An Animated Course

I’ve been teaching an introduction to animation course each summer for the last ten years to 7th, 8th and 9th graders. The summer program is the Joseph Baldwin Academy, sponsored by Truman State University. It is three intense weeks of learning traditional cell-frame animation, stop-motion photography animation and claymation. I have managed to excite a few of the students, but mostly they learn that animation is a ton of work for some very small payoff. I have crushed many a budding animation career when students realize how much effort it takes for a few seconds of action. We don’t even work at the typical 24 frames per second. To keep the math simple, we work at 10 frames per second. Their large group project is a 3 minute claymation animation – 1800 frames. We process/animate everything in Photoshop and render to Quicktime movies, then use iMovie to edit and add post production audio voice-overs, dialog and sound effects. Here is an example of one of my claymation characters I demo for the students… Scrawny Wolfman – Wire armature, masking tape and animation clay.



Published by rlnelson

Professor of Art: Graphic Design Instructor at Truman State University


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