Two girls and a boy.

Sarah and I heard those words quite often when the girls were young (and had very little hair!). For some reason, when we would be out in public, strangers would assume whoever was in the black single stroller was a boy. It used to drive us crazy!! Yes, the girls were pretty much bald for the longest time but if you at least looked before speaking you could see they were all girls!! Anyway, for the first time in at least a year the statement “two girls and a boy” was mouthed to us in an elevator on Monday.

The words took on a completely different meaning this time however. Sarah’s mom, Sarah and I were making our way out of the hospital after Anna’s ultrasound appointment (see Sarah’s post for more) on Monday. I had carried Allie (a bit crabby due to lack of sleep and teething) to the cashier of the somewhat antiquated parking garage within the city/hospital while Sarah and Sheila hopped in the elevator to start the process of loading the girls for the ride home. Because the building is so old, the elevators move extremely slow so I was able to pay the cashier and reach the elevator just in time for Allie and me to join the rest of the family for the elevator ride.

The elevator was small, but there was enough room for all of us, the stroller, and a couple of other passengers. My mind was preoccupied with getting to work and Anna’s ultrasound so I hadn’t given much notice to the elevator passenger next to me. Sarah, however, noticed he was carrying two balloons – one pink and one blue so she made a comment to the gentleman – something like “did you have twins?” The guy responded with “triplets, actually”. I took notice. His next statement was “two girls and a boy”. In the next two minutes we learned they were born four days previously at about 31 weeks and were all three were breathing on their own.

Before the new dad got off the elevator, Sarah told him to get some sleep. I didn’t say anything – I just thought to myself "he is in for quite a ride”.

Problems with videos on Blogger?

There seems to be an issue with some of the videos I have posted the last few weeks so I thought I would ask whether anyone else has experienced problems viewing videos (on my blog or other blogs). When viewing the video a message "This video is temporarily unavaible" appears on the screen. I am going to look at alternatives such as putting the videos on Youtube and then linking from my posts to Youtube. In the meantime, if anyone has any suggestions or feedback, I'd appreciate it.

Ready on Your Mark, Get Set...


I think the girls might be runners after all. Allie and Emily took turns lacing up a pair of my running shoes the other and all the while they were chanting "Go Emmie Go" and "On your mark, get set...."! It was classic.

Am I still a Runner?

The title of this blog and the subject matter of some of my posts would lead one to assume that I am a runner. However, changes in my running over the past few years have led me to ask myself several times "Am I still a runner?"

I didn't run in high school or college. The only real running I did was recreational – a few miles here and there. As a matter of fact, I was about 30 years old the first time I ever registered for a road race. When I did decide to get into running, I got into it. After seeing my friend Kate run the (Boston) marathon, I had my mind set on completing a marathon. The race was on – I purchased a few books, set-up a training plan and started logging the miles. After completing the marathon (in a respectable 4:20), I joined a running club and started running road races and having a whole lot of fun with it. Since then, I have completed three other marathons (Boston, Marine Corps and Disney), the Falmouth Road Race every year since 1996, one or two half-marathons, and a ton of 5Ks, 5-milers and 10Ks.

It’s been well over 10 years since I became an avid runner. And, like most people, my life has taken many turns since the first time I crossed a finish line. As my life has changed, so has my running. There have been periods when I have trained by running the streets at 5:00 am in mid-winter. I’ve run 15+ miles on a treadmill because outside conditions did not permit me to run safely on streets and sidewalks. At times in my running career I’ve juggled work, a social life, school and family with running. Recently, however, my running story has not been one which would get printed in Runner’s World magazine. If you read Runner’s World, you know the type of story I am referring to - the runner who works 80 hours a week, does triathlons on weekends and gets up 4:30 am to get his run in.

