The Shadows Move – the 1930s

Almost concurrent with the setting up of Anglia Films a Daily Express newspaper strip cartoonist named Roland Davies thought it would be a good idea to produce a cartoon film series featuring his character ‘Steve the Horses. In 1936 he opened a studio, enlisted the aid of fledgling artists from the Ipswich School of Art, and later took on a young Ronnie Giles.

Drawing Cartoon Figures

Drawing Cartoons
By David Jefferson

Figures can be based on a series of ovals. Draw the ovals lightly in pencil. When the pose looks right you can go over it and add the details. Rub out the unwanted lines as you go.

Reminiscences of an animator

By D J M Coleman

I first began to draw ‘animatable’ pictures in the early seventies, after seeing Bob Godfrey’s excellent DO-IT-YOURSELF FILM ANIMATION SHOW. The fact that I did not possess a cine camera did not bother me. I hoped to borrow one of the two I knew existed in my wider family and save up for “a film” myself. I spent a great many hours drawing complete scenes on IZAL medicated toilet-paper a convenient source of standard-sized sheets of tracing paper.

Reminiscences of an animator

The eight houses in the city square were made of cast-off computer-paper boxes and the “city wall’ was built around a framework of rubbish from the computer tape library with modrock, plaster, and as nasty a paint-job as I could manage. Every single item of scenery could be removed so as to allow the sort of camera angle which could have been achieved by my puppets (mostly less than 15 cm tall) but would otherwise have been impossible for me using a camera (on their scale) about ten feet long with a front element more than a yard across.

Squaring the Circle

Squaring the Circle

Neil Carstairs tells us about his latest cartoon which won one of Australia’s “Ten Best on Eight” awards.

I finished Nightmare in November 1981, just in time for the U.K. competition season. I was thinking about changing from 2 pin to ACME registration because parts of Nightmare, particularly in the bedroom scene, were unsteady. This feeling was confirmed when one of the judges in the Scottish 8, a professional animator, made the same comment.

Squaring the Circle

My storyboard now had a title “The Circle & The Square” and three designs with the story connecting them: Square draws flower… Circle draws deer… Deer eats flower… Square gets angry… Square draws big flower… Flower eats deer… Circle draws??? I went back to experimenting with a compass.

Beginner’s View of Inking and Painting Cels

Beginner’s View
Inking and painting.

Morris Lakin continues his journey of discovery.
Part Two – First go at Painting Cels.

I have just finished painting the cels for the first scene of my first cel animation. Owing to the fact that my spare time has been limited it has taken me about nine months to produce 218 cels, which will fill about 15 seconds of screen time. That is work¬ing on them for about 2½ hours a week most of the time.

Beginner’s View of Inking and Painting Cels

There was no problem when the figures were walking forward (fig. 3), but when the figures turned to walk across the screen the problems started. (Fig. 4) Obviously I could not just paint up to the line and over it because there would be no demarcation between the front leg and the back leg.

Jazz in Animation – Experimental

Jazz in Animation – Experimental
By Antoinette Moses.

Even more than mainstream animation, the experimental animators have been influenced by jazz. One can trace its fusion back to Guillaume Apollinaire who wrote in the Paris Journal in 1914: “One can compare coloured rhythm to music… We thus will have beyond static painting, beyond cinematographic representation, an art to which one will quickly accustom oneself and which will render its followers infinitely sensitive to the movement of colours, to their interpenetration, to their fast and slow changes, to their convergence, to their flight etc.”