September 24th, 2021

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Discord Discussion: The Uses Of Reference 9/26

Thanks to everyone who came to our Discord Discussion. We hope it was useful to you.

Animation Resources Discord

Animation Resources is hosting monthly Discord parties on its Discord server. Join us the last Saturday of every month to participate in discussions and network with fellow artists from all over the world. The party starts at 4:30 pm (PDT) and the program begins at 5:30 pm.

THIS MONTH’S PROGRAM

Uses Of Reference

Our schedule of monthly programs under the banner Discord Discussions continues Sunday September 26th!

There is a myth that true artists don’t use reference, that they are just born gifted, and that inspiration just comes out of thin air. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The most successful artists use reference for two main purposes. One is for finding solutions to technical problems. If you need to animate a walking dog, then you’ll need reference on quadruped mechanics. And the other is for general inspiration. Great artists expose themselves to as wide a variety of work as they can, regardless of whether or not they see an immediate practical use for it. Join Animation Resources Programming Director Davey Jarrell, Education Director Taber Dunipace and President Stephen Worth on Sunday, September 26th on Discord as they dive deep into both of these methods for using reference. Doors open at 4:30pm PDT and the program starts at 5:30pm PDT!

HOW TO USE REFERENCE
Animation Resources
At The Animation Resources Discord Server
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 26th, 2021 5:30 pm (PDT)
HOSTED BY DAVEY JARELL WITH TABER DUNIPACE AND STEPHEN WORTH

Animation Resources is one of the best kept secrets in the world of cartooning. Every month, we sponsor a program of interest to artists, and every other month, we share a book and up to an hour of rare animation with our members. If you are a creative person interested in the fields of animation, cartooning or illustration, you should be a member of Animation Resources!

ABOUT YOUR HOSTS

Davey Jarell is a member of the Board of Directors of Animation Resources. He is a professional storyboard artist for television and acts as our Director of Programs.

Taber Dunipace is an animation educator who serves on the Board of Directors of Animation Resources.

Stephen Worth has been producing animation for over 35 years. He is the President of Animation Resources.

ABOUT DISCORD

Discord is a free chat app that supports video, voice chat and text chat. Discord servers are divided into channels, which all have their own subject or theme of discussion. Members are assigned roles which helps everyone keep track of who’s who. The Animation Resources Discord channel is a virtual meeting place for our supporters. You can meet other Animation Resources members, talk with the people behind the scenes at our organization, and attend lectures and screenings— all without leaving your home. It’s free and open to everyone in the creative community. If you’d like more info on how Discord works, see this article: What is Discord?

Here’s how to install the Discord app and login to the Animation Resources Discord Server:


    1. INSTALL DISCORD
  • iPhone or Android: Download the app from the App Store or Google Play Store and install.
  • Desktop: You can access Discord for your Mac or PC from discordapp.com. You can choose to download and install the free Discord app, or enter our channel directly using your web browser. https://discord.gg/cuvNvsMNQP
    2. CREATE AN ACCOUNT
  • Just follow the prompts to create your own login account.
    3. JOIN THE ANIMATION RESOURCES CHANNEL
  • Click the plus sign to the right of the app and select "JOIN A SERVER".
  • Enter this invite code: vES5YsV
    4. YOU’RE THERE!
  • Take a moment to look around, read the rules and introduce yourself.

The Animation Resources Discord Server is open to the public right now. Pop in and look around, and make a point to visit on Sunday!

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Posted by Stephen Worth @ 2:01 pm

September 23rd, 2021

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REFPACK041: Russian Animated Feature, Japanese TV Animation & MORE!

LAST CALL! REFPACK041 will be replaced next week. If you haven’t downloaded it yet, do it now before it’s gone forever. If you haven’t joined Animation Resources yet, JOIN TODAY and download RefPack041 today and Refpack042 next week. Animation Resources membership is the biggest bargain in animation.

JOIN NOW! https://animationresources.org/membership/levels/

Reference Pack

Every other month, Animation Resources shares a new Reference Pack with its members. They consist of an e-book packed with high resolution scans and video downloads set up for still frame study. Make sure you download the Reference Packs before they’re updated. When it’s gone, it’s gone!


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JOIN TODAY To Access Members Only Content


Animation Resources is growing. Since we are a non-profit organization, all of the money we take in from dues gets spent on our projects. So as we get more members, we share more wonderful material with them. Here’s an overview of what you will find in RefPack041…

The Humpbacked Horse

One of the unquestioned masterpieces of Russian animation is Ivan Ivanov-Vano’s The Humpbacked Horse. This lavish film was produced in the years immediately following World War II when Russia was isolating itself from Western influences. Ivanov-Vano mined Russian fables and fairy tales as subjects for animated films, and adapted them to suit the ideological demands of the Soviet authorities who oversaw the Soyuzmultfilm studio. The goal was to create animation that competed with Western studios like Disney, while developing a style that was distinctly Russian. Click through to the Members Only page to see the entire film.

