Why Does It

A feature film must be one hour ten minutes long, minimum. At ninety feet of film projected every minute, there are 6300 feet to be animated. However, most Disney films were about ten minutes longer, totaling 7200 feet. Ten feet a week was the average output of an animator on this type of action some did more, some less. The crew usually had ten men who could do this. Ten men doing ten feet a week would take 72 weeks to do 7200 feet. Add to that holidays, vacations, winter colds, a touch of...

Dubbing

This is the original name for the process of combining all the sound tracks onto a single track that will be printed on the film along with the picture. Somehow, the dialogue, sound effects, and music all have to be dubbed together without losing any of the special val ues that each has brought to the picture. Proper balance between these sounds can give the film more life and sparkle, while a lesser job will leave it muddy and undistinguished. Since the process actually calls for recording...

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Sequence of the mice and the girl dow n in the cave with only a tiny lantern would have been an ideal place for shadows to augment the suspense and the drama of the situation, but since the sequence was frightening enough the way it was the decision was animator Cy Young Nutcracker Suite. Fantasia. Only an extremely sensitive artist could have animated this sensuous, white blossom that became a mirling ballerina. made to leave off the shadows and paint the w alls dark and wet instead. The shoes...

Discovery

Best Pals Mickey And Pluto

I definitely feel that we cannot do the fantastic things based on the real, unless we first know the real. The mid thirties was easily the most thrilling period for the Disney animators. It was a time of explosive growth for the whole studio, but the exploring and experimenting and discovery created an excitement never quite matched again. Just because we had named one of the new principles of animation did not mean that we understood it or grasped the extent of its possibilities. Constant...

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Disney Animation Background Drawings

Drawn on the layout it was an old pot, rusty and partially covered with soot from years of cooking. Cy felt that light from the flames would be reflected evenly over the whole pot Ugo claimed that the light would be only on the portions not covered by the soot, since soot has no reflective power. Each man was adamant, and. since there was only one way of proving who was right, a fire was built in an empty film can in the middle of the floor, with the shade from a goose-neck lamp inverted over...

The Staging

J Cinderella is awakened in the morning by a friendly bird. This is the introduction of the heroine, and it is important to show what kind of girl she is. She must be appealing, not merely pretty. mhnails research attitudes for Robin Hood when dis-ed as a stork competing in the tournament of the Golden ro

Supervising Animator

This title meant that the individual was responsible for the work done by the men under him. Ordinarily, he would be assigned anywhere from one to seven or eight animators of varying talents. If they were strong, experienced men, he had little to do. They would pick up their work from the director and do the scenes by themselves. The supervising animator would talk to them about the character they were doing, exchange ideas on how to keep him consistent in appearance, suggest business that...

Music

Work was still being done on the last segments of Fantasia when the Bambi crew moved into full production. and Walt was kept hopping from one projection room to the next to keep up with the reels as they progressed. One day he was called into a meeting on the forest fire sequence in Bambi just as he finished viewing the work reels on Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony. The Bambi picture reel was only half completed, but the intent was clear and the musician, lid Plumb, was eager to present his ideas...

Put the Juice in it

With all the staging problems solved, the animator can now concentrate on individual actions, timing, expressions, and making the drawings that will give life to the action. The scene is a close-up of Captain Hook telling his valet in the next room of his plan to trick Tinker Bell into revealing the location of Peter Pan's hiding place. During his dialogue, he is putting on his finest clothes, down to a gold-plated hook. These are blow7i up fri thai detern perspective ment in the are twenty-e...

Woolie Reitherman

Woolie is the most physical of the group with a compulsion to stay young and to squeeze in everything before it is too late. Ken Peterson, who was Woolic's assistant on the dinosaurs in Fantasia, says, You know how Woolie is . . He's gonna lick this if it's the last thing he ever does. The way Woolie is, he'll fight for entertainment the drawing problems he had on his stuff but he finally got it. Some of those papers, you know, when you'd go to clean them up, there was practically nothing left...

Cutter

The cartoon cutter has none of the latitude of his live-action counterpart to determine lengths of scenes or choose which shots shall be used. His job is concerned, first, with keeping, marking, and storing all of the film, and, second, with keeping the all-important sync. In order to have everything as flexible as possible while the animation is bringing out new ideas, the sound should be kept on separate tracks. Even the simplest film will have four tracks two of dialogue, one of sound...

Info

Suggestions for costumes by Tom Oreb. for Sleeping Beauty. 1, Captain Hook has captured Tinker Bell and is trying to make her divulge the Peter's secret hiding place. Pretending friendship, he plays on her jealousy of i finally wins her over. She marks the spot on the map. jradi explored camera angles, staging, acting, character development, locale, n these early sketches. was the first one to put up a drawing with his heart in it. The artists who followed would be just as vulnerable, but he...

Iming

The number of drawings used in any move determines the amount of time that action will take on the screen. If the drawings are simple, clear, and expressive, the story point can be put over quickly, and this was all that concerned the animators during the early period. Timing in those cartoons was limited mainly to fast moves and slow moves, with accents and thrusts calling for special handling. But the personalities that were developing were defined more by their movements than their...

