Each month at Full Sail, we have 10 classes instructing the 12 Principles of Animation in the 2D Animation Lab. On the last day of class, students get to enjoy a traditionally animated film as they put any finishing touches on their animation projects and flip books. Often students are illuminated by the warm glow of the animation disks as they sketch. There is usually a rush of activity at the animation cameras as scenes are shot and re-shot.
This month, the class decided to watch Mulan, a film which I put plenty of blood sweat and tears into. This was the first full feature film Disney produced entirely in Florida and the small crew had to put in an astonishing amount of overtime to get the film finished. It was trial by fire, and I loved the pressure. I stayed late without being asked to re-work all the keys in a scene that showed fish swimming underwater. By morning I finished the scene, locking down the stripes and patterns on the fish bodies. All that work garnered quick promotions. Ironically after all the water ripples were added, all that work was distorted, but I still feel pride any time I see it. I haven't experienced that kind of intense community creative effort since production on that film. I suppose my daily deadlines are my way to keep that pressure cooker active as I strive to grow as an artist.