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Now on Kickstarter

The traditional animation desk for iPads


Random Rejected Product Slogan:
“Let the good times barrel roll“

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Celebrate the Golden Age of Animation with a traditional animation desk designed for non-traditional dreamers and doers.


clip_phone_callWhat is it?

Simply put, the Animation Dock is an animation desk for tablets. See, back when people did traditional animation on paper, they had these really spiffy, classically-designed desks with a rotating disc in the center. This allowed animators to rotate the paper as they drew, always ensuring they could get the best angle while pumping out beautiful animations. The animation dock recreates that experience– except instead of paper, we’re doing it with the iPad.

We want to remind everyone that the simple act of drawing is the only skill you truly need to bring stories to life.


Not only can you use the Animation Dock to rotate your digital canvas while working, but you can also use your tablet as a lightbox for tracing, animating, painting, and more. Each dock can be used for traditional paper animation thanks to the integrated Acme pegbar.

  • Support for 7″ and 10″ sized tablets (Only the iPad confirmed at the moment) 
  • Built-in industry standard ACME pegbar 
  • 360 degree rotating disc  
  • Lightbox protective cover
  • Two parts: Base & removable Desktop (for couch drawing)
  • Easy to use Lightbox app (iPad only for now)
  • Built in Burbank, CA

This product isn’t just about aesthetics; the Animation Dock is a genuine working animation desk complete with a 360 degree spinning disc, portable desktop, lightbox attachment, and pegbar support. Hidden under the dual rulers is a universal grip that can accommodate most tablets up to 10” in size such as the newest iPads. (Please refer to the list of officially tested tablets for more information.) 

We’re fans of animation. We know it’s not exactly a field you get into because you’re counting on becoming incredibly wealthy. It’s more about the legacy, the history of the art. There isn’t an animation geek alive who doesn’t know the names of Ub Iwerks, Max Fleischer, or any of the rest of the original pioneers. Those guys made incredible art that still holds up today, and they did it with pen, paper, and desks like these.

That’s all we want. To feel like we’re a part of that group. The go-getters. The doers. The crazy cartoonists, laughing in the face of a skeptical film industry. The guys and gals saying, “we’ll do whatever we want. And we’ll do it better. And we’ll look good doing it, too.”

But we don’t want to shun modern conveniences. Why should we? The Animation Dock is about paying homage to and borrowing a note from the legends of the past, while utilizing the technology of today.

Each Animation Dock is made from laser-cut maple plywood then hand stained and assembled in Burbank, California.

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We can’t do this without our swell supporters. Wondering what we’ve got cookin’ for helping us? Here’s a preview…


Light-up Mini Desks and Ink & Paint Rewards


clip_jumping Paintings from My Cat
Exactly what it says. You will get a digital iPad painting by my cat. Don’t worry– She’s right here in Burbank, so it’s not more rampant outsourcing.

Wood Animation Disc Keychains
Because there’s nothing like carrying some good hardware in your pocket.

 Ink n’ Paint Jar Magnets/Keychains
Hand-painted by your favorite Ink ‘n Paint ‘n Cat Lady with honest-to-goodness cel-vinyl animation paint

 Mini Traditional Animation Desks 
Man-made, cat tested. Add a little light underneath to make the world’s tiniest light box. What is this, a drafting desk for ants?!

Animation Dock for Early Adopter
Get a fully hand-made and finished Animation Dock of your own!

Limited 1st Run Custom Editions
Choose your own adventure. Pick your wood stain color, trim color and additional details such as custom engraving.

Special Artist Editions
We have a select group of artists and animators who are busy dreaming up special one-of-a-kind editions that will be available via our Kickstarter campaign!

Stretch Goals?
If we reach stretch goals, we’ll be happy to offer additional colors, deluxe models and finishes.

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Tammy Gray Smith

Animator, Designer, Geek

Tammy is a native Floridian who grew up with an above-average dose of the Disney channel & theme parks. Thanks to her family, she had a strong background in science, arts, history, and sassy lady-ness. A winner of Terrible Timing, she made it to college just at the 2D animation programs were shelved. Ever since graduating from UCF as a Digital Media major, she has never stopped advancing her education on her own. She is a self-taught Illustrator, web designer, animator, model builder, & cat-enthusiast, and has more Twitter followers than her husband can understand.


Corey Smith
VFX Artist, Voice Actor, Manly Man

Corey is a country boy from Southern Illinois. He went to school for digital animation and spends most of his time working in the VFX industry. He lends some construction experience and power tool knowhow to the mix, having worked on two Habitat for Humanity projects, as well as building his parents’ home in Southern Illinois. Whenever Tammy dreams up an idea, he provides a functioning 3D model of it. He also likes coffee, waffles, and pie.

Director of Human Resources

League of Superfriends

More importantly: We couldn’t have gotten this far without the help of the fine folks at Campbell Laser Works and A Bunny Line.

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How did this start?

I (Tammy) have always been a big fan of animation. I’m also a bit of a technology geek. I’ve struggled for awhile to find better ways to work my phone and tablet into my routine. I work as a digital artist and designer for a living, and I want to be able to use my tablet to make storyboards and art and animation. At the same time, I didn’t want to give up the nostalgia and class of the traditional art supplies I once used.

Where are you now?

We are done with the initial designs, and are currently testing our (hopefully) final prototypes. We’re also speaking with manufacturers on ways to more cheaply produce the desks, as well as different size options for other tablets (currently we’re only supporting the iPad mini).

Whom is this product for?

We’d like to say it’s for everyone, but more specifically, it’s meant for artists that want to marry modern technological conveniences with the wisdom and style of the Golden Age of Animation. As animators and filmmakers, we often find ourselves at odds with how easy some things are to do nowadays, and how much we respect the hard-working men and women that came before us. Max Fleischer didn’t have Maya or Photoshop, but we do. Those guys used pens, we use styluses (stylii?). The animation dock is an attempt to marry those two worlds.

Why Kickstarter?

We’re just a couple of animation geeks from humble backgrounds. We don’t have trust funds, we don’t have investors, we just have our savings from working in Web Design and VFX. In other words, the kickstarter is a way to guarantee we can afford to produce each desk we sell. Hopefully, after the first kickstarter, we’ll be able to incorporate into a complete business, at which point we’ll look into offering more products at better prices.

The kickstarter also helps us quantify how large our potential market is. We hope that there are a lot of animation fans out there who sympathize with what we’re doing. We think there are. It is, however, probably going to be a considerably niche group. So a Kickstarter campaign helps us understand exactly how many of you guys want this stuff!

Why Help Us?

Well, basically, because we’re trying to do all this as ethically as possible. We’ve been trying to keep production in the USA. We’re putting a great deal of thought into how much we charge, because we don’t want anyone to get gouged. We’ve been there. Art supplies are expensive. Easels are often constructed from staples and balsa wood, and marked up over 500%. We’re not after that kind of margin. We believe in fair business, fair prices, and we really just want to share with the world what we thought was a pretty cool idea.

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