Hi everybody and welcome to Courtney Mason Illustration!


My goal is to translate written and verbal ideas into visual imagery that is colorful, compelling, and clearly communicate the objectives of the client. I pride myself on my versatility and am confident in my abilities to tackle any challenge both effectively and efficiently. I am open to creative opportunities in a variety of markets such as but not limited to Graphic Design, Advertising, Editorial, Book Publishing, and especially Post Production for Entertainment.


My "dream job" is to someday have a career within the animation industry. The holy trio or trifecta of skills will be in character design, storyboarding, and character animation. I have experience in experimental animation, stop motion, claymation, 2D and 3D animation using Autodesk Maya, Photoshop, and Final Cut Pro. In 2011, I received a grant from the Women's Education and Leadership Fund to conduct a study of animation through research and practical application. I learned the fundamentals and foundations of 3D animation through the Ianimate Advanced Character Animation Program and I am continuing my education through Animation Mentor School for Character Animation online starting this upcoming fall 2012.


I am very much a team player, but also a self starter and driven towards success. Since I was a child, I was an entrepreneur, a quality I believe I enherited from my father. This sense of leadership and drive has always helped me optimize every opportunity and has given me confidence in the value of my ideas. While I am very dedicated to clients needs before my own needs, I always feel like I have something to learn and something to give.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

the in-betweener

yes, not only is it the term for an animator, but it also serves a perfect double entendre.  You see, I feel like I am an in-betweener in more ways than one.

Right now, I am in-between jobs, in-between passions, in between...a rock and a hard place.
The rock is, that I just started school for animation and I am just grazing the surface of what it means to animate and entering that world.  Meanwhile, I'm getting plenty of offers to illustrate, but for unfair pay or royalties only, which is virtually nothing.

I wish I could teach or do a job that I can be creative in that doesn't distract from my current focus of animation/illustration.  I'm working on finding a way there.  So, in the meantime...I shall keep on pushing from the in-between, to the break down, and than finally my x-treme new life :)  how's that for some creative metaphors!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

RAW semi finals

hey everybody :)

Here are some pictures from the big show!  This was my first time where I actually had some fans that weren't just friends and family! A few people recognized me from the last show which was exciting!  Even though I didn't get selected to move on to nationals, another HAS alumni did and I am happy for her!

I started to unwind by the end of the night and my caricature booth blew up...I had a line of over twenty people waiting for me to draw them.  I timed myself and could start and finish a black and white drawing of more than one person under 10 minutes.  I have never done this before so it really challenged my speed and skill.  

Monday, October 29, 2012


Hi everybody!  fun updates...

1.) I was nominated for the state semi-finals for RAW's Artist of the Year award, the biggest indie art competition in the world. Artists were narrowed down from 100 other eligible participants based upon an online voting and a panel of RAW judges.  I also must congratulate my other Hartford Art School Alumni for also making it to the state semi-finals. I would be thrilled if any one of us are voted to continue on to nationals. I am permitted to hang only 5 pieces and I am going to make sure that a majority of the work is new and better than before.  I really think I have a shot at this, so I am going to put all my energy into this.

When:  November 15th 7-12pm
Where: The Russian Lady, Hartford, CT
Cover:  $15 if you purchase in advance, $20 at the door

How it works:

Everybody that attends gets one sticker per category.  You are permitted one vote for each category (performing arts, visual arts, photography...)  50% of public live vote and 50% judges discretion is what will determine who wins in each category.

If I go on to Nationals, the award ceremony is in L.A. and all 50 states will have artists as representatives.  So please, come, support and vote for me :)

and may the odds ever be in your favor.

ALSO, I am half way through my animation course I.  Trying to step up my a game for that.  I have two children's book contracts I am drafting up as well.  Cheers to feeling like myself again and making art everyday!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Oh, the places you'll go

Maybe I am being naive, but I do believe that at this tender age of 23 I should keep dream chasing. But the work I was doing combined with school, combined with trying to create new art, was slowing me up in all aspects of my life.

While I really enjoyed the opportunity to be the head of the art department and have truly grown from the experience, it was becoming too stressful and I was sacrificing my creativity far too much for my liking.  My school work has been barely getting done, and I have not painted since last april...

