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3_Animation and Non-Fiction Animation Techniques In Process

Rotoscoping



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2_Invention, Plasticity and Visual Music Animation Techniques In Process

Principles 3

figure drawing
Animation principles
animation process

Animation is a process and the malleability of time is its primary material.

‘Time is what prevents everything from being present all at once’ Henri Bergson. The animator seeks to control at what pace, rhythm and direction things appear.

“What happens between each frame is much more important than what exists on each frame” Norman McLaren, Computer Animation
It is not the image, drawing or shape of each frame that matters in animation, rather it is the difference between the frames that generates the illusion of movement in animation.

It is the animator’s ability to control and play with these intervals between frames that matters. It is important to think in terms of intervals, rates of change and flux, rather than thinking in terms of still images or compositions.

Key Resources
  • You Tube
  • OCA Moving Image 1: Animation
  • Howard Wimshurst YouTube channel and tutored courses on Animator Guild
  • Proko – A channel which specializes in teaching observational figure drawing.
  • FilmMaker IQ – So much of Animation is linked to Film Making. This channel is a fantastic resource for film makers of all kinds.
  • Striving for animation – for those who are specifically focused at working in the Japanese Anime industry, this channel gives excellent advice and training.

BOOKS

  • Animator’s survival kit – Widely considered to be the cornerstone book for animators
  • The Illusion of Life – This covers the principles of animation in a lot of depth as well as being a valuable insight into classic Disney-style animation and drawing.
  • Drawn to Life – Another good book for learning animation and drawing
  •  Framed Ink – A fantastic book on dynamic composition
  • Framed Perspective – A lot of people get hung up on perspective. If you are one of them, this book explains it very well and gets pretty advanced in book 2.
  •  Force: Dynamic life drawing for animators – This book helps you to understand gesture – getting energy into your drawings!
  • Directing the Story – Highly recommended. Explains very simply how to tell a story with drawings – it shows you that you don’t need to have mad drawing skills to be able to convey a compelling story.
  • Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain – For breaking bad drawing habits and learning to draw what you see.
  • Atlas of the Human Anatomy – contains good pictures and diagrams if you want a deep dive into anatomy and proportions.
  • Color and Light – an inspiring book which teaches all about colour and lighting for artists.

Animation techniques

Boil

In traditional animation when an object, character or scene is at rest it is not still or motionless, it ‘boils’. Boiling is the term used to describe an animated effect in which the outlines or surface of an otherwise still character or object are made to wiggle or quiver in drawn animation. This is achieved by the looping together of several tracings of the same image (usually between 3 to 8 drawings). Boiling movement is used to sustain the illusion of movement in the animation overall and provide the impression of life or liveliness.

Questions about boil

  • What ‘boil’ technique is used? Why do the lines move and what elements, if any are allowed to be still?
  • Does the pace of the boil emanate throughout?
  • What emotional or narrative purpose does the use of boiling serve? Does it make for a more lifelike effect or is the boil deployed humorously?
Frame rate

It is most common in animation to draw on twos, this is both because drawing on ones is double the amount of work and because working with twos lends a smoother appearance to slower actions, avoiding unnecessary jitter that can accompany shooting on ones. It is generally thought that working on twos adds a particular liveliness to a fast action rather than working on ones, which can make an action appear more leaden.

Cycle, loops and layers

Cycles can loop, oscillate, or even appear to be stationary. The use of cycles is often motivated by economy because it saves on drawing time. But the type of cycle that you use also make up the meaning of your film.

Looped cycles are most commonly employed on particular layers within a frame. Sergei Eisenstein described this layered looping within a frame as ‘vertical montage’:
“The simultaneous movement of a number of motifs advances through a succession of sequences, each motif having its own rate of compositional progressions, while being at the same time inseparable from the overall compositional progression as a whole” Sergei Eisenstein, Eisenstein Volume 2: Towards a Theory of Montage (London: BFI Publishing, 1991)

  • ‘Dumbland’ (2000), David Lynch purposely used cycles of animation to represent the breakdown of social structures depicted in his film.
  • Francis Alÿs, Jordan Wolfson and Owen Land work extensively using loops to communicate meaning.
  • Katie Dove’s Luna, 2013 https://vimeo.com/81492504
Eye trace

