Sunday, November 20, 2011


I'll use inspirational sketches to work out the basic staging for a physical gag.

Shown below is a walk-through of the ape triplets each trying to be the first to get out of an airplane. The ape triplets are very much Three Stooges-like: Larry (Algeria), Curly (Angola), and Moe (Zaire). 

In order to be successful, the gag will have to rely on the animator's sense of physical timing and acting ability.

Question for you: What's the funniest gag that you have seen in animated films of the past 20 years? Was it based on personality or surprise?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

INSPIRATIONAL SKETCHES #1: Poses Portraying Character Interaction

As a director, I like to use inspirational sketches as a way to give aid and guidance to storyboard artists. For me, the entertainment value is more about character performance than camera angles. If the storyboard artist has a better way to convey the performance and/or the camera angle, then great! We'll use that!

But I believe that an animation director should be able to at least use quick sketches to convey how he/she envisions the acting in the script. The director should give a starting point for the storyboard artist to work from...after all, the director should be the one with the overall vision for the film.

Here are some of my inspirational sketches showing the ape triplets (Algeria, Angola, and Zaire) interacting. Sometimes they fight. Sometimes they act as one.

These sketches were gathered together onto model sheets to show personality attitudes.

The ape triplets are very much Three Stooges-like Larry, Curly, and Moe

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Forms and Forces By Master Animator Bill Tytla #2

I never cease to enjoy looking at Bill Tytla's work.

Here are some rough poses of Grumpy being washed by three other Dwarfs (Bashful, Sneezy, and Sleepy). These drawings are of pure forces affecting form. The choreography of the interaction between the four characters is amazing. Study these well. This is pure Motion Capture here.

These drawings appeared in the December 1978 issue of CARTOONIST PROfiles as illustrations for Grim Natwick's article about Bill Tytla, who had passed away ten years earlier on December 29, 1968 at the age of 64.

Pose A

Pose B

Pose C

Pose D

Pose E

Pose F

Pose G