Wednesday, January 11, 2012

WEEK 1: Animation Direction 2 -- Stop Motion!

Things are about to get very hands-on in the Octagon.
Stop motion, people! Pixilation, claymation, puppet animation -- anything that can be moved is fair game in stop motion.

Stop-motion is the granddaddy of all animation dating back as far as 1825 with the invention of a simple gadget called a 'Thaumatrope' - a simple spinning disk with images on both sides, such as the famous bird & cage example. When spun quickly the images seemed to blend together -- a phenomenon called, "persistence of vision".
Click here to see this in action.
Just think how exciting your life could have been with one of these babies
It progressed through the centuries into the multi-faceted medium it is today. Stop motion shares elements of live action, traditional and even CG animation. Like live action, you need to create sets, lights and real objects or puppets to animate. Like traditional animation you need a sense of timing and a means of planning and tracking your animation. Like CG you'll be manipulating jointed characters frame by frame. You can easily transfer your CG animation skills stop motion, and the same is true in reverse.
Phil Tippett making history on The Empire Strikes Back

We'll have a look at a sampling of various under-the-camera animation techniques, take a virtual tour of Aardman animation, and try out a bunch of simple frame-by-frame animation styles.

Today we'll start planning the major project for the term.

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