All animation is an exercise in applying the principle of ‘eye trace’. This is a principle of film- making in general but one that is essential for the illusion of animated movement to work. ‘In The Blink of an Eye’ by Walter Murch, (1995) sets out the principle that the viewer’s eyes will focus on a particular position on the screen and editors exploit this to allow less jarring edit when one shot follows another by ensuring that the action or image is located in the same part of the screen.This is also known as ‘registration’ in animation. A keen awareness of eye-trace allows the animator to play with the audience’s expectations and surprise them. The registration protocol was developed for hand-drawn animation to ensure that each subsequent drawing uses the same co-ordinates so that the illusion of movement between frames is not interrupted. In other animation the registration is looser and is intended as such to draw attention to the variation that ‘eye trace’ allows.

Do more research on using photographs

Technical note: resize and don’t overload software, particularly on iPad.

Animation Steps and Principles

Animation Steps
12 cel animation principles

from Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnson:
1)squash/stretch
2) anticipation and leading attention, can have multiple levels
3) Staging/exaggeration/sequencing to make things clear
4) straightahead/pose to pose drawing
5) Follow through and overlapping action
6) slow in slow out
7) arcs
8) secondary action
9) timing
10) exaggeration
11) solid drawing
12) appeal

Timing

Norman McClaren

Smooth versus flow

Difference between fluid animation and smooth animation:

  • Smooth is about the frame rate – how many new frames occur per second of animation.
  • Flow is about the gesture of the drawings, the arcs, the drag and follow through of a movement.

To get smooth animation, you just need to draw plenty of in-betweens until all of your animation is on 1s
Flow is more complex to get right than smooth.

Keyframing
Stick animation

See also Ross Bollinger: pencilmation

Howard Wimshurst

Animator Guild: https://www.animatorguild.com

Animator Guild: https://www.animatorguild.com

issuu.com/laramoon/docs/f._thomas___o._johnston_-_the_illus

Categories
2_Invention, Plasticity and Visual Music Animation Techniques In Process

Animation Principles

figure drawing
Animation principles
animation process

Distorted movement
The above systems of observing and capturing movement are useful for
animators but only in so far as they inform the animation process rather than
dictate it. If followed too closely these techniques severely limit the possibilities
of animation. As noted above, it is not possible to transcribe the whole of the real
world in an image. Choices must be made, things must be left out and short-cuts
taken. The questions of what to leave out and what short-cuts to take are the key
creative decisions in animation. The
Consider two basic principles of animation: instability of line and
exaggeration .
As a general rule, to add life to a drawing, the identity of line should be unstable.
The unstable line implies movement, breath, what we know to be life-like (see
exercise 1 of Part 1). It follows from this that lines and shapes in animation
should be expressive and dynamic. In addition, the ability to read movement
works best if the movement is exaggerated. The most common form of this
exaggeration is known as ‘squash and stretch’. This is where a shape is distorted
to indicate the impact of gravity and energy. It is very important to remember
that when distorting a shape or form, the volume should be maintained in order
to maintain the illusion (continuity of volume). For example, if a round shape is to
be elongated or stretched, as in the image below, it must also become thinner. If
it is to be squashed then it must become wider.

A particular application of ‘squash and stretch’ is known as ‘anticipation and
overshoot’. When a movement is about to begin and the shape or object has
been stationary prior to this, it is a convention of animated movement that the
first frame of the movement actually moves in the opposite direction of the
movement as a whole (the ball above is about to reach upwards but the first
frame will have the ball compress downwards a little in anticipation of the
upwards movement). Including a frame or two of anticipated movement adds to
the illusion that the movement is ‘self-motivated’, it also allows the viewer’s eye
to momentarily register that a movement is about to take place – so that it can
be the point of focus and viewed without being missed.

Animation is a process and the malleability of time is its primary material.

‘Time is what prevents everything from being present all at once’ Henri Bergson. The animator seeks to control at what pace, rhythm and direction things appear.

“What happens between each frame is much more important than what exists on each frame” Norman McLaren, Computer Animation
It is not the image, drawing or shape of each frame that matters in animation, rather it is the difference between the frames that generates the illusion of movement in animation.

It is the animator’s ability to control and play with these intervals between frames that matters. It is important to think in terms of intervals, rates of change and flux, rather than thinking in terms of still images or compositions.

