Butch Hartman, a renowned animator celebrated for creating the popular show “The Fairly OddParents,” has shifted his focus to inspiring young Christians with a faith-based series called “The Garden.” Together with his wife Julieann, who shares his Christian faith, Hartman embarked on this new project after his successful career at Nickelodeon. Hartman’s creative journey took a faith-driven turn after he became a Christian in the year 2000 when he was 35 years old. He shared that he grew up in a household that didn’t discuss or prioritize matters of faith, despite having good parents. As a result, he had limited knowledge and understanding of God and spiritual matters. It wasn’t until he attended a church service that something inside him clicked. The message he heard that day resonated with him, and he found himself opening up to the possibility of a deeper spiritual connection.
A veteran animator known for creating the runaway hit “The Fairly OddParents” is now on a mission to inspire young Christians.
Butch Hartman and his wife, Julieann, have created “The Garden,” a faith-based series. The duo, who are outspoken Christians, embarked on the project after Hartman’s monumental success working as an artist, storyteller, and show creator for two decades at Nickelodeon.
“I was there from 1997 to 2018, and … I had this idea around 2005,” he said, noting he had become a Christian a few years earlier in 2000. “Since the year 2000, I’ve always had Jesus on my heart, wanted to know more about Jesus, more about the Lord.”
Hartman said he was 35 years old when he became a Christian.
“I grew up in a very godless home — not that my parents were bad people,” he said. “They were great people, but we didn’t talk about God, because they didn’t know about God.”
Hartman continued, “I knew about God, but I didn’t know how it all linked together. I didn’t know how Jesus died for my sins. What does that mean?”
But one day, while visiting a church, Hartman said something clicked. The message resonated, and his “heart was open.” As time progressed, the couple went to church weekly, with their faith growing in the process.
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Photo by Fred Seibert