Obstacles/impediments to my running over the past few years have included normal stuff like the renovation and maintenance of our first home, wedding plans, and job searches. There has also been some procrastination, laziness, and New England weather as an excuse not to run. Since I started running I've also experienced gut-wrenching emotional pain with the passing of my 13 year-old niece Julie, my dad, and our angel Abigail on June 4, 2006. Then, of course, there are three little girls at home who have consumed Sarah and I for the past three years! In years past I had a hard time finding an excuse not to run. In recent years I have found it difficult to find 30 minutes to run.

I’m hoping I am making a positive turn in my running, though. The excuses not to run have become fewer (in my mind, anyway). For the first time in many years, Sarah and I have a designated room/area in our home to work-out. The space is well-lit, heated, and has enough room for our treadmill, mat and hand weights. I have just lost an excuse for not running. Even though most nights Sarah and don’t get uninterrupted sleep, that excuse has also worn thin. Like most every other American, I have enough going on in my life to fill all my waking hours – a career, the care of our house, taking classes toward an MBA and (lest I forget) the care of three crazy toddlers! I’m done with excuses, though. I will continue to run.

I run. I think about running all the time. People with whom I haven’t spoken to in awhile always ask me about my running. Yes, I am a runner.

Finding my own style

I've been learning construction for a few months now at The Animation Academy, and I'm trying to combine the technique of construction with my own style. Hope you guys like it. AG

Head Rotations

That was an assignment over at The Animation Academy, it's the first time I'm trying to do draw rotations of a human. I'd like to thank the amazing Charles Zembillas for all the help.


I did this at CSUN today. Not sure what it is, it's suppose to be half man half fairy. I'd like to thank Charles Zembillas for all the help. AG

Funny Characters II

Here's part two, hope it makes you guys laugh. AG

Funny Characters

Ok, so I was just having fun when I created these characters, just did it for fun, I really enjoyed the process. Hope you guys like it. AG

Craige the Mouswolf

I really enjoyed designing this character, I did it today, at CSUN. Charles Zembillas is the main instructor of that class, I had a great time, it was a lot of fun. I'm not sure what it is though, it's some kind of a wolf or a mouse, I really don't know. Well, I hope you guys like it. Till next time. AG

Laundry Helper times Three.

Our girls are getting to the age where they can "help" mommy and daddy. Help from Allie, Anna and Emily comes in the form of the clean-up of toys, books, crayons, paper, clothes, diapers and whatever else the girls decide to make a mess of. And, because we don't have a separate room for our washer & dryer (they are are in the bathroom on the first floor), the sorting of the girls' clothes is often done in an area of the house where the girls have full access to a laundry basket filled with dirty clothes. Sunday was one of those days - some unsorted clothes sat in the laundry basket and the girls were in a helpful mood. So help they did.

Notice in the video clip how Anna is very deliberate with the task at hand (and deliberate in what her sisters should be doing also). I think the little episode is pretty funny, but Sarah didn't see the humor in it when she went to put a load of clothes in the wash!

Using Colors...

The title pretty much says it all. I used Prisma Colors and Photoshop. Hope you guys like it.

Happy Hearts.

Valentine's Day at our house this year was a fairly typical Sunday - no $100 roses or fancy dinner. And while I was out grocery shopping I noticed a number of people (mostly men, of course) leaving the grocery store with flowers or candy and rushing home to satisfy the obligatory Saint Valentine's Day gift purchase. As I watched these people, I thought about how lucky I am to have my personal valentine(s) waiting for me at home. Sarah's Valentine's Day post tells it all.

Happy Valentines Day Allie, Anna, Emily and of course my honey Sarah. And to my angel Abigail: in my heart you remain.

Playing with colors

Just a quick sketch I made, took me about 10 mins. This was the very first time I used colors, I used PrismaColor. Hope you guys like it. AG

The AnimationGirl Style

Just trying to develop my own style. Doing the best I can.

I was basically trying to focus on the anatomy of the human body when I did these. Hope you guys enjoy it. AG

Creating concept art using 'Microsoft's Paint'

Ok, so I was trying to create a concept art using 'Microsoft's Paint', this is the very first Concept Art \ Background design I've ever created. Hope you like it guys.