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What ya got there, Joe Joe would casually reveal his little masterpiece, causing Walt to exclaim, Yeah . . . yeah Look at this, guys, isn't that better Why don't we draw it like that However, there was no way an animator could duplicate in line what had been captured with a slight smudge of chalk. Although stimulated by an improved appearance for the character, we were completely frustrated by the technique.

Foreign Versions

Ordinarily one does not think of the special problems of making a foreign version of a film until after the initial release, when the box office receipts indicate whether the venture is justified or not. At Disney's the foreign market always has made up a large percentage of our revenue, starting with that first recording of Show White in another language. Since the shorts were based on sight gags, the sound tracks had been mainly sound effects and music. The occasional, Hi, Minnie and Yoo-hoo...

Lower Background Plane

Rim-lighting has been eliminated, and three and four strips can be combined simultaneously, and a soft focus can be achieved on one level (as in the old multiplane), and even a see-through effect for an overlay is possible. While Don Griffith is excited about these accomplishments, Art Cruickshank, veteran of the Special Effects Department since the thirties, still likes the multiplane camera best. He wishes it could be used again, because nothing can take its place in achieving great effects....

Preface

This book is about Disney character animation, an art form that created such world-famous cartoon figures as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. Disney animation makes audiences really believe in those characters, whose adventures and misfortunes make people laugh and even cry. There is a special ingredient in our type of animation that produces drawings that appear to think and make decisions and act of their own volition it is what creates the illusion of life. No other studio has been able to...

Frank Thomas

Writing in Millimeter magazine, John Canemaker paid this tribute to Frank He has been 'sincerely' affecting audiences for forty years he has made them laugh and cry. hate and fear, using basically a pencil he has charged with intelligence and humanity, tons of paper, and the 'persistence of vision'.13 No job was too painstaking, no research too time-consuming to lay the groundwork for a Thomas sequence. Each possibility had to be explored endlessly to find every last ounce of entertainment. His...

Io How to Get It on the Screen

Disney Animation Background Drawings

It's possible to do darn near anything if we figure out certain definite things. . . . We can do anything we think of with this. Walt Disney Shortly after The Rescuers was released in 1977, a friend remarked, I love those characters I think they are probably the greatest Disney has ever done. Undeniably the animation of the characters is what attracts an audience, but many other elements play a vital role in a successful picture the colors, the beauty, the visual effects, the locales, and the...

Iiv

As lationships were built into even more tions until that section became a high lole picture. e picture. Here, they will benefit from of activity and personality in the scenes , as well as the ones that follow, imator continues this practice, the story becomes the work reel, or the ruff reel, ins all the scenes of rough animation, the matching sound reels, they are coning with the latest revisions of footage ting. As each new test comes in, there is test for...

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S SHORTER I SLIGHTLY MORE SQUARE AT THE HOTB DEFINITE DIVISION OF THftOA T SE PAR A TING UPPER LOWER. 0 ILL f T Z FKA ETSS LIME USE > ON FOOT OAJL V * AU M* ALL 0R PART OP TH & OFT0A, S SHO ti. account for the variety of feelings and characters they can portray on the screen. The general appearance of the character can be almost any design that fits the story and the overall style of its presentation, but the specifics of how he is drawn depend entirely on what business he has...

Music Not Prescored

Most animation on the features was not done to a prescored track, and with the emphasis on acting and mood the scenes were better supported by a free tempo type of music than by the rigid beat. In those cases, the musician would ask for a dummy score to be made up showing him what he had to match and where things happened. A music check was made of the whole section w ith all the accents, the footsteps, jumps, staggers, displays of emotion, or strong looks. Foot-ages were marked for each of...

Long Shot or Establishing Shot

For The Fox and the Hound, Don Griffith established with this master shot the houses of the hunter and the widow, the distance between them, and the details in the terrain. For the whole picture, this layout then became the guide for all business in this area. A scene of a closer shot along the fence is planned, keeping all the spatial relationships established in the long shot. No matter what camera angle is chosen, everyone in the unit knows what should be shown in such a shot.

Answer Print

Anyone who has shot color pictures of a vacation trip knows that the slides or prints never come back looking exactly the way the scene appeared to the eye. The pictures are a little bluer, or maybe redder, or in some strange way not in the same balance at all. The same thing happens when film is shot of the completed artwork and sent to the lab to be developed. These scenes come back as dailies and are eagerly studied by a concerned staff. The representative of the lab explains that dailies...

Assistant Director

This individual is neither an assistant nor a director. He is a troubleshooter and record-keeper who has the job of making order out of the sweeping criticisms and creative thoughts of the director and the production unit. He works in areas where things constantly can go wrong. Frames can become lost more easily than cattle on the range, and, as with the stray dogie, a missing frame must be found which is incomprehensible to live-action editors, who measure their Film in arm lengths. Every last...

Story Sketch

Disney Animation Sketches

A story sketch is not geography it is not continuity and it is not a diagram. Nor does it merely illustrate the dialogue for the sequence. Those are all the common mistakes of the beginning story sketch man. The story sketch should show character, attitude, feelings, entertainment, expressions, type of action, as well as telling the story of what's happening. When you look at a board, it should reflect the feeling of the sequence so the viewer starts to pick up some excitement and stimulation.3...

