Book Review: Pixar Animation Studios Artist Showcase ‘Box Meets Circle’ by Aaron Hartline

Check out our video book review as well as the history of Pixar Artist, Aaron Hartline’s “Box Meets Circle” Characters.
Box Meets Circle Custom Fan Art

Back in 2014, both Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios teamed up with Disney Worldwide Publishing to launch a series of children’s books created by artists and storytellers from each studio. The series of books enables employees from both studios to showcase their personal projects in picture books featuring original art and characters.

The original art and storyline can have quite a personal connection — as in the latest title for the Pixar Animation Artist Showcase series, Box Meets Circle by animator Aaron Hartline, who shared one of the inspiration points behind the story came from his son bouncing around with all kinds of energy (Circle), while he felt more like a stiff square just wanting to take a moment to sit and rest (Box).

Aaron Hartline's sketches of Box and Circle

Having a bouncing energetic 4-year old son ourselves, we can certainly relate to the “sitting is the best!” character named, Box. The way Hartline choose to arrange the book on stark white pages in a minimal fashion with textured brushstrokes really allows the characters to “jump” off the page — and don’t get us started on the “squash and stretch” technique used in the book, which ultimately enhanced the playfulness of the characters and was done exquisitely.

For our complete review of, Box Meets Circle, watch the embedded video below, or directly on our Pixar Post YouTube Channel.

Along with the adorable story of overcoming differences and learning to play together, we absolutely love Aaron Hartline’s personal story of getting to Pixar in the back of the book. Just as the characters Box and Circle persevered to come up with a way to play together, Hartline did the same when applying to Pixar for 13 straight years before being offered a job in 2008.

In 2011, Hartline’s Twitter account (link removed as it is no longer active) was filled with various original and beloved characters sketched on post-it notes with quirky and witty taglines, the project was called “The Daily Post-it.” However, back in 2014, those sketches morphed into box and circle designs – which we now know is when his book idea for Box Meets Circle began.

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The previous titles in the Pixar Animation Artist Showcase are ‘Over There’ by Steve Pilcher and ‘Cloud Country’ by Noah Klocek and Bonny Becker. The upcoming fourth title, ‘Henri’s Hats’ by Mike Wu is set to release on September 4, 2018.


Circle loves to jump, but Box just falls flat. Oww! Box loves to sit, but Circle just rolls away. Whoa! They want to play together, but how? They figure out that Box can sit on Circle as Circle jumps to her heart’s content. However, Box still experiences an Oww! every once in a while.


You can pick up the book on Amazon.

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