Ron Dias Biography

rondiasRon Dias is one of today's outstanding animation artists, who over the past 45 years, has contributed to almost every animation studio in Los  Angeles. His work has appeared on television, in commercials, feature  films and educational films.

Favorite Project: Secret of NIMH

Favorite Art Film: Bambi

Most Influential Mentors: Claude Coats; Eyvind Earle; Paul Julian and Dick Kelsey

Hobbies: Swimming; model ship building and fine art painting

Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, after graduating high school, he persued his  childhood dream receiving formal art training at The Honolulu Academy of Art and the Famous Artists Schools in Westport, Conn.

In 1956 Ron won a National contest for his design of a U.S. postage "Children's Friendship" stamp. He was given a jet flight to Washington D.C. and a meeting with  President Eisenhower, The First Lady, the acting Postmaster General, and Lady Butterfield, who sponsored the contest.

Ron began his animation career with Disney Studios in 1956 where he worked  as an inbetweener and clean-up animator on "Sleeping Beauty". Ron's  desire to become involved in animation was sparked when, at the tender  age of 6, he saw "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs". He was so taken by  the film and its beautiful art that he decided, then and there, that he  would someday become an animation artist. Ron appeared as the guest  speaker on Disney animation at the City of Kawaguchi's World Festival,  on July 25th, 1998, in Kawaguchi, Japan.

While Ron started his career in animation, he made his mark on this art form  and has spent the bulk of his career painting beautiful backgrounds for  some of our favorite animated features and TV shows. Over the years Ron  has contributed to so many feature and TV projects for so many studios,  it is best to highlight a "short-list" of his work through the years.

Columbia Pictures, 20th Century-Fox, Warner Brothers Pictures, and M.G.M. Pictures employed Ron's talents between 1958-60.


After the completion of "Sleeping Beauty", the 1960s found Ron illustrating  Disney characters for Golden Books and creating backgrounds for some of  Hanna-Barbara's most successful series and features, such as "Hey There, it's Yogi Bear"; "Jonny Quest"; "The Man Called Flintstone"; "Jack and  the Beanstalk" and "The New Adventures of Huckleberry Finn". During the  60's, Ron also created backgrounds for DePatie-Freleng's theatrical  shorts featuring the Pink Panther, Daffy Duck, and Speedy.


Ron was really busy during the 1970's. In addition to creating backgrounds, his experience and talent lead to positions as character designer, key  background artist and art director. He painted backgrounds for, among  others, U.P.A.'s "Uncle Sam Magoo"; several educational and commercial  films; Bakshi's "Lord of the Rings"; "A Flintstone Christmas"; Chuck  Jones' "Return of Duck Dodgers in the 24 1/2 Century"; and "Bugs Bunny  Busting Out All Over".


During the Disco days of the 1980's, Ron added "Color Stylist" to his resume.  We're sure that you appreciated some of Ron's work in Don Bluth's "The  Secret of NIMH"; the arcade game "Dragon's Lair" and both the TV special and arcade game "Space Ace"; "The Chipmunk Adventure" and the Toon Town backgrounds in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" (Ron was Art Director for the  Toon Town backgrounds).


In 1990, Ron was Key Background Artist on "Rover Dangerfield" and in 1992, while freelancing at Disney Art Editions, he became Art Director and  Color Stylist for Disney's "Little Mermaid" TV Special and series. In  1993, he became Art Director for Disney Art Editions which produced  Disney's limited edition animation cels. In this position, Ron was  responsible for selecting the original backgrounds to be reproduced for  these cels. However, in the numerous cases where the original was lost  or otherwise unavailable, it was Ron's responsibility to painstakingly  create a background that was faithful to the original in every detail,  Ron has painted over 90 backgrounds for these limited editions. You will see his work on Snow White's "Heigh Ho", "A New Home", and "Snow White  At The Wishing Well"; "Bella Notte"; "Peter's Seamstress" "Sleeping  Beauty", and the new "Dream Duet" sericel as well as countless others.  In 1987, Ron created for the One Stop Poster Co., a special  poster promoting "Snow White's" 50th Anniversary and also a poster for  "Beauty and the Beast". Through Creative Capers, a Disney subsidary, Ron also creates the art for Disney's interactive CD-ROMs. Although Ron has contributed his talents to virtually every major studio over the past  45 years, because of his love for Disney, he has maintained a continuous relationship with the studio as a freelance artist even while working  elsewhere.


Ron is currently working on fine art paintings during his free time. Being  the perfectionist that he is, he is not satisfied until his works  exhibit the same subtle "magic" that shows through in all of his  animation work. He is now in the Big Sur area of California to pursue  his interests in fine art. We can all agree that this art-form and its  fans have truly benefited from Ron's creativity over the years and we  hope that he will continue to share his immense talent with us for many, many, more.