Friday, 15 May 2020

Head and Shoulders Don't Turn at the Same Time

Animator's Survival Kit
One of the most common mistakes that junior animators make is to animate a character turning all at once, moving the head and shoulders at the same time. The result is that the motion feels stiff and robotic.

The solution is to offset the body parts so that you either lead with one part - perhaps the head - and then the other parts follow.

The head can lead, and the shoulders follows, or the shoulders lead, and the head follows, whatever feels most natural. The trick is to break up the action so that the different body parts overlap one another, creating the illusion of flexibility and overlapping body parts, or "successive breaking of joints", as Art Babbitt used to call it.

There is a good section on this in the Animator's Survival Kit.
The basic underlying premise is that in any action, everything shouldn't happen at the same time.

Successive Breaking of Joints
The basic principle dates back to the 1930s, when the Disney Studios first discovered what would become known as the 12 Principles of Animation.

To find out more about Animation Apprentice, click here for a link to Frequently Asked Questions. To sign up for our next classroom at Animation Apprentice, follow this link.

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