// Gurney Journey
Disney Studios went to great lengths to shoot photo reference for Tinker Bell in their 1953 feature Peter Pan.
Animator Marc Davis brought in pantomime actor Margaret Kerry to pose with larger than life props.
Footage of her kicking a feather pillow informed a scene where she kicked a dandelion. Animators put reference films into a frame-by-frame viewer to study timing, spacing, and action.
While the reference helped make the action more believable, Marc Davis kept the look of the character aligned with his imagination.
The Disney Studios were using filmed reference in their earliest features, such as Snow White and Pinocchio. (Link to video on YouTube) But the impression they usually gave in their behind-the-scenes marketing was that they merely sketched from living models. They did that, too, but it's only fairly recently that the photos of the early video reference have come to light.
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