A Brief History of Important
Animators and Their Films
by Melissa Wilkinson
Winsor McCay (1869-1934)
 Self-taught in comic art
 Worked in vaudeville
 Started animating
“Little Nemo” on a bet
 Di...
Winsor McCay (1869-1934)
 “Gertie the Dinosaur” (1914)
 First character animation
 Live interaction
Walt Disney (1901-1966)
 Started in comic art
 Studied at Kansas City Art Institute
 First character:
Oswald the Lucky ...
Walt Disney (1901-1966)
 Mickey & Minnie debuted in
“Steamboat Willie” (1928)
 First sound-synch cartoon
 “Snow White &...
Walt Disney (1901-1966)
 Didn’t originate practices, but refined them
 Always looking for ways
technology could help
sto...
Walt Disney (1901-1966)
 Mostly managerial, oversaw studio of other animators:
 Ub Iwerks
◦ Walt’s first business partne...
Chuck Jones (1912-2002)
 Started art career selling
pencil portraits for $1 on the
sidewalk
 Worked as a cel washer for
...
Chuck Jones (1912-2002)
 Directed 10 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons
◦ #1 – “What’s Opera, Doc?” (1957)
◦ #2 – “Duck Amuck” (...
Richard Williams (1933)
 Created “The Animator’s Survival Guide” textbooks
 Teaches sold-out animation masterclasses
 A...
Richard Williams (1933)
 “The Thief & The Cobbler” project started in 1964
 Incredibly detailed, scenes redrawn constant...
Hayao Miyazaki (1941)
 Studio Ghibli called “The Japanese Disney”
 Films all hand drawn, less than 10% computer effects
...
Hayao Miyazaki (1941)
 Gorgeous natural backgrounds
 Detailed character mannerisms
 Delicious-looking food
 Strong, fi...
John Lasseter (1957)
 Voted “Best Artist” by his senior high school class
 Sword in the Stone inspired him to work at Di...
John Lasseter (1957)
 Brought character animation skills to a technical team
 Early short films: The Adventures of Andre...
If you want to learn more…
Visit my blog at cartoonology.tumblr.com!
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History of Animation: Important Animators and Their Films

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Am extra credit presentation for my History of Film class in Fall 2012. Animation wasn't part of the curriculum so I took it upon myself to educate the class through detailed research and experimentation with moving .gif files so that they could see the animation in addition to hearing about it. Unfortunately that movement didn't transfer when I uploaded this Powerpoint and some of the loops are stuck on odd frames.

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History of Animation: Important Animators and Their Films

  1. 1. A Brief History of Important Animators and Their Films by Melissa Wilkinson
  2. 2. Winsor McCay (1869-1934)  Self-taught in comic art  Worked in vaudeville  Started animating “Little Nemo” on a bet  Did almost all work himself  Thousands of drawings
  3. 3. Winsor McCay (1869-1934)  “Gertie the Dinosaur” (1914)  First character animation  Live interaction
  4. 4. Walt Disney (1901-1966)  Started in comic art  Studied at Kansas City Art Institute  First character: Oswald the Lucky Rabbit  Created Mickey Mouse after loss of rights to Oswald
  5. 5. Walt Disney (1901-1966)  Mickey & Minnie debuted in “Steamboat Willie” (1928)  First sound-synch cartoon  “Snow White & The Seven Dwarves” (1937)  First animated feature film
  6. 6. Walt Disney (1901-1966)  Didn’t originate practices, but refined them  Always looking for ways technology could help storytelling  Multi-Plane Camera  “Caricature of both life and action”  Live models for animals
  7. 7. Walt Disney (1901-1966)  Mostly managerial, oversaw studio of other animators:  Ub Iwerks ◦ Walt’s first business partner, did most of the animation work ◦ Helped design Mickey Mouse, Walt created the personality  “Nine Old Men” ◦ Walt’s right-hand team ◦ Les Clark, Marc Davis, Ollie Johnston, Milt Kahl, Ward Kimball, Eric Larson, John Lounsbery, Wolfgang Reitherman, Frank Thomas ◦ Reitherman directed all animated films after Walt’s death, 1966-1981
  8. 8. Chuck Jones (1912-2002)  Started art career selling pencil portraits for $1 on the sidewalk  Worked as a cel washer for Ub Iwerks  