So after much thought,  I gave my two weeks notice and graciously resigned.  I realize some might criticize me for this saying I should be grateful as an artist to have found any employment at all or that I at least should have found a better job first before leaving.  However, I value my creativity a little more than some people do...and I am willing to put in the time and live a frugal lifestyle until someone truly recognizes it and appreciates it.

And that may happen sooner than I think.  I am not sure.  I had two interviews since I departed on Friday.  While of course I hope they work out, I wouldn't mind doing freelance and really boosting my portfolio for specific markets.  I feel like while my college education offered me versatility, but it didn't offer me much time to hone in on a specific market.  So, I am going to have to do this myself.

I hate that society is quick to judge your career path, but we are all so different. Some live to work, others work to live.  Some will stay at a company for 30 years, some will jump from place to place. I am learning there is no right or wrong answer.  All and all, we have the rest of our lives to find the job we love and excel in. And maybe you won't.  Maybe you'll find something that gets you from A to B.  But either way, you can turn that crap job's money into something you really love to do after work...or whatever you want.  At the end of the day, we all just strive to live well and prosper (yeaaaaaah star trek reference!)

And the best booster of confidence and evidence of this in the day to day,  is the book from doctor seuss, "Oh, the places you go!"  If you want to go read it right now, it will seriously improve your mood.  I recommend reading it with a glass of wine. Just for fun.  If you are of age of course :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

what I do at work

Here are some of my t-shirt designs that I created in corel and illustrator.  When I'm not setting up and printing films, filing and documenting 13,000 films, or editing peoples work for screen printing, I am given artistic license to a certain extent to create my own artwork for clients. Stay tuned for updates :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Animation School

officially a student of AM!

and did I mention I am going to CTN-EXPO...oh yeah


Friday, August 31, 2012

call it kismet, but animation is following me

so for my graduation, I was given the gift of ultimate the city of sin Las Vegas.  However, I am not going to tell you of my adventures in gambling, drinking, and late night strolls down the strip.  I am not going to tell you about dancing on tables with my girl friends...

I am going to tell you of one of the greatest indulgences one wanna be animator could happen upon...and it was, the CHUCK JONES EXPERIENCE!

So, for those of you who are not quite as versed in the history of animation, Chuck Jones is not only the creator of Looney Toons, but also has worked on classics such as "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," and "The Jungle Book."

I was the only one that night in the 8 room gallery, which I kinda liked, because it made the whole experience more intimate, and important.  I took a lot of pictures that do no justice to the threshold adorned with sketches, paintings, cells, and animation.

Monday, July 30, 2012


so RAW did an amazing job at putting on our show.  Although I had to leave work early, drive three hours (which turned into 4 hours) through storms, all the way to Hartford, it was totally worth it.

I met some great artists and individuals, sold 2 pieces, and many interested takers, as well as admirers.  I even made a new fan whose sister works for pixar. All and all, a great networking opportunity, and I was so touched that all my friends and supporters were there to route me on.  I could not have done it without you all and you inspire me to continue to do what I love, so thank you!

They were really friendly and made sure that our space suited our needs and that we had the proper lighting and tools to display our work.  As far as publicity, head shots were taken, an interview was recorded, and we received coverage of the event from the Hartford Courant and Raw Staff members.  We were each introduced on stage and talked a bit about our work and our lifestyle.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


Sometimes I get a shout out here and there in the news.
So go on...don't be it! I dare you. 



more to come. as it comes.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

my life plan is sorta backwards

I got a full time job and an art exhibition before I had any time to make new art.  I'm not sure how I feel about this.  I have a laundry list of old art ideas that I want to embellish more...and new ideas I have yet to peruse creating.  For now I am sketching and hoping to network through my travels across the country.  I brought my sketch book and watercolors and will be posting some things soon.  I am trying to hone in on drawing more people, seeing as animals come most naturally for me to draw.

Next summer, I hope to do caricatures part time to keep my drawing skills relevant and just to meet interesting people.  I hope to be in L.A. this time next year, but we will see how the economy and job market is treating me by than.

