Quique Rivera discusses his life’s journey as an animator

Joselyn Green, Reporter

Quique Rivera is an artist and an animator from Puerto Rico. Rivera went to the University of Puerto Rico, and California Institute of the arts. Rivera first began to be interested in music that he even played in the school music band.

“I thought I was going to be a musician,” said Rivera.

Rivera didn’t think that animation was a career when his interest began. Rivera juggled between trying to find out how to combine all his favorite hobbies which were filmmaking, photography, drawing, and music, but he wanted to do all of them. According to Rivera, the professor from his film making class referred him to look at another artist by the name of Jan Svankmajer.

Once Rivera saw Svankmajer’s work it made him know that being a photographer and artist was something that he really wanted to do. Seeing Svankmajer’s work made him realize that he could do all his hobbies together including sculpturing.

Shortly after Rivera graduated, one of his professors asked him if he could teach a photoshop class. Rivera told him that he didn’t really know photoshop and that he knew animation.

The class never happened but the idea really helped Rivera do research to have a better understanding of animation. He realized that Puerto Rico wasn’t the location that he needed to be in to succeed, so Rivera made a huge step and moved out of Puerto Rico where he started school at California Institute of the arts.

One of Rivera’s films is titled “Menuda Urbe” which was created by him taking pictures of these birds that flew around. He captured pictures of each stage of the bird flying according to Rivera. Rivera said everything was filmed in Puerto Rico, but the audio was finished after he moved to California.

“I started self-teaching how to do it, Essential just making mistakes, making tests all the time, and kind of like improving my skills little by little with whatever resources I had,” Riviera said.

All of Rivera’s sculptures were created out of recycled material whether that being recycled paper or old wires. He would then create an imaginary world to ensure the audience can understand these creations and why they were made.

Before getting into California institute of the arts Rivera said that he started to feel “guilt that he didn’t study animation.” Rivera stated that the quarantine is kind of normal for animators because they always work by themselves.

According to Rivera, he also has pieces at the Museum of Latin American art that will be there until January or February. Rivera’s films can be found on his website or on his YouTube channel.