Tuesday, 1 November 2011

History of animation - Early animation

What is animation?
The first thing the class was asked was “what is animation?”  In my head i prepared the response “it is the ability to create and portray movement using a series of images , it can be used for a Varity of things such as communication and storytelling.” but when I was asked this question I reminded of a moment in the anime Genshiken when a character called Madarame explains the word animation.
After we gave our answers we was told the history and evolution of the word animation and it matched what the character said quite closely.

Early animation – cave paintings
We looked at some cave painting that show movement some of which are over 32,000 years old and are found all over the world. The earliest cave paintings found were the chauvet cave paintings with paintings done over 32,000 years old in southern France. And they were found in 1994
we also looked at Iranian and Egyptian cave paintings, with the oldest animation been found in Iran and to have said to been made over 5200 years ago, it’s a sequence of images that show a deer jumping up to a tree to get food( I presume).
                                                            Animation found in Iran

Early animation – development
The zoetrope was developed by Ting Tuan in 180AD and is something that give the views an illusion by spinning numerous static pictures to give the effect something is moving, we watched a really good Toy Story one found in Disneyland. I liked this because it makes it look as if they are alive right in front of your eyes.

we also watched "What the butler saw" this film was more of a short series of images that was on an arcade machine that tell some sort of story. This is very much like a flipbook.

Early animation – films
The first animation on film was “the enchanted drawing” by James Stuart Blackton  who made an animation of a man and wine where it would seems as if he was interacting with the picture he drew by taking things out and putting them back in. I liked this animation and it gives a similar feeling to the toy story zoetrope because its almost as if you are able to see the animation in real life.

Winsor Mccay
Winsor Mccay was a brilliant drafts man who created the animation “The sinking of the Lusitania” and many others. He’s most famous piece being “Gertie the dinosaur”.
Gertie the dinosaur(1914)
This has to be one of my favorite early animations just because of the movements. I think the animation was really good for early animation, although the timing could be better. at some points it seems as if everything is moving at the same speed.

The sinking of the Lusitania(1918)
I think this film is a good old animation i liked the smoke animation the best along with the fishes. Not as entertaining as Gertie the dinosaur.

Max Fleischer

Out of the ink well(1921)
We can see the realistic animation from the rotoscope, but why bother using this method to create animations? I think it’s because of the control you get when giving the characters and environment realistic or cartoon like movement in their animations. In this animation i like the how there is interaction between the artist and the cartoon character.

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