Artist of the Issue: Lily Williams Heads for the Big Screen

Sophia Bollag

We may be seeing senior Lily Williams’ name on the big screen sometime in the future. This summer Williams worked as an intern for Sony Pictures Animation, the company that created the recently released animated film Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. Williams, who specializes in drawing, worked in Sony’s Visual Development department.

“I had to sign a lot of confidentiality agreements,” said Williams. “So I don’t know how much I’m allowed to say. I did typical intern stuff.”

We may never know exactly what Williams did for Sony, but it is no secret that she is an incredibly talented artist.

“I could draw before I wrote my name,” said Williams. “My mom would have me write out my name, and I didn’t understand [why] because I already knew how to draw.”

This makes sense considering Williams’s belief that pictures are a more natural form of communication.

“I think art is the universal language,” said Williams.

Williams cites Barron Storey, who painted the famous image featured on the cover of the 1980 edition of Lord of the Flies, as her favorite artist.

“[Storey’s] style is very detail oriented,” said Williams. “There is an honest quality to his work; nothing is faked. Each line has purpose and each brush stroke has character.”

She also admires Marcelo Vignali, a visual development artist for Sony whom she worked with during her internship.

“When I met him I was star struck,” she said. “His artistic talent is mind boggling and [he] has worked on some of my favorite movies. He critiqued my art, gave me tips on how to improve it, and showed me some great techniques. My artwork has improved greatly since then.”

However, as far as her own work is concerned, Williams is much more judgmental.

“I’m very self-critical,” she said. “I can hang up the work of another artist, but I can’t hang up my own work. I don’t really enter contests.”

Williams mainly draws people. Many of her subjects have devious or sarcastic expressions that are instantly recognizable, giving her work a witty edge. Her drawings have a very professional quality and look as if they came out of an animated movie. She mostly uses brightly colored Copic markers.

In addition to drawing, she has recently developed an interest in painting.

“I’ve taken a lot of painting classes out of school, mostly at California College of the Arts,” said Williams.

Here at Miramonte, Williams is currently taking AP Art, Independent Art and Crafts.

Williams plans to pursue a career in visual development for animated films, either as a character designer or a production designer. As for college, Williams says she definitely wants to attend an art school.

“I want to have a strong technical education,” said Williams. “I strongly believe that if you are good enough, you will find a way… My major will depend on the school I go to.”

Visit the Miramonte art gallery to view selections of Lily’s work.