In Cartoon Animation, acclaimed cartoon animator Preston Blair shares his vast practical knowledge to explain and demonstrate the many techniques of cartoon animation. By following his lessons, you can make any character—person, animal, or object—come to life through animated movement!
Animation is the process of drawing and photographing a character in successive positions to create lifelike movement. Animators bring life to their drawings, making the viewer believe that the drawings actually think and have feelings. Cartoon Animation was written by an animator to help you learn how to animate. The pioneers of the art of animation learned many lessons, most through trial and error, and it is this body of knowledge that has established the fundamentals of animation. This book will teach you these fundamentals.
Animators must first know how to draw; good drawing is the cornerstone of their success. The animation process, however, involves much more than just good drawing. This book teaches all the other knowledge and skills animators must have. In chapter one, Preston Blair shows how to construct original cartoon characters, developing a character’s shape, personality, features, and mannerisms. The second chapter explains how to create movements such as running, walking, dancing, posing, skipping, strutting, and more. Chapter three discusses the finer points of animating a character, including creating key character poses and in-betweens. Chapter four is all about dialogue, how to create realistic mouth and body movements, and facial expressions while the character is speaking. There are helpful diagrams in this chapter that show mouth positions, along with a thorough explanation of how sounds are made using the throat, tongue, teeth, and lips. Finally, the fifth chapter has clear explanations of a variety of technical topics, including tinting and spacing patterns, background layout drawings, the cartoon storyboard, and the synchronization of camera, background, characters, sound, and music.
Full of expert advice from Preston Blair, as well as helpful drawings and diagrams, Cartoon Animation is a book no animation enthusiast should be without.