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My New Project

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My New Project

Hey guys! I hope everyone is enjoying their summer! I've been away for a bit but now I'm back and am working on a new animation. I intend on making this another one of my wip threads, rather than simply showing a finished animation. My work from yesterday/this morning can be found at

I have two questions for you guys. The first one is how do you normally go about animating your characters? Do you animate a simple/generic figure and then draw the character over it once the motion is right, or do you draw the character from start to finish? I'm wondering which of those methods would be the most efficient since I've been told quite a few times that I work too slowly. I imagine it would be faster to draw the character from start to finish, but it must be annoying to have to erase all of the character's details if you have to edit/remove a frame.

My second question deals with the weight of the squirrel in the forground(sp?). I'm unsure of how quickly he should come in. When I draw the character he will be wearing a bullet-proof hat and vest so I figured they would weight him down a bit. But at the same time I dont want him to feel too heavy since he's just a small squirrel. What do you guys think about his weight so far?

Today I will work on animating his jump from the ground to the tree stump and adding the blocking for what he does after he lands. I'll be checking back here every so often so I can incorporate you guy's comments into my work. Thanks a lot everyone! :D

MightyMew1's picture
"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane


I'm finished working on the project for today. Here's an up-date:

I seem to have fixed the weight issue in the beginning. I really like how he jumps onto the tree stump as well. If someone has a comment please know that all critiques are welcome and greatly appriciated! :D

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

I am not a traditional animator but when I am working I set my key frames along my timeline with my characters and backgrounds and then fill in from there. But then I working with Flash and usually a stable of characters I've already developed, so this probably won't help you much. Sometimes when I am developing a character I will go the stick character route just to get the action clear in my head before I start.

Pat Hacker, Visit Scooter's World.

Thanks Phacker. It sounds like you pretty much draw the character from start to finish in your animation. I'll try that when I get started today...

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

unnerving silence

No one has any critiques? o.O

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

My thoughts..


I think your animation is good. I recently began pursuing tradidtional animation, so I don't know how much help I can be at this point. As far as my working methods, I think you are on the right track by getting your motion down first before adding details. In life drawing I was always taught to go from the general to the specific, and I imagin that is helpful in animation least for me it is. I generally try to get the motion right first before i add details. It saves a lot of time for me than putting all the details in and then the pose/gesture turns out to be not what I'm looking for, but I imagine a lot of skilled animators may work like that if they are highly skilled, but working this way has helped me. As far as speed, I don't know if you've done this but practicin drawing your character in different positions and with different expressions, becoming fluent at drawing the character in any position may help a bit. I've also found that working on my life drawing constantly, has helped me improve my speed as well, these are just my thoughts, like i said I recently took up traditional animation, so I don't have as much experience as a lot of people here. mentioned problems with conveying weight in the animation..well when the squirrel jumps up on the stump, he stretches in your drawings as he lands, but there is no squash as he lands..I don't know if that was intentional or works the way it is, but I thing a bit of a squash as he lands on the stump might make his jump a little stronger. Other than that, I think the animation is great and you're off to an awesome start on it. In addition to here, you may want to also post your work on the Show and Tell forums too, looks like a lot of people are getting responses there as well on their works. Anyway these are my thoughts, hope they have been a little helpful.;)


Thanks a lot Whisper! I'll add more squash to the animation when the squirrel lands. I'll try to have an up-date by the end of Monday. I agree with your life drawing proposal. I did a lot of that while I was at school, but over the summer life drawing slowed down to a halt. I really need to pick it up again.

Thanks again for your crit, Whisper. I wish you luck in your plunge into traditional animation, and look forward to seeing some of your stuff here. :D

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

personally, I really admire your work... =) it is REALLY well done... I couldn't animate if my life depended on it... so... I send my compliments your way. lol.