Disney Animation Sketches

Sketch Girl Turning Away From Camera

Layout sketch with suggested camera move. As Snow White gets to her feet, the camera follows her up. losing the animals. Less to draw, less for the audience to watch. Full-sized layout sketch with the figure in it will it work as planned in the Layout Book The girl must run about to instruct the animals on what to clean. The length of the soundtrack did not allow for this much movement so. eventually, this action was done in a close-up. problem lhe Lady and the sed to turn the irritating ning...

Prescoring

In Fantasia, most of the music was free tempo and did not adhere to a strict beat, which created awkward conditions for the use of the bar sheets. With one bar being 42 frames and the next 47 and the next 45. there was no way of getting a consistent measurement for a chart. Instead, the tracks were read by the cutters, the same as they read the dialogue tracks, writing the notations on the greys. Measure numbers were written on the sheets, along with special accents and any other placements the...

Fred

Fred Moore never did get to be a big guy, and when he was young he was much smaller than his brothers. They would all play baseball together, and, of course, they always made Fred play in the outfield and never gave him a chance at bat. Finally, his mother made the brothers let the little guy bat. But the first ball went over his head, and the second one came along the ground each time they would yell, Strike The third pitch was thrown behind him. Strike three, you're out Fred would get so mad...

The Thoughtful Thumbnail

Developed by Ken Anderson and Wilfred Jackson for The Song of the South. With their knowledge of staging, layout, and visual communication, they worked from the storyboards in small thumbnail sketches, trying one way after another. When a continuity finally was found, the animators were called in to criticize and suggest still more ideas. With Ken's amazing ability, sketches were made as fast as the men talked. These became the basis for the final layouts, cutting, and staging, and showed the...

1

Pluto knows he is hanging on a ledge but not how high up. Reaching about with his fanny he fails to locate solid ground, so he takes an apprehensive look. Difficult to stage and animate, yet this was the type of scene Bill Roberts liked to do. His maxim never lose the personality of the character in either a long shot or a wild action. experiments might be in each other's scenes, that we could hardly wait to see the film of what had been tried. The halls echoed...

Color

Before 1932, the only full color cartoons anyone had ever seen were in the Sunday newspaper comics, so it was only natural that when the first animated cartoons appeared at the labs, the technicians tried to match their harsh and gaudy and brilliant colors. When the original art material was sent over to show the delicate gradations that had been so carefully painted, the reaction was still, Why do you want that This has more punch and sock to it Gradually their attitude changed, but somehow...

Layout

Drawing Disney Girl Body Character Poses

The layout man has the responsibility for the appearance of the picture, scene by scene, and as a total film. If a special style has been set for the production, he adapts this work to the bread-and-butter needs of the scenes. He works with the director on the staging and dramatization, building on the ideas of the story sketch man. He designs the backgrounds, suggests the pattern of action for the animator, indicates camera positions for the most effective shot and the cutting that will tell...

The Team

The basis of the Disney method of making a film always has been team effort, where constant discussion and daily arguments replace rigid procedures. Walt realized that each person connected with the film had to feel that what he did was the element that made it all work. This meant keeping everyone involved in the searching and the trying and the evaluating that went on through the whole production. Walt summed it up very simply, Everyone has to contribute, or they become laborers. Frank Lloyd...

Our Procedures

The ideal set-up would be the story man, the director, and the layout man, as well as the musician, operating as a sort of story unit. They all should be keenly interested in the picture. No one person should dominate to an extent where he would keep the others from entering into the production and freely expressing themselves. In spite of constant efforts and persistent claims, Walt never did build an organization in the strictest sense of that word. What he built was a loosely unified group...

Thats My Character

Everyone who has worked on a picture will feel that he made the personal contribution that caused the cartoon character to come alive on the screen. The story-man naturally will feel that the character is his, because, after all, it was the story work that determined what kind of an individual this figure would be and the story sketch man smiles because he drew the new character, made the expressions, showed how he would look and the director knows that it was he who pulled all these talents...

The Work Reel

Drawing The Human Head Burne Hogarth

When the animator has film on two or three of his scenes, he wants to see how they play in continuity. By themselves, they may look just great, having life and sparkle and clarity, or they may be a complete disappointment. All of this can change completely when the scene is viewed as part of an overall continuity. After all, they have been planned to work in sequence and that is the way they should be seen. The dull scene may have just the subdued feeling needed for that spot, and the active...

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Disney The Old Mill

Bul is built almost entirely on personality. In fact, it represents the peak of Walt's feeling for Mickey and has dialogue development that is so specific for this character that it never would fit Donald or Goofy or anyone but Mickey. One simple scene of Mickey reading to Pluto from a book on how to train hunting dogs, a longer shot of their camp in the woods, and that is all anyone needs to know about the situation. There is little continuity, once again, and each scene is in the picture...

Johnny Lounsbery

Disney Ollie Johnston Animator

As is often the case, the pupil surpassed the master. Norm Ferguson had instructed well but Johnny had gone beyond what the legendary master had been able to do. His better drawing and bigger concept, not limited by old vaudeville acts, brought the bold, crude approach to new heights, using more refinement, more dramatic angles, more interest, and all without losing the main idea. His simple staging, appealing characters, good taste, strong squash and stretch, and controlled anticipations and...

