Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Goldberg, Eric. Character animation crash course! I by Eric Goldberg. p. em. Title: Character animation crash course eric goldberg. Page number ISSUU Downloader is a free to use tool for downloading any book or publication on. Ebook download any format Character Animation Crash Course! Renowned animator Eric Goldberg's detailed text and drawings illuminate.
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For Full 1. For Full 2. Book Details Author: Eric Goldberg Pages: Paperback Brand: Description Character Animation Crash Course! Herewith, a deferential nod and a raised glass of pencil shavings to those who helped me make this a reality and not a pipe dream : -The nice people at Silman-James Press, Tom Rusch, Tom Morr, and especially the unbelievably patient and encouraging Gwen Feldman, who allowed my work schedule to trample over my deadlines, but never wavered in her support to make the book I really wanted.
Now that's love. Definition of Terms Like the instruction manuals that scream at us, "Read me first," I recommend a perusal of these terms before diving into the nitty-gritty of the text. Many of the terms may already be familiar to you; some may have my own personal twist. In any event, knowing this stuff will just make going through the book easier, since it is written for the most part without stopping to define terms every two sentences. Accents -The parts of the soundtrack that are louder or more stressed, which should be indicated in the animation.
In dialogue, it can be louder parts of words or words that carry emotional stress; in music, it can be major beats or particularly present instruments. Anticipation - The smaller preparatory action that precedes a major action, used to show that a character must physically prepare to perform an action or gesture. Attitude Pose -A pose that expresses, through the entire body, what a character is thinking and feeling. Attitude Walk - A walk that expresses, both through poses and movement, how a character feels.
Background -The painted usually scene against which the full-color characters perform in a finished scene. Breakdown - The initial drawing or position made between two keys, which defines how a character transitions from one idea to the next. Boil - The slang term used for the evident flickering of drawings when a scene is run at speed, which results when lines and forms have not been drawn carefully enough to follow through from one drawing to the next.
Replaced in later years by non-fire-hazardous acetate, the term is still in common usage as in "held eel" , although almost all hand-drawn animation is now digitally in ked and painted. Clean-Ups -The drawings in an animation scene that are refined for final inking or scanning, usually made by placing a new sheet of paper over the rough and perfecting both the linework and the character nuances.
In traditional animation today, these are the drawings the audience sees on the screen. Cushion-Out and Cushion-In - The drawings that accelerate out of a pose, spaced progressively farther apart so the action does not start abruptly , and decelerate into the following pose, spaced progressively closer together to complete the action with a smooth settling-in.
Also known as "Slow-Out and Slow-ln. Eccentric Action - Specialized movement within an action that cannot be articulated through normal inbetweening. This can include leg positions in a walk or run, mouth positions, hand gestures, and elaborate movement on the entire body. Exposure Sheet - The bible of a scene in hand-drawn animation, showing the timing, the dialogue frame-by-frame, camera and fielding information, the number of eel levels required, and how many frames each drawing should be exposed.
Extreme - A key drawing or pose that is the most exaggerated or dynamic point of a particular action. Favoring - Making an inbetween position that favors either the position directly before it or after it, instead of making it directly in the center.
Foot - Unit by which 35mm film is measured and exposure sheets are subdivided. There are 90 feet of film per minute of screen time. Film Grammar - The language of filmmaking, comprised of different types of shots, staging and editing principles, and scene transitions, and how they are used by filmmakers to help tell a story.
Frame -One single picture, usually equaling lh 4 of a second in the cinema, whether film or digital projection is used. Because of differing electrical systems around the globe, some altered frame rates occur on television broadcasts. NTSC television runs at 60 Hz per second, so some animation is timed to 30 frames per second fps , although most is still produced at 24 fps and converted electronically.
Held Cel - Portion of a character that is not moving and is drawn onto its own eel level, used to avoid redrawing the non-moving part over a series of frames. At times they can be right in the middle; at other times they can favor either the earlier or the later position.
Keys - The important drawings or poses in a scene that establish the basic tentpoles of the movement and performance. Layout -The setting in which the animated action takes place, indicating sizes of characters in relation to their background, perspective, camera position and movement, major positions of characters within the scene, lighting, and composition of the shot.
