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The World According To Tom LaBaff

How a local illustrator and animator creates scintillating storyboards for a variety of clients.

One of LaBaff’s more popular drawings with Facebook fans was this one of a woman in a bath towel hugging her reflection. It illustrated a story for Charisma magazine about self-acceptance.

One of LaBaff’s more popular drawings with Facebook fans was this one of a woman in a bath towel hugging her reflection. It illustrated a story for Charisma magazine about self-acceptance.

I n recent months, the headquarters of Tom LaBaff Illustrations has been housed in a darkened studio over a bagel shop in the historic Hibiscus Building downtown. On stormy days, paper towels catch rain dripping to the floor where, not three yards away, sits a large makeshift “time management” calendar affixed with columns of to-do magnets to keep LaBaff on schedule with deadlines. On any given week, the 45-year-old former Disney animator is juggling several projects for clients ranging from magazine and book publishers to advertising agencies and independent production companies.

But his top passion is to create “storyboards,” illustrations that get displayed in sequence to help movie directors pre-visualize a film prior to animation. “It’s an efficient way to make movies,” says LaBaff, whose storyboarded characters have been turned loose in well-known feature films like Ice Age 4 and Epic.

Read the entire article in the September/October 2013 issue