12 Principles of animation

Timing is the amount of frames that an animation will last. It is when an object moves. The standard frame-rate used in movies is 24 frames per second. This is how fast that the animation is as well as how smooth it is. If you want a ball to move from one side of the other, then how many frames that you have from the start of the animation to the end then that is how long the animation lasts. The amount of frames in between the start key frame and the end key frame is how fast that the animation will be. The more frames in between, the slower the animation will be and the less frames, the faster the animation. Spacing the key frames will create a smoother, more realistic animation which is very important.

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Squash and stretch gives flexibility to an object and helps give an idea of what material that object might be  made of. If you are making a bouncing ball animation then it is required  to have squash and stretch as it shows the force from landing on a surface then pushing it back. The volume needs to be the same when using squash and stretch meaning when you shrink the height of the ball, you need to increase the width of it. Squash and stretch can also be used in exaggerating facial expressions like a shocked face.

Anticipation allows the audience to know that an action will happen before the action is performed as well as create the sense that more force is being used. For example, when someone slams a hammer into the ground, they always lift up the hammer over their heads before slamming it into the ground and in some instances jump in the air after the slam.   If the character just quickly hits the other then there is no sense of force or impact within the animation.

Ease in, Ease out makes character movement look more realistic as with out it, it will make the character movement seem very robotic. It is when an object starts moving it accelerates then when it is going to stop, it decelerates. Vehicles don’t go from 0-60 straight away and 60-0 in real life as that will cause some issues from the driver such as bashing their head on the seat or wheel which may lead to having to go to the hospital pr worse. When a person is running, the frames should be close together so it starts slow then spread out the frames in the middle to make the character build up speed then close the space of frames at the end so that the character is slowing down when they are about to stop.

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Follow through and overlapping action can be considered as two different principles; however, they are rather closely related. Follow through is when separate body  parts of a character continue to move even though the main action has stopped. For example, when someone is walking. When people walk, their arms will swing back and forth as part of the movement. When people stop walking, their arms will still swing as part of finishing then settle in the center as a basic standing pose. Overlapping is when more than one body part moves as part of an action. Let’s say when someone is waving. Their shoulder will move first before the arm and the elbow  with the hand being slightly behind.

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Arcs are used to make more realistic animation since everything (except for robots) will move in an arc. When a character throws a punch, their arm will be pulled around in an arc fashion before connecting. Or when someone rotates their head, their head will dip down a bit before turning to create an arc motion.

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Exaggeration can be used to create a more cartoony feel to the animation or create a restrain to the realistic animations. Exaggeration can be used to make the  realistic animation more readable and fun. If you have a character standing on a diving board, have the edge where the character is standing bend down slightly to show the weight of the character.

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Solid drawing is about making an accurate drawing that shows volume and weight whilst thinking about the balance and anatomy in a pose. In 3D animation, the drawings aren’t really relied on that much; however, an idea of a solid drawing can be just as important. Solid drawings can help with the posing by knowing where they need to put certain parts of the model so it matches up with the drawing. It can be also useful when creating the pose from an angle such as the side view as it helps them give an idea of how to make the back look.

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Appeal is important as it will create a character that the audience can connect or relate to.  It is important not to give the character a confusing design as it can remove the appeal. You need to make the character stick out as how they would look and how they would move. Exaggerating how they look by giving them a large chin or make there movements exaggerated can also make them memorable and more appealing.

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Straight ahead and pose to pose are two different techniques that are used in animating. Straight ahead is rather linear as you will create each pose, one after the other. So a character jumping would have a frame where they are standing still then the next would have the character start to kneel down in preparation for the jump, etc. Pose to pose is the preferred option as you start with working on the main poses of the animation (going back to the jumping animation) you would have the character stand still in the start and end frame then have the character in the air in the middle frame. This makes animating simpler as you can work on the posing on the frames to make the timing more accurate as well as save time from working on each individual frame.

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Secondary action is something that a character would do that doesn’t break away from the main action. It creates more life in the character. Say if you have to characters having a conversation, the characters talking will be the main action but you can have a character tapping their foot, pacing back and forth, looking around or even folding their arms.

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Staging is how you set up the scene in the animation. It can vary from the scene location, the characters in the foreground and background, and even the camera angle. The camera angle is important as it lets the audience know what they need to focus on. If you have an animation with two characters, set up the camera set up for the audience to expect something so if something is going to happen in front of one of the characters then zoom out the camera so the audience can see in front of that character and if something is happening behind that character then zoom out so that they can see behind them. Don’t focus the camera on something then have the main action on something else as the audience might miss what happened. So if you have one person in the foreground then have someone trip over in the distance then the audience might not have seen it.



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