Many of us miss the days of our childhood, when all we cared about was our favorite cartoons and not the newest technology, as we see today. Saad Abdulwahab Al-Wuhaib, an animator, is one of such people, working to bring ’80s cartoons to life.He also hasa collection of retro toys. Kuwait Times spoke to Wuhaibto know more about his passion for being forever young.
Kuwait Times: Tell us more about yourself.
Saad Al-Wuhaib: I’m a 31-year-old Kuwaiti man who loves his work as an animator.
KT: Growing up, did you draw a lot? What style do you like the most?
Wuhaib: I began drawing from the early stages of my life, and my parents noticed that I lovedsketching, coloring, watching cartoons and reading comics. Because I was a huge fan of cartoons, I wanted very badly to have all the characters, but I couldn’t. So using creative ways to solve the problem, I decided to draw them when I was a kid, then cut them out and play with them.
KT: Do you have a natural talent or was it a skill you had to push yourself to learn and acquire?
Wuhaib:I believe I was born with a talent for drawing, so I didn’t need any degree to learn how to draw.Regardless of the level of achievement, I always look forward to further my creativity in this field.
KT: Tell us more about Danqos?
Wuhaib: Danqos is a mini drawing of me. I created him to narrate my daily life on Instgram in a funny way. He is a simulation of the reality of my own routine to interact with my fans.
KT: What was the first project you ever worked on? How did you get it?
Wuhaib: My first officially project was working on the first Kuwaiti anime series for a Kuwait TV production in 2014, which began work in 2013. I designed the hero “Hassan the Fox”. I drew Hassan for 30 episodes with 3,000 frames for this character. I also worked on some other minor characters in the series.
I got this job because of my account on Instagram. Kuwait TV invited me to take a capabilityexam and I passed the test in drawing the main character. It is such a big responsibility to complete30 episodes of this animated serieswhen you are just an amateur and not a professional. But I learned from my mistakes. During my work, I benefited a lot from reading comics and watching animation, and what made me continue is this challenge to accomplish my childhood dream.
KT: Have you considered making animated films?
Wuhaib: Yes of course. I would love to work in making animated movies with a professional team to gain experience and learn more.
KT: What does a typical day look like for you?
Wuhaib: I spend my day often at home, specifically in my room, where I practice painting and receiving my clients’ requests.In my free time, I read stories, watch anime movies or play video games.
KT: What part of your job do you like best and why? What makes it so awesome?
Wuhaib: I enjoy all the formal stages of drawing – from the foundation tothe coloring till the finaltouch. The best thing that I like about doing this work is that I have the chance to be a kid every day.
KT: What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Wuhaib: I have a lot of animation work that I am proud of, but the most important one is my first “digital drawing” in 2004. I participated in a special art exhibition in college.Back then, no one knew how to make a digital painting or had even participated in an art exhibitionwith a digital painting in Kuwait. So I got an award for my painting as the most creative and new idea in that exhibition.
KT: What does your animation workflow look like?
Wuhaib: It is hard to be accurate, so I have to be careful because one cannot afford any mistakes while drawing by hand, as it is hard to edit and redo. I make sure that a painting is free of errors.
KT: Tell us a little about the tools that you are using. What are your preferences?
Wuhaib:For freehand drawing, I use pencils and ink, and for coloring, I always use Copic markers.
KT: What do you think about Japanese animation? Are you a fan or do you prefer good old American animation?
Wuhaib: Actually, I really love all types of animation – old and new. But I adore Walt Disney and ’80s cartoons.
KT: What projects have you been involved with?
Wuhaib:”Story Board” for Ooredoo in Kuwait, “Story Board” for Kia Motors, “Story Board” for Ooredoo in Qatar, and designing logos for various official bodies, such as a gas company in Qatar. I also drew charterers for seven children storybooks.
KT: Lastly, is there any advice you can give to an aspiring animation student or an artist trying to get into the animation business?
Wuhaib: I recommend that those who have the talent to refine their talent by working hard and observing movements and expressions in order to get many ideas to apply in their artworks.
By Faten Omar