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In 2002, I worked for Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI) down in Glendale, CA. While I had a handful of smaller assignments, my main project was to assist with environmental graphic design for Hong Kong Disneyland as the grand opening was scheduled for 2005.
In addition to the work for Hong Kong Disneyland, I designed signs for Euro Disney in Paris, helped create a mailer for an annual art gala event, and digitized hand-drawn blueprints to help update the backlog of files from the 1950s for the parks.
Walt Disney was adamant that each park built looks like the one before it. Or more specifically, all parks should emit the entertainment and energy that Disneyland brought to California in 1955.
For this reason, we not only paid close attention to the new park to follow Anaheim’s site but ensured we respected the country’s culture and beliefs.
As we prepared for Hong Kong Disneyland, I focused on the digital translation of Main Street USA, the train station, and other famous structures that always define every Disney park.
Another project I was assigned involved signage throughout Disneyland Paris for Tomorrowland. As seen below, we worked to create two- and three-dimensional signs for the rides. Cyberspace Mountain was one of them.
One of the many memorable moments while I was an Imagineer was working with John Hench—one whom I consider the “10th Old Man“.
As an extra assignment while at WDI, I was privileged to work with Mr. Hench to create a new sign for Mickey’s of Glendale—Disney’s internal store for WDI employees. I worked with him for over a month to look at the basic sketch for Sorcerer Mickey, so we knew we had the correct pose. After sign-off was received for the drawing, I generated the vector scale version of the sign. Using reference materials as well as known PANTONE® colors assigned to the character.
Hong Kong Disneyland was officially opened to the public on September 12, 2005, by then the Chief Executive of Hong Kong Donald Tsang, Chief Executive Officer Michael Eisner, and President Bob Iger. Beijing offered its significant support by sending Zeng Qinghong, Vice President of the People's Republic of China.
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