Stan Jolley, born in 1926, quickly learned the ins and outs of the entertainment industry as the son of I. Stanford Jolley, a popular character actor of the time. Following his naval service in World War II, he became an apprentice in the Art Department at Warner Bros., and after rising to the role of senior set designer, Disney artist Herb Ryman convinced Stan to come work for Walt Disney on a new and unprecedented project.
Long before Disneyland was a twinkle in the eye of the general public, Stan was hard at work with Herb, Walt Disney, and Dick Irvine, designing some of Disneyland’s most beloved landmarks. His influence can be seen in the Main Street Emporium, the Golden Horseshoe Saloon in Frontierland, the Storybook Land Canal Boats, and Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Following his work on Disneyland, Stan was one of the first to work in Walt’s newly created Motion Picture & TV Art Department, and worked on Disney television classics from Zorro to The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca. He then began working on feature films, including Old Yeller and Darby O’Gill and the Little People. In 1959, he moved on from the Disney Studio to continue his career in other areas of the motion picture industry, and was nominated for an Academy Award® for his production design on 1985′s Witness.
Throughout his career, Stan continually expressed his gratitude for his formative years spent working with Walt Disney. His artistry continues to endure at Disneyland, as well as in the films and television shows that new generations of Disney fans continue to enjoy.