Sunday, April 13, 2008

Andy Knight: 1985

Like everyone, I am completely saddened by Andy Knight's untimely passing. He was an incredibly creative artist; an amazingly mature leader right out of the gate. He was also generous to those he worked with.
Andy was 2 years ahead of me at college, a class that was comprised of some pretty stong draughtsmen/cartoonists, and Andy was at the top. His drawings were the definition of "appealing".

In 1984-85 I was fortunate to work in Paris on 2 "Asterix" animated films. Andy was doing both storyboards and layout for the films. His drawing ability was something to admire even back then. He must have been 22 years old, yet he storyboarded most of the film with a confidence and ability of someone who'd been in doing it for a dozen years. I could never figure out how he understood film language so easily that early in his career.....

On "Asterx in Britain" I moved up to work in the Layout dept, which Andy was Supervising, and my job was to create "character poses" for some of the sequences. It was daunting and frustrating to see him in his office just pumping out image after image that were so well designed and composed for animation. In my attempt to keep up, I was learning to put down ideas in a simple, appealing manner, much like Andy. In hindesite I was learning from one of the best. The group of artist at the studio was young and influenced each other immensely. That included Mike Smith, Rob Stevenhagen, Bibo Bergeron, the Brizzi brothers, Reg Bourdages, etc...
For most of us on those films, it was one of the best experiences of our careers/lives.

I had not seen Andy in the past 15 years, and unfortunately never got to tell him how much he inspired me to improve my early work.

Below are a couple of photos of Andy during that time.

Andy(standing) supervising the storyboarding on "Asterix in Britain".
(Keith Ingham is second from the left.)

Andy and Pino

On the street's of Paris.
Pete, Jonathan Webber, Andy

Andy, Linzi, and John
(courtesy Reg Bourdages)

One of the common images I have of Andy is his wry smile. It's as though he knew something you didn't; showing a wisdom beyond his age.
Rest in Peace Andy.

I'll be adding more pictures of Andy to this blog in the next few days. If you'd like to add images to this blog, please email them to me at


At 7:45 PM, Blogger the doodlers said...

These early pictures are as I remember Andy when he first started working on Gadget! A super talent, and a sweet guy.

Thanks for this post. It's a shock to think that he's passed away.

~Arna Selznick (Andy's story supervisor at Nelvana in 1982)

At 3:33 AM, Blogger TotalD said...

That was the first Asterix I worked on and I had never had such terrific layouts to work from in my life. I kept thinking , did they have these great animators do them ? Jesus , these were too good ! Who the hell was cranking out these things ?!

Then we ran into Pino Van Lamsweerde , the director of Asterix and he raved on and on about this kid Andy Knight . He was right to , they were great.

Beautiful pics Ken . Look at that hair. My god , that is the Andy I remember most.

At 8:18 AM, Blogger David Scott Smith said...

Thanks for this Ken.
Sending a pic to you from Paris

Fond memories of Sheridan College. His wanting to introduce me to this wonderful girl he'd met ..Linzi. Of course we know they became soul mates and soon married. Our first working together at Nelvana on Inspector Gadget with Arna Selznik. Sailing the Toronto harbor every week, living around the corner from each other in Parkdale and crashing at each others place depending how hard we partied. It was through Andy initially, and Bill Speers that we had those few years in Paris! on two Asterix productions.

Our last meeting in L.A. then after several years ... we were so very glad to see each other... felt like 1982, kids again in Toronto.

Such a HUGE talent, I've such great respect for this man. Gone from us far too young.

With a very, very sad heart.
david smith

At 7:11 PM, Blogger dots4eyes said...

Thanks for posting these photos, Ken. I looked through the few that I had of Paris but didn't find any of Andy, which I'm sad about. The one of him with Linzi and Jonathan is great.

A light has gone out.


At 4:24 PM, Anonymous Linzi said...

Ken, thanks so much for the kind words and wonderful photos - a few I've never seen. I'm truly touched.



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