Call For: Layout Artists & Key Pose Artists @ Cartoon Saloon


Layout Artists

Required for Oscar © nominated animation studio, Cartoon Saloon. This is a full-time role based in Kilkenny.

The ideal candidate will have good experience in hand-drawn layout production, good drawing and observation skills.

Duties to include; working with the director and art director to design production layouts based on production design kit and model pack.

To apply, please send your CV and application letter to

Please note that due to restrictions in employment law in Ireland, we will only be able to consider applications from EU nationals


Key Pose Artists

Required for Oscar © nominated animation studio, Cartoon Saloon. This is a full-time role based in Kilkenny.

The ideal candidate will have good experience in hand-drawn Key Posing, good drawing and observation skills.

Duties to include; working with the director and art director to design character poses based on production design kit and model pack.

To apply, please send your CV and application letter to

Please note that due to restrictions in employment law in Ireland, we will only be able to consider applications from EU nationals


Interview: Paul Young, Producer of ‘Song of the Sea’



Paul Young is co-founder and CEO of Cartoon Saloon and Producer of the Oscar-nominated animated feature Song of the Sea.  Lynn O’Reilly, an animation student at BCFE, caught up with him at the recent Irish VFX + Animation Summit to ask for advice on breaking into the animation industry and the role of the Producer of an animated feature film.


Do you have any advice for any animation students who are trying to decide what they want to do when they leave college?


It can be hard when you’re young. I was lucky because I went to study in Belfast first and went through lots of different art and design disciplines before I settled on illustration and then on to animation. The best advice I can give is whatever part of it you enjoy most, like you if you enjoy the drawing or the writing the most, just try to draw as much as you can, or write as much as you can. Then get out and about and meet the studios. Try and call in and talk to people who work in those studios. Talk to past students. Try to get to places like Annecy [the International Animation Film Festival] and you’ll meet so many more people from other places and other colleges. And then you suss out more from them. The most important part of the college experience is the people you’re with, the people in your class. Obviously you learn from your tutors and your classes, but you learn more from each other.


You’re Producer on Song of the Sea, and the role of Producer is not something people get much of an insight into compared to other roles in the filmmaking process. Would you be able to shed a bit of light on this? What’s involved in being the Producer of an animated feature film?


It varies. For big studio films a Producer is more like what we would consider a Line Producer or a Production Manager, and that’s the only thing they do, that’s their one focus. Whereas with smaller studios, as a Producer I’m doing lots of things. I’m not really as hands-on with the day-to-day production like a Line Producer or a Production Manager. I’m trying to get money for the next film, like a Business Director or a Company Director.

Studios do need a lot more Production Managers, because there is a lot of people interested in animation. We’ve hired fantastic people from colleges like Gobelins and colleges in Denmark, who, in their final year, just focused on Production Management and learned how to be producers. Maybe after spending some time studying animation they realized it’s not for them or they’re not getting the skills, and for them there’s a great career to be had in Production Management.

The best people you can find are from colleges who have been through the production process, who know what it’s like to make something themselves, then they’ll understand what it takes. I studied animation and illustration and I never really thought I’d be a Producer. I just kind of fell into it, because we had to find money to fund our projects. I never really got any training. So what I had to do was hire a Production Manager who’d worked on a TV series or hire a Line Producer who’d done a feature film –I’d try and bring them in and at least they might know more about the pitfalls. And now I’ve learned a lot after making a number of films. So really, it’s just about doing it.




‘Somewhere Down The Line’ Wins at Clermont-Ferrand


Irish animation Somewhere Down The Line won the the prize for Best Animated Short at the 37th Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival this weekend.

Julian Regnard ‘s film, produced by Jonathan Clarke, examines a man’s life, loves and losses through the exchanges he has with the passengers in his car. It was produced by the Oscar nominated Cartoon Saloon’s Kilkenny studio using a combination of 3D and 2D animation techniques.

The Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival is the world’s leading film festival dedicated to short films. It is held annually in Clermont-Ferrand, France, and is the second largest film festival in France, after Cannes, in terms of audience and professional attendance, boasting over 100,000 attendees annually, since 1995.


Call For: Python Developer & Storyboard Artist @ Cartoon Saloon


Illustration: Adeline Pericart

Python Developer

Cartoon Saloon is looking for a Python Developer to start in January 2015

Project: Various
Start date: Monday, 05th January 2015.
Duration: 3 months initially – exact duration to be confirmed.
Location: Cartoon Saloon, Kilkenny.


A Python Developer to work with Cartoon Saloon in setting up a new programme in house.

