The Animation Course

Our first and primary course, the animation course consists of 4 levels with the goal of giving the student the tools they need to enjoy the process of creating stories and animating them, thus producing their own short films.

The Animation Course Overview

Level 1

12 – one hour long sessions: Meeting online through Adobe Connect

The main goal of Level 1 is to introduce the student to the concept of animation.  Not merely making something move across the screen, but rather making something come to life.  We learn how to do this through The Principles of Animation, ideas and concepts that were identified and written down by 2 of the original Disney Animators.  Each week we will examine and explain one principle and then put it into practice as the student will have an assignment to create their own animation during the week (3-5 hours per week).  By the end of Level 1 the student will have created 4 animation projects.


Learn more about Level 1

Level 2

12 – one hour long sessions: Meeting online through Adobe Connect

Continuing where Level 1 leaves off, Level 2 will introduce the student to the concepts of physics (and how they apply to animated motion) and body mechanics (the way joints and structure are utilized during basic locomotion:  i.e. walking, running, jumping, etc.).

We will also explore the concepts of adding emotion and acting to animation, further enforcing the idea of bringing a character to life.

As with Level 1, Level 2 can be experienced in any form of animation (hand drawn, computer, etc.).

Learn more about Level 2

Level 3

Moving into the most important aspect of film-making, Level 3 delves into how to tell a story. Everything from the basic structure that all stories share to staging and cinemetography. In Level 3 your student will learn the tools to take their ideas and transform them into a cohesive narrative that communicates a clear theme.

We will explore the concepts of characters and why developing convincing personalities is essential to plot.

Learn more about Level 3

Level 4

Taking all of the lessons from Levels 1, 2 and 3, your student now combines them to make their own animated short film. All of the assignments work in conjunction to help the student conceive, write, direct, storyboard, edit, record and ultimately animate their film. Each class is devoted to giving feedback and constructive critique to help encourage and guide the student throughout the process.

At the end of the course, your student’s film will be joined with the other films from the class into a compilation and released on The Animation Course YouTube channel where students can set up their own ‘premiere’ to screen their films for friends and family.

Learn more about Level 4

Level 5

Students will be given the opportunity to work together just like a real animation crew to complete a joint film project.  A collaborative effort, the students will come up with concepts, designs, art direction, record voices and animate using all the lessons from Levels 3 and 4.

The goal of Level 5 is to spend more detailed time with each individual section of the film-making process, especially giving significant time to animation.  The students will receive detailed critiques on a small number of shots with the intent that they can seriously refine their animation skills.

Learn more about Level 5

The Drawing Course Instructor - Chad Stewart

Chad Stewart

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