Limited Animation - Animation with a reduced number of drawings for either stylistic or economic reasons, most commonly seen in television cartoons. Line of Action - The first line indicated in a pose, showing the basic overall posture, prior to adding the rest of the details. Lip-Sync - The animation of lip and mouth shapes in synchronization to the number of frames indicated for each dialogue sound on the exposure sheets.
Mass - A character's personal dimensionality; what his shapes look like in three dimensions, moving around. Moving Hold - A minimal amount of movement used to keep acharacter alive while still communicating a strong pose or attitude.
Dawn Rivera-Ernster. Last but by no means least. Dave Bossert. Now that's love. Eddie Khanbeigi. Bobby Beck of Animation Mentor. Tenny Chanin. Jennifer Cardon Klein. The slang term used for the evident flickering of drawings when a scene is run at speed. Definition of Terms Like the instruction manuals that scream at us.
In any event. The initial drawing or position made between two keys. Many of the terms may already be familiar to you. The smaller preparatory action that precedes a major action. In dialogue. XV II. Background -The painted usually scene against which the full-color characters perform in a finished scene.
Accents -The parts of the soundtrack that are louder or more stressed. Attitude Walk. Attitude Pose -A pose that expresses. A walk that expresses. Exposure Sheet. Replaced in later years by non-fire-hazardous acetate. Clean-Ups -The drawings in an animation scene that are refined for final inking or scanning. A key drawing or pose that is the most exaggerated or dynamic point of a particular action.
The language of filmmaking. The bible of a scene in hand-drawn animation. Making an inbetween position that favors either the position directly before it or after it. The drawing of action that indicates a portion of a character lagging behind. Cushion-Out and Cushion-In. Eccentric Action. Also known as "Slow-Out and Slow-ln. In traditional animation today. The drawings that accelerate out of a pose. There are 90 feet of film per minute of screen time.
This can include leg positions in a walk or run. Film Grammar. Specialized movement within an action that cannot be articu- lated through normal inbetweening.
Unit by which 35mm film is measured and exposure sheets are subdivided. Held Cel. Portion of a character that is not moving and is drawn onto its own eel level. Because of differing electrical systems around the globe. The first line indicated in a pose. A minimal amount of movement used to keep acharacter alive while still communicating a strong pose or attitude.
Moving Hold. The animation of lip and mouth shapes in synchronization to the number of frames indicated for each dialogue sound on the exposure sheets. Layout -The setting in which the animated action takes place. Also known as a "Glorified Pose. The important drawings or poses in a scene that establish the basic tent- poles of the movement and performance. The natural elaboration of an action that shows how one part leads organically to the next until the action is resolved.
At times they can be right in the middle. Animation with a reduced number of drawings for either stylistic or economic reasons. Chart on a key drawing that indicates both the spacing of the inbetweens and the order in which they are to be drawn up until the next key.
A character's personal dimensionality.
Line of Action. Limited Animation. Frame -One single picture. NTSC television runs at 60 Hz per second. Recoil -The after-effect of an abrupt stop. Roughs -The drawings in an animation scene made prior to clean-up. For example. An animation scene that has no dialogue.
Overlap -The actions that indicate that not all parts of a character arrive at the same time. Used to indicate weight. The overall shape of a pose. The exposure of drawings or positions for one frame each. The process of containing a sentence of dialogue within an organic pattern of movement. In a walk. The method of animating by establishing key poses first.
The mechanical manipulation of frames to achieve a vibration on screen. The process of determining how far apart the positions should be from one another. Passing Position. Secondary Action. Action animated in addition to a major action. A rough animation drawing that only includes the eccentric actions lip- sync. The term first coined by animator Art Babbitt to describe how a character can move fluidly based on anatomy.
Strobing -The unwanted effect of a vibration across the screen. You can show a "wave" action in a character's arm. Staging -The positioning of characters in a scene for maximum emotional content and clear readability of actions. The appearance of differences in timing.
