Rogue Community College
Rogue Community College
Phone Search Menu Search

Expanded Course Description - Animation

For most of us, animation has been a part of our daily lives as far back as we can remember.  The Muppets, Spongebob Squarepants, Mickey Mouse, and Dora the Explorer are like a part of the family, whether they represent people, animals, even machines or inanimate objects. The characters and their origins are countless.  They entertain us with themes that we as an audience can relate to, the kind of communication that makes animation a particularly effective art form.

One thing these many invented “personalities” share in common is that they all began as a figment of someone’s imagination. This class will allow you to exercise your imagination in the processes of development and design for your own original animated character. Included will be techniques for visualization of your ideas with traditional drawing and “user friendly” sculpting, to achieve a “personality” of the sort that could be utilized in production of feature films, TV shows, computer games, commercials, and the many expanding applications for animation today.

You’ll be asked to start with an idea for a character, and the only limit here will be your imagination.  You might want to use a human, an animal, even a popup toaster! (Remember the “Brave Little Toaster”?), or any living or non-living subject.  Perhaps you’ve had an idea you always wished could be developed into a central character.  Maybe you’ll start with a story idea and develop a character to be the main actor in the storyline.  Now’s the time to put those ideas into solid form!

After some initial drawings of your character, the instructor will review your designs with an eye to the needed simplification and appeal needed to bring it to life.  The next step will be to start on a sculpted “Maquette”, a small three-dimensional statue of the character, built of polymer clay that’s easy and enjoyable to work with, and that you’ll be able to keep.  The process of building the character in 3-d form will actually help your brain to memorize the shapes that make up the character, showing you an idea of how it will appear as a “real” subject in space, giving it depth and allowing it to be drawn from any angle.  Throughout the process, you’ll be individually guided in all the steps needed to complete a finished piece.

Whether you consider yourself “artistically challenged” or accomplished, you’ll enjoy the feeling of being involved in the creative process.  Many of the best ideas have come from individuals who simply hit on the right idea at the right time.  Walt Disney was an example of a very gifted “idea” guy with no real artistic background!

Walt pushed his artists to attain new dimensions of depth through the use of animated characters, showing through these stories that the things humans have in common can create a universal form of entertainment that resonates with any audience.

Here’s a chance for you to jump into this interesting, fun, and very communicative medium!