OFY alumnus Zac is living proof that hard work, dedication, and positivity can lead to great opportunities. Zac’s passion is storytelling through illustration and animation. His unique designs and illustrations have demanded the attention of famous brands and have opened many doors. In 2014, Zac posted his own fan art of the characters of the Disney film Big Hero 6 on his website. Shortly thereafter, Disney discovered Zac’s drawing and invited him to the Big Hero 6 private screening and after-party at the Walt Disney Animation Studios to be amongst other great and world-renowned artists. Realizing his own potential, Zac started a business called Squibbs2D which produces art, illustrations, and animations. In his free time, Zac showcases and sells his art at various conventions and local events.
All of Zac's accomplishments thus far have been a testament to his perseverance and will to succeed despite challenges he has faced. Zac grew up in California and went to high school in Idaho, where there were few opportunities for artists. “When I lived in Idaho, being young in a rural area made it hard to find a connection to the artistic community,” says Zac. “I found myself depressed and uninspired.” Thankfully, Zac’s family ended up relocating to Southern California, and he enrolled at Options For Youth (OFY), Irwindale. At OFY, Zac got the encouragement and support that he needed to pursue his passion for art. Zac continued to grow as an artist and broadened his skillset, and he eventually became the afterschool Art Instructor at OFY in 2015. He credits his former teacher Monica Rubio for teaching him professionalism and the Pathways In Education trips for broadening his perception on life.
Currently, Zac is the Summer Marketing Intern at Options For Youth's corporate office in Pasadena. He enjoys working on creative projects on the side, which include photography, videography, and putting together a comic book with his girlfriend. “Working at OFY’s corporate office, I’ve felt like I have support and a second home just like I felt at OFY. In the future, I hope to make stories with a variety of mediums that will help anyone going through a tough time see the positivity and beauty in life. That has always been my message: peace, love, and positivity.”