Key Resources
  • You Tube
  • OCA Moving Image 1: Animation
  • Howard Wimshurst YouTube channel and tutored courses on Animator Guild
  • Proko – A channel which specializes in teaching observational figure drawing.
  • FilmMaker IQ – So much of Animation is linked to Film Making. This channel is a fantastic resource for film makers of all kinds.
  • Striving for animation – for those who are specifically focused at working in the Japanese Anime industry, this channel gives excellent advice and training.

BOOKS

  • Animator’s survival kit – Widely considered to be the cornerstone book for animators
  • The Illusion of Life – This covers the principles of animation in a lot of depth as well as being a valuable insight into classic Disney-style animation and drawing.
  • Drawn to Life – Another good book for learning animation and drawing
  •  Framed Ink – A fantastic book on dynamic composition
  • Framed Perspective – A lot of people get hung up on perspective. If you are one of them, this book explains it very well and gets pretty advanced in book 2.
  •  Force: Dynamic life drawing for animators – This book helps you to understand gesture – getting energy into your drawings!
  • Directing the Story – Highly recommended. Explains very simply how to tell a story with drawings – it shows you that you don’t need to have mad drawing skills to be able to convey a compelling story.
  • Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain – For breaking bad drawing habits and learning to draw what you see.
  • Atlas of the Human Anatomy – contains good pictures and diagrams if you want a deep dive into anatomy and proportions.
  • Color and Light – an inspiring book which teaches all about colour and lighting for artists.

Animation techniques

Boil

In traditional animation when an object, character or scene is at rest it is not still or motionless, it ‘boils’. Boiling is the term used to describe an animated effect in which the outlines or surface of an otherwise still character or object are made to wiggle or quiver in drawn animation. This is achieved by the looping together of several tracings of the same image (usually between 3 to 8 drawings). Boiling movement is used to sustain the illusion of movement in the animation overall and provide the impression of life or liveliness.

Questions about boil

  • What ‘boil’ technique is used? Why do the lines move and what elements, if any are allowed to be still?
  • Does the pace of the boil emanate throughout?
  • What emotional or narrative purpose does the use of boiling serve? Does it make for a more lifelike effect or is the boil deployed humorously?
Frame rate

It is most common in animation to draw on twos, this is both because drawing on ones is double the amount of work and because working with twos lends a smoother appearance to slower actions, avoiding unnecessary jitter that can accompany shooting on ones. It is generally thought that working on twos adds a particular liveliness to a fast action rather than working on ones, which can make an action appear more leaden.

Cycle, loops and layers

Cycles can loop, oscillate, or even appear to be stationary. The use of cycles is often motivated by economy because it saves on drawing time. But the type of cycle that you use also make up the meaning of your film.

Looped cycles are most commonly employed on particular layers within a frame. Sergei Eisenstein described this layered looping within a frame as ‘vertical montage’:
“The simultaneous movement of a number of motifs advances through a succession of sequences, each motif having its own rate of compositional progressions, while being at the same time inseparable from the overall compositional progression as a whole” Sergei Eisenstein, Eisenstein Volume 2: Towards a Theory of Montage (London: BFI Publishing, 1991)

  • ‘Dumbland’ (2000), David Lynch purposely used cycles of animation to represent the breakdown of social structures depicted in his film.
  • Francis Alÿs, Jordan Wolfson and Owen Land work extensively using loops to communicate meaning.
  • Katie Dove’s Luna, 2013 https://vimeo.com/81492504
Eye trace

All animation is an exercise in applying the principle of ‘eye trace’. This is a principle of film- making in general but one that is essential for the illusion of animated movement to work. ‘In The Blink of an Eye’ by Walter Murch, (1995) sets out the principle that the viewer’s eyes will focus on a particular position on the screen and editors exploit this to allow less jarring edit when one shot follows another by ensuring that the action or image is located in the same part of the screen.This is also known as ‘registration’ in animation. A keen awareness of eye-trace allows the animator to play with the audience’s expectations and surprise them. The registration protocol was developed for hand-drawn animation to ensure that each subsequent drawing uses the same co-ordinates so that the illusion of movement between frames is not interrupted. In other animation the registration is looser and is intended as such to draw attention to the variation that ‘eye trace’ allows.