Not as easily controlled as the pose-to-pose method. Storytelling Drawings -The drawings in a scene that succinctly communicate to an audience the important ideas expressed through the action. Successive Breaking of Joints. Parts of a scene or piece of animation that do not occur at the sa me time.
The drawings made as a secondary stage in rough animation that further refine the expressions and details throughout a scene. The technique of animating in order. Strobing would occur if a character were animated on twos while the camera panned on ones.
Thumbnails -A series of quick sketches usually small. The exposure of drawings or positions for two frames apiece. This is used to keep a character feeling alive. Indication of a character's poundage. The amount of space a character takes up. The process of determining how long each drawing or position should be on screen. Portion of a character that is held for several frames. Walt Kelly. When you start working.
Upon entering the nightclub. Attitude Poses Attitude poses are those succinct drawings in your scene that convey what your char- acter is feeling while he's moving. Classic stuff. If you can develop the ability to encapsulate an expression or attitude in a single drawing. His hand grips that of Country Wolf. Charles Schulz. City Wolf walks in. By using strong attitudes. Bill Watterson.
They also define who your characters are by the specific way they are posed for their particular personalities. The strength of your poses can also be tested by how well they read in silhouette: This gives your poses thrust and purpose.
In the case of television or commercial productions. These drawings can be telegraphed strongly for more extreme. Don't even worry about timing at this stage. I sometimes call this the "Name That Tune" school of animating. Milt Kahl was a firm advocate of storytelling drawings.
Whether they are provided for you. For those of you not ancient enough to remember this TV game show. Almost mashed a daisy! I'm a pretty slick item. Instead of just getting the character from one place to the next.
Here are just a few examples: Although this is technically "incorrect. Step 2: Develop the same pose for the opposite arms and legs. This means our doggie will take a step every 16 frames. Call it. Determine a pose that expresses the feeling your character needs for the scene in this case. Call it!
In a strut such as this. Also note that oppo- site things happen on the breakdown: When charted as above. Develop two "passing position" breakdowns. The only place this favoring does not occur is when the foot contacts the ground.
Now that you have these drawings. Now go in and further break down the action. This means that the contact foot must be animated in such a way that its spacing appears even. If the foot is favored during contact. Another moving hold technique is to have the character cushion in slowly to your storytelling pose for what would be the duration of the proposed hold. Computer animation makes even more frequent use of moving holds. The majority of the character can be traced back or on a held eel.
His body is on a held eel. Hipster wolf. One eyebrow raises up. A fine example: In a dialogue or monologue. Each action is timed separately instead of all at once. Eyes flick toward camera. Attitude Poses in an Acting or Dialogue Scene Here are some ways that strong attitudes enhance a variety of animation scenes: In a pantomime scene. Very few inbetweens are needed between major poses.
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Peeved pig registers disgruntlement: One ear flaps down. In a musical scene, a major pose per musical phrase gives th e animation direction and humor. Two examples, one animated, one live-action: Animating in this way gives your characters force of intent. Obviously, not all ani- mation can be thought of in this manner, but how subtly or broadly you handle it can have a bearing on an infinite number of situations.
If handled broadly, the anima- tion is stylized, telegraphing the audience - first one thought is read, then the next, then the next, and so on. If handled more subtly, which usually requires the less- frenetic pacing found in features, it can result in more realistic movement but still give strength and intent to a scene.
Milt Kahl 's Shere Khan or Glen Keane's Tarzan are sterling examples of animation that uses great storytelling drawings. Attitude Poses Developed from an Outside Source When you are called upon to animate an already-established, distinctive style, as is frequently the case in television commercials, look at the source material and find out how the artist handles various attitudes and postures you may need. Whether you're animating a famous comic-strip character, Japanese woodcuts, or fashion illus- tration, each would have attitudes that the original artist utilizes to communicate in the printed form.
Examine how the artist expresses joy, sorrow, anger, relaxation, dejection; how the figure walks, runs, rests - the characteristic poses that make this artwork unique.
