Friday, January 11, 2013

History of Animation

Conrad Winterlich came into the 2D Animation class at Full Sail last month to introduce students to the history of animation. He usually gives this lecture when students get to his class much later in the curriculum. This was a test to see if an earlier introduction to the history of animation might offer students more creative options as they planned their work for later classes.

It was a fun lecture going all the way back to French cave paintings and covering animation trends throughout history. After the lecture I further researched Windsor McCay who single handedly animated "The Sinking of the Lusitania." This propaganda film helped get America involved in WWI.  Of course the first film to use synchronized sound, Steamboat Willie, was shown. Some hooded students started to nod off, but there were so many amazing animated clips that kept most students engaged. I certainly learned a few new things.

Our animation lab just got new Apple computers for shooting and testing hand drawn animation. We also got new software, called Flip book Pro for testing the timing of animation. We tested the software for several hours learning it's quirks. We will still be getting up to speed ourselves as we introduce January's students to the new software. I'm actually excited about the new possibilities, applying digital software to make traditional animation faster and easier.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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