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Avian Anderson

RespectAbility Entertainment Professionals Lab, Summer 2019

Avian Anderson headshot

Avian Anderson

Avian Anderson is a professional storyboard artist and character designer. She has worked for studios such as Warner Brothers, Hasbro, Dreamworks, and various other animation studios. She earner her BFA in Illustration from the Rhode Island School of Design.

Avian has ADHD, depression and anxiety but likes to think of her disorders like The Hulk. A superpower with the ability to help or hinder, that simply must be managed. The disorders plus the skills she learned from managing them became very useful in working in animation: her ability to create ideas at rapid speed thanks to her hyper connected brain, her sense of humor she developed from trying to beat her depression, and her ability to come up with multiple outcomes, which is helpful in story creation and file management. She would like to create a cartoon showing how much differences can be like superpowers.


After an extensive search and interview process, 22 individuals were invited to participate in RespectAbility’s Summer 2019 Lab for Entertainment Professionals. This 5-week, nine-session innovative summer lab series for people interested in – and with experience in – development, production and post-production, including careers as writers, directors, producers, cinematographers, animators and other production roles, takes place June 18 – July 18, 2019. Participants include diverse people with physical, cognitive, sensory, mental health and other disabilities. Learn more:

This program, which continues building the talent pipeline of young professionals with disabilities looking to work behind the scenes, is made possible with support by: Comcast NBCUniversalJonathan Murray and The Walt Disney Company.

Meet the Author

Eric Ascher

Eric Ascher is the Communications Associate for RespectAbility. He is responsible for supporting RespectAbility’s Vice President, Communications in developing and implementing advocacy efforts and communications of various types. Ascher manages RespectAbility’s social media channels, website and emails; organizes and develops webinars; and supervises Communications Fellows.

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