Having Fun...

I was just having fun when I created this cat\fox (I'm not really sure what it is). I wanted to create a cool new-looking character with the tools I had, so I did my best. Hope you like it guys. AG

In Unity There's Power!

As one my favorite artists used to say: "In Unity There's Power!"-- That's how I feel when I look at this drawing. I still have a LONG way to go, but it's the first time I actually focused on drawing the male's body. Hope you guys like it.

Bad Day.

The song Bad Day (the one American Idol used as a farewell song to contestants a couple of seasons ago) has been in my head since my run-in with an idiot at the train station this morning.

Dear fellow commuter:

You’re a tough guy, I know. Very cool and intimidating with your pulled up collar and shaved head. So you had a bad day, eh? That’s why you decided, rather than having to walk around me, you felt the need to purposely bump me once and then knock my bag off my shoulder with a second bump. You decided you weren’t going to say “excuse me”. You didn’t apologize because you are not sorry. Maybe you’re in a mood because your girlfriend left you for that cute guy who lives upstairs from you. Or maybe your ugly dog (who makes a mess in your neighbor’s yard all the time) got hit by a truck last night. Or maybe you are just pissed because, rather than getting paid to sleep in this morning, you had to get your sorry *ss out of bed and go to work for once. I don’t know what your story is nor do I care. We all have stories. We all have crosses to bear. You are rude. You are an idiot. You are everything else I didn’t get to say to you this morning while my blood was boiling and you were in my face. I was so mad I couldn’t think straight enough to tell you I know your deal – I don’t buy your lame surprised response when I confronted you about your rudeness. You must have thought I was going to roll over like some professional geek with no gall. This morning you made the decision that you were mad and that the first person who “got in your way” was going to have a bad day too. I (unfortunately), have to admit I let you get the best of me. I didn’t throw a right jab square to your nose like I wanted to, but you were in my head rent-free this morning so in some ways you did win. So…you HAD A BAD DAY. You poor baby - maybe when you call your mother tonight she’ll be the sole person to pity your sorry soul.

Yours truly,
Commuter Who Got In Your Way

Can I wear mommy's boots?

This morning, as I was attempting to have coffee and rest my feet for a few minutes, Allie and Anna decided they wanted to wear my slippers. This wasn't the first time one of the girls has worn mommy or daddy's shoes - Anna wore Sarah's knee-high Uggs one time, actually. This is the first time I got the cuteness recorded on video, however. In the video Anna asked if she could wear mommy's boots!

The Disney Style?

Ok, so I was trying to catch up with the Disney style, I still have a long way to go but I know I'm gonna get there soon. I was inspired by the Beauty and the Beast movie and also by The Art of Tarzan book. I hope you like it.

Till next time guys! Have a great weekend! AG

Controlling Illusion - First Book by the Character Design Master: Charles Zembillas

Controlling Illusion is the debut release of master creator, Charles Zembillas, the founder and leader of both Animation Nation and The Academy. Charles Zembillas is my teacher, mentor, and friend. He has taught me more than any teacher I have ever known, and the majority of that knowledge is presented in this book! Controlling Illusion is, indeed, a fantastic collection of LIVE class demonstrations. Every image was completed in one sitting before an audience. What makes the book truly unique, however, is its explanation of the material. The process behind every drawing, painting, and sketch is described in great detail. Further more, a broad range of tools are represented, including pencil, inkpen, marker, guash, watercolor, acrylic, and digital medium. Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to bare witness to many of these brainchildren, and having seen them created in person, I HIGHLY recommend this book to any level of artist! The work will inspire, the text will enlighten, and the unquestionable result will be improvement in your art!! Thank you so very much for sharing your wisdom, talent, and secrets with us, Charles!!! I'm sure I speak for the masses when I say I'll never forget it... Your students are all over the industry, they would not be where they are today if it wasn't for you Charles! Thank you for everything!

