Art school formed at Disney Studio to train animators, with Donald Graham serving as teacher.

Art School Formed at Disney Studio with Donald Graham Serving as Teacher

Donald W. Graham loved art ever since he first visited an art school. He was so dedicated, in fact, that upon enrolling at the Chouinard Art Institute in 1923, he also became the janitor, “earning his keep” as he would say, and slept in the school’s bathtub instead of paying rent. He was later commissioned by Walt Disney to instruct evening classes, beginning on this day in 1932, to help train the artists. His relationship with Disney would continue for decades to come, from investigating the possibilities of making films on various aspects of art to setting off on a nationwide talent search to review and judge the portfolios of potential new Disney artists. And he was nothing if not industrious. In seven years he personally examined more than 35,000 portfolios!