2009 Frank Armitage

Muralist, portrait artist, medical illustrator, radio operator, practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncturist, globetrotter, volunteer and good Samaritan – Frank Armitage is all of these things. And yet he also found time to forge a distinguished Disney career. He started at Disney in 1952, working as a background and layout artist. He painted backgrounds for the Disneyland television series, including the famous episode “Man and the Moon.” He also did backgrounds for short subjects, including the Goofy short Freewayphobia #1 and Donald’s Fire Survival Plan. For feature animation, he painted backgrounds and did layouts for Peter Pan, Mary Poppins and The Jungle Book. But his greatest legacy from this early period at Disney was working with the great Eyvind Earle as a background painter for Sleeping Beauty. Frank left Disney after that, but returned in 1977 to work for Imagineering. Among many other projects, his artwork was instrumental in paving the way for Epcot’s Wonders of Life pavilion. Although he officially retired in 1989, Frank has continued to do work for Disney. He painted 5,500 square feet of murals for the Pizzafari restaurant at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and prepared several murals at Tokyo DisneySea.
 

Frank Armitage

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