this is an excerpt from an interview with John Kricfalusi from www.awn.com it relates to some of the stuff thats being discussed here..
Dr. T: You seem to have a pretty dim view of how students are trained in today’s animation schools and programs. Have you ever thought about forming your own school or doing your own textbooks on animation methods and production?
JK: Well, we might start a school up here. Some of the quicker learners here, I’m just now promoting them, and having them explain to some of the other people just artistic principles in general. Which they don’t teach in school anymore. I don’t care which school you’re talking about — they do not teach art in art schools anymore, and it drives me insane. I cannot believe the portfolios that come out of the art schools. I tell them all, just get your money back because they didn’t teach you to draw! Even if they’re talented. Talented people can teach themselves, but there’s only so much you can teach yourself because every single person has weak points, things that they don’t see. If you don’t have somebody to point them out to you, they’re going to stay weak. The whole point of paying $30,000 a year is to get somebody to tell you that you’re wrong, not that everything you do is wonderful and creative. The animation schools don’t teach even the fundamental, basic concepts of animation; they don’t teach you how do construction. They say the words “construction.” They don’t teach you how to do line of action. They say “line of action.” Everyone’s familiar with the terms, but nobody does them.
Dr. T: What do they teach, then?
JK: You got me! They teach five-minute life drawings. Everybody brings in these scribbles! Just pages and pages of scribbly life drawings. And I ask everyone, “Ah, why does this look like a scribble?” “’Cause I did it in five minutes.” Why would you show a potential employer something that you drew in five minutes? How do I know you can draw a finished drawing? I know you can make scribbles, that’s great. What good is it? And I ask the teachers too. The only reason they do it is because sixty years ago the Disney studio — when Don Graham was teaching — supplemented their life drawing classes with gesture drawing classes. But you don’t give gesture-drawing classes to people who don’t already draw well. If you can already draw the human body and you know how anatomy works, great — now you can do a quick sketch. But they’re teaching you the last step first. So, if you don’t know how to draw anything yet, go ahead and draw really fast! How the hell can you learn anything? You can’t see what’s there in five minutes. You can’t do line of action with that. But meanwhile, the pose doesn’t have any line of action — because the model doesn’t know anything about animation. He’s not doing a gesture that has a line of action. But they still do it because the last generation of teachers did it, and the previous generation of teachers did it, and so on back six generations or something. But no one knows why they’re doing it anymore. They only do it because it says in the curriculum: “You must have gesture classes.” You know what I equate it to? The fall of the Roman Empire.