MEET #3094 KIRSTEN LEPORE
Animator • Los Angeles, CA
WNW Member #3094 Kirsten Lepore is an animator and director based in Los Angeles. Her films have taken top prizes at SXSW and the Vimeo Awards, and she's given presentations everywhere from Pixar to Portugal. Some of her clients include Google, MTV, Yo Gabba Gabba, Newsweek, Whole Foods, Toyota, Facebook, Nickelodeon, Nestle, and Glamour Magazine. Kirsten spoke to WNW about her life as a freelancer and advice from Fred Seibert that she never forgets.
1. How long have you been freelancing?
I think it's been about 7 or 8 years?
2. Is there a time or place that you feel most creative/have the best ideas?
Definitely late at night - once most people are asleep - I have my quiet late night work session of intense focus. I also get super inspired being out in nature....or the craft store.
3. What's your ideal Working:Not Working ratio?
I usually love to have something I'm working on constantly or I get bored. I also never usually have consistent days off...I'll just work more on some days than others. I'd say 85% working 15% not working?
4. Do your parents understand what you do?
Surprisingly yes! They're super supportive! There have also been several instances where I was watching TV with my mom and an animated commercial came on, and she'd be like "Was that done in Flash?" and guess the software, haha. Sometimes she's way off, but I'm always impressed with her understanding of animation.
5. What scene from a movie makes you laugh just thinking about it?
Pretty much any scene from Wayne's World, like this one. I can pretty much quote that entire movie.
6. If you were stranded on a desert island, with your computer, what 3 websites would you take with you?
7. What do you do when Not Working?
Cooking!!! ...and eating!
8. Do you have a hidden talent?
I guess it might be considered "hidden" to my current friends since they've probably never seen me do it, but I've played piano since I was about 2. Music was the biggest part of my life before filmmaking or animation ever entered the picture.
I also used to be really good at making armpit farting noises.
9. Any tips or advice for fellow freelancers?
The best advice I ever received from a client that was eye-opening at the time was from Fred Seibert (the guy responsible for all the awesome creative direction for 80s MTV and Nickeodeon). I was doing a project for him and pitching a few concepts that I must have thought he would "go for." He stopped me at a certain point and told me that he'd rather me come up with a bunch of ideas that I loved and that excited me, rather than trying to just do what I thought the client wanted. He was such an awesome, brilliant guy and I've been thinking about and have tried to stick to that advice ever since.