My Native AdVantage:
Lance Myers has been a professional artist, writer, and animator for over twenty years. His work can be seen in the feature films Space Jam, Anastasia, Quest for Camelot, Prince of Egypt, and Richard Linklater's A Scanner Darkly. His animation has also appeared in over twenty-five successful video game titles, including Turok Evolution, NBA Jam, Arcane Legends, and Star Wars: The Old Republic. Myers has written and directed twelve original animated shorts, many of which have shown on HBO, MTV, Adult Swim, PBS, and Canada's Movieola. He lives in Austin with his wife and three kids, and has just recently started teaching animation classes at The University of Texas.
What do you do best?
The only thing I’m the very best at is being me in the present tense. In every one of my artistic pursuits, there is someone out there who can do it better than I can. Somebody out there can draw better, someone can animate better, plenty can write better… but there’s not a single person out there who can out-do me at being me. Does that beg the question?
What makes you the best?
Staying in the game. Every day is a new move on the chess board. Gotta stay in it. I tell my students that there are two ways to be successful: luck and persistence. And the only one of those that we each have control over is our own persistence.
What are your aspirations?
To understand, and to be understood.
And for my kids to become happy, successful adults.
Marrying my wife.
Finding an audience for my work.
And this story:
A few years back my youngest son was talking about how he would like to become a father some day, and he proclaimed that would be the very best father in the world. I asked him how he was going to do that, and he said he’d just copy me. So I win!
Most Challenging Moment?
When my rap band opened for Ice Cube in ‘93. Yes, this really happened.
Also, dealing with celiac disease has been a real pain in the ass.
“Talent does what it can, genius does what it must.” –Edward Bulwer-Lytton. I use this quote with my students to start a conversation about the importance of being passionate. Being absolutely desperate to accomplish something can sometimes be a better starting point than having a natural, so-called “God-given” ability.
My family, of course. My wife is brilliant. She keeps me on my toes. And my kids (Evan, Ariel, and Cameron) are a huge inspiration. Also inspiring: my parents and my sister, Christopher Hitchens, Kurt Vonnegut, David Foster Wallace, Sylvain Chomet, and, of course, Ice Cube (see Most Challenging Moment, above).
I used to plan every vacation around art galleries and museums. This led to some wonderful trips to New York, London, and Paris. I love those places. But for the past several years, my family and I have taken some really great vacations to Colorado and to Yellowstone. Those bears are just as captivating as the best Picassos.
Coffee. Gluten-free (see Most Challenging Moment, above) chocolate chip cookies. My Wacom tablet, and my desktop PC. Also, my wife just gave me my own crock pot.
I am knee-deep in the creation of my thirteenth original animated short, Boxer Story. I’ve been working on it for several years, and I am finally starting to see a distant light at the end of this extremely fun tunnel. I am also re-reading Infinite Jest, and fervently awaiting the next season of Rick and Morty.