Peeking into Animation

Animation is amazing. However I realize that the path to becoming an animator isn’t all fun and games, especially when your school doesn’t even have that major. However, fortune was on my side when I got to be one of the guinea pigs in the first ever 2D animation class at my school. Although taking the animation class taught me a lot, it was an eye opener and a slight disappointment. I was informed I would make no money, be overworked, and often be out of work. Yet, I still want to pursue this career. (Call me crazy) After touring Bent Image Lab in Portland, meeting everyone and seeing what they actually do behind the scenes, I knew that I had made the right decision.
I spoke to an alumnus from my school who worked on Coraline for Laika and asked for his advice on what to do to pursue a career in animation. His response was to learn the following programs on my own:

  • All Adobe Suite
  • Maya
  • After Effects
  • Small Amount of Flash
  • 3D Studio Max
  • Motion Builder
  • Mudbox
  • ZBrush
  • CG Animation and Sculpting
  • Rigging
  • Texturing, lighting, rendering

Clearly, that’s a ton of programs to master on my own. Luckily the animation program, Maya is offered to anyone for over a year and can be downloaded and used non-profitably. I’ve yet to begin learning Maya but I will document my learning process here as it unfolds (if the internet decides to not hate me and lets me find an affordable tutorial).
One of the things that was repeated a thousand times in the beginning 2D Animation class was that the best animations have a clear message without talking. The short, Luxo Jr. made by Pixar Animation Studios is an excellent example because it brings life into two inanimate objects.

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One thought on “Peeking into Animation

  1. This is a good start for your blog. You already have a good understanding of some of the elements of your template. The bulleted list is effective. How many of those words can you turn into links? On that subject, you use link text effectively here, because you’re building the links into your posts, not just including the URLs. I like that. I agree – Luxo Jr. is Animation 101 for students.

    Sometimes you’re a too chatty and colloquial – “debby downer,” “a ton of poop,” etc. It’s a fine line between sounding personal, and sounding unprofessional. Use parenthetical clauses rarely, and correctly. Your first one “(call me crazy)” is a complete sentence. It should start after a period, the first letter should be capitalized, and the sentence should end with a period before the close paren. Likewise, you second one is an incomplete sentence, so it should start with a lower case letter inside the open paren.

    I love the fish hook animation in the left margin!

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