Checking

One of the best ways to keep work flowing smoothly is to have each scene checked carefully before it moves on to the next department. Once the animation is completed, it should be checked for technical problems. The drawings may have worked well in test camera, but someone has to adapt them to their final form on the eels. Are the characters on the right levels to match the other scenes in the sequence Should some of the levels be combined Will the pan moves and trucks work smoothly Is the...

Fantasia The Rite Of Spring

Fantasia The Rite Spring Dinosaurs

Rain soft rain, hard rain, heavy rain, blowing rain, swirling rain, drizzling rain These were printed ontc special papers, so they could be combined with th lt animated rain as needed to get any effect wanted. Jos had been told. When I look at rain, I don't see a lo of black lines around every drop. Sometimes I don' even see the drops, just streaks of light, and littl-splashes on the ground. The animator's drawings b themselves could not give this illusion, but by combining them with...

Fantasia Film Earthquake Vacation Premiere

Sketches Homemade Robot

Diagram m the Lay Manual of the Hon camera crane devised ft ' the final shot in Fantt Amazing effects kere of tained by painting low images on panels of and moving the camc slowly through them Pictures taken from the A t Maria section in Fantasia show how this looked c the screen D gt at dawn, giving a spiritual feeling for the end of the picture. The special effects men looked at each other. No camera they had could move that slowly and continuously why, it would have to be 40 or 50 feet above...

Effects Department

The effects animator is a special kind of artist he has a curiosity about the way things work, a feel for the mechanical, and usually sees great beauty in the patterns of nature. Some effects animators have been fascinated with pure realism and have tried doggedly to duplicate it, while others have created spirit in the movement of water and lava, drama in fires and storms, and astonishing loveliness in the handling of falling leaves and snow. During the making of Snow White, the Effects...

Ink and Paint

Mary Tebb Ink And Paint Girl

There comes a day when the animation drawings have been completed. The scene works in continuity, the character acts as he should, his expressions communicate strongly, the layout supports his actions, and the details of costumes and props are all accounted for. On that day, a big check goes up on the production chart. But the drawings are far from finished. They only have been approved as working correctly. Now thev must be put into their final form, the way the audience will see them. In the...

Appeal

John Lounsbery Drawings

Appeal was very important from the start. The word is often misinterpreted to suggest cuddly bunnies and soft kittens. To us, it meant anything that a person likes to see. a quality of charm, pleasing design, simplicity, communication, and magnetism. Your eye is drawn to the figure that has appeal, and, once there, it is held while you appreciate what you are seeing. A striking, heroic figure can have appeal. A villainess, even though chilling and dramatic, should have appeal otherwise, you...

Elephant Poses

James Bodrero Disney

Sculptors Ch doroandDuki part of a srna of artists wk drawings into sional master The Character Model Department eventus panded to include three sculptors who transla drawings into beautiful, little clay figures of cat acter. These were cast, and a limited number oi models, painted in the colors suggested by the Model girls, were distributed to the animators were no elusive smudges here but hard reality ii and shapes magnificently done, and they were aid to the whole animation department....

N

Layout man Ken O'Connor built an actual model of the coach and photographed it as an aid to drawing in changing perspectives. A circular pan is suggested in the preproduction planning of Cinderella's coach on its wax to the castle. Final eels of the coach show the accuracy of drawings that came from this approach. Four Ways to Plan and Make the Layouts

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Animation Sequence Drawing

More thought is put into visualizing the actual layout so that everyone will know exactly what is being planned and can judge if it will work properly. Changes still can be made, but they generally are confined to small things, such as extending the drawing so a slight pan move can be used, or moving a piece of furniture to make more room for the character in the scene. This method works best if the layout man has had enough time to plan the staging for the whole sequence. Also contributed by...

Gustaf Tenggren

Disney Eye Expressions

Somehow he had the ability to make you see what was funny about the character itself, and it was the character's expressions that you saw and later tried to draw but, still, that dog's eyebrows could only have come from Walt. When Fergy projected the first tests of his new character sniffing and snorting and then stopping to think, everybody was enthusiastic. No one remembers what Walt said, but very probably his comment went like this Yeah . . . y'know, he ought to have a big snort, right into...

Q

Disney Fairies Animated Transparent

Writes little notes on his drawings explaining any mysterious forms created by the movement. The women who had worked up to the more important jobs continually were looking for ways to make the individual eels look more appealing. They did not like to see crude, barren work going through the plant, even though they knew that probably, in action, these drawings would do the job. Still, if the draw ings could be made to look better, to have a bit of shading, or a smudge, or one more color, or a...

Little

Disney Drawings Step Step

The first scene Fred ani-mated on Snow White was with this early model of Dopey. Later scenes refined his appearance, adding charm and appeal. ARTIST Fred Moore Three Little Wolves. The changing shapes in Fred Moore's animation gave a special excitement to his extremely simple drawings and great clarity of action. STARTS ON PAGE 169 The final model of Dopey had the same mischievous look that Fred possessed. The final model of Dopey had the same mischievous look that Fred possessed. the...

