Where The Job Takes You!
I often marvel at the course of events that lead us to where we ultimately land within our lives. The people we meet, the experiences we encounter along the way — they shape and define us in profound and lasting ways. For many, it's through our work that the course of our life unfolds. What began as a 'temp' job many years ago set me on the road that I travel today within film and animation, unfolding a course of events I never could have imagined even then.
Ninety five years ago this month, a young girl by the name of Lillian Bounds started a new job. Upon completing her secretarial training at a local business college in Spalding, Idaho, Lillian traveled to Southern California to visit her oldest sister Hazel Sewell and her family (husband, Glenn & their daughter Marjorie) in a cozy bungalow on Hollywood Blvd. In late 1923, Los Feliz was the epicenter of the burgeoning film industry. Metro Studios, Vitagraph, Mack Sennett's Keystone Film Co, Griffith's Fine Arts Studio and Fox were among the studios that had sprawling lots in the area. Possibilities were abundant for a young, newly certified secretary and Lillian thought she might try to find a job in the big city.
Filming at the Vitagraph Studios in Los Feliz
One of Hazel's friends had been working nearby at a small storefront start-up operated by two young brothers. They had established the first animation studio in Hollywood and were expanding to meet the demands of creating their "Alice Comedies" series. "She told me they were going to hire another girl to do the inking and painting," Lillian recalled. "Since the studio was within walking distance from where I was living, it sounded like a good opportunity."
Lillian Bounds and the staff of the Disney Brothers Studio circa 1924
Indeed, as one of the young brothers — Roy Disney — later noted: "It was only a little temporary work. It wouldn't last long. Lasted the rest of her life."
Walt & Lillian Disney