Keep Creating!

Character Rotations

This is the second drawing I'd like to show, I've drawn it at The Animation Academy. I really tried to rotate this little fellow as best as I could. If you want to be a Character Designer you have to learn how to rotate characters.

A very good friend of mine used to say: "You can't be a Character Designer if you don't know how to rotate your own characters" so I listened to him and did my best with this drawing.

Foxy Lady...

Ok, so this is the very first drawing I want to show, I've drawn this foxy lady over CAL State Northridge University. The amazing Charles Zembillas is the main instructor in that class and we had an assignment, we had to draw a Character based on the human body.

I've been trying to draw the human body for years and it always came out wrong. The class over CSUN with Charles Zembillas really helped me to understand the anatomy of the human body. So that's the story behind this drawing. Hope you like it. I really tried my best.


Welcome everybody! My nickname is AnimationGirl. Welcome to my official art blog. Animation, Video Games, the Animation\Video Game industry and art in general have been my number 1 passion since I was a little girl. I live in the Burbank, CA area. I always wanted to learn animation and Character Design, I started my animation studies at The more than amazing Animation Academy of Burbank, CA in September of last year and I'm still taking classes over there. I improved after only few classes.


I met a lot of artists through the Animation Academy so far, I met Charles Zembillas (Founder of The Animation Academy, designer of Crash Bandicoot, Spyro the Dragon, Jak and Daxter) Joe Person (Designer of Crash Bandicoot and War of the Worlds: Goliath) Paul Felix (Best known as the Art Director of Bolt, he worked on movies such as Mulan, Aladdin and so on) I met Paul at the Walt Disney Studios through the Animation Academy. Snakebite (A Photoshop painter at RedStar Studios) Jose Lopez, I met Jose over Cartoon Networks (He currently works as a lead Character Designer at Cartoon Networks)

Chance Raspberry (Layout Designer on The Simpsons)

(CLICK HERE to visit Chance's BlogSpot Page)

All these people are lead artists in the animation industry. I met all of them through The AMAZING Animation Academy in Burbank, CA, all of them were students at The Animation Academy, all of them were Charles Zembillas' students! I feel SO blessed for the having the opportunity to take classes at The Animation Academy with the best Character Designer in the whole world: Charles Zembillas! Charles is the main instructor and founder of The Animation Academy and he taught me everything I know, I still have a long way to go, but I know I'll do well because the best artist on this planet is teaching me. I truly appreciate all of you taking the time to explore my world and I sincerely hope you enjoy what you find enough to return again. I'll be adding to and updating this blog as frequently as I can with new and current artwork. So until then, God bless! AG

The Blizzard of 1978.

How ironic that Washington DC is receiving record snowfalls on the anniversary of The Great Blizzard of 1978. I am a survivor of the infamous storm that dumped over two feet of snow on the Boston area, causing road and school closures - snow fall at a rate of 4" an hour at one point. Being just a pre-teen at the time, I thought it was a lot of fun. There were, however, several deaths and many homes on the coast were lost or damaged beyond repair. I hope the storm which went through the Mid-Atlantic states today does not do the damage the Blizzard of '78 did to parts of Massachusetts.

Some facts about the storm:

It snowed from 10:20 am on February 2 to 6:20 Am February 7, 1978.

President Carter declared it a Federal disaster

It was the worst winter in 105 years

Record sbowfall in 24 hr period 27.1 inches

Winds were measured at 79 mph

Record school closings

I dug up some video my dad took of me and my two younger brothers "helping" my mother and father clear out the piles of snow. Check it out!

The Great Blizzard of 1978

Almost three years old.

The girls' birthday is only about two months from now so Sarah and I have started to talk about the big day - party at our house versus at a "party place", etc. And, as with many things in life,
I can be fairly emotional when it comes to milestones and other life events - just ask Sarah about my reaction to setting up Emily's bedroom on Sunday!'s a look back at the girls from September 2007 - "they grow up so fast":