Do more research on using photographs

Technical note: resize and don’t overload software, particularly on iPad.

Animation Steps and Principles

Animation Steps
12 cel animation principles

from Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnson:
1)squash/stretch
2) anticipation and leading attention, can have multiple levels
3) Staging/exaggeration/sequencing to make things clear
4) straightahead/pose to pose drawing
5) Follow through and overlapping action
6) slow in slow out
7) arcs
8) secondary action
9) timing
10) exaggeration
11) solid drawing
12) appeal

Timing

Norman McClaren

Smooth versus flow

Difference between fluid animation and smooth animation:

  • Smooth is about the frame rate – how many new frames occur per second of animation.
  • Flow is about the gesture of the drawings, the arcs, the drag and follow through of a movement.

To get smooth animation, you just need to draw plenty of in-betweens until all of your animation is on 1s
Flow is more complex to get right than smooth.

Keyframing
Stick animation

See also Ross Bollinger: pencilmation

Howard Wimshurst

Animator Guild: https://www.animatorguild.com

Animator Guild: https://www.animatorguild.com

issuu.com/laramoon/docs/f._thomas___o._johnston_-_the_illus

Categories
2_Invention, Plasticity and Visual Music Animation Techniques In Process Inspiration

Norman McLaren

An artist may be like someone who just hears music and then starts to dance

Norman McLaren (1914 – 1987) was a Scottish Canadian animator, director and producer known for his work for the National Film Board of Canada (NFB). He was a pioneer in a number of areas of animation and filmmaking, including hand-drawn animation, drawn-on-film animation, visual music, abstract film, pixilation and graphical sound.

Experiments in Motion

Tempo: The basics of perception of linear movement: Shows the animator’s table with camera, switch and frame counter. Calibration marks and muscle memory. And shows the difference in perceptions of movement through increasing the number of equal spaced moves of a cut-out circle going from A to B. The greater the number of moves, the slower the movement. We interprete this differently depending on our understanding of context eg whether we think the circle is a large sun moving fast or a small golf ball moving slowly. Ends with interesting abacus type comparison of movements at 1-1000 moves between A and B.

Synaesthesia and experiments in sound

Experimental animation

In this animation McLaren created the sounds through drawing on film. The tall vertical geometric shapes make it seem like a film about speed and impersonality of city life. Reminiscent of Mondrian paintings.

Short films

Cold war allegory. Story of two neighbours who kill each other in a fight about a flower that starts to grow along the fence between them.
A Chairy Story: Amusing story of a man trying to sit on a chair. The chair refuses to be sat on until the chair has sat on the man. metaphor for the importance of equality and politeness and not taking power for granted.
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2_Invention, Plasticity and Visual Music Animation Techniques In Process

Sound Design

Foley sound

Sound libraries

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1_The Basics of Animated Movement Animation Techniques In Process

Cut paper animation

Uses rotoscoped Photoshop images cut out.
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1_The Basics of Animated Movement Animation Techniques

Stop Motion Studio iPad

Issues

Do I lock WB/exposure settings. Does that depend how I am bringing objects in and out?

What isvthe best interval timer setting – 15fps? For what types of movement?. Or use remote?

Backdrop/lighting. Pro version has greenscreen.

Looks at frame rate, inbetweens etc
Life lapse on iPhone. Alternative tripods: cup, booksvon chair. Lock White Balance and Aperture to aboid flickering.
Light lapse. Interval timer at 15 sec. then delete any clips where the hand is in. TURN PHONE AUTOLOCK OFF. She is bringing new things on and off. So she locks the settings.
Good basic overview of free Ap. Uses pegs, and gorilla tripod. Keeps all settings on Manual.
Life Lapse. Put camera on book. Need to lock camera oroehtation as well as other settings.

Lego animation

Lighting, sets, subtle motion, camera movement,

Effects

Uses masking feature

Audio

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1_The Basics of Animated Movement Animation Techniques In Process

Stop Motion techniques

You Tube Examples

Does a panning diagram mounted on tripod to make panning and other camera movements predictable. Move set instead of character

LOOK AT KEVIN PARRY

Framerate

Persistence of vision only operates at 10-12fps
Uses a grid. Can I make ine to put overnthe ipad screen?
Discusses different framerates for diffeent types of movie: slow/fast movement, size of objects
Overview of different types of Stop Motion: cutout, claymation, object,

The whole production process. Uses two cameras: webcam to use free software for onionskin, but shoots with DSLR.
Introductory overview.
To go from chaos to structure, start with the structure and deconstruct, then reverse frames.
Tether camera to Lightroom, with battery replacement pack, LED lights and remote control.
Camera settings ISO 250, f/6.3 (f/5-f/8) 1/10sec, f/
Framerate 6, 10, 15 FPS for typical SM look.