Then utilize these as the storytelling drawings or action keys to give your animation accuracy to the original and allow your audience to recognize the original. Just for yocks, imagine you got the secret dream assignment of many animators: If you can figure out a better place to get your poses than in Watterson's beautiful, practically animated-already drawings, then good luck to you. Limited Animation Attitude poses can be even more important in TV ca rtoons, since they rarely have the budgets and schedules for niceties like overlap and slow cushions.
While it's true that much of television animation rests on the quality of the writing and voice work, the best exa mples utilize the visual as well as the verbal. A Word about Thumbnails I'm sad to report that I very rarely use thumbnail sketches to help determine my poses, since I prefer to work full-size.
For me, this is the most comfortable method, beca use I can better explore using the entire body to be expressive. However, there are many staunch supporters of the thumbnail, some world-class animators among them, so who am I to disagree?
If you find them useful, go for it. Acting in Animation - Part 1: Getting Started. What Is 11Good Acting" in Animation? Simply, "good acting" is that which convinces an audience that the character exists. He should look as if he is in control, not a pile of drawings pushed around by an unseen artist. If he is reacting to stimulus, physical or emotional, he should be ani- mated in a way that tells an audience that it is he who is reacting his particular personality and facial expressions and his ground rules of weight and mass and not another character.
Or hers. They won't be alive unless you invest them with a personal, intuitive set of feelings. If the cha racter is doing something physical, feel out the action for yourself or act it out even! Recall similar incidents you have experienced to that which your char- acters must undergo. Don't just settle for cornball cliches found in cartoons - base your drawings on a knowledge of cartoonin g and caricature, but al so on observa - tion of people around you and an awareness of personal experience.
I'm goin g to concentrate primarily on pantomime here, but as you read farther, you will see that some fundamentals rely on the consideration of dialogue and plot content, even at the earliest point of character conception. No one will believe in your character unless you do first. And if this character exists, he will have certain properties, physical and emotional, that you will need to convey to an audience.
Any character has to be conceived from the inside out. By understanding who your character is, you will define movements, gestures, and behavior that reflect his outlook.
Often, animation characters start with archetypes, so the audience can "get" who they are quickly. I call this the "John and Ron" technique, since John Musker and Ron Clements are the directing team that uses this method so effectively.
Heck, they darn near invented it! Let's use Disney's Hercules as an example: However, these characters become richer when you define for the audience why they have become these archetypes and how they deal with it.
Meg has been hurt in love before - so much that she's developed that hard shell as a defense mechanism - and it's the prospect of true love that makes her crack. Phil is a washout, a failure: Now all of this may sound lofty for a broad cartoon comedy such as Hercules, but I assure you it is indeed the process the directors and animators went through to realize their characters.
By giving your characters a history, your animation can evolve over the course of a film: Grill yourself over all the aspects of your character until you know the answers: What excites him? What makes him mad? What is his driving motivation? How does he look at life? What are his basic atti- tudes?
How can you expand these basic attitudes to acquire more depth? What makes your particular character tick? What makes him unique?
How do you show him thinking, changing mood? Make sure your actions are consistent with his particular viewpoint on life. Sometimes animators can be trying so hard to express emotions that they can lose the essence of their particular character. Brer Bear is big.
Brer Fox is cunning.. What is his weight and mass. How can you show what he is thinking and feeling through his movements? Sir Laurence Olivier said that when he was realizing a character. How physically fit is your character?
How weak? How does he compare and contrast with them? What properties of movement make your character unique to the others around him? In Song of the South When should you break them? In other words..
Ho hum.. Here's a dull scene in which everyone stands In this scene.. In Phil's case. Husband throws his chest out and leans forward on the opposite diag- onal. How does he react as a secondary character when another character is performing or talking? Get off the verti- ca l when doing humans!
By that. Mean Lady leans forward. PART 1: By portraying him as loud and bombastic most of the time. Wife curls around behind Husband. I mean there is a tendency when animating humans in a scene together to have al l of them standing up straight like they have poles up their.
If he really did something realistic. What does that walk say about how he's feeling at the moment? In other words. Is your character the type to conspire with the audience and look into the camera?
