Friday, March 28, 2014

I Don't Oppose Some Pose to Pose

When it comes to 2D animation, 
two techniques reign supreme: 
Straight Ahead animation, 
and Pose to Pose Animation.
I'd like to present the pro's and con's of each style 
so that you may leave this blog feeling more knowledgable, and more aware.

Straight Ahead animation is the easier of the two dueling techniques to understand. NOTE: Although the concept is simple, the results can be disastrous when done incorrectly. Straight ahead animation refers to animation that is drawn frame by frame in the order they appear in the final product. 

For example, when creating Post-it animations, most people draw the animation in order, Post-it note by Post-it note. However, what happens when you get to the last little square in the stack and your animation isn't complete? 
This is what I'm talking about; disastrous. 

Still, when done right, straight ahead animation results in animation that flows extremely well. This style is often utilized when spontaneity is a necessity. Many of the early Disney animations were produced using the straight-ahead method.

Pose to Pose animation is the solution to the short-comings of straight-ahead animation. In Pose-to-pose, certain key poses of a character doing an action are set in advance on an exposure, or "dope" sheet. Key poses describe WHAT happens, but not necessarily HOW it happens. 

Once the key poses of the action are in place, the animator just has to fill in the space between each key. This proves not so simple. Many inexperienced animators, (the experienced ones too on occasion), have a hard time delegating the correct amount of movement for each frame between key poses. This leads to stiff, unrealistic animation. 

Neither animation technique is easy to control, because animation isn't about to make your life easy. Both techniques are incredibly time-consuming. Still, it's good to know that maybe, just maybe, you'll make it to that last post-it note and have nothing left to animate.

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