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Blog . The Animator's Survival Kit


The Animator's Survival Kit

12/02/14  |  Posted by Zachary James  |  Posted in Digital Creativity

The Animator’s Survival Kit by Richard Williams is an extensive “how-to” guide to animation for cartoons, films, television, games, and more. Williams has extensive experience in the animation field, notably being the director of animation for Who Framed Roger Rabbit. In The Animator’s Survival Kit Williams focuses on breaking down the basic principals of animation, while expanding upon them heavily with his own knowledge and experience. The book is filled with information and awesome guides on how to push one’s animation further. Williams speaks to the reader in a very friendly conversational manner, and spills everything.

Williams discusses timing and spacing, the history and progression of animation, simple techniques, walk cycles, lip syncing, and everything in-between. Williams goes to great lengths to inform readers on how animators work in the field, and what it was like to learn from some of the biggest names in animation. He even goes as far as to teach readers a thing or two about acting and directing.

Williams’ book is a great guide that has most certainly assisted with my animation skills. Using his step by step guides and references to learn how things move, and discover the tricks of timing and transition have been helpful beyond belief. Williams opens his book with this statement:

“I want this book to put over what I have found to be the best working methods, so that animating becomes better and easier to do.

There are lots of formulas, principals, clichés, and devices here to help, but the main thing I want to pass on is a way of thinking about animation in order to free the mind to do the best work possible.

I learned it from the best in the business and I’ve boiled it all down into a systematic working order. It transformed my work – I hope it will be useful to you.”

Williams accomplishes this and goes above and beyond. If you are at all interested in animation – even just watching animations, not doing – this book is well worth your time.

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