T Have Been Successfully Animated

Hand Sketched Disney Animal Characters

That necessitated doing the dialogue over with a different phrasing or expression that sequence would be marked for a retake the next time the voice talent was at the studio another reason for not recording all of the sound at one session. It became increasingly important to choose just the right actor for this type of live action, since it would have such an influence on the development of a character's personality, and even on the entertainment value in the picture. Some comedians were...

What Is Secondary Action In Animation

Secondary Action Animation

Actions all with the same intensity and amount of movement will quickly become tedious and predictable. It will have no punch. But if the overall pattern contains accents and surprises, contrasts of smooth-flowing actions with short, jerky moves, and unexpected timing, the whole thing becomes a delight to watch. Obviously, this is impossible to attain with Straight Ahead Action. Using Pose to Pose, the texture in the variety of the movements can be planned and the action designed to make this a...

Slow In and Slow

Once an animator had worked over his poses the extremes and redrawn them until they were the best he could do. he naturally wanted the audience to sec them. He timed these key drawings to move quickly from one to the next, so that the bulk of the footage of the scene would be either on or close to those extremes. By putting the inbetweens close to each extreme and only one fleeting drawing halfway between, the animator achieved a very spirited result, with the character zipping from one...

Poses

Disney Layout Background Drawings

Together, fascinated by the relationships that were now so evident. A few excited moments later, Walt had another idea. Why not take Margie Bell who had been hired to do the live action of Snow White herself and shoot film of her on the stage, pretending to come through a door, entering the room, looking about in wonder, seeing a small chair and running over to sit on it This could all be done with the measurements of the model of the cottagc blown up to full size. Then on another reel of film,...

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Disney Animation Guide

This book is dedicated to Walt Disney and the staff of artists who brought the magical quality of life to character animation. Copyright gt 1981. Wall Disney Productions All rights reserved. No part of this book may he used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without the written permission of the Publisher. For information address Disney Liditions, I 14 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 1001 I. Library of Congress Caialoging-ln-Publication Data Thomas. Frank, 1912 I'hc illusion of life Disney...

Ollie Johnston

Wear Glasses Animation

Like most of the group, Ollie was at his best when leading off on a character, particularly if the story and the characters were at a stage where they were still flexible. He was often the first to perceive that a character or a story point was not developing the right way and would work tirelessly to correct it. He had a vision of what it ought to be and was dedicated to seeing it come out that way. Through early experimental animation, he was able to show the potential for entertainment in...

Backgrounds

Disney Animation Backgrounds

The background painters were experimenting, too. trying to capture in water color or tempera1 mediums easy to change if necessary the same effect the stylist had achieved with chalk or inks or some special build up of paints. Taking the layout suggestions as scenes that actually would be in the picture, and surrounding himself with the original sketches that Walt had liked, the background painter searched for ways to duplicate an elusive effect. These painters are not the same as easel...

Timing Spacing and the Metronome

The action in a scene was planned by the animator and the director at the time of the handout. If there was music, there would be either a prcscored track or a tempo set by the musician that could be marked on the exposure sheet. When a metronome was set to that tempo, those written beats became audible, giving a good indication of the amount of time for the action of the scene. If there was no sound to use as a guide, the metronome was the only way to determine the length of any of the action....

The Principles of Animation

When we consider a new project, we really study it . not just the surface idea, but everything about it. A new jargon was heard around the studio. Words like aiming and overlapping and pose to pose suggested that certain animation procedures gradually had been isolated and named. Verbs turned into nouns overnight, as, for example, when the suggestion, Why don't you stretch him out more became Get more stretch on him. Wow Look at the squash on that drawing did not mean that a vegetable had...

And Overlapping Action

Animal Sketches Animation Disney

When a character entering a scene reached the spot for his next action, he often came to a sudden and complete stop. This was stiff and did not look natural, but nobody knew what to do about it. Walt was concerned. Things don't come to a stop all at once, guys first there's one part and then another. Several different ways were eventually found to correct these conditions they were called either Follow Through or Overlapping Action and no one really knew where one ended and the other began....

Pose Test

Disney Drawing Lessons

The quickest way to see how a scene is going to play is to shoot what we call a pose test. While the animator is setting up his scene, figuring the size, the movement, the acting, he is making rough drawings that will become the basis of the actual animation. Now, instead of refining those drawings and relating them to each other, he sends them to camera just the way they are. They are the key poses for the scene and show how the scene is being planned. By shooting them at no less than 4 frames...

An Art Form Is Born

Animal Sketches Animation Disney

Animation can explain whatever the mind of man can conceive. Walt Disney Man always has had a compelling urge to make representations of the things he sees in the world around him. As he looks at the creatures that share his daily activities, he first tries to draw or sculpt or mold their forms in recognizable fashion. Then, when he becomes more skillful, he attempts to capture something of a creature's movements a look, a leap, a struggle. And ultimately, he seeks to portray the very spirit of...

Cinderella Bird Friends

Stretch And Squash Animation

Stone that called for special decisions. The young Arthur had been turned into a squirrel by Merlin, the magician, so that the boy could gain a better understanding of the world of nature. While in this guise, Arthur met some real squirrels who accepted him as one of their kind, even though he could not speak their language. The problem was to animate the boy so that he would be believable both to the audience and to the squirrels. If he were just a boy running around in a squirrel suit the...

