Toxic waste may have turned them into heroes on the half-shell, but it takes a team of artists to transform Leonardo, Michaelangelo, Donatello and Raphael into mean, green fighting machines. Dancing Diablo animation studios has been working with 4Kids Ent. Inc. to provide digital coloring for the all-new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series, which airs Saturday mornings on FOX.
Dancing Diablo has styled and painted backgrounds for 26 episodes for Season One and are currently completing the last of 26 episodes for Season Two. This month, they begin work on 13 episodes for Season Three.
"My team works on the digital coloring of one show each week," says Dancing Diablo founding partner and stylist Beatriz Ramos. "We meet with the director at 4Kids to breakdown the board and discuss the color treatment for the show (the palette we use is moody with an emphasis on dramatic lighting), how we want the backgrounds to look, what colors the flashback scenes or the dream sequences are going to employ, what light treatments we are using for characters and props, etc. 4Kids supplies the designs which we scan and prepare for color. Then, in Photoshop, the Dancing Diablo artists digitally color the backgrounds, characters and props. Once all the color models are completed and approved, Dancing Diablo prepares all the files to be shipped to Korea where the actual animation is done [at Fun Animation]."
In addition to Ramos, the Dancing Diablo creative team color supervisor Liz Artinian, background painter Reginald Butter, prop/character colorist Pedro Ros and production manager Francisco Hurtado.
The 4Kids Ent. team includes supervising producer Lloyd Goldfine, supervising director Roy Burdine, exec. in charge of production Carole Weitzman and producer JoEllyn Marlow.
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were created in May 1984 when Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman published a 40-page, black-and-white comic book. The original animated series debuted in 1987 and was the No. 1 children’s television show throughout the late 1980s and early 90s.