Stop Motion Studio on iPad

Free SMS on iPhone. Uses pegs to stabilise the the iPhone on a table.
Compares SmS on iPad with DSLR. Main issue is grain. Make sure have good lighting. Can shoot greenscreen then key in AE and overlay on background.
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1_The Basics of Animated Movement Animation Techniques In Process

Adobe Premiere

https://www.filmeditingpro.com/the-editors-guide-to-working-with-still-images-in-premiere-pro/

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1_The Basics of Animated Movement Animation Techniques In Process

Animation Approaches and Styles

Animation is a process and the malleability of time is its primary material.

‘Time is what prevents everything from being present all at once’ Henri Bergson. The animator seeks to control at what pace, rhythm and direction things appear.

“What happens between each frame is much more important than what exists on each frame” Norman McLaren, Computer Animation
It is not the image, drawing or shape of each frame that matters in animation, rather it is the difference between the frames that generates the illusion of movement in animation.

It is the animator’s ability to control and play with these intervals between frames that matters. It is important to think in terms of intervals, rates of change and flux, rather than thinking in terms of still images or compositions.

There are two main forms of animated movement: manipulation and replacement. These can be used in a number of different ways.

  1. Traditional cell animation. Frame by frame flip book. Requires very good drawing skills.
  2. 2D vector-based animation eg Flash. Can create rigs for tweened animation.
  3. 3-D computer animation or CGI . This can by hyperrealistic or output in various illustration styles.
  4. Motion graphics moving elements in space
  5. Stop motion frame by frame capture of moving elements using eg Claymation, Cut- outs, Silhouettes, Lego.
  6. Rotoscoping drawing on and manipulating video or photo sequences.
  7. Scratch video

Types of animation

There are two main forms of animated movement: manipulation and replacement. These can be used in a number of different ways.

  1. Traditional cell animation. Frame by frame flip book. Requires very good drawing skills.
  2. 2D vector-based animation eg Flash. Can create rigs for tweened animation.
  3. 3-D computer animation or CGI . This can by hyperrealistic or output in various illustration styles.
  4. Motion graphics moving elements in space
  5. Stop motion frame by frame capture of moving elements using eg Claymation, Cut- outs, Silhouettes, Lego.
  6. Rotoscoping drawing on and manipulating video or photo sequences.
  7. Scratch video

Many of these types can now be simulated using Aps on tablet, smart phones and iPad as well as computer software. The different types can also be combined in different ways. See posts:

Early animation

  • Winsor MCKay 1914 Gertie the Dinosaur was one of the earliest animations made on film. Each drawing was redrawn on each page and captured on film and then projected at a rapid rate. McKay presented his animation as a stand-up show with live narrative. Written text is also included on some of the frames.
  • JR Bray Dachshund: introduced the background shot and discovered use of celluloid sheets for layering where only certain elements changed each time.
  • Raoul Barre: Dreams of Hercules and Crazy Cat uses write on text.
  • Willis O’Brien stop motion animation of a prehistoric world.
  • Paul Terry move the background to show movement.
  • Fleischer rotoscoping to create realistic movement Clown and ink
  • Pat Sullivan Felix the Cat

Traditional Cel animation: to reduce the amount of drawing required each image was constructed using multiple overlaid layers of drawings on transparent sheets of celluloid (cels). In this way, the background scenery for say, Mickey Mouse could be drawn once for use in a scene, while Mickey would be re-drawn multiple times. Typically, an animated feature would require over 100,000 hand-painted cels. These would be photographed one by one onto a painted background using a rostrum camera – a specialised camera used to animate still objects.

