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Unit Industry Sector
Arts, Media & Entertainment

Unit Originally Created By: Mike Morris

Animation Process

Part of Course: Animation Model

Unit Overview / Details

Instructional Hours

Standards

Content / Concepts

  • Persistence of Vision
  • Story
  • Storyboarding
  • Sound Design
  • Character Design
  • Layout
  • Background
  • Animation
  • Ink and Paint
  • Modeling
  • Texturing
  • Lighting
  • Rigging
  • Ethics

Lessons in this Unit

  • Compositing in animation is similar to compositing in still image editing but with motion. Compositing is the combining of two or more images still or motion into a single image or shot. There are multiple ways to achieve this from a green screen to various software. We are going to start with a simple animation added to a photo background to create a composite video shot. There are four key elements to pay attention to in order to get a believable composite: camera angle, lighting, shadows, and interaction.

    Introduction
    15 Minutes
    Guided Practice
    60 Minutes
    Independent Practice
    120 - 180 Minutes
  • In this lesson students will be introduced to the methods, techniques and understandings necessary for cleaning up and tracing back drawings so that they are ready for scanning into the computer to be used in bitmap/vector image production. Students will review analyzing characters for basic underlying shapes, forms and volumes, before proceeding to how to clean up and trace back rough drawings. The main technique for trace backs/clean ups students will be introduced to and using is the dagger stroke. The dagger stroke is crucial for creating clean consistent lines in line based animation.

    Anticipatory Set
    10 - 15 Minutes
    Demonstration
    10 Minutes
    Guided Practice
    40 Minutes
  • Students will create a simple stick figure, animate it, and add design elements such as background.  Principles taught include the understanding of motion tweening, frames, timeline, and layers, all to create a basic Walk Cycle.

    This lesson has instructions for Flash, but can be easily translated into other animation software, or even hand-drawing. See Resources for suggested applications.

    Lesson Instruction
    30 Minutes
    Guided Practice
    30 - 60 Minutes
    Follow-up; share out
    20 Minutes
  • This lesson describes the basic steps and concepts to create a simple stick-figure animated walk-cycle in Flash Software, using a frame-by-frame approach (not tweening).

  • Lecturing Activity: Students will learn to convert a scanned image of a clean pencil or inked line drawing into a inked and painted digital image to be used in an animation production or sequence. Inking and painting frames and backgrounds is a big portion of traditional hand drawn animation production.  The process involves using some type of image editing software or an animation software with paint capabilities. The goal of this lesson is to understand the process of how to import, digitize a line drawing, and create a saved palette for painting a character, background, or asset to be used in a composited scene or sequence. 

    Anticipatory Activity
    10 Minutes
    Scanning Demo
    10 Minutes
    Painting Demo
    15 Minutes
    Animatic/Animation Production
    2 - 12 Weeks
  • Students will review basic elements of good storytelling and learn how to create a storyboard before building a frame-by-frame animation.

    First they draw a proscribed setting; then develop their story in that setting; then create the storyboard that will guide their construction of the frame-by-frame animation.

    Intro/Demo - Picnic
    25 Minutes
    Guided Practice - Picnic
    1 - 2 Class Periods
    Intro/Demo - Storyboards
    30 Minutes
    Guided Practice - Storyboards
    1 - 2 Class Periods
    Intro/Demo - Animation
    30 Minutes
    Guided Practice - Animation
    2 - 4 Class Periods
  • This lesson is an introducion to the beginning of the animated film and a study of the father of this medium. The motion studies created by Edweard Muybridge are considered to be the bridge between photography and animation/film. We will look at Muybridges motion studies and talk about his work. We will discuss Persistence of vision and how Muybridge exploited this phenomenon through his motion studies and in the process bridged the gap between still image and motion picture.

    Time allocated for Lesson
    2 Hours
  • This lesson will introduce the students to 2D character development and the important role of shapes. They will be introduced to how professional animators utilize simple forms to create a multitude of characters. The students will create a basic cartoon character with simple shapes, be introduced to entry level character development, and create a final character of their own. The is a 2D drawing excercise and does not cover the steps for the digital animation option mentioned in the lesson.

    Instructional Time
    50 Minutes
    Student Activity Time
    60 Minutes
    Student Independent Time
    45 Minutes
    Closure and Reflection Time
    20 Minutes
  • The lesson will begin to cover the very basic foundations of developing a character head and lip- syncing a short clip of audio to it. This particular example will focus on the two dimensional sketch, preperation, and design of  phonemes for use in a final digitally created project.

    Included are examples of the beginning drawing exercises, preliminary student designed head sketches, and finally the students digitally produced projects (the digital process is not covered in this lesson).

    Instructional Time
    50 Minutes
    Student Activity Time
    90 Minutes
    Closure Time
    20 Minutes
    Reflection Time
    20 Minutes
  • Lighting and shading go hand-in-hand with 3D animation. It is important to keep in mind that students are creating an illusion of depth. This is still a 2 dimensional medium until we begin to move into stereoscopic 3D. When discussing and demonstrating lighting we are observing the intensity of light from highlights to shadows and how they appear on a given surface.

    Hook
    10 Minutes
    Group Work
    45 Minutes
    Guided Practice
    55 Minutes
  • Using slpines and NURBS for modeling.

    We are going to look at how to create 3D models using splines and NURBS. Up to this point we have only looked at prebuilt geometric primitives. With splines and NURBS we can create many more models.

    Introduction
    5 Minutes
    Lecture
    20 Minutes
    Guided Practice
    85 Minutes
    Independent Practice
    110 Minutes
  • This lesson provides a one-hour student exploration of the history of animation and animation terms such as:

    • Persistence of Vision
    • Apparent Motion
    • Hand-drawn Animation
    • Cel Animation
    • Stop-Motion Animation
    • Computer-Assisted Animation

    and Explores beginning steps at character drawing and beginning storyboarding.

    This lesson could be used as the first lesson of a semester or year-long animation curriculum.

    Introductory 1.5 hour lesson
    90 Minutes
  • The creation and application of materials provides texture and depth to a 3D scene. Material design can also make modeling of some objects much easier.

    Introduction
    15 Minutes
    Setup
    40 Minutes
    Materials & Mapping
    55 Minutes
    Independent Practice
    55 Minutes