Pixar Animation Studios
Harley Jessup joined Pixar Animation Studios in May 1996 as production designer for the studio’s 2001 feature, “Monsters, Inc.” Jessup continued in this role for the Academy Award®-winning feature “Ratatouille,” and Golden Globe®-nominated “Cars 2.” As production designer, Jessup leads teams of artists who create and design the sets and characters for each film. Most recently he worked as the production designer on Disney•Pixar’s Fall 2015 release “The Good Dinosaur.”
Jessup began his animation career designing “The Adventures of Thelma Thumb” for “Sesame Street,” which served as a training platform for his work as production designer on “Twice Upon a Time,” an animated feature done in cutout paper. He went on to Lucasfilm to work as art director on several live action projects before joining Industrial light and Magic (ILM) in 1986. As a visual effects art director at ILM, Harley earned an Academy Award® for his work on “Innerspace” and an Academy Award® nomination for “Hook.” After serving as creative director of the art department at ILM, Harley next worked as production designer for Disney’s animated feature “James and the Giant Peach” before coming to Pixar.
Besides his work in film design, Jessup has written and illustrated three children’s books, “What’s Alice Up To?” (1997) and “Grandma Summer” (2000), both published by Viking Children’s Books, and “Welcome to Monstropolis” (2001) based on Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.”
Born in Oregon, Jessup grew up in California’s San Joaquin Valley and the Bay Area. He earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design at Oregon State University in 1976 and a Masters degree in design from Stanford in 1978.
Jessup currently lives in Marin County, California, with his wife and three children.