Requirements are –

Minimum three years experience developing with Python necessary
Experience working with Shotgun software preferred
Experience working within an animation production pipeline preferred
Must be capable of working within a fast-paced creative environment
Must be a resourceful and versatile team member with excellent people skills – good team player, communicator, able to work calmly under pressure and without constant supervision.

Due to employment restrictions in Ireland,  Cartoon Saloon will only be able to consider applications from EU nationals

Please email your application, including samples of work and details of previous experience, to by specifying “Python_Developer_your name” in the Subject.


Storyboard Artist

Cartoon Saloon’s  Puffin Rock Partner, Dog Ears, are looking for a highly motivated storyboard artist to join the Puffin team in Derry, Northern Ireland

Project: Puffin Rock – 39×7 minute episodes.
Position: Storyboard artist.
Start date: Monday, 05th January 2015.
Duration: 9 months – exact date to be confirmed.
Location: DOG EARS Studio in Derry – Northern Ireland (UK).

Requirements are

Excellent people skills – good team player, communicator, able to work calmly under pressure and without constant supervision.
Must be organized and have a good eye for continuity and detail.
Hardworking and enthusiastic, passionate about character animation and acting.
Must have strong drawing and storytelling skills for action sequences.
Adhere to the quality and style of the series and make sure it is consistently achieved in your drawing.
Ideally with experience in pre-school storyboarding for film and/or television animation.
Must be able to work digitally – Storyboard Pro software knowledge is preferred.
Must respond well to notes and be able to translate revisions during storyboard reviews.
Meet all deadlines as determined by the production manager.

Please be aware that a small test will be required.

Due to employment restrictions in Ireland, Cartoon Saloon will only be able to consider applications from EU nationals

Please email your application, including samples of work and details of previous experience, to by specifying “Puffin Rock_storyboard application_your name” in the Subject.


Cartoon Saloon & Aircraft Pictures Present ‘The Breadwinner’


Aircraft Pictures and Cartoon Saloon announce a major co-production deal to adapt the award-winning novel The Breadwinner written by Deborah Ellis as an animated feature film


The Breadwinner is the story of Parvana, a young girl living under the Taliban regime in Afghanistan who must disguise herself as a boy and become the breadwinner of the family when her father is unfairly imprisoned for being an intellectual. It’s a tale of self-empowerment and imagination in the face of oppression – celebrating the culture and beauty of Afghanistan. The book has sold millions of copies worldwide and is recommended reading for middle school students in the US, Canada and in Europe.


The film will be directed by Nora Twomey from Cartoon Saloon, co-director of the Academy Award® nominee for Best Animated Feature The Secret of Kells and director of the multiple award winning shorts From Darkness and Cúilín Dualach (Backwards Boy). The screenplay was written by author Deborah Ellis and Anita Doron.  Ms. Doron’s credits include the feature films The End of Silence starring Sarah Harmer and The Lesser Blessed written and directed by Anita, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and won the American Indian Film Award in addition to being nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

The Breadwinner will be produced in Ireland and Canada and plans to begin production this year. Development work on the project has been assisted by Telefilm Canada, the Irish Film Board, The Belinda Stronach Foundation and Movie Central – A Corus Entertainment Company.




‘The Tomi Ungerer Story’ and ‘Moon Man’ Set for Release


Wildcard Distribution are delighted have announced the release of the fascinating documentary Far Out Isn’t Far Enough, The Tomi Ungerer Story and Moon Man, a beautiful animated feature produced in association with Cartoon Saloon and based on a book by Ungerer with both films scheduled for cinema release in December 2013.

Moon Man, which is screening at the Cork Film Festival this week, is the lively and offbeat animated feature from the Oscar-nominated producers of The Secret of Kells, Kilkenny-based Cartoon Saloon. Based on Tomi Ungerer’s successful children’s book of the same name, Moon Man tells the story of the man on the moon who comes to Earth on the tail of a passing comet. Directed by Stephan Schesch and Sarah Clara Weber, the film showcases the stunning artwork of Ungerer’s original book and offers a change of pace from Hollywood’s animated films.

Meanwhile, Brad Bernstein’s Far Out Isn’t Far Enough, The Tomi Ungerer Story which wowed audiences and critics alike at the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival earlier this year, where it picked up the Best Documentary award, offers a feature-length retrospective of the pioneering mid-century graphic artists controversial life and art. It also shows his influence on such artists as the creator of Where The Wild Things Are Maurice Sendak and the Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist Jules Feiffer.

