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Animation and CGI

Animation and CGI

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Animation and CGI

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  1. Animation and CGI November 20, 2012

  2. What is Animation? • “Animation refers to the recording of any image which goes through changes over time to portray the illusion of motion. Before the invention of film, the depiction of figures in motion through static art existed as far back as the Paleolothic period.”

  3. Animation in Ancient Times • Evidence of animation has been found in Paleolithic cave paintings, in which animals were depicted with multiple legs • Ancient Egyptian paintings displays sequences of images, as soldiers are being trained • Leonardo da Vinci’s show anatomical depictions of a figure raising and lowering its arms

  4. Early Developments in Animation • The magic lantern (c. 1650), which operates similarly to a projector, projects a translucent oil painting by through the use of a candle or oil lamp

  5. Early Developments in Animation • Throughout the nineteenth century, a variety of devices were invented that created the illusion of motion. These devices included the thaumatrope, the phenakistoscope, the zoetrope, and praxinoscope.

  6. Early Developments in Animation • Another early form of animation was the flip book, which was first patented in 1868 • In a flip book, there are images drawn or printed near the unbound edge of the book and, when the pages are turned rapidly, it appears as though the images are moving

  7. The Silent Age of Animation • The silent age last from the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s • Stop Motion Animation: Images are moved between shots so that when they are put together, it appears as though they are moving • Many of the earliest animated films were shot using the stop motion technique • The most common materials for stop motion are puppets and claymation

  8. The Silent Age of Animation • The first stop-motion animation was produced in 1899, and was entitled the Humpty Dumpty Circus • One animator used dead insects with wire limbs to create a stop-motion, animated film • Another famous, early stop-motion film is Gertie the Dinosaur, which is an early example of character development

  9. Silent Age of Animation • A modern example of stop-motion animation is Coraline, which used 3D printing technology to rapidly prototype images with vast amounts of detail • South Park uses cut-outs to create the stop-motion

  10. The Silent Age of Animation • The cel technique is a method of animating that involves moving objects on transparent celluloid sheets which were then placed over a stationary background image, and the photography to create a sequence of images • Used to create the first animated series • Reduced the work required to produce drawn animation by eliminating the need to redraw the backgrounds • Allowed the work to be divided amongst a team—one could design the characters, one the backgrounds, etc.

  11. The Silent Age of Animation • The first animated feature film, El Apostol, was made in 1917 • In 1920, Otto Mesmer created Felix the Cat, an extremely popular animated character, which was distributed by Paramount Studios • Other famous, early animated films include Fantasmagorie, Little Nemo, and The Revenge of a Kinematograph Cameraman (which was shot using stop-motion technology and puppets)

  12. The Golden Age of Animation • In 1923, Walt Disney opened his studio and ushered in the Golden Age of Animation • First significant breakthrough took place in 1928 with the production of Steamboat Willie, which was the first cartoon to include a fully post-produced soundtrack

  13. The Golden Age of Animation • Disney produced the first animation in full, three color Technicolor method, which was called “Flowers and Trees” and won an Academy Award • Disney released Snow White and the Seven Dwarves in 1937, which is often considered the first animated feature but it is actually just the first to become successful and the first to be filmed in Technicolor • After Snow White, Disney released about one major film every year

  14. The Television Era • Seven years after the introduction of color television (1951), Hanna-Barbera released Huckleberry Hound, the first half-hour television program featuring only animation • Hanna-Barbera also released The Flinstones, The Jetsons, and other animated favorites

  15. The Television Era • Looney Tunes started around the same time as Hanna-Barbera and produced a variety of cartoons throughout the mid-twentieth century

  16. The Television Era • Animation remains an important part of modern television, with major networks playing animated shows in primetime

  17. CGI • Computer animation is the art of creating moving images with the use of computers • CGI was made possible by software innovations that made it easier to generate and animate complex, photo-realistic scenes • Improvements in hardware have made it possible to perform the calculations involved in the animation much more quickly

  18. CGI • Three Steps to Produce CGI Scenes • “Wire-Frame” Geometric model of every object in the scene is developed

  19. CGI • The surface appearance of each object is defined; its color, texture, reflectivity, transparency, and so on • The scene is rendered to calculate the color of all the pixels

  20. CGI • The first computer-animated full-length feature was Toy Story • The film contains a cast of largely plastic, wood, and metal, with simple jointed limbs and a limited range of expressions because of the difficulty in photo-realistic images

  21. CGI • Many other early CGI, animated films used similar characters to work around the limitations of the technology • For example, A Bug’s Life and Antz both include insects with jointed limbs and shiny, plastic looking exoskeletons

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  23. CGI • The advancements in CGI can be seen in such films as Shrek and Monsters Inc. • The characters in these films seem much more realistic and have much more fluid motions because of technological innovations

  24. CGI • CGI animation is not just used to produce full length feature films, but also to add elements to live-action films that would other wise be cost-prohibitive or impossible • Notable examples include the Star Wars Episodes I-III, Lord of the Rings, Spiderman, and a host of others.

  25. CGI • A recent development in CGI is the use of motion capture • Two notable examples of this are Gollum from the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Caesar from The Rise of the Planet of the Apes • Motion capture uses sensors to record the actions of human actors and uses that information to animate digital character models

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  28. The Future of Animation • With the advent of new technology and innovations, many predict that animation will soon become the equal of live-action in terms of skill and variety • Animation will appeal to an adult audience, continuing the recent trend of shows on Fox and Cartoon Network