How do you show these attitudes and expressions succinctly? Instead of utilizing poses that are standard animation cliches. Is he cocky. Johnny once asked him how he got his performances and characters to look so realistic. His answer: Does he feign sincerity when talking to another character and reveal his true nature when that character's back is turned? Think Zero Mastel in The Producers. Do you give them enough room to breathe and space to act without the audience feeling like they're watching a ping-pong match.
Does it need to be slow. Quick and snappy? Is there texture to the variety of timings and moods?
Are your expressive poses on screen long enough to communicate to an audience? Are anticipations used effectively to change mood or expression? Is he under physical strain or unfettered? Can he perform nonchalantly? Is he interested in what he's doing. P X I movement or a glorified pose? Or he can start a secondary action I I 41 looking in the other direction. I using a ca lcu lator. Oll ie Joh nston: If the " If your X-sheets aren't pre- 5'3 timed by the director.
Pantomime has no crutches. His lip-sync and accents come from his personality and are believable for his character. If the scene works without sound. Realism The most important attribute your character can possess is that he exists on his own terms: If the scene works without sound in conveying emotions and physical properties.
Chuck Jones: It could be nobody else but that character. A pantomime scene is automatically more difficult than a dialogue scene: A good soundtrack can very often carry lukewarm animation. If you can tell what's going on without picture. A human. Bugs has confident. Don't just concentrate on the face and upper torso to tell the audience what's going through your character's mind. When he fights Sabor.
Goldberg Eric. Character Animation Crash Course!
His casual walk says that nothing fazes him. The entire body. Chuck Jones' Bugs and Daffy. His postures and movements show how comfortable he is on the animal side.
Glen Keane's Tarzan. Daffy has a. Even when you have strong psychological ground rules for a character.
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A lot of the si ncerity comes from what has just been described. It is these relationships that often reflect sincerity the most. It's all part of the larger picture of not only believing that your character exists. Pocahontas is a free spirit with a love for her people and their regard for nature.
Something must crack that grouchy shell and make him feel. If she smiles. See why a history is important? The important thing to remember is that the range of emotions you show must be true to who that character is. Giving your char- acter a goal a "want. Something must excite him to passion. If a character is generally grouchy. If he actively hates the villain. His craven movements are contrasted with his overzealous screaming and humiliating attempts to make Bugs a fall guy.
If your character shows care and concern for the ones he bonds with closely in the show. And speaking of goals -that's a good quality for any character. Her movements suggest those of a little girl for whom everything is too big or too complex. Some of this came out in the storyboarding process. Joe is the symbol of the Depression. The choices you make for the range are all filtered through who that character is. Joe is also torn with moral dilemmas.
Heading toward old age. He has a slow. His wife Margaret glares him down when he tries to have fun. Here's what I knew about my characters before we started animating. When he's in the groove. A case history I've given a lot of complex information here. He's jobless. If she gets an gry.
His love for jazz shows in his body movements and gestures. The embodiment of jazz. He takes the realist's view of survival first. She's privileged not based on our bank accounts. She's actually quite overwhelmed by the world. Based on our own daughter albeit when she was quite young. I also knew what they wanted. Acting with posture whirlwind. Lost and Foundling Sniffles. Duke wants to play jazz. He's free as a bird. Weight and mass to establish character Junyer Bear.
Free of constraints. Rachel just wants to spend time with her parents. Knowing who these characters are.
It's where he really feels comfortable. John wants to be free. Mouse Takes a Tnp Mickey. It takes a bit to hoist his bulk off the ground. Duke is the most important character in the show. Clear poses for two characters. Defining a character through move- ment.
The visualization of th eir goals became the centerpiece of the show. They'd never drop her! Joe just wants a job. So now if you 're at all inspired to pop in the DVD for a peek. Recommended Cartoons: So her movements are joyous and confident when skating with them.Peeved pig registers disgruntlement: This is used to keep a character feeling alive, rather than separating the held portion onto a sepa rate level.
Drawing 1 -The ball in midair, at the top of its arc, in its most spherical shape. Now that's love. It's nice to show the underside of the material in your animation to give more three-dimensional form. In a pantomime scene.