Breakthroughs Aren’t Just Possible. They’re Likely.

Room 2 from The Oatley Academy is a resource designed to help you make the switch from “aspiring” to “experienced.” Here are just a few of the stories that we are fortunate to be a part of…

“Investing in Chris Oatley as a mentor was the single best career decision I have made. He has been a constant creative and constructively critical force in my professional life since 2014, and the clarity and creative drive in Clockwork Heart played a large part in helping me launch my career.”

Chad Welson | Storyboard Revisionist, ‘Dragons: The Nine Realms’, DreamWorks Animation Television.

“The tools I got from Chris’ mentorship, I will carry with me FOREVER. I love his perfect balance of heart and brain style teaching, which I have yet to see elsewhere. It’s a big reason why I would come back to do more.”

Daina Valiulis | Live Action Costume Concept Artist & Designer, ‘Star Trek: Discovery’, ‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’, ‘The Boys’, ‘Titans’.

“Enrolling in a mentorship was easily the best choice I ever made for my career. Chris’s focus on mindset helped me understand my strengths and weaknesses so that I could create with clarity and confidence. I still use the skills I learned in Clockwork Heart to be focused and efficient at work.”

Laurel Van Patten | Artist/Designer, Pure Imagination Studios.

“My career has benefited from all of Chris’ mentorships I’ve taken. I’ve learnt crucial skills and used them in every job since. Pretty much as soon as I started implementing them into my work the phone started ringing with job offers!”

Amy Lewis | Background Supervisor, ‘The Unstoppable Yellow Yeti’, Gigglebug Entertainment.

“Each mentorship gave me a significant push in my art education and skills, and this translated directly into more opportunities. Chris puts his heart and soul into his mentorships and genuinely cares about his students, making it a personal experience.”

Rami Juma | Tonals Artist at Cartoon Saloon

“The momentum I’ve felt since taking Chris’ mentorship has helped me build a life for myself that I’m really thankful for. It changed my life, changed my relationship with art, and introduced me to a mentor that has been a huge part of my life and career ever since.”

Sydney Dean | Illustrator & Graphic Novelist

“Chris’ mentorships have been career changing for me. He has provided valuable insights into the animation industry, and helped to develop my skills in order to produce a professional portfolio that has allowed me to break into animation as a full time artist.”

Paul Jay Nicholson | Character Designer, ‘Deadendia’ (Netflix), ‘Buster Saves Christmas’ (Moonbug Entertainment), ‘Bean The Animated Series’ (Tiger Aspect).

“Clockwork Heart has helped me take ownership of my career journey with greater courage, confidence, and belief in my ability to plan for and attain the career of my dreams. The practical, actionable advice has given me a new level of focus I couldn’t have imagined before.”

Veronica Kosowski | Visual Development Artist, Factory Create.

“Working through Chris’s program absolutely helped to sort through the noise and provide me with the tools to forget about what others are doing and focus on just what I need to take my career to the next level. Combined with the wonderful camaraderie and support of this community, it’s like no other online course I’ve ever done.”

Jana Hoffmann | Comics Creator, ‘The Lonely Giant.’

“Chris, the team and community gave me the first push to professional digital painting. Through it, I found great friends who pushed me to practice harder and we are deeply connected even today, after several years.”

Annamari Kuvaja | Senior Artist at Huuuge Games

“Chris’ wisdom greatly helped me focus on the types of projects I wanted to create, and gave me a better understanding of the steps to take in order to make them a reality.”

Kasper Kavalaris | Art Director & award winning screenwriter, LOUD!PICTURE Entertainment

“I developed more clarity with the goals I wanted to pursue. As a result, I got approached by clients more aligned with the kind of work I want. My community of fellow professionals also followed suit.”

Dawn Lawson | Concept Artist / 2D Illustrator

“Clockwork Heart has helped me clarify the goals I want to work towards, while also providing practical strategies to make them a reality, one day at a time. I feel empowered to take the next steps forward in my career, equipped with a new toolbox of workflow systems and a heightened sense of creative focus and determination.”

Sylvia Kosowski | General Technical Director at Walt Disney Animation Studios.

“Chris’ Mentorships got my foot in the door and helped me know what was needed to thrive, and the overwhelmingly supportive community gave me the courage to try and break into the industry. They both changed the trajectory of my life!”

Britt “Dooz” Leslie | Visual Development Artist,
Powerhouse Animation Studios

“What makes these courses stand out is Chris’ deep personal commitment to his students’ artistic and personal growth. I learned that artistic success looks and feels as diverse and varied as the artists themselves, and that exciting opportunities happen when you invest in supporting and sharing with other artists.”

Mikaela Watson | Props & Background Artist, Factory Create.

“In the past I was going towards whatever projects came my way, but without much agency over what happened next. With the things I’ve learned in Clockwork Heart, I feel like I’m taking more control of the direction of my career.”

Matthew Cook | Freelance Illustrator & Assistant Professor of Animation and Illustration, University of Kansas

“Chris’s guidance and mentorship really helped me find my strengths as an artist in areas I had never known about or considered before. You’ll come out of a mentorship knowing yourself and your art a lot better.”

Natalia Falciglia | Production Coordinator at DreamWorks Television Animation.

“Clockwork Heart has helped me slow down, focus, and decide what I want for my art career. By the end of 2021 I developed a children’s book concept that I’m excited about, and was also hired as a children’s book designer! It’s been a lot of hard work, but it has been so worth it!”

Michelle Crowe | Designer at Penguin Random House.

“My favorite aspect of Clockwork Heart is its high level of personalization. It can be fitted to many different creative careers, life stages, and available time and energy levels. It has really helped me focus in on where I want my career to go and has given me tools to define the concrete actions needed to make these plans a reality.”

Kathryn Killackey | Scientific Illustrator, Catalhoyuk Research Project, ‘Tiger King’ (Netflix), ‘Finding Fairness’ (University of Florida Press).

“Being a part of this community has truly changed my life forever, and played one of the biggest roles in my professional career. These courses have been the biggest and most transformative educational experience I’ve ever received. It’s challenged the way I think, the way I approach design, and provided a safe space to learn and grow. It’s given me a community but more importantly a family, and I can never thank Chris enough.”

Zachary Clarkson | Production Assistant at Nickelodeon Animation

“I already knew how to draw, but these courses taught me what it means to be an artist. Chris’s coaching turns storytelling from strange, unattainable magic into science—and then back into more tamable magic. Now I see stories everywhere, and I couldn’t be more grateful.”

Tori Sharp | Graphic Novelist

“Chris’ courses have been a crucial influence on my career since the beginning. They inspired me to pursue personal projects and launch the Directing Animation Livecast, which has unlocked the opportunities I desperately sought.”

Scott Wiser | Director of Art & Animation, The Spacestation