The History of Animation

Walt Disney with his popular character, Mickey Mouse, as he was originally. Animation One of the many animating programs animators use. An image showing how Bugs Bunny has developed over the years as an animated character. Felix the Cat, one of the very first animations. Table of Contents: Introduction ……………………………………………………………. Page 3 1. What Is Animation? ………………………………………………. Page 3 2. History of Animation: 2. 1 Early Ages……………………………………………………………. Page 3 2. 2 Early Animated Films………………………………………………. Page 4 2. 3 Mid 1900’s……………………………………………………………. Page 4 3. Modern Animation 3. Computer Animation………………………………………………. Page 5 4. Money and Animation 4. 1 The Cost of Animated Films………………………………………Page 6 4. 2 The Profits of Animation………………………………………….. Page 7 5. The Success of Animations 5. 1 Successful Animations……………………………………………. Page 8 5. 2 What Makes a Successful Animation……………………………Page 8 6. Notable People in Animation 6. 1 James Stuart Blackton…………………………………………….. Page 9 6. 2 Walt Disney…………………………………………………………… Page 9 6. 3 Tex Avery, Chuck Jones and Fritz Freleng…………………….. Page 9 Introduction In this report on animation I will be covering many things.

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First I will be giving a brief summary of what animation is before moving onto the history of animation and where it has come from. I will then move on to more current times an then go through what makes animations so successful. 1. What Is Animation? Animation is a widely used form of entertainment or design that makes images appear alive with motion. To accomplish this, a succession of pictures are taken and then shown quickly after each other to make the image look like it has movement and life in. This effect can be achieved in multiple ways.

Animation can be transformed into a business, or can be used simply for entertainment. The name animation came from the Latin word ‘anima’ which is the vital force inside every living thing. It is often used as a translation for the Greek word ‘psyche’ and related to the Christian idea of soul. Animation to the Greek was giving ‘soul’ to inanimate objects and images. 2. History of Animation 2. 1 Early Ages A image from the clip, Humorous Phases of Funny Faces Animation can be found as early as the Stone Age in caves as paintings on the walls.

The paintings had multiple pictures of the same object to show that the image was moving and were a very early attempt at trying to capture movement. Another attempt at animation was found on a 5200 year-old pot made in Iran. The pot had images that had moved all around the outside of the pot, which when spun could potentially form movement. Leonardo Da Vinci also attempted to show movement in his paintings and drawings, for example his most famous sketch of the biology of man. Many other types of animations were explored during the 1800’s.

These ranged from the flip book, where images were drawn on several pages of paper then flipped rapidly, to the Praxinoscope, which was a cylinder with images painted on the side then spun fast. 2. 2 Early Animated Films The animation that is regarded as the first animated film was developed in 1906. It was made by a man called James Stuart Blackton. He is generally regarded to be the father of animation. He made the animation by taking several hundred photographs and then inserting them into a slide to play them on a film.

It was called Humorous Phases of Funny Faces and moved at 20 frames per second, which is regarded as average in modern animation. Emile Cohl replicated this technique and made a film called ‘Fantasmagorie’, which consisted of 700 slides and had a running time of 2 minutes. He screened the film in France, and later he moved to the U. S. A. and spread the use of animation. This further influenced a Russian scientist by the name of Ladislas Starevitch, who used this technique to make his own film in 1911 but instead of using drawings, he used dead insects as characters in his film.

Later in 1914, an American cartoonist Winsor McCay released another short animated film called ‘Gertie the Dinosaur’; this was an early example of character animation. This film was widely recognized and went on to jump-start the animation world. All of these are now regarded as stop motion films. The production of cartoons became an industry for many people in 1910; this was another milestone in the development of animation. 2. 3 Mid 1900’s The mid 1900’s in America were regarded as the ‘Golden Age of Animation’. Animation expanded rapidly and many new ideas and methods were developed.

Walt Disney dominated in the market of animation and his company thrived through his successful films such as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. The first full three-Technicolour film was made by Disney Studios, called Flowers and Trees, which won the first Academy Award for Animated Short Subjects in 1932. Many films after this success moved onto three-Technicolour. Warner Bros. also became highly recognized in the animation industry, becoming successful through their development of characters such as Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck. In 1940, Pinocchio also stood out in the film industry.

The animation used in Pinocchio is called traditional animation, and is made using drawings. The artists draw different pictures and then draw a second picture that slightly differs from the first picture for each frame then put all the pictures together to form the movie. Snow White, also produced by Walt Disney used traditional animation but was believed by many to have been the first film to use this technique in a feature length film. 3. Modern Animation 3. 1 Computer Animation Animation has taken a big step forward in terms of technology. Technology has opened up a whole new variety of techniques and possibilities.

Computer animation is a new technique that has been made possible with the invention of computers. Computer animation is the development used for creating animated pictures using the graphics in a computer. Most computer generated films use 3D computer graphics rather than the easier generated 2D graphics. It is essentially traditional animation except with 3D models. Computer made animations are easier to control than traditional animation because of the lack of physical precision. It also allows easy construction of images that would be extremely hard with any other technology.

Computer animation does not require actors or crowd extras as it all can be produced within the computer. It allows a simple computer animator to produce a whole set without real-life actors, stuntmen, props and costly set pieces. 3D animation is achieved by constructing a character; much like you would with modelling clay, and giving it a virtual skeleton. This helps animators capture the need of slight movement in frames by moving the skeleton. Constructing the characters is difficult though, for example, Woody in Disney Pixar’s movie Toy Story used over 700 different points.