Speaking about the upcoming cinema releases Tomi Ungerer said: “Imagine! Having two movies produced and projected at the same time befits my love for Ireland. Both deserving me well. One about my jagged life: Far Out Isn’t Far Enough was realised by Brad Bernstein who was able with tact, taste and talent to compose my portrait on the screen with integrity. The other, Moon Man was adapted by Stephan Schesch from one of my picture books. He gave the Moonman, my alter-ego of sorts, a new dimension. And there my thanks go as well to Cartoon Saloon, the Irish studio whose talents fructified the production. I consider myself truly privileged for having met such creative minds who respected both my life and my work. As a coin, I feel well minted on both sides now!”

Paul Young, Cartoon Saloon, producer of Moon Man commented: “Cartoon Saloon is proud to bring Moon Man to Irish and UK audiences this Christmas. Tomi Ungerer is an inspiration to artists the world over and his books for children have been celebrated for generations for their intelligent, entertaining stories and original characters. Cartoon Saloon is delighted to have helped bring Moon Man to Irish and UK screens.”

Both films will be released in selected Irish cinemas by Wildcard Distribution with Far Out Isn’t Far Enough, The Tomi Ungerer Story hitting cinemas on December 13th and Moon Man being released on December 27th.

Moon Man will also go on release in Picturehouse cinemas (with the support of multi-service agency Coffee & Cigarettes) throughout the UK at the end of December. Picturehouse are the leading independent cinema chain in the UK and are very excited to be screening Moon Man as a Kids’ Club special.

The release date for Moon Man at the end of December offers the perfect Christmas treat for families in Ireland and the UK searching for some heart-warming, festive fun.


Oscar-Nominated Irish Film gets Limited Release of Iconic Stills


One of Ireland’s leading animation studios Cartoon Saloon has released a set of 16 limited edition prints from its 2010 Academy award-nominated film The Secret of Kells.

These one-of-a-kind, handcrafted prints are gloriously high-resolution, gallery-quality scene illustrations from the critically acclaimed film and draw heavily on the ornate and richly textured Irish medieval art that influenced the film. Each scene illustration from the lovingly crafted film is a must-have for film and animation fans, art collectors and historians alike.

Ever since the release of the film, fans have often asked director Tomm Moore how they could own a piece of ‘Kells’ art. Now the studio can meet that demand with this set of limited edition prints crafted by the Cartoon Saloon team.

And, as well as being available for purchase and making a handsome addition to both galleries and any fan’s personal collection, the illustrations will accompany the film as it continues to play at art centres and cinemas worldwide.


Moore and his team went through the more than 200 scene illustrations in the film and selected a short list of 16 scenes from which they made the set of prints. And as well as being personally signed by the director each print is created using archival quality pigment inks on museum quality Hahnemühle Cotton Rag fine art paper and comes framed in the floating deep black timber frame. The prints will be are ready to hang anywhere in the world and are shipped directly from Kilkenny where Cartoon Saloon is based.

The new Secret of Kells Store website features the full range of prints as well exclusive video downloads where Tomm Moore and art director Ross Stewart explain the process and journey behind the creation of each scene illustration.

Moore was on hand recently to launch the prints at the prestigious Hay Festival in Kells, Co. Meath. He said: “Each scene in this special film is its own work of art I hope many will enjoy having a lifelong memento of the film and the story as well as a valuable piece of contemporary Irish art.”

Since the launch the prints have been on public exhibition of the prints at Kilkenny’s IDEATE art and design festival and are set to tour to various other locations internationally in the coming months.


Specifics about the Prints

The prints come framed in a deep, black timber frame 690mm by 460mm and 55mm deep with the individual prints 510mm x 280mm mounted in a floating design. Each print is individually signed and numbered by director Tomm Moore. The image is printed using Epson Ultrachrome HDR archival quality pigment inks on museum quality Hahnemühle Cotton Rag 308g/m2 fine art paper.

How to Buy the Prints

The prints can be viewed online at and are priced at $500/€385 for each signed framed print, which will include a certificate of authenticity and also includes shipping and all applicable local taxes worldwide. Depending on location, shipping may take up to three weeks.



Irish Film at the Galway Film Fleadh: Moon Man


The 25th Galway Film Fleadh (9 – 14 July, 2013)

Moon Man

Saturday, 13th July



Moon Man, the 2D feature animation based on Tomi Ungerer’s best-seller, takes giant steps to the Galway Film Fleadh this weekend. Ireland’s Ross Murray and Paul Young, from Cartoon Saloon (The Secret Life of Kells) produced the film along with the German director, Stephfan Schesch, and French company, Le Pacte. Irish animators who worked on the project include Fabian Erlinghauser (The Secret of Kells), Sean McCarron (Song of the Sea) and Marie Thorhauge (Old Fangs).

