Posted by: Jusuchin (Military Otaku) | 04/06/2010

Blog Post # 10 – Project Included

Limited Animation and Its Many Uses, or How Justin is Happy UPA Made It

-more after the jump-

Ah limited animation. We’ve covered this certain technique in class awhile back. Basically, since Disney was freaking rich and was able to afford it, each and every shot required a completely new redraw. Then the strike happened and UPA came along. Now, I didn’t know UPA was an animation studio until I took this class, considering I had heard their name mainly after watching Godzilla from the 1950s. So I did a little check on wikipedia, it seems that UPA was the American distributor of the old monster films. But beyond that, UPA’s pioneering of limited animation was particularly helpful. It’s evident in their works as well as the numerous Saturday morning cartoons that I grew up to, like Scooby Doo and Hanna-Barbera cartoons.

An example that I found on youtube would be walking cycles. People, prospective animators and the like, even those who do it for fun, rely on limited animation for running, walking, etc… It allows people to reduce the amount of drawings and reduces the workload and time between keyframes. This allowed animations to be done quickly and in a reduced budget. While looking this up in wiki, I found out this interesting tidbit.

“Limited animation in anime is frequently used in action scenes such as mecha battles or transformation scenes. Limited animation is seen most frequently in television serials, but the aesthetic is so grounded in the medium that even bigger-budget feature films make use of it. Most Japanese animation is significantly less expensive than its American counterparts as a result, with Katsuhiro Otomo’s Steamboy (the most expensive japanese animated feature film yet produced) costing only $26,600,000.”

Another example on limited animation was actually a fan-made video of a game series. Mostly featuring running cycles, it is safe to assume that the person that did this didn’t really do much work in animating most of the scenes, except for the few frames where somethign happens besides the people being chased by an evil, overworked maid.

So yeah, limited animation does have its usefulness. And that brings me to the main thing about this post. I decided to make a small animated gif for my project, and found that limited animation was my friend, allowing me to create the gif in a time-span of 3 hours, from drawing the frames to creating the gif file.

  • Title: Gif for History of Animation
  • Date: 4/5/2010
  • Frames (initial): 60
  • Frames (final): 40-50ish
  • Notes: Cut out a bit of inbetweens between sentences to cut down the time lag between sentences. Start of loop: “Lights!”

History of Animation Project


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