Aslan in the movie Narnia was made using over 1500 points, with around 700 of the points in his face. Although 3D animation is more advanced graphically, it requires a much stronger rendering system and each frame has to be rendered separately, causing a much longer and more costly production time. Trying to construct a human in computer animation is very difficult for animators. It requires a very advanced computing system and the complexity of the human body and its very varied movement hardens the challenge. Most computer animated films use animals and robotic characters that are restricted in movement.

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is said to be the first full computer animated film to attempt to have realistic looking humans. However it did not achieve the full complexion of the human body. It will be a while before technology allows us to have that much detail in animation. 4. Money and Animation 4. 1 The Cost of Animated Films An image of how CGI works. The cost to produce an animation films can be very, very varied. Simple stop motion can be very inexpensive, being that all that is required is a camera, a computer and a simple set. All of these you would probably find in a regular household.

The other side of things can be extremely expensive. For example, the second most expensive film ever made was an animated film called Tangled. This movie used CGI (Computer generated imagery) which is a technique used to generate real looking images. The move Tangled also came at a hefty price tag of 260 million to produce, only to beaten by Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End. To generate the virtual world used in CGI it takes a lot of pricey machinery and a huge amount of electricity to leave this machinery running to do the various tasks it needs to do.

The production time of Tangled was also around 5 years, which may also explain the cost. Animated films usually cost a lot of money though, so this may not come as quite a surprise to some. 8 animated movies came in the top 40 of the most expensive movies of all time. Tangled came second and Toy Story 3 came in at 11th with a 200 million cost. Nearly all of the animated movies in the top 40 were made less than 3 years ago. This shows that the cost of producing high-quality animated films is steadily rising and that we might find a fall in quality so the films can cost less to make.

This also might be a good thing for films to cost so much to make, inventors might try to come up with cheaper and better ways to produce animated films. 4. 2 The Profits of Animation Animation has always been a profitable business if things were done properly. This graph shows the cost and profits of the 5 notable animated films (Not the most successful) The Walt Disney Company has annual revenues of approximately $33 billion dollars (Australian), showing the large amount of money a successful animation business can make. The biggest gross on an animated movie was $920,665,658, the movie being Shrek 2.

The budget of Shrek 2 was $150 million meaning the producers, Disney, made around a whopping $770 million on the film. Toy Story 3 made more money by around $100 million than Shrek 2 but the cost to make Toy Story 3 put it back $200 million, lowering its overall profit. Other films such as Finding Nemo and The Lion King did very well in the industry considering their relatively small budgets compared to some other films. 5. 0 The Success of Animations 5. 1 Successful Animations Most animations are always a hit to the general public if they do things right.

For example, Toy Story and its sequels did so well because it did many things right. The Walt Disney Company deliver hit after hit after hit because they know what they are doing and the public has connected with the company. To list the successful animations that The Walt Disney Company made would be practically impossible, proving how many successful films they have produced. The Shrek movies turned out as a great success and profited hundreds of millions of dollars. The Toy Story movies could be argued to have been more successful, but they both did very, very well.

Successful animation series are a different thing that should be mentioned. A series can be more profiting than a movie in the long run to. Animated series are usually called cartoons. Easily the most successful long-running cartoon series ever is The Simpsons. Most people would know The Simpsons if it was mentioned. The characters that everyone has grown accustomed to and enjoy watching are still successful even though they have been running for over 30 years. Other successful cartoon series such as Family Guy and South Park more or less try to aim there episodes at adults and use other sorts of humour. . 2 What Makes a Successful Animation? Disney’s animations are always so successful because they are innovative and creative. They are 9/10 times humorous and you can sit back and have a laugh. A good storyline that you can follow and relate to the characters with is essential. Another point that Disney always gets right is the use of stories we already know, and they transform them into funny, upbeat movies that people love. Low Huoi Seong said that “Animation is done like a flip book concept and the principles very much remain the same.

Although innovation seems to be going towards hi-tech, it is actually very much grounded on basic principle that Disney animators came out years ago. To be successful in the industry, one needs to be able to combine technology with creative skills, the language of animation and storytelling. ” 6. Notable People in the Industry 6. 1 James Stuart Blackton James Stuart Blackton is generally regarded by many to be the father of animation. He made the first animated clip in history, called Humorous Phases of Funny Faces.

He came up with the concept of animation, the move, stop, photograph, move, stop, photograph, idea and made it in to a short film. Without him, animation may have never come to be. 6. 2 Walt Disney People could argue that Walt Disney is the most important figure to have ever attempted animation. He single-handedly brought up his own company and transformed it over the years into a multibillion dollar company. He has made so many successful animations it would be difficult to count. His well known character, Mickey Mouse, was his defining figure when he started, and was a major benchmark in his business.

After Mickey Mouse, he came up with a number of thriving characters who gained popularity over the years. Theme parks have been made after his company such as Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resort. 6. 3 Tex Avery, Chuck Jones and Fritz Freleng These people are all the owners of the Warner Bros. company. They defined animation in the 1900’s with their extremely well known characters such as Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck who have developed over 70 years each. Their Warner Bros. company along with Walt Disney is a multibillion dollar company and has thrived since the mid 1900’s and is still going strong.

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