More Walt Disney World Resort Stories

Vinylmation Turns Two

Steven Miller

by , Senior Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility, Walt Disney World Resort

Vinylmation Figures

On November 7, Vinylmation turns two. There is such a difference between one and two when it comes to kids (I’m sure that some parents are nodding in agreement). The same could be said for Vinylmation (go with me on this). The program started small but continues to grow with each new release. I recently spoke with Randy Noble and Dan Howard from Disney Design Group who were involved with creating Vinylmation in 2008. They shared some stories from their experiences launching this new Disney collectible.

“When we were creating Vinylmation, I never thought it would be where it is today,” said Randy. “Originally, we wanted something that would appeal to a different guest visiting our Gallery locations. We dreamed it would be big but never thought we would have entire stores dedicated to Vinylmation.”

Dan shared his thoughts about the early design process.

“Aaron Babcock was the product developer who, along with Randy, me and a few others, helped get this collectible off the ground,” explained Dan. “We learned a lot about creating designs that were simple to translate to the Mickey Mouse-shaped canvas. It wasn’t easy at first as it was so new to us.”

Dan initially thought that every design was applied to the figures at once. It wasn’t until he saw the production did he realize how complex it could get.

Original Concept Art for the Urban #3 Vinylmation Series

“When I finally saw how the figures were produced, I realized that it wasn’t as simple as I thought,” continued Dan. “This gave us the challenge to create designs that were fun and visually appealing while being easy to capture on the form.”

Dan shared his original concept for the Urban #3 series which ended up being much different than what was released. As you can see, the designs were simple to translate to the form.

Red Balloon and Script Vinylmation Figures

Randy shared one of his favorite figures that he designed.

“I liked the red balloon figure from Park #1,” said Randy. “I love the connection between the two parks with Disneyland on the front and Walt Disney World on the back. I also liked the figure with the yellow poncho. When our offices were at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, we would watch guests putting on ponchos everyday during the afternoon rainstorms. That image inspired that figure.”

Dan also shared his thoughts about his favorite figure.

“I like the script figure from Urban #3,” continued Dan. “When designs get too complex, they can lose something in translation. For me, I like seeing how Guests have connected to the figures. Each figure means something different to guests. That is the essence of Vinylmation: it is whatever you want it to be.”

Computer Vinylmation Figure

As we embark on our next year, I invite you to follow our official Facebook page. We have all sorts of plans for that page. But what I’m really curious to know is what do you think was the best figure from these past two years?


  • Happy Bday! Can you confirm that this price hike will be seen on all future vinyls or is it exclusive to the Park series? Unfortunately I think my collecting days are coming to an end because of this price increase. It’s too bad because I know many people who are in the same boat – they love the line of collectables but can no long justify spending nearly $30 for two figures.

    Hopefully the price change is for this one series and will not continue on.

  • are you guys going to put up the sorceror mickey combo pack at the disneystore website

  • Any word on when the the Disneyland “Ticket Book” set is coming out?

  • My favorite is Epcot 82, hands down.

  • Thanks Steven for answering my question

    I sought out the urban 5 chaser, and let me say its amazing!!!!
    I cant wait to look at the vinylmation exclusive figures at times square (my home base :)) )

    Vinylmation is heading in a good direction, and if the series get better, the anticipation would become greater too.

    Its been a great two years of Vinylmation and my favorite design out of all the series so far is the park series #4 chaser
    One word: “Kungaloosh”!!!!

  • Happy Birthday vinylmation!

    Congratulations to all of the members of the design team. I have many favorites but if I was forced to only pick two I would have to say Owl from Cutesters and Paint Drip Mickey from Urban 4.

    Looking forward to many more year of vinylmation collecting.

    • Wow! Thanks for all of the birthday wishes. On behalf of all of us in Vinylmation Land, thank you for the enthusiasm and love! We are celebrating two years as a result of you.

      @Jennifer – Ah, you found him. Hmmm …. he is arriving in 2011. 🙂 We don’t have a definite date yet.

      @Kevin – Not sure what information you are seeking on pricing. We periodically review pricing for all merchandise with key partners from planning, pricing (yes, there is a division for that) and product development. Prices change, and I can say that not everything increases. It is a balance we continually strike.

      @Christopher – Yes! Thank you for giving some love to those figures. Dan met someone who has collected lots of the same figure from that series. The photos are priceless!

  • Orange Gears is LEGEND!!!

  • Favorite figure is the paint drip Mickey chaser from Urban 4

  • Clear Green!
    Seriously though, it’s like picking your favorite child but if I must then it would probably be Kermit from Park 1. I LOVE the clever use of Mickey’s ears for that design.

  • first of all let me say

    Happy birthday vinylmation!
    It was great of you to start an official vinylmation page on facebook.

    I just have one question,

    Would you be able to address the pricing issue (increase) of vinylmation.
    I think that I am not the only one who wants an answer to that question!!

    Thanks :))

  • Very Happy Birthday Vinylmation! The creative of the products could to be amazing. Awesome things come in small packages.

  • Happy Birthday, Vinylmation!

    There were so many good figures that have come out over the last two years…I can’t just limit it to one. But, the one I have the most attachment to, just because my beloved dalmatian passed away close to when it was released, was the Park #2 chaser – Pongo! Thank you for making that one. It’s very special to me.

  • Oh but I really cannot wait for Chip n Dale nerd and the Chip n Dale Rescue Rangers set! Any hints as to when we can expect to see them… 🙂

  • One of my favorite is drippy Mickey from Urban 4!

    Thanks for another great read Steven! 🙂

  • Happy 2nd B-Day Vinylmation! What a success. Our wallets are hurting, but continued success!

Comments are closed.