Saturday, July 28, 2007

David Wolter's first publication

At the Academy we encourage our students to consider self publication as a means of promotion, personal franchise development and sharing one's work with a creative community anxious to see something new. David Wolter did just that with his very first collection of drawings and designs, many of which he came up with as a student in our Character Design class this year. On the left is the cover, on the right a page from his book. Clicking on the image will give you a better view.

David prepared this initial publication of his to distribute at the annual San Diego ComicCon taking place this weekend. I'm certain he'll get a very favorable response. We'll be hearing more about David Wolter in days ahead. Meanwhile feel free to visit his blog and see what's happening with this very talented artist.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Sean Galloway visits the Academy

We welcomed our latest guest speaker to a full house on Tuesday evening. Sean "Cheeks" Galloway was at the Academy. Cheeks is an outstanding character designer and self published artist currently working on the upcoming animated TV series for 2008 "The Spectacular Spiderman" at Sony.

During the course of his presentation Sean created a series of demo sketches. Much of what he was explaining as far as his methods and approaches go were completely consistent with what we emphasize through our program, underscoring the importance of strong fundamental skills.

Sean Galloway was well received and everyone learned from the time he spent with the class as he shared his secrets to success in the industry and in art.

To experience more of Sean's work be sure to visit his blog:

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Demos make a difference

Whenever possible our instructors utilize demonstrations for educational purposes. Here's something I created for a group at the last session of Character Design I for adults. I used blue pencil for the initial construction and layout, red pencil to commit to the design, black pen for the final pass and blue pencil again for tone. Clicking on the image will give you a better view.

This quick sketch served to illustrate the process of developing a character in the classic animated style, with a full explanation of depth of field suitable for 3D modeling if needed. I judge the effectiveness of a demonstration by the difference it makes with our student's approach to their own work. If I see an immediate improvement, then I know that the demo has done was it was intended to do. With that criteria in mind, this little demo was a success.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Patrick Morgan from the archives

It's fun to go back into the Academy's archived work. There's always a surprise to be found. In this case, it's something from Patrick Morgan's early days as a student in our program.

Patrick was featured on the Academy's blog a few weeks ago on May 26, 2007 when he paid us a visit as a special guest speaker and shared his latest endeavors. It goes without saying that he's come a long way since his time at our school. Back then he was one of many talented and promising artists. He continued to develop a franchise around his creativity. An inspiring role model for students to follow.

To see what's new with Patrick, visit:

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Jack Enyart at the Academy

Our first guest speaker of this the 50th consecutive semester of The Animation Academy was Jack Enyart. Jack is an accomplished writer for animation and comics, having worked on many shows and studios over the years. Jack is also a career and project consultant which made his presentation at our last class that much more interesting.

Jack's presentation was lively and upbeat as he shares a laugh with our students. His visit was different than what we would normally feature when we have a guest speaker in that he focused on topics such as agents, entertainment attorneys, insider advice about pitching projects as well as his perspective about the efficiency of writing in getting multiple projects moving forward simultaneously.

Here he is contemplating a student's question.

Jack sells an audio CD with excellent career advice which can be accessed through his website.

You can also download the audio at a significant discount through this link:

We're grateful that Jack paid us a visit and took the time to educate the class about areas of the business of animation that students don't normally hear about and can benefit from. Thank you, Jack. We hope we can enjoy your company again in the near future.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Introducing Conor FitzGerald

The first publication of one's artwork is always a special occasion and I'm happy to feature Conor FitzGerald and his debut on the Academy's blog. Conor's been with us in the Teen Program making excellent progress. Here's a recent example of what he's been up to.

Conor's approach to this action oriented composition is solid in many respects. He's drawn the anatomy of the figure first then flushed out the clothing and design elements, used a counter twist in his pose, made effective use of overlaps and gave the drawing a feeling of motion by showing drag. A good job all around. Looking forward to more of Conor's art in the future.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Independence Day

This is a shot of the flower bed in front of the Burbank Association of Realtors building, the place where we conduct our classes for the Adult Program. It was taken yesterday prior to the start of our new semester.

Here at The Animation Academy, we've always encouraged an independent spirit within our community. On this Independence Day in the USA, we invite our students, instructors, friends and associates to contemplate the importance of independence and the sacrifices made by those who gave the highest measure so that we may create in freedom. Have a safe and happy celebration.