Connect with us

Lehi People

McDonald’s awards cash to local anime artist for “WcDonald’s” illustration



Megan Wallgren | Lehi Free Press

Lehi artist Ingrid Ochoa is lovin’ it. McDonald’s awarded anime artist Ochoa a $10,000 grant to help fund her upcoming anime projects and provide her with the tools needed to be successful in the industry. The check was awarded to Ochoa on Thursday, March 14, at Lehi’s Digital Drive McDonald’s by owner-operator Chris Sparrer-Baer.

Ochoa is one of three artists nationwide honored as part of McDonald’s anime-themed promotion. The fast-food chain is taking on its alter ego, “WcDonald’s,” the thinly veiled way it has been referenced in popular anime and manga art. The promotion includes new packaging with the popular anime-inspired “W” logo and a new Savory Chili WcDonald’s dipping sauce. The company also released four anime shorts as part of the WcDonald’s universe.

Ochoa said she was shocked when McDonald’s contacted her about the grant. She hadn’t applied for anything, but they had noticed “WcDonald’s”-themed art she had posted on Instagram. “They reached out and said, ‘We like your art and want to celebrate it,’” Ochoa said. A poster of the piece, featuring two of her characters eating a burger and fries, was on display at the award ceremony. She created it two years ago as part of her webtoon series, “The Kiss Bet.”

Sparrer-Baer said she was thrilled to learn a Lehi artist would be receiving one of the grants at the restaurant she co-owns with her brother Rob. 

“I was so excited. It made my day,” she said. “They looked for artists with previous WcDonald’s artwork, and [Ochoa] was selected based on her art and creativity.”

In addition to the grant money, Ochoa will meet with manga artist Acky Bright for a one-on-one mentoring session. Bright is the artist who brought “WcDonald’s” to life for the company’s promotional anime packaging.

Ochoa said she has been in love with anime since childhood. 


”I grew up watching a bunch on TV and have been interested in making my own since I was really little,” she said. Ochoa said much of her art has “coming of age” themes and is inspired by real life. “It’s inspired a lot by things that have happened to me and to my friends and family, just real life.”

Originally from Mexico, Ochoa has lived in Lehi for 15 years. She is a graduate of Utah Valley University, where she studied animation. Ochoa plans on using the grant money to buy new computer equipment to continue her art. You can follow Ochoa’s work by visiting her comic “The Kiss Bet” on or following @ingridcomics on Instagram.

Her advice to fellow artists is, “Keep doing your art, don’t give up, and always choose WcDonalds.”

Continue Reading