Secondary Action

Often, the one idea being put over in a scene can be fortified by subsidiary actions within the body. A sad figure wipes a tear as he turns away. Someone stunned shakes his head as he gets to his feet. A flustered person puts on his glasses as he regains his composure. When this extra business supports the main action, it is called a Secondary Action and is always kept subordinate to the primary action. If it conflicts or becomes more interesting or dominating in any way, it is either the wrong...

Pinocchio

Six Boy Imagres Body

Our first Pinocchio had wooden hands, a stocking cap, and a cocky personality, Walt found this to be too brash and lacking in appeal, so we stopped animating until a new design could be found, matching a new story concept of the character. Fred Moore's drawings at upper right suggested more innocence and the proportions of a boy rather than a puppet. Milt Kahl's drawings of the chubby, naive little boy in the Tyrolean hat became the final model when we resumed animating six months later....

Its C for me

Disney Woolie Reitherman Artist

The well-known phrase of resignation. You can't win was just coming into popularity. One effects animator shook his head and added a second thought. It's not only that you can't win you can't even get out of the game. 14 You know, the only way I've found to make these pictures is with animators you can't seem to do it with accountants and bookkeepers. Walt Disney The isolation of the animator did not end with the move to Burbank, but it was the turning point. Except for one final picture,...

Brave Little Tailor

Brave Tailor Roller Coaster

Carry Tcaiktr onnfidsideof Mickey's hat. Note turn oil brini He really was a funny little guy, but it was not that he was trying to be funny. It was just that his proportions were cute, like his drawings, and it kind of tickled you to watch him move around imitating someone like Fred Astaire or Chaplin, or trying some fancy juggling act. Even if the stuff dropped on the floor, Fred would always end up in a good pose -just like his drawings. He could not seem to do anything awkward. The thing...

Les Clark

Les Clark Disney

When Walt hired Les Clark in 1927, he said, Well, you know this is only a temporary job, Les. I don't know what's going to happen. But as Les said, So it lasted forty-eight years Les just kept going and kept up As Walt asked for the better drawing and greater refinements that left so many others behind, Les was able to adapt and continue in the front ranks of the animators, year after year. His drawings had appeal, were always gentle and warm and likeable, and his timing was always sensitive....

Snow White Drawings

Disney Animation Thumbnails

Check all layouts for the scale you need in a picture. Examine your sequence for pictorial shots that will remind you of the size of the characters you are animating. The scale of the characters to the things around them, and to each other, is an important part of making them believable, as well as giving them charm and appeal. artist Ward Kimball Cinderella. Long diagonal pan accentuates the scale. artist Bill Tytla Brave Little Tailor. Page of drawings to the best way to show Hood as a gypsy...

The Story Reel

The storyboards must now be altered to match these wonderful sound tracks, so a recording is made that can be played while the crew watches the storyman point to the familiar sketches. It is one thing to tell aboard, making the parts spirited or peaceful by the pitch of the voice combined with the tempo of the presentation, but it is quite another to create any of this drama while trying to keep up with a sound recording that races through the slow parts and drags forever where it should be...

Character Model Department

In the mid-thirties, no model sheet of the characters was official until it bore the seal. OK. J.G. Joe Grant, artist, writer, designer, and. at one time, producer, was the studio authority on the design and appearance of nearly everything that moved on the screen, and his taste and judgment were largely responsible for the pleasing style that identified the Disney product during that period. He collected under his wing, in the Character Model Department, a strong group of very talented artists...

Recording

Walt wanted to find his characters before going ahead with other story sequences or even the experimental animation, so the production unit began searching for voices as one of its first assignments. By this time, we all knew the type of character we wanted in our story, but to find the precise voice that made him just right was always a very demanding process. For Geppetto we had wanted a gruff, crotchety old man, who had a heart of gold but was accustomed to having his own way since he lived...

Disney Animation Pencil Sketches

Disney Pencil Drawings

Fleeting smile, the raising of a shoulder as the body leaned forward these were the precious elements of life revealed by the camera. But whenever we stayed too close to the photostats, or directly copied even a tiny piece of human action, the results looked very strange. The moves appeared real enough, but the figure lost the illusion of life. There was a certain authority in the movement and a presence that came out of the whole action, but it was impossible to become emotionally involved...

Fantasia Rite Of Spring

Disney Animation Background Drawings

Drawings for the splash of i passing storm in Bambi reflect study and observation by the effects animator. animator Paul KoSSoff Rite of SpringFantasia. Imagination in both design and movement was needed for this scene of lava Jlowing down the primordial landscape. artist Jules Engel ' 'Rite of Spring.9 9 Fantasia animator Ed Aardal Rite of Spring. Fantasia. artist Jules Engel ' 'Rite of Spring.9 9 Fantasia The Rite of Spring in Fantasia called for mist, rain, smoke, wind, water, falling rocks,...

Special Effects

Sketches Monstro The Whale

Pinocchio is swimming madly to escape the powerful charge of Monstro the whale. He is surrounded by frh. all dashing for their lives. He finally breaks to the surface and apparent freedom, but the monstrous foci rises from the depths, and his huge jaws close with a heavy sound on all who had tried to elude him. It is a exciting moment the audience should feel the tension. the suspense, the desperation of the characters trying to escape. The animation of Pinocchio is good and does exact what is...