(hey look, it's the kardasians)

If you haven't noticed new art, it's's in the rough phases and I lack a scanner at my disposal.  You might see some crappy phone jpegs in the meantime.  Stay tuned my fellow art lovers :)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

working world as an artist

I have only been working for 2 weeks full time and have already learned a ton!  My first few days were a bit rocky because not only was I learning how to use illustrator for a completely different function, I also was learning Corel painter, which I have never used in my life.  I felt like a Columbus, thinking I knew where I was in the program, when truthfully I was really somewhere else.  The buttons are all different, but I happily discovered that Corel painter might be more user friendly than illustrator.  I am trying to commit to memory all the hot keys and short cuts so I can be as fast as my boss Ryan.  He says he is not a creative artists so much as a production artists, so basically...he knows A LOT about a lot of things.  I can ask for his help sometimes, but he is busy running the business and I hate to pester him with questions I could answer for myself.  

As fancy as my title sounds, so far I have done little design work of my own.  I found that 80% of the art work needed for print is on file, either created by the staff artist of another company we print for are Ryan.  I have only done a few design assignments of my own and have spent a majority of the time getting a feel for editing, creating proofs for customers, setting up artwork for films, and printing them on my old foe and arch-nemesis...the EPSON 4800!  


Yes, for the past 3 years I have been fighting a losing battle with this printer. Back at UHA, the printer lived in the Illustration studio and was named "jezebel." Time and time again I would fight with the archaic mac desktop and Jezebel to achieve the proper color, size, and paper settings.  And time and time again, I would triumph and fail, wasting time, paper, ink, and ultimately, money! Finally, with my ally and academic advisor Tom Bradley, Jezebel was finally defeated and replaced with a new and improved monster...Epson's much more efficient version of the same high tech demon!     

When I entered on my first day to the workplace, I was half nostalgic to see Jezebel's twin sister (who I have yet to give a name.)  But than came the flash backs, and that was when I experienced my first post traumatic stress episode.   

But other than that, and learning new programs, I manage my deadlines fairly well and communicate well with my clients and my employers.  I'm starting to get to know them all, and we share the same organized chaotic behaviors and sense of humor, which is awesome!  

FUN FACT: I found out we printed for Cartoon Network and Nickolodean!  Don't you love connections? Who knows,  maybe this will lead to my something more.  I am trying to save my pay checks for the CTN Expo Animation Conference in Burbank which happens in November. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fun facts about being 23

My birthday was yesturday, and so far these are fun facts I have learned about the magical age that is 23. 

-It is remarkably like 22.  But less cute-sounding.
-People expect you to have matured by now and yet I still snort when I laugh sometimes (oops!)
-Acceptance of social practices such as getting up, going to work, and working out is key.  Apparently if you do anything less, you are NOT a blue blooded American.
-A new appreciation for mundane things that always enthuse adults...such as discount laundry detergent. And vice gripped clothes hangers.  Simple joys of life.
-Memory has started to go.  Thus post its are my new savior!
- Money is now more important than before.
-Hyper awareness my friends getting hitched and making babies

more to come. as it comes. so far it has only been one day!

I realize...this has nothing to do with art.

but you must realize, it has everything to do with me.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

first professional exhibition!


 I got an email from this organization called RAW Natural Born Artists, a non for profit that seek to promote up and coming artists. They urged me to register for their community and within the next day asked to meet with me to discuss being featured in an exhibition. So, I am now showing my illustration work in Hartford among many art school alumni and locals from around CT.

 However, I must sell 20 tickets in order to cover gallery expenses. So please, if you live in the Hartford area and want to get out of the house for some artsy indulgence, check out my profile and purchase tickets through pay pal. They are only $10 and you would really be doing me a solid.

 Here are the details:

WHEN: JULY 18th 8 PM - 12 AM
HOW MUCH: $10 online ticket price :)

  you can purchase tickets online here^^^^^^^^^^^^. If you can't make it, donations would be greatly appreciated as well. Hope to see you all there!

Friday, June 8, 2012

my first real job!

