From Pencils to Pixels

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After watching a documentary called "From Pencils to Pixels" which described the birth of animation through to today's furthestmost cgi creations, mainly focussing on Disney and Pixar, I felt I had learnt a lot about the path animation has taken to get where it is today, but also that there is so much out there that I have not seen.

 

From Gertie the Dinosaur and Little Nemo in the very early days of animation, through to the rise of Disney, techniques in which animations are produced have staeyd realtively the same, while at the same time progressing from small one person productions to 600+ working on classics such as Snow White. Disney was the main instigator of this more industrial production of its animations, however some studios still let one or two main people be the driving force behind them (Ghibli).


"Animators are Actors with Pencils"


Pixar has introduced a whole new medium of popular animation, that breathes new life into frame-by-frame animation and is astounding audiences worldwide. John Lasseter, the head of Pixar, started with early short films such as The Adventures of André & Wally B and Tin Toy. They first hit the big-time however with the 1995 release of Toy Story, which proved to audiences that computer animated films could provide a level of depth and quality of storytelling that was previously assumed that they could not. Since then, they have had quality hit after another, most recently UP, which is a beautiful and well-told story.



The Death of 2D Animation?
One of the points raised from the group after watching this documentary was that "is 2D traditional animation dead or dying?"
I really do not think there will ever be a time when there will be no demand for traditional drawn animation, as much the same way that once digital painting was invented, people didn't give up on more traditional mediums of paint and pencil. It is simply a different process and produces its own unique results, and will be popular for as long as it is unique.


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