Aaw

Disney Animation Exposure Sheet

A man landing and jumping contacts the ground for six to eight frames. Charted on the exposure sheet. it looks like this The exposure sheet with the action notes for the run. the jump. and the splash. The animator makes a chart showing where the pup's head will he on each of the drawings in the run and jump. When Pluto was sniffing, his nose hit the extreme up ami down positions on every other frame. 0 ie exposure sheet, the chart looked like this The exposure sheet with the action notes for...

Anticipation

Anticipation Action Animation

People in the audience watching an animated scene will not be able to understand the events on the screen unless there is a planned sequence of actions that leads them clearly from one activity to the next. They must be prepared for the next movement and expect it before it actually occurs. This is achieved by preceding each major action with a specific move that anticipates for the audience what is about to happen. This anticipa- tion can be as small as a change of expression or as big as the...

Gustaf Tenggren Pinocchio

Tenggren Pinoccio

Artist Kay Nielsen Night on Bald Mountain. Fantasia. r sT Eyvind Earle Sleeping Beauty. 190 Mary Blair and Ken Anderson discuss drawings they have done in relation to the needs of the film. artist Mary t ''Johnny Appi Melody Time Each story seemed to call for something new in the way of style and design to match the mood of the material so. before any actual story work was begun. Walt would look for an artist of unique ability to make some drawings or paintings that would excite everybody. From...

Sweatbox

lo with film lacking as it he viewing lies a test as try to see ier. Walt had to have a way to see the animation before it went into his pictures. He could flip the scenes and study the drawings on the pegs, but the only way he really could tell how they would look was to have the drawings filmed. This was known as a pencil test, and it gave both Walt and the animator a chance to study the action and make corrections before the scene was inked and painted. Ub Iwerks had devised a way to look...

Thinking up funny business look prsvsta over the

Recycled Disney Animation

Long-term, seemingly distant rewards of self-improvement. In many cases, the aspiring artist whose curiosity kept him seeking more and more knowledge often found himself the subject of ridicule from his coworkers. Bill Tytla was asked. What the hell do you want to go to art school for you're animating, aren't you They could not know it at the time, but actually there was little chance for these cartoonists to improve, given the type of material they were animating. The spot gags, stereotyped...

Camera

Pictures The Multiplane Camera

The first animation camera was suspended from a wooden frame so it would point straight down at the drawings on a table. There was nothing fancy about it and most filmmakers built their own. Since the drawings had to be held in register so each always would be in the same place, various methods were tried, with holes punched in the paper that matched little metal pegs becoming the most successful. To hold the drawings absolutely flat while photographing, a large piece of heavy glass, called a...

Blue Sketch

Disney Animation Background Drawings

New procedures were suggested constantly that would make the checker's job simpler and eliminate some of the expense created by needless errors. The Blue Sketch was one of the most practical. One time a background painter was given a layout showing an ominous evening sky with the vague shapes of tree branches silhouetted against the clouds. The color key that styled this sequence showed a greenish sky with an evil look. The background man was intrigued. Here was a good-looking design, simple...

Ward Kimball

Disney Animation Background Drawings

Not all nine of the supervising animators were interested in personality animation and character relationships. To Ward Kimball fell the mantle of true iconoclast of the group. He had tried and done successful personality animation on Jiminy Cricket, but soon found this style too limiting for his particular talents. He felt the proper use of animation for him lay further away from live action. His conception and execution of the long song sequence in The Three Caballeros is a classic in the...

An

Straight Ahead Action And Pose Pose

The animators saw Walt at the story meetings where he acted out everything as it should be. and then again in sweatbox, when they showed him the scene as they had animated it. In between times, the directors discussed with them what actions would be used, argued about how to stage them, how long the scenes should be, and how best to do the business. The animators learned from each of the directors, and animation flourished. In 1934, when the big expansion began, there were three directors....

Animal Sketches

Animal Sketches Animation Disney

Sketches by 0 What makes and appealing tor tries to di sketching fro for Aristocats bulge coming up, or a joint moving under the skin much more clearly. Many people get the idea that production stopped for six or seven weeks while everyone learned to draw a new character. That would have been a lovely way to gain knowledge, but it was not economically feasi ble. Other than a special class that might start at 4 30 I'M and go until 6 00 one hour of our time against a half hour of Walt's , all of...

Eric Larson

Eric Larson Disney

Eric's Figaro is one of the finest examples of pure pantomime ever done at the studio. The acting, texture in timing, and inner feeling for the character were remarkable things to achieve without benefit of dialogue. His flying horses in Fantasia were graceful in movement and convincing in action. He supervised the animation on the very difficult stag in Barnbi and ani- and would still be going strong at five o'clock while the rest of us sat in exhausted admiration. He was the only director...

Hyperion The Explosion

Disney Animation Background Drawings

Mygreatest reward is that I have been able to build this wonderful organization. Walt Disney Many a philosopher has observed that a person's physical environment greatly determines how he will behave and what he is apt to do. One historian of animation has claimed that the old studio on Hyperion Avenue at the far eastern edge of Hollywood was largely responsible for the innovative and imaginative thinking of the artists who worked inside. The studio was indeed unique, but then it would not have...