The Humpbacked Horse


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Van Beuren Tom And Jerry

Van Beuren cartoons are among the most misunderstood animated shorts from the golden age of animation. Armchair animation historians tend to have a certain set of criteria they judge by— either the polish and production values of Disney, or the carefully constructed gags of Tex Avery at Warner Bros and MGM. If you judge like that, Van Beuren cartoons fall far short, but that doesn’t mean that there’s nothing to learn from these films. Click through to the Members Only page to find out more…

Van Beuren Tom And Jerry


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Mowgli

In our International Animation section, we are continuing three series we began in our last Reference pack… The first is the second chapter of a Russian adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book directed by Roman Davydov. We will be sharing the entire story in five parts with our members over the next several Reference Packs, so don’t let your membership expire.

Well Just You Wait

Also included is the second episode of the most popular cartoon series in Russia titled "Well, Just You Wait…" Rounding out the International section is a fantastic film from Poland, the second episode of "Dog, Cat and…" You won’t want to miss these, so click through the link and download them now.

Pies Kot I


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Sabu And Ichis Detective Stories

Next up we are introducing a new section in our Reference Packs dedicated to early anime. This time we are featuring episodes from three television series that are rarely seen outside of Japan… Sabu & Ichi’s Detective Stories presents the adventures of Sabu, a young shogun and his partner, the blind master swordsman Ichi. This series is animated in an animatic style with very sparse animation. However extremely complex movement is perfectly conveyed with only a few drawings by means of careful spacing and timing.

Fight Da Pyuta

Next in line is Fight da!! Pyuta, which takes a Western approach, employing pop art and imagery from American comic books as well as an underscore that features surf guitar and jazzy latin bongos. The debt to Bakshi’s Mighty Heroes is clear here. The last Japanese show we are featuring is called Space Ace. It’s a great example of a bunch of totally different ideas being mixed together for maximum fun. The show starts out with skiing, then suddenly takes a turn towards science fiction when a space ship lands. The interior of the space ship turns out to be like a haunted mansion. The action becomes more and more surreal until an alien brain in a glass helmet is revealed. It gets even weirder! You’ll have to download the show to find out. It’s sure to inspire you.

Space Ace


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Buster Keaton

In the Slapstick section, we feature the last episode of a landmark three part documentary on one of the greatest slapstick performer/directors who ever lived… Buster Keaton. If you have never seen a Buster Keaton film before, this documentary will give you a taste of what you’ve been missing. If like me, you have studied all of his films over and over many times, you will learn new things about Keaton and his creative process that you didn’t know before. It’s a rare opportunity to sit at the feet of a master, and even though these films were made a century ago, Buster Keaton: A Hard Act To Follow allows you to do just that.

Kanada Effect

Animation Resources Board Member, David Eisman has curated a collection of breakdown clips featuring "Kanada Style Effects". Yoshinori Kanada was one of the most influential Japanese animators of the late 20th-century. Throughout his career, Kanada developed a school of thought pertaining to effects animation that was completely unique and would inspire and mold an entire generation of Japanese animators, from Hiroyuki Imaishi of Studio Trigger to Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli. Kanada was able to distinguish himself from the factory-like system of late 20th-century Japanese animation by experimenting with abstract shapes and linework to create energetic and often chaotic movements. You’ll definitely want to add these clips to your reference library. Click the link to see…


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Halas and Bachelor Shorts

Last but not least is our Bonus Download. We’re rerunning three wonderful short films by the British team, John Halas and Joy Batchelor. The first film, “Top Dog” employs paper cut out characters in a very appealing way. “Foo Foo The Stowaway” uses simple means to put across its story without compromising movement, design or color. The third film, “The Cultured Ape” is modeled after the UPA style, and succeeds to make its point in a more entertaining way than many of the UPA films it is based upon.

Halas and Bachelor Shorts


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Halas and Bachelor Shorts

At Animation Resources, our Advisory Board includes great artists and animators like Ralph Bakshi, Will Finn, J.J. Sedelmaier and Sherm Cohen. They’ve let us know the things that they use in their own self study so we can share them with you. That’s experience you just can’t find anywhere else. The most important information isn’t what you already know… It’s the information you should know about, but don’t know yet. We bring that to you every other month.


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Haven’t Joined Yet?

Check out this SAMPLE REFERENCE PACK! It will give you a taste of what Animation Resources members get to download every other month!

Sample RefPack

CLICK TO DOWNLOAD A Sample RefPack!

Animation Resources is a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization dedicated to providing self study material to the worldwide animation community. If you are a creative person working in animation, cartooning or illustration, you owe it to yourself to be a member of Animation Resources.