Common visual conventions include:

  • Use of lines radiating from eye to show noticing something.
  • Lines out of mouth for noise
  • Dream bubbles.
  • Use text screens and build-up text to drive the narrative. These screens move up and down to continue the feeling of movement from the animation.
  • Music of different moods and tempo
  • Whole screen moves up and down like camera shake. On old films the grit and scratches also flicker to give movement.

Gertie the Dinosaur, Winsor McCay
1914 Produced for a Vaudeville Act it took McKay a year to draw the thousands on pictures needed for this film.
Uses cycles and loops. When Gertie raises her feet, right and left in a little shuffle dance approximately 8 minutes into the film, the same sequence of drawings were used in a loop.

Flipbooks

flip book or flick book is a book with a series of pictures that very gradually change from one page to the next, so that when the pages are turned rapidly, the pictures appear to animate by simulating motion or some other change. Flip books are often illustrated books for children, but may also be geared towards adults and employ a series of photographs rather than drawings. Flip books are not always separate books but may appear as an added feature in ordinary books or magazines, often in the page corners.

Flipbooks work on the same principles as frame-by-frame animation. They can be made in very many different styles. Software packages and websites are available that convert digital video files into custom-made flip books.

In addition to their role in the birth of cinema, flipbooks have also been commonly used in marketing of items like cars and cigarettes. They are also in art and published photographic collections. Vintage flip books are popular among collectors, and especially rare ones from the late 19th to the early 20th century have been known to fetch thousands of dollars in sales and auctions.

Andymation

‘Andymation’ is the YouTube channel for Andy Bailey – a stop-motion animator and worked on Laika’s movies ParaNorman, The Boxtrolls, Kubo and the Two Strings, and Missing Link. He has produced a series of very useful tutorials for creating paper flipbooks using a lightbox. The same principles can be adapted for tablet Flipbook Aps.

Simple basics of making a Flipbook with examples of waving stick figure, bouncing ball and alien spaceship abduction.
Discusses perspective
What to do with just a line. Flexlines and sraight lines and learning about the physics of gravity.
How to do a much longer Flipbook with coloured scenes, drawing on Japanese anime techniques of trembly shots, framing etc. Uses reference photos and drawings to get perspective and consistency. Produces 658 pages in 35 days over 3 months.

Amusing fun with a Scribble
I hour challenge with humorous ball story

Traditional cell animation.

Requires very good drawing skills.

2D vector-based animation

eg Flash. Can create rigs for tweened animation.

Steve Cutts

Patrick

Filmbilder

Ross Bollinger Pencilmation

https://www.youtube.com/user/rossbollinger

Rotoscoping



drawing on and manipulating video or photo sequences.

3-D computer animation or CGI .

This can by hyperrealistic or output in various illustration styles.

Stop motion

frame by frame capture of moving elements using eg Claymation, Cut- outs, Silhouettes, Lego.

Motion graphics

After Effects. Adobe Animate. moving elements in space

Scratch video

Resources

Key Resources
  • You Tube
  • OCA Moving Image 1: Animation
  • Howard Wimshurst YouTube channel and tutored courses on Animator Guild
  • Proko – A channel which specializes in teaching observational figure drawing.
  • FilmMaker IQ – So much of Animation is linked to Film Making. This channel is a fantastic resource for film makers of all kinds.
  • Striving for animation – for those who are specifically focused at working in the Japanese Anime industry, this channel gives excellent advice and training.

BOOKS

  • Animator’s survival kit – Widely considered to be the cornerstone book for animators
  • The Illusion of Life – This covers the principles of animation in a lot of depth as well as being a valuable insight into classic Disney-style animation and drawing.
  • Drawn to Life – Another good book for learning animation and drawing
  •  Framed Ink – A fantastic book on dynamic composition
  • Framed Perspective – A lot of people get hung up on perspective. If you are one of them, this book explains it very well and gets pretty advanced in book 2.
  •  Force: Dynamic life drawing for animators – This book helps you to understand gesture – getting energy into your drawings!
  • Directing the Story – Highly recommended. Explains very simply how to tell a story with drawings – it shows you that you don’t need to have mad drawing skills to be able to convey a compelling story.
  • Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain – For breaking bad drawing habits and learning to draw what you see.
  • Atlas of the Human Anatomy – contains good pictures and diagrams if you want a deep dive into anatomy and proportions.
  • Color and Light – an inspiring book which teaches all about colour and lighting for artists.