Fergy

Peculiar Penguins

Norm Ferguson or, as we always called him, Fergy used to like to tell of the lonely night when he switched from cameraman to animator. He was staying late to finish shooting a scene when he discovered that some of the drawings were missing. There was no one else around to complete the animation and no one to call, so as Fergy put it, I had to fill in. The scenes were so successful that he was offered a job drawing. And he reasoned, 4tIf this is all there is to animation. I guess I'll switch...

Experimental Animation

With the voices recorded and the lead story sequence approved in the story reel, it becomes time to start the experimental animation. The term is misleading in some ways. It means thatNa supervising animator will now take these ingredients along with the suggestions for the appearance of the main characters and, putting it all together, see if he can come up with a personality that comes to life on the screen and is interesting enough to hold the picture together. The sequence that is chosen...

Acknowledgments

This book belongs to the people, past and present, of Walt Disney Productions, whose cooperation and assistance made it all possible. Special thanks must go to the executives E. Cardon Walker. Ron Miller, and Vince Jefferds, for without their continued support over the four long years we spent putting it together, this book would never have been written. We wish to thank the many departments who were more helpful than their jobs required. In alphabetical order, they are the Animation Research...

Sound Effects

Sound Effects Disney

Funny sounds always have been an integral part of cartoons. It is almost impossible to think of the early films without the slide whistle, ratchet, pop-gun. xylophone. and bells. These had all been written in as part of the score and were not recorded until everything on the picture was completed. The animation had been done to a specific beat, the actions were all marked on the score itself, and four or five percussion men were now brought in with the orchestra to record the whole picture in...

Staging Animation

Staging Animation

Staging in an early ey by Ub Iwerks. thing is out in the where it can be seen ng is confused or tan-up in lines or shapes. staging in an early ey by Ub Iwerks. thing is out in the where it can be seen ng is confused or tan-up in lines or shapes. ar staging with the atti-e shown in silhouette. A id test of the clarity of drawing is to shade it yard, clouds floating across the moon, threatening sky, maybe bare branches rattling or scraping against a window, or a shadow moving back and forth all...

Straight Ahead Action and Pose to Pose

There are two main approaches to animation. The first is known as Straight Ahead Action because the animator literally works straight ahead from his first drawing in the scene. He simply takes off, doing one drawing after the other, getting new ideas as he goes along, until he reaches the end of the scene. He knows the story point of the scene and the business that is to be included, but he has little plan of how it will all be done at the time he starts. Both the drawings and the action have a...

Surprise Accents

Surprise Animation

The audiencc feels comfortable when led to believe that certain things will happen and in fact they do. The character walks in rhythm with the music he accents his movements on the beat it feels right. The opposite must be true of the surprise gag, the unusual, the startling. These accents should come on the off beat, the up beat, somewhere in the middle of the measure, where they are least expected. T he audience is led to anticipate one thing, and the continued accents on the downbeat fortify...

Marc Davis

Disney Animation

Marc Davis is an example of a talent being shifted to where it is most needed. This happened to many of the men since no one had been trained for the jobs that were being developed at Disney's. Several men actually created their jobs by doing something particularly well and that is how we got the great results. From careful cleanup on the delicate drawings of Snow White, Marc moved to story sketch and character design on Bambi because of his ability to draw animals. After doing outstanding work...

Arcs

Animation Arcs

Very few living organisms are capable of moves that have a mechanical in and out or up and down precision. The action of a woodpecker might be an exception. and. because of the restrictions of an external skeleton, there are undoubtedly some examples in the insect world, but the movements of most living creatures will follow a slightly circular path. The head seldom thrusts straight out. then back again it lifts slightly, or drops as it returns. Perhaps this has to do with weight or maybe with...

The Early Days

Walt Disney Early Cartoons

At first the cartoon medium was just a novelty, but it never really began to hit until we had more than tricks . until we developed personalities. We had to get beyond getting a laugh. They may roll in the aisles, but that doesn't mean you have a great picture. You have to have pathos in the thing. Walt Disney When Walt Disney first came to Hollywood he had no intention of continuing to make animated cartoons. He had done that kind of work in Kansas City, achieving only meager success with his...

Wilfred Jackson

Hamilton Luske Animated Drawing

Hamilton Luske was opening the door to a new. more refined approach in which everything one has is put into the first test. This requires an uninterrupted continuity of thought. It may take days to do the scene, but you must not lose the thread, change your mind, or lose your confidence you must be sure Ham had an absolute fascination with how things moved. Eric Larson, who was Ham's assistant in the early thirties, says, Ham was studying animation all the time it was his whole life. One...

Exaggeration

Solid Drawing Illusion Life

The persistent question, especially from the New York men was. When do you use 'ones' and when do you use 'twos' This referred to the number of frames of film to be shot of a single drawing. One exposure was called ones, two exposures twos. It had long been known that for most normal action there was no need to make a new drawing for every frame of the film. Each drawing could occupy two of the precious frames, and the audience would never detect it at 24 frames a second. This saved immense...