Apr 2016 - Present (5 years 8 months)
I art direct the creation of Character Art for Global Licensing. In this role I conceive, draw and manage
external resources in the development of CN characters for use in Style Guides for Product Development
and Marketing materials. I also provide direction and creative assets for Hardlines in cooperation with our Master
DISNEY STORE NA
I managed and art directed a team of artists and freelancers to both design product and created assets for product development ranging from Kids & Adults Apparel to Home, Stationary, and Tabletop items. I was instrumental in the creation of items for multiple Disney Animated Franchises such as Cars, Tangled, Toy Story 3, as well as ongoing live action theatrical releases such as Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" as well as TV properties such as Handy Manny, Phineas & Ferb and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. I also directed the creative design for the Disney Store Exclusive "Vinylmation" ﬁgure line originated in the Orlando and Anaheim Theme Parks. In this role I continued to be a "hands on" illustrator and graphic designer from conceptualization to ﬁnal mechanical art all while taking into consideration the realities of manufacturing limitations and cost restraints of a vertical business model.
CARTOON NETWORK STUDIO
My responsibilities included the development of Character Art, network premiums, graphic design and ﬁnal illustrations for use in licensing style guides, DVD and Video Game packaging art, marketing and sales materials, trade advertising, on-line and on air promotions and interstitial content. In this capacity I worked closely with show creators and developers along with executives in Atlanta in an effort to provide appropriate creative assets for the launch of new network shows. I also contributed to creative and conceptual development of special projects and environmental installations such as the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Float. In addition, I oversaw creative development of 3D licensed promotional items with Quick Serve Restaurants such as Burger King & McDonald's.
PRINCIPAL, JIM VALERI
My clients have included Disney, Mattel, Sony, Playmates Toys, The Jim Henson Co., Equity Marketing, Funrise Toys, KidsII, Evergreen Concepts, Fisher Price, Idea Planet, Baby Einstein Company, Harper Collins, Cartoon Network and many more. My business has included toy aesthetics, packaging illustration, logo design, publishing, character art and style guide development, as well as conceptual development of new entertainment properties and toy invention. As a co-founder of Playtonium Labs LLC in 2004 I focused on toy invention with an eye toward the creation of novelty toys. My partner and I worked with manufacturing counterparts, voice talent, distributors and inventor relation's personnel in an effort to place items at retail.
Babies, Winnie the Pooh, Vault Disney Classics, and Toy Story. I collaborated daily with a wide variety of Toy and Sporting Goods licensees in every aspect and discipline of the product development process including design, marketing, costing, focus testing, safety testing, line planning, and packaging. Companies I interacted with included Mattel, Fisher-Price, Spinmaster, Hasbro (Tiger), Lego, Applause, Thinkway Toys, Tomy, Gund, Neurosmith, Monogram, and Playmates. In this role I was in charge of a design staff of six people. In addition, I interfaced with a signiﬁcant number of external sculptors and graphic design ﬁrms on a regular basis. I was also involved in the assessment of inventor submissions regularly.
DISNEY CONSUMER PRODUCTS
Reporting to the SVP of Disney Global Toys. My responsibilities included ongoing "blue sky" conceptualization and art direction for all new design initiatives as well as day to day product development oversight of all toy categories targeting Infant/Preschool, Girls, Boys, Games, Novelties, and Collectibles. In this role, I worked closely with the internal marketing team to develop and implement Disney's Global Strategic business plan including creative direction for retail merchandising, print and TV advertising programs. Responsible for development of merchandise and creative content, including character design, and pitch materials for the following Disney Global brand initiatives: ESPN, X-games, Disney Princesses, Disney Fairies, Mickey
ART DIRECTOR, CHARACTER ART and HARDLINES- CARTOON NETWORK
I art direct the creation of Character Art
Global Licensing. In this role I conceive, draw and manage external resources in the development of CN characters for use in Style Guides for Product Development and Marketing materials. I also provide direction and creative assets for Hardlines in cooperation with our Master Toy Licensees.
CHARACTER ART MANAGER
DISNEY CONSUMER PRODUCTS
Beginning as an intern, I was trained and eventually chosen to oversee what would become a staff of twelve character artists/ product designers in the creation of style guides and supplemental creative materials including graphic design, character art, and illustrations for multiple licensees to utilize in the generation of toys, accessories, home decor, gifts, stationary, and apparel. In addition, I conceptualized and art directed the creation of over ninety animatronic Disney ﬁgures for Macy's Holiday Windows in Manhattan and San Francisco, contributed to the layout and illustration of several children's books published by Disney, as well as theme park attractions, and I laid out and illustrated many Disney Newsletter and Disney Store Catalog covers. I designed and oversaw the development of some Disney Store merchandise as well during this time.