Action Analysis for Animators
Focal Press – 2012 – 408 pages
Action Analysis is one of the fundamental princples of animation that underpins all types of animation: 2d, 3d, computer animation, stop motion, etc. This is a fundamental skill that all animators need to create polished, believable animation. An example of Action Analysis would be Shrek's swagger in the film, Shrek. The animators clearly understood (through action analysis) the type of walk achieved by a large and heavy individual (the real) and then applied their observations to the animated character of an ogre (the fantastic). It is action analysis that enabled the animation team to visually translate a real life situation into an ogre's walk, achieving such fantastic results.
Key animation skills are demonstrated with in-depth illustrations, photographs and live action footage filmed with high speed cameras. Detailed Case Studies and practical assignments ground action analysis methodology with real life examples. Action Analysis for Animators is a essential guide for students, amateurs and professionals.
Why analyse action? The value of action analysis to animators. Sports science, anatomical study.
The Study of Motion
Naturalistic action, abstract action,
Pioneers of Motion Analysis - Muybridge, Marrey,
Animation Based Analysis ? George Lutz, Fleisher Brothers, Disney Studios, Walt Stanchfield
Dynamics and Laws of Motion
Newtonian laws of motion, Laban system of movement.
Webster's Four ?A's of Animation. Animation Timing, Overlapping Action, Follow Through, Drag, Balance and Weight, Arcs, Anticipation
Figures in Motion
Anatomy, Walks, Runs, Lifting, Carrying, Pushing, Throwing, Jumping, Character Interaction, Dance and choreography, Movement under Loads, Movement and the environment, Children in Motion, Adults in Motion, Movement in the Elderly,
Animals in Motion
Quadrupeds ? Cats, Dogs, Horses, Cows, Others
Anatomy, Walk, Run, Trot, Canter, Gallop, Jumping, Hauling loads, Group Action
Birds ? Song birds, Pigeon type birds, Swans, Waders, Hummingbirds, Raptors, Others
Anatomy, Principles of flight, Types of Flight, Take Off, Landing, Hovering, Flocking.
Fish ? Bony Fish, Rays, Eels, Others
Anatomy, Modes of swimming, Types of Swimming, Shoaling
None Organic Action
Clothing and costumes, Water, Wind, Fire, Others
Drawing from Life - Anatomy, Construction, Materials, Mark Making, Sketchbooks
Photographing Action - Cameras, Exposure, Technical Issues
Filming Action ? Cameras, Film speeds, Technical Issues, Creating movies
Motion Capture ? Automated systems for the capture and analysis of movement.
Methodologies for Analysis
Staging actions, Analysis of Timing, Choreography, Analysis of Performance, Motion capture, Reading a sequence, Rotoscoping,
Reference and Research
Sources, Creating a Reference Library
Chris Webster is an animator who has worked for twenty years in the industry and has extensive experience as an educator teaching across a broad range of levels from schools, higher education and professional training programmes and within the studio environment. He is currently Head of Animation at the Bristol School of Animation and the University of the West of England.