Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Start at the Beginning

We start at the beginning in this course: a blank piece of paper & a pencil. I teach drawing methods that are simple, enjoyable & not hard to do. You can start the course with simply the desire to learn to draw. You don't need to be excellent or experienced as an artist. We also begin right away with simple straight & curved lines; the simplest of beginning lines. These develop into the building blocks of form and the basis for all design: The cube, sphere, & cylinder.
I notice as I've taught at various colleges for the past 14 years, that starting at the beginning isn't always taught as carefully as it could be. Steps are skipped sometimes in courses, & students, in a hurry to become "animators with a job", also tend to skip steps. One step at a time is best. Don't skip steps, I say.

If you build up the fundamentals of drawing first, the sky is the limit. If you don't, you will end up being limited in what you can draw. Then, you'll have to go back to the beginning again and work on the steps you skipped in the first place. After that, you can advance as a skilled artist.

Traditional animation requires drawing skills that take time, dedication, & practice to develop high-levels of capability & knowledge: the rewards are well worth it. You can become an independent filmmaker, like Bill Plympton, an animator for hire, a studio employee, or a teacher. Computer animation follows drawn animation; that's what all the good colleges teach. I agree.