The bringing of apparent life to inanimate objects. (Mancis & Van Dyke, 1966) What is Animation?
1820 Persistence of Vision Persistence of vision, first noted in 1820 by Peter Mark Roget, refers to the length of time the retina (the "screen" at the back of our eyes which is sensitive to light) retains an image. If we see a light flash every tenth of a second or less, we perceive it as continuous. The impression of each flash of light remains, or persists, in the retina for at least one-tenth of a second. Because of this persistence, we can't tell where one flash ends and the next begins. Instead, we perceive a continuous light. Persistence of Vision- An effect that occurs when the brain receives images faster than it can process them.
1826 Thaumatrope The Thaumatrope is invented by John Ayrton Paris in 1824 to demonstrate the persistence of vision. It consists of one disc with a different image on both sides and a string on either side of the disc. The word "thaumatrope" has Greek roots. "Thauma" means magic in Greek and "trope" refers to something that turns. The thaumatrope is somewhat magical because it creates illusions dependent on persistence of vision. When you spin a thaumatrope, the two images on either side seem to blend together and become one picture.
Phenakistoscope Phen`a*kis"to*scope The Phenakistoscope is a toy that was invented in 1832 by a man named Joseph Platue. Much like the Thaumatrope, the Phenakistoscope relies on the persistence of vision (The eyes ability to retain an image) to achieve it's illusion. The contrivance consisted of a series of drawings or painted pictures of figures in steps of motion. It had two disks with the inner disk holding the pictures in order on the rim, and the outside disk which the viewer (one at a time) looked through. The outer disks had blackened slits to ensure a constant clear frame and to shield unwanted light off the picture once seen. Both turned on the identical axis. When turned together the impression of motion was achieved.
Phenakitstoscope (fantoscope) a machine which produced an illusion of movement by allowing a viewer to gaze at a rotating disk containing small windows, behind which was another disk containing a sequence of images. When the disks were rotated at the correct speed, the synchronization of the windows with the images created an animated effect. • Plateau's device required disks with 14 to 16 images, all showing the progression of movement in successive order. When turned in the device, the subject would appear to dance.
1834 Zoetrope • The zoetrope appeared first in England in 1834, then France in 1860 and finally the United States in 1867. The “Daedatelum" was invented by William George Horner in 1834 and renamed "Zoetrope" by French inventor, Pierre Desvignes. In "zoetrope" you might recognize the root word "zoo" from a Greek word meaning animal or life. "Trope" is also from Greek and refers to things that turn. The zoetrope is the wheel of life. When you place a strip of drawings inside the zoetrope's drum, spin it and look through the slots, you will see the images come to life. Of course, they are not really alive. This illusion of motion depends on two things; persistence of vision and the phi phenomenon. • If, when you spin the zoetrope, you look over the top of the drum at the drawings instead of looking through the slots all you will see is a blur. The illusion of motion is gone. The slots of the zoetrope simulate flashes of light, creating a strobe. Persistence of vision is a stroboscopic effect. The images you see must be interrupted by moments of darkness in order for the illusion to work. • The Phi phenomenon is a result of human instinct. Our brains strive to make meaning from what we perceive. When we see different images close together our brains quickly create a relationship between them. The metamorphosis of an umbrella into a mushroom (left) makes a certain kind of sense, even though this is not something you would ever see in the real world.
1872 Motion by Photography • Muybridge started his photographic compilation of animals in motion.
1889 Motion Picture Projector • Thomas Edison announced his kinetoscope which projected a 50ft length of film in approximately 13 seconds.
1906 Animated Film • J. Stuart Blackton made the first animated film called Humorous Phases of Funny Faces
1909 Cartoons • Winosor McCay produced a cartoon called "Gertie the Trained Dinosaur" consisting of 10,000 drawings. 1913 Cartoon Series Sullivan American cartoon series “Felix the Cat”
1914 Cel Animation Method used for creating hand-drawn animation. Individual frames are drawn in a sequence that, when played back quickly (usually 10 to 30 frames per second), creates the illusion of continuous movement. • The invention of the technique is generally attributed to Earl Hurd, who patented the process in 1914. What is cell animation? Generally, the characters are drawn on cels (short for celluloid)and laid over a static background drawing. This reduces the number of times an image has to be redrawn and enables studios to split up the production process to different specialized teams. Using this assembly line way to animate has made it possible to produce films much more cost-effectively. The outline of the images are drawn on the back of the cel. The colors are also painted on the back to eliminate brushstrokes.
Cel Animation Animators drew on semi-transparent sheets of vellum, or acetate cells (cellulose acetate) - they could see through the frame they were drawing to the previous frames.
1928 Animation and Sound • Walt Disney combined cartoon with synchronized sound.