He was fired from a newspaper because he “lacked imagination and had no original ideas”. His first company Laugh-O-Gram went bankrupt in six months. With his suitcase, and twenty dollars, Walt headed to Hollywood to start anew. It was now do or die for him.
Walt had an early interest in art, he would often sell drawings to neighbors to make extra money. He pursued his art career, by studying art and photography by going to McKinley High School in Chicago. At the end of World War I, Walt quit high school to join the ambulance driver troops. This was where he found his true calling by drawing caricatures for the U.S troops.
They were a huge hit among the soldiers which encouraged him to continue with his passion. He went home to join the Kansas City Star as an intern in the cartoon section. He was rejected by them.
Never one to be discouraged Walt established his business called Laugh-O-Gram, he added $15,000 from investors and sold his cartoon series to Kansas City cinema. But the company found it difficult to survive and went completely bankrupt in 6 months.
He came to California with merely $40 in his pocket. He once said, “We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” Here he created popular characters like Oswald the rabbit.
However, he lost this character. Oswald the lucky rabbit belonged to Universal Studios and not Walt Disney. Universal Studio went ahead with their character excluding Walt Disney from further deals.At the lowest point in his life Walt Disney invented Mickey Mouse.
Retaining copyright over Mickey led to other classic characters like Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Pluto and Goofy. Nobody could stop him then. Walt Disney gave birth to an idea more than a company. He proved that you did not have to fit in to be happy. He once said that, “Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” These words still ring true for all of the dreamers out there.