Tuesday, February 3, 2015

STUDY: Wander over Yonder

Hey, didn't I say that I'd focus on animation? I sure did! Though I have to say I miss drawing..and there's this fear that all of sudden I'll want to draw a simple sketch and realise I have forgotten how to hold a pencil! But my drawing skills are better than my animation skills, so I need to level the two out a bit before shifting focus again on drawing.

One of the eye openers last year for me was how much progress you can make by "studying" artists. You can watch cartoons 24 hours a day for 20 years and still be a shit animator, you need to take the time and analyse scenes frame by frame if you want to unlock the secrets!

And that's also the beauty of it, the best animation training is COMPLETELY FREE! As long as you can frame by frame through a video, you're all set up to study! Anyway, here are 2 little scenes from Wander over Yonder...sorry again to the animators for cutting and looping their animation, it's obviously not meant to be watched like this, but for study purposes we need to break this down easy :)

Also, the scenes I pick are super easy little scenes, but as with everything we need to understand the basics before we can tackle more fancy shnazz. I picked the scene below because the motion of the hands was just very pleasing, the main success of this because of:
1)Arcs : The hands follows a 8 loop, if I got this scene I'm pretty sure I would've just followed a circular motion, the animator here added interest by changing it up. Gotta remember that one!
2)The spacing: After the hands go into the anticipation for 2 drawings, it snaps to POSE B. And then basically settles by completing the arc. But it's really that snap that adds contrast and makes it pleasing.


Wander over Yonder is full of those snappy little animations from pose to pose, it doesn't pop or feel choppy, it's just super cool looking. I picked this scene because it's using a formula I've seen come up time and time again.

Ease out of POSE A for 1 or 2 drawings
SMEAR favoring POSE B
Follow through with secondary action (usually the main body remains static)

Sounds easy? Well it's deceptively easy. The thing is that these guys are experts at using the 12 principles of animation. Squash and Stretch, Arcs, etc... They'll find interesting ways to cover the distance between POSE A and POSE B....

Anyways that's it for this weeks' little study. If anybody is doing something similar or knows of blogs that analyse animation, let me know!


  1. Replies
    1. I am, but not Wander over Wonder in case you were Wondering (pun not intended :P). I do want to learn more about cartoon animation though.