Yes, to my surprise I got a real job sooner than I thought I would. granted, I have made it a habit of applying for jobs that I lose track of just how many things I have shown interest in. Finally one was just right. It happened very quickly. I tried the "bombardment of emails" method to get their attention. They called me four days later to set up an interview, the interview was the next day. I was given 24 hours to show create a design for them. I did two designs in 12 hours and submitted it. I got a call the next day that I got the job. So now I am a layout artist. It's not pixar, but it's a start. It will be a good experience for me because it is a production job, set up much like an animation pipeline, or an assembly line, it is subject to change, collaboration, and deadline oriented. Good practice. It is also local. I know I said I wanted to leave jersey the first second I got. This is a true statement, but not a practical one. I need to save another $10,000 before I move anywhere else. Once I get the hang of my this job, I will look for freelance work to keep my head in the illustration/art game. Maybe try and find an agent. Until then...I am excited to put my art skills to use. YAY!

check out my glorious cubicle and my first day of work outfit! (equally glorious...hehe!)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I gots a BFA! HURRAY

I GOT MY Bachelors in FINE ARTS! I graduated this past sunday! After four years of all nighters in the studio, soul searching, and exploration of mediums and art forms I finally have found out what I want to be when I grow up.

So the burning question what?

well allow me to illustrate my goals...ahem...

#1.  make new art for the jobs I want

I kinda just grazed the surface and I think I now know what I must do to get the jobs I want.  It involves making a portfolio that demonstrates my digital competence and my artistic skills set as it pertains to an industry in entertainment.

#2. get a job

This summer I am traveling a lot, so there is no point in looking for summer work, but I will be making summer work so that when August comes around I can apply with a portfolio that I know pertains to the jobs I am looking at.  I would preferably like to work somewhere that utilizes my skills (and NOT waitressing...ugh)  but if I have to do that to secure consistent income so be it.  just as long as I get to draw everyday.

#3.  start animation mentor!

I will be starting my education at Animation Mentor this fall, and I am very excited about it!  I can't wait to learn more about animation and to really get into my niche and to meet new people.  I hope to be hitting up NYC a lot more so I can meet more people that share my passion!

#4.  make a badass demo reel to add to my portfolio

So when my demo reel is complete and perfected, I can go to Cali and get jobs

#5. Move to Cali and make movies and art :)

yep, that one is the biggy.  I would like to accomplish that one before I am 25.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


I am finished!  My illustrations and animations are complete and show worthy!  Everything came together so beautifully and I am so very proud of my class for all we have accomplished! 24 of us participated in the show and I believe about 500 visitors in total came to our opening.  Thank you to everyone who has supported me and offered me this great opportunity!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

did you notice the new layout?

well, I hope you do now!  because this whole "personal branding" thing is very time consuming so I hope you kids like it.

Caffine is officially my savior, it truly makes me an art making machine!  I have managed to design my tumblr, blogger, and business cards addition to fixing and old painting and finishing a new one today.

Needless to say, I haven't left the studio.  But hey, I'm not complaining.  I'm in good company and I don't have to take calculus.  :)

Our senior show is steadily approaching, hence the "branding" and hectic schedule.  May 5th is the big day!  I am working hard on my comic strip to make it look as clean and clear and under control as possible. 

I've been job searching during my "breaks."  I have lost track of which ones I have applied to, but the efforts were null and void.  I have a direction I want to go in, but I need some work experience. I'll keep you posted if there is much to report in that arena, but for now I just wanna make my work better and better. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

i love where googling takes me!

in going on linked in to look up peter de' seve (who most certainly is too cool for that website anyway)  I discovered a really cool artist by the names of Sylvian Marc.  And by discovering and oggling his work, I discovered SKETCHTRAVEL!

Imagine all the best contemporary illustrators/animators traveling in one combined sketchbook?


can I do this?
I believe so.

Monday, February 13, 2012

me at age 6...painting.  that little girl keeps me goin! 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

one step closer

so here I am listening to chrisitna perri,  and doodling in my room.

I am still figuring out what I am doing for my senior project. I am doing two graphic novel children's books.  One is called "Our wondrous World of Troubles"  and basically creates a kid friendly optimistic way of looking at common struggles and difficult situations that people encounter every day.

The other I think will be called "Ele-fat to Ele-fit," which is the idea for my animation that I will turn into a graphic novel/comic strip sorta set up of my story board.

4 pages worth for the graphic novel, and 4 full color spreads for the "Our Wondrous World of Troubles"

Here goes nothin...stay posted