Monday, October 6, 2008

Animating Question...

Jason, Thom, et all...
Okay, this touches on my REAL reason for wanting to join the CAnimators blog. (And Jason, I know I've talked to you about this before). My two oldest, Caleb and Rose, have been begging me to learn animation. Rose, age 11, is a budding artist with geniune talent, (she recently painted the watercolor version above of my character Rose Brier) and Caleb, age 13, is a computer guru. Caleb is working for Veraprise, my husband's company (anyone need a website? talk to him). Rose is experimenting with flip-book animation.

This year is a prime time for them both to start learning an animation program, since they're both homeschooled (next year, we may put them in private school). What would be a good place to start?

I have been thinking of starting Caleb on learning Flash, if we can find an old version of it somewhere. That way, he might be able to do some simple things for the websites Andrew creates: and Rose could have an outlet for her artwork. I'm going to check out the free stop-mo programs you posted about, Thom, but I'm wondering if I should look for something more graphic since we have an on-site artist.

Let me know what you think would be a good starting place for them: a program, a book, a technique: let me know. If it was a more expensive program that had a "fun" element to it, maybe we could make it a Christmas present.

So what do you all think?


Thom said...


What perfect timing! I just so happen to be putting together a beginner tutorial/tutoring course.

Basically, it would use free to low cost animation software that I have been digging up lately. There are better alternatives to flash, which really isn't made for animation anyways (real character animation, I mean). Plus it's stupid expensive, as you already know by now.

I'll email you so we can discuss it more. This will help me flesh things out. Thanks!

Blake said...

as far as books go I would highly recommend "The Illusion of Life" . Also I haven't got this book yet but I hear that Animation Crash Course is a really great one too!

Jason Manak said...

Guess I got to this one a bit late. Oh well ... At any rate, Blake is right. "The Illusion of Life" should be in every animator's library. But another HIGHLY recommended book is "The Animator's Survival Kit" by Richard Harris (the guy who made animation cool again with Who Framed Roger Rabbit"

I agree with Thom, although flash is used for animation, it's really not designed for character animation. Strange that TV shows are even produced 100% in flash these days, but what they have, you don't, a production pipeline with peons to build the characters already knowing what moves they will be making (etc).

Since there are so many facets to animation, the key at a young age is continual experimentation and drawing. There is nothing in the universe to replace drawing ... ever.

regina doman said...

Thanks guys! Thom, I'm looking forward to seeing those tutorials!