Catherine Hehir, Studio Manager at Cartoon Saloon, told Film Ireland, ‘We are delighted that the Galway Film Fleadh will be screening Moon Man, and the fact that author Tomi Ungerer will be there makes it a very special event’.

Ungerer, who is now based in Cork, acted as a consultant to the filmmakers and will be taking part in a Q&A with Stefano Scapolan from Cartoon Saloon after the screening.

Moon Man is a loving family tale about the man in the moon, who isn’t even aware how much children love him. When a shooting star passes by on its way to earth, he hitches a ride and crashes down on a planet ruled by a tyrannical President. Escaping the president’s soldiers, Moon Man sets off on an adventure , where he will marvel at the many wonders the Earth has to offer and realise how much children love and need him.

Tickets are available to book from the Town Hall Theatre on 091 569777, or at


Blackrock Festival announce details on Animation Festival and Family Fun Day

(DYDC Dancer, Sorcha O’Connor, Photographer Karla Holden)

The Blackrock Business Network today (Tuesday) announced details of this year’s Blackrock Festival. The town is hosting its first Animation Festival on Saturday 27th August and the hugely popular Family Fun Day will return to the main street on Sunday 28th August with music and fun activities for everyone.

On Saturday 27th August, the first Blackrock Animation Festival will include free screenings of animation shorts and films at a mobile cinema in the car park of Frascati Shopping Centre – the new Terry Gilliam film is expected to be one of the highlights. An animation workshop by Cartoon Saloon is also planned to take place in Blackrock Shopping Centre.

Winning entries from the Animation Festival Competition will be showcased at a pop-up cinema in Urban Junction on the main street and will be followed by an awards ceremony. Over forty entries from across Ireland and the UK to as far away as Hong Kong, Israel and Netherlands are currently being judged.

All Blackrock Animation Festival screenings and activities will be free and organised on a first come, first served basis. A full programme of the Animation Festival screenings at Urban Junction and the mobile cinema will be available on

On Sunday 28th August, festival-goers will enjoy free live entertainment, music and giveaways at the Family Fun Day. The well known juggler and stilt walker, Johnny Phelan will be the Family Fun Day’s MC, performing his own act and introducing a number of live performances on the main stage.

With Blackrock Main Street closed to traffic from the corner of St George’s Avenue to the traffic lights at the Cross, the town will come alive with lots of exciting activities including food stalls, street games, free children’s hairdressing and face painting.

The Festival’s main stage will be the hub for great music and entertainment acts including Dublin Youth Dance Company, singers Sharon Crosbie, Alva O’Loughlin Kennedy and local band, the Rockbreakers. The afternoon will culminate in a performance by the popular covers band, Smokin’ Mojo on the main stage.

Blackrock Business Network Chairman, Aidan Fitzgerald said ‘We are proud of our town and want to celebrate all it has to offer by hosting a great weekend of fun, free activities for everyone. As a business community, we are determined to inject positivity and fun into our efforts to stimulate local business and attract visitors to Blackrock.’


Win for 'The Secret Of Kells'

Cartoon Saloon’s The Secret Of Kells has won the Audience Award at the 2009 Edinburgh International Film Festival, with the award being presented by Sir Sean Connery.

The Secret Of Kells will be released on DVD in Ireland on 7th of August 2009.


Cartoon Saloon Nominated and 3 Irish Companies at Cartoon Forum

Cartoon Saloon has nominated for one of the industry ’s most prestigious awards, the ‘Cartoon Tributes Award’ for Best Production Company. The European Association of Animation Film selected Cartoon Saloon as one of only five production companies to be nominated from all over for the Europe Cartoon Tributes, Best Production Company Award. This important award seeks to recognize outstanding contribution to the European animation industry throughout the year.

Cartoon Saloon is a multi-award winning animation company employing 70 people at their new studios in central Kilkenny. Their series Skunk Fu!, directed by Aidan Harte, has been sold to TV stations worldwide. Their next project is feature film The Secret of Kells, which will be released in Irish cinemas by Walt Disney Studios Ireland, in the first quarter of next year.

Also, three companies will be presenting new projects at Cartoon Forum from 16–19 September. The three animation projects, developed with funding from Irish Film Board support, were selected to be presented at the Forum. Jam Media will present Badly Drawn Roy; Monster Animation and Design will present Ballybraddan and Magma Films will present their project Just a Thought.