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Posted by Stephen Worth @ 12:00 pm

September 22nd, 2021

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Instruction: Writing Cartoons Pt 2- A Continuity Emerges

Valiant Tailor

When I was beginning to draft this series of articles, I remembered a folder of thumbnails that Grim Natwick’s family gave me. The folder was labelled "Valiant Tailor Gags". I thumbed through the drawings several times over the years, but I only looked at the drawings individually- I didn’t look at them as a group. I pulled the folder out this week and upon closer examination, I discovered that the drawings formed a clear record of a gag session from 1934. This set of sketches is particularly important because it shows how the gags were created, how they evolved and grew as the artists discussed them at the story meeting, and how they found their way into the continuity of a finished cartoon.

Iwerks Staff 1935

The basic premise of this sequence is… The King is being chased by bees. He dives into a lake to escape them. The Giant arrives and harasses the King. The Tailor defeats the Giant and saves the King. Grim Natwick directed this cartoon, and his notes appear on the drawings in red. A check mark indicates that the gag is approved for the film. A question mark indicates that he isn’t sure where to use it yet.

Here are some of the gags that the staff of the Iwerks Studio came up with for this premise. At the end is a Quicktime movie of the complete cartoon, so you can see how these plans were realized in the finished film.

Writing Cartoons

William Hamner suggests a gag where the King is swallowed by a whale and is shot out his blow hole. (Since the character design hadn’t been established yet, Hamner draws the character as Otto Soglow’s Little King!)

Writing Cartoons

An artist named Hudson elaborates on Hamner’s basic idea, adding a tail flip to the end.

Writing Cartoons

This gag suggests that the King be underwater, hiding from the Giant. The Giant tries to catch him like a fish with a gold watch as bait.

Writing Cartoons

Underwater, the King uses a looking glass as a teeter totter.

Writing Cartoons

The Giant blows on the water and a passing octopus offers him Listerine.

Writing Cartoons

Ed Friedman suggests a gag where the Giant breaks a limb off a tree and uses it as a boomerang.

Writing Cartoons

Another variant on the broken tree branch- The Giant uses it as a straw to drink the lake dry.

Writing Cartoons

Several unrelated gags: The King runs out of the lake with streams of water from his crown. / The King is poked in the butt by a sword fish. / The Giant gets honey poured on his head. / The King is stung by bees on the patch on his butt.

Writing Cartoons

The Giant runs from a swarm of bees and stumbles over some wagons.

Writing Cartoons

Grim suggests a gag where the Giant takes a header into the dirt, plowing the ground in a furrow.

Writing Cartoons

He attempts a topper gag with a farmer using the Giant to plow his field.

Now comes the really interesting part! Here are Grim Natwick’s thumbnails showing how he takes the random gags and works them into a rough continuity. The drawings are very rough. You might want to print them out so you can compare them to the finished film.

Writing Cartoons

  • (32) The King enters scene and does a trout dive into the lake to escape the bees. We pan with the soldiers as the pursue the Tailor and chase him up a tree.
  • (33) The King bobs up and down in the water as the bees circle in a repeating cycle above him.
  • (34) A thunderous laugh is heard in the distance. The Giant steps over the crest of the hill and takes a few steps over them.
  • (35) The Giant scares the soldiers away. He looks at the King and laughs. The King ducks.
  • (36) The Giant blows on the water and throws a stone at the King.
  • (37) The King reaches up into the tree and grabs a branch. The Tailor jumps to another branch.

Writing Cartoons

  • (39) The Giant uses the branch like a gaffing hook, reaching to catch the King with it.
  • (40) The hook at the end of the branch catches in the patch on the King’s butt.
  • (41) The Tailor sees what is happening and ducks into a hole in the tree. The camera pans down the outside of the tree to its base, where the Tailor crawls out of another hole.
  • (42) The Tailor sneaks past the Giant and runs off screen
  • (43) Dissolve to: Interior tailor shop. The Tailor grabs a jar of honey.

Writing Cartoons

(44) Exterior Tailor Shop: The Tailor runs down the street with the jar.

  • (45) Dissolve to: The Tailor diving back into the hole in the tree trunk.
  • (46) The Tailor, standing on a high limb of the tree, drops the honey jar.
  • (47) The pot of honey dumps all over the Giant’s head.
  • (48) The King comes to the surface of the water as the bees go after the Giant.
  • (49) The Giant runs from the bees. He shoves his head in the dirt to escape them. He runs through a barn and a church over the hill and into the distance.
  • The sequence went from here to the storyboard stage, where the action was defined better and the gags were plussed. Watch the film and see how it came out…

    Writing Cartoons

    The Valiant Tailor (Iwerks/1934)< (Quicktime 7 / 7 minutes / 18.5 megs)

    The next article in this series will show how the structure of cartoons became more sophisticated in the mid-1930s, and the development of organizational tools that made that possible.

    Stephen Worth
    Director
    Animation Resources

    INSTRUCTIONINSTRUCTION

    This posting is part of an online series of articles dealing with Instruction.

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    Posted by admin @ 1:25 pm