Sunday, June 30, 2013

2D Animation

There is a certain nostalgia seeing a new group of students each month in the 2DA Full Sail classroom. By the end of the first day it is possible to sense which students have the drive to excel. Most of my time is spend helping students navigate how to use the computer software to shoot the drawings they produce at their animation desks. For some students there is a legitimate glee that comes from seeing their drawings move for the first time.

Larry Lauria does a good job of sharing his enthusiasm for the medium. Each lunch break he shows academy award winning animated shorts, to give the students an idea of what can be achieved with a pencil, plenty of paper and imagination. On the first day, students realize the amount of work needed to create just one second of animation. They create a one second animated morph, having one object transform into another.

The students are issued plastic portfolio cases that come packed with the basic supplies needed to create hand drawn animation. They get red, blue and black Prismacolor pencils, an eraser, sharpener, a peg strip and a flip book.  The 150 page flip book is the most creative assignment the students get. They can create any type of animated scene that they like. Some students plan a whole story while others simply play with shapes and forms.

There are several animation projects in each of the ten classes each month. Some students finish with ease while others struggle to keep up. I'm always trying to encourage students to make passable animation better or more entertaining. This is the hardest thing to pass on, the fire in the belly, an undeniable need to create. Some sleep walk through life trying to just get by. Some discover this drive early while others will find it later in life. Jobs might come and go, but a life fueled with creative ambition will always be full filling.

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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