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I'm trying to find places where this art isn't side-swiped by the new emergence of 3D and Flash 'moving refrigerator magnet' animation. This being my primary area of study I want a place that doesn't group 2D together with other animation as being all sides of the same coin, because it isn't. Any recommendations on departments/schools etc., either in the US or Canada, would be welcome-- particularly those with good reputations for giving scholarships.
Acting pretentious is proably not the best way to get advice.
I'm no expert on that area, but I've heard some mentions of CalArts I believe. Try checking them out?
It's a hard school to get into though.
Max the Mutt (Toronto) hasn't removed any traditional courses, but we have added Toon Boom (used by Pixar/Disney to reintroduce classical animation).
Check out the website and please feel free to leave a message on the Max the Mutt thread if you have any questions.
CalArt's Character Animation is the most 2d oriented program that I'm familiar with, although I think there may also be a couple more schools in California with 2d oriented majors, maybe usc or laguna, I'm really not sure. CalArts starts everyone off in 2d, but there are also some computer based classes to introduce students to flash and other programs. The really nice thing about the school though is they try to get you to find your own niche in the field and you get to pursue whichever medium you want further.
A lot of other schools with good animation programs have not completely sideswept hand drawn 2d animation but use it more as a training grounds for the others, often requiring a year or so before moving on to 3d and other stuff. A solid 2d focus has become rather difficult to find though, at least in comparison.
SVA has a animation major and a seperate computer art major. Animation major is more geared towards 2d you should check them out.
There's just not a lot of companies out there looking to hire 2-d animators, although that's not to say it's no longer used.
This is just my opinion though.
Cool Captain, if you're "not interested in pushing and shoving [your] way into an elite school", then what business do you have trying to get into an elite industry (particularly 2d, which has so few people working professionals at the moment). This is meant to sound harsh because this industry is hard to break into and, all things considered, it is an elite field, so don't be so quick to put CalArts out of the running, it's probably one of your best bets.
3d, 2d, flash whatever ARE the same thing, to the extent that they're based on the same underlying principles. What you need is a school that teaches you solid animation principles, not one that completely separates 2d from everything else (which you're unlikely to find anyway). The fact that a lot of flash and 3d animation sucks is because these people worry only about software and not the underlying principles of classic animation.
That being said, check out Laguna as Lizzybeth suggested, tuition is lower than CalArts, and it looks like a good school, there is a strong focus on traditional principles.
I studied with Glenn Vilppu for awhile (if you don't know who he is, well....he basically taught half the animation industry how to draw, including Glen Keane and a bunch of other disney people) and when someone asked him about good places to study animation, the only place he mentioned was San Jose State. This might be a good fit for you, the tuition is low since it's a state school, but it's run by one of vilppu's students, sheldon borenstein, so you'll be learning how to draw traditionally http://ad.sjsu.edu/pdf_forms/Q%26A_Anim_Illus.pdf
That's probably the best value you'll find, but also check out Max the Mutt in Canada, as Maxine suggested, and Sheridan College also in Canada, which is still considered to be one of the best classical animation schools in the world.
Hope this helps,
Thanks for the replies everyone. Pancho, yes you're right, it is an elite field-- and I can't quite rule out Calarts. I just have a fairly strong aversion to living in California, and those tuition costs. San Jose and Laguna look like options however.
Disney has reinstated classical animation and Disney/Pixar has a commitment to traditional skills. My prediction is that because of new technology (Toon Boom), classical is about to make a big comeback. The animators who will do the best will be those with versatility.
well, since 95% of the industry is here in CA (okay that's not exactly true but still), you're going to have to get used to the idea, I'm sorry to say that you can't be too picky, since there's not that many good animation schools out there. Good luck
I love traditional 2d animation. I am quite saddened that it no longer exists in american animation for the most part since almost everything has been taken to computers. However most good art schools do have basic training in it because it is a stepping stone before entering into computer animation. And though I wish it wouldn't be if you only know how to do traditional 2d animation you are going to have a hard time working out of college when the industry is so focused on 3d. The only place I know that bother with doing full-length animations in 2d traditional is japan. Most places otherwise is almost completely dominated by 3d computer or 2d computer animation. If you want to start a company or group up or find a startup firm for it or try to create a rage for 2d again, I believe experience in 3d is still necessary just to be considered a proper animator.
I have a gut feeling that 2d animation will always be around in some form or fashion. It's cheaper to create 3d animation in the long run but there is no way to completely wipe out a nice 2d animation. It will rise again I am sure. Not dogging 3d at all but.. I have seen a lot of chop shop cgi out there (not that there isn't a 2d crap animation). I used to be a master control operator for CW and one thing that always ticked me off was having to set the bars for the red spectrum. Ugh.. some kids are really heavy on the reds.
I think that if Princess and the Frog fails, we won't see 2D again for a while. It's hard to say how the film will be from the 30 seconds or so that have been released online, but the good news is that the film is guaranteed to make a boatload in merchandising. My reasoning is that she's Disney's first African American princess... One more Barbie doll to add to the collection.
If the film does succeed, I still don't think we'll see any other companies besides Disney doing it for a good 6 years, maybe longer. Pixar is starting to become very experimental in their film making--they even have one in the works that may be completely live action with CG composite. It'd be interesting if they would bring about a 2D film.
Sorry for the rant, but my point is in line with Pancho's. If you want to do 2D animation, you are going to have to fight for it.
There are many companies world wide using Toon Boom to lower the cost of doing classical animation and/or films that combine classical, 2D and 3d computer animation! The possibilities for animation are very exciting, but will always be dependent on good stories, good direction, and animators who
can act through their characters. Classical animation skills are essential- and require more time than most schools devote to them. Also, with the use of new technology like Toon Boom, it's less costly to produce quality animation
than ever before.
Toon Boom also makes it possible for independent animators to produce their own films without having numerous assistants or huge funding. My guess is that more and more animation artists will be working on their own independent projects.
In addition, the internet (Google) will be looking for short animation series, and the internet will likely become a major distributor of series composed of short segments, and, eventually, of feature films. You can create a series that uses classical animation by importing your classical animation into Toon Boom. So if you want to animate classically, take heart. ... my guess is that the future is yours.
My 9 yr old son watches a ton of 2d animation everyday? I mean there a re a ton of cartoons out there that are 2d. Maybe not feature length but definitely on a 30min scale.. Are they using Toon Boom for all of the cartoons on Nick? Guess I need to look into that.. I mean where are most of the companies located anyhow? Cali? I see a lot more 2d animated style than 3d as far as real cartooning goes.
For a long time many series were done using Flash. Flash brought a lot of work back to North America, but it wasn't really designed for broadcast, so its very limited .
Toon Boom is much more flexible and was designed to meet the needs of animators. It's being used by Disney and Warner Bros, and is making its way into the mainstream. Nelvana is working on a beautiful new series using Toon Boom. Its the first thing I've seen in years that is really visually exciting. Disney is working on series using Toon Boom.
Classical animation is far from dead! Let me repeat: you can animate classically either on paper or using a Cintiq pressure sensitive tablet. Your animation can be imported directly into Toon Boom. You can create a film that is all drawn, or you can combine drawing with 2D computer animation, and now Toon Boom will also include 3D. The pipeline makes it faster and therefore less expensive to do classical animation. I imagine there will be a lot of
experimentation. (Toon Boom, of course, can also (like Flash) be used at a lower level- but it has the capacity to handle classical films.
My worry is that not enough schools are teaching drawing and classical animation. However, for those of you who do draw and have a passion for classical animation, my guess is that there will be many companies vying for your talents and abilities.
PS There are animation companies all over the USA and Canada. Many of them do work for PBS, for Disney, for Warner Bros. They just don't get the credit (and Toon Boom doesn't either). Not everything is done in California!
Last edited by Maxine Schacker; August 10th, 2008 at 09:17 PM.
2D animation focus, is the same thought I have too.
I´ll come to Toronto and I´ll look for Schools they educate with my
focus, 2D Animation.
But I´am very curious about Toonboom Studio and other 2D Programs.
I am already a keyframer,...go for my website
I really love the Kids Channel and the simple Animation from the 70´s
My Favorite Animators I look up to:
They all have one thing in common, simple, drawing style !
If you know other Animators I should know feel free to Add my List !!!
Last edited by iven; August 23rd, 2008 at 09:21 AM. Reason: forgot Daim Dziauddin
Does anyone know the location of Sheridan College?
And is there any student work that I can look at?
I'm not so technically knowledgeable. So I had no idea of the differences between Flash and the regular method of commuting 2D.
What is the difference? I thought that Flash was just another .wav or something that made 2D animation easier to put on the web, not easier to animate.
Max the Mutt sounds interesting. I looked at the location on the map. It's....somewhat close to Ohio...........
Do you have examples of student work?
Do you know of any small animation companies in Ohio or nearby states?
Last edited by JBCLC; August 23rd, 2008 at 10:42 AM.
if you believe flash has limitations. The guy who made these used to be part of the special effects section of disney for 10 years and now he's making amazing stuff with flash. Thats just my 2 cents
The Academy of Art University in San Francisco teaches traditional 2D animation as well as other types of animation. I went there this past summer for a pre-college program and I took 2D animation there. But anything else I could say has already been mentioned. It's a tough field to get into so you're going to want to have some backups.