Donn Kinney grew up and attended school in Logan County West Virginia, during his senior year of high school he was awarded a full scholarship to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh where he graduated with high honors in 1993
Donn began his career working in puppetry with his first art-related job in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3 creature shop. After Ninja Turtles, Donn worked on several national and international puppet projects including The Fox Cubhouse, a co production by the Jim Henson company, Film Australia, WQED and DIC Entertainment. During work on the Cubhouse, Donn began to experiment with computer animation, creating several short films that played at SIGGRAPH, and one short, Steve Saves the Universe, that went on to be nominated for an award at the London Effects and Animation Festival.
For the next nine years, Donn would do animation work on a variety of projects ranging from a series of commercials for Singapore's M1 Telecommunications to animated elements for Mr. Roger's Neighborhood as well as a full length animated Christmas special The Toys that Rescued Christmas.
On a stroll through the artists alley while attending Otakon in the summer of 2003, he was accidentally introduced to the world of Japanees BJDs (Ball Jointed Dolls) and was instantly inspired. Within the next year, and after much experimentation, he had created his first BJD sculpt and in 2004 founded Bishonen House.. Bishonen House has now been in existence for fourteen years, and during that time Donn has handmade over 450 BJDs which are in private collections worldwide. Don's BJDs have been featured in Doll Reader, Haute Doll, Fashion Doll Quarterly and Dolls magazine.
Donn exhibits at conventions, teaches workshops and displays work at art exhibits throughout the US and just recently finished construction on a studio which includes an expanded sculpting workshop as well as classroom space where he teaches sculpting, casting, and mold-making workshops for model makers and doll/figure artists.
When Donn isn’t working on doll commissions, he spends his time working on a comic project based on his sculpted characters titled Break Step Velocity
Donn and his partner Seth Kitzmiller also put on a semi annual art show known as Beauty, Birds and Bones where they display and sell their oddities themed darker works. The next show (Beauty, Birds and Bones 4) will be in Logan county at the Hot Cup in the fall of 2019
You can check out Donn’s latest photos and updates on the following links:
This is Donn’s first appearance at WillCon so be sure to stop by his booth and check out his amazing items!
Welcome to WillCon Donn!