Over the past week I’ve been answering lots of messages about how to start out in learning animation. There’s a million easily accessible ways to start animating, but one of my favourite exercises is the 9 frame animated morph. Here’s a couple of examples freshly completed by my wonderful illustration students as a one lesson introduction to animation.
To start with everyone drew a simple image, then we arranged them in the best order to get silly transitions. I then photocopied each persons drawings so that everyone had their image and the image theirs was to morph into. We then traced off a breakdown pose and inbetweens which cushion to the first and last drawings to give them a nice ease in and out (see the above chart). We also used pegboards which I made myself to match the size of a standard 80mm hole punch to ensure that all of the drawings would line up with each other (it’s an illustration course and we only do a tiny amount of animation so there’s no justification for $700 hole punches).
Do any of you want one of these pegboards? I made a couple of hundred a few years ago but now I’m down to just enough for my classes, if there’s enough interest I could make another batch and sell them for a couple of bucks plus postage?
Q:So how do you go about your lil traditional animated doodle things? Do you have a light desk? :)
I bought an amazing light box last month (an Artograph Revolution which is AMAZING and EXPENSIVE) but generally I just work on thin paper and trace them off between two pages. I doodle them in free moments on a small pad which I carry around with me, I’ve used the light box for a few of them but generally I’m away from my desk at the time.
I drew the one I just uploaded on a long car trip (with a blue pencil before inking it terribly while bouncing around in the car). It looked a bit choppy with only eight frames so I doubled them and reworked it using highlighters on a big sheet of bond paper once the car had stopped and I could get to a desk.
Ringa Ding Ding!!
Pterodac’til ya drop!
Q:Hi is it ok I ask you where you find your inspiration for your drawings? I hope I don't sound creepy but I think they're so cool! I love looking at them and your animations! They're incredible!
it’s not creepy at all, but your username is! How are you?!
It’s fantastic when someone reaches out, and it’s actually really rare! I have no idea where I get my inspiration from, I think I’ve always had an overactive imagination and can remember being a kid and always finding monsters and hidden pictures in rugs, woodgrain, shadows, clouds and things like that. My drawing process is kind of like that, I doodle some lines and then build them into a character, I draw and think and draw and think and draw and eventually a crazy beast appears in my head and on the page. I’ve been doing it for so long now that it just kind happens straight away, I just sit and doodle when I get some free time. They’re kind of like my dumb version of a crossword puzzle, and the best thing is that they’re still as surprising and fun to create now as they were when I was a kid!
Thanks again for reaching out, have a great day!!