Monday, November 24, 2014

Devin Martin returns

We're very pleased to have with us once again the great Devin Martin. He's a former student of the Academy going back to our earliest days. Devin has become a very successful artist working on staff at Walt Disney Studios Product Development. He is currently enrolled in our Visual Development class where he's honing his skills even further. Here's a few recent samples of what Devin has created as part of his assignment. He's reworking some concept designs for The Wizard of Oz while practicing his gray scale rendering techniques. To see more of Devin Martin's excellent work follow this link to his blog.




Friday, November 07, 2014

Friday, October 24, 2014

Students of the week - Oct 24 2014

Why not put a spotlight on students who've created exceptional content during the week. Here's three students whose impressive class assignments warrant a share on the Academy's blog.










Don Sheean


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sharing VisDev Lessons - Sketch to Color 2

As with my previous post this demo was created the same evening as the preceding composition. This time using a Cintiq and SketchBook Pro to illustrate a concept sketch in black line and rendering the image with gray scale tinting over color instead of the other way around. You can follow the process in reverse by scrolling down...




Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sharing VisDev Lessons - Sketch to Color 1

I gave a demonstration earlier this week in the Visual Development class at my school. I used a Cintiq (a specialized monitor for direct digital drawing} and Sketchbook Pro to create the image below. Something promotional as well as educational as you can follow the reverse history of the composition by scrolling down below.




Saturday, October 11, 2014

Sharing VisDev Lessons - Exploring Werewolves

It's October and the perfect time of the year to be sketching up a Wolfman!

In the Visual Development 1 class here at the Academy we emphasize the importance of gray scale tonal values, textures and rendering in simple mediums. Here are a couple of examples I created while working with students recently. 

You can follow the process from sketching the initial composition in blue line and then continuing into graphite pencil and finishing in black line.




This was followed up by another werewolf concept in full body using the same mediums of blue line, graphite and black line pen.



There was an additional concept sketch in between the two that's been left in blue line...


Creating is contagious! The Animation Academy in Burbank wishes you happy times coming up with fun images and concepts to draw.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Latest from Maia Gross

When a dedicated student shows significant and consistent progress with their art to the point of reaching a professional level they oftentimes become instructors here at the Academy. Such is the case with Maia Gross who continues to impress us with her excellent art.

Here's a couple of examples of what she's created lately. The fist image is from Visual Development and the second is from Character Design 2. 


Thursday, September 04, 2014

Character Rotations - Student Assignments


One of the reasons why the Character Design classes at The Animation Academy are so effective in getting our students up to a professional standard with their skills is that they're encouraged to do work that is as challenging for them as it is fun.

Case in point is our emphasis on creating rotations for the characters they come up with. Concept is of course very important. Yet when it comes to the art of Character Design it is essential that artists working in a professional capacity in this area should be able to generate rotations for their designs.

The main reasons for doing so are that rotations are the link between concept development and production. Adapting your designs to production enables a character design artist to work in a realistic capacity within the animation production system. It is a marketable skill that will give artists the chance to participate in the production process more than just with concept design alone.

Whether it's a 5 pose traditional rotation or a 3 pose turn for CG modeling, being able to pivot your design will do a great deal of good in extending your abilities into new opportunities.

Take a look at the examples below. These are class assignments recently completed by several of our students. They get into the nitty gritty of the art and are better suited for whatever situation might arise that requires rotations as an aspect of the job.


Lola Chee



Jeff Mum



Amanda Gonzales



Johnathan Keys



Dawn Glover




Ryan Magnon



Raul Enciso



Joel Valdez

Friday, August 22, 2014

Christian Gossett - "Star Trek: Axanar" on Kickstarter

Back in 1999 in the early days of The Animation Academy we had a student in attendance who created a sensation in the world of comic books. Christian Gossett was with us when he developed and launched "The Red Star". It was a groundbreaking property that established him as an innovative force in the world of independent creators. 

Now Christian is back in the news as the Director of a highly successful Kickstarter project. It's called "Star Trek: Axanar" and is an independent film based upon the venerable sci-fi franchise being produced through crowdfunding. The production quality of the project is excellent and the results of two campaigns this year have greatly bolstered prospects for the continuation of the project.

The first Kickstarter campaign was conducted this past March 2014. The initial goal of $10,000 was surpassed early on and the Axanar team wound up with a total of $101,171. Those funds helped finance the follow up campaign which is in its last few hours. The goal of $100,000 has been far exceeded with a total so far of $415,632 as of this writing.

We've always strongly encouraged the development of an independent aspect to one's artistic career and for the creative community at large. The emergence of crowdfunding has made it possible to do incredible things outside of the realm of the mainstream entertainment industry as this and many other projects over the past few years clearly show.

Take a look at the original promotional video for Star Trek: Prelude to Axanar and the most recent episode below and see for yourself how exceptional this project is.


"Star Trek: Prelude to Axanar" trailer directed by Christian Gossett... 



"The Four Years War: Prelude to Axanar" full film directed by Christian Gossett...



EDIT on August 27 2014:

Christian Gossett's second "Star Trek: Axanar" campaign ended up with $638,471.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Bridget McCarty - Disneyland Gallery Artist

We recently received word that former Academy student Bridget McCarty has the unique distinction of being a Disneyland Gallery Artist. Her work in connection with the 45th anniversary of the Haunted Mansion attraction at Disneyland is now on exhibit and for sale through their venue. Here's what she created for the occasion...


This is a great honor for any artist. We're very excited for Bridget and happy to be sharing in the celebration of this impressive accomplishment. Bridget was enrolled at the Academy years ago as a high school student and made an an impact with her art at the time. Today she is a grown lady with a successful professional career. Visit her website to see the unique art that she creates...

Bridget McCarty on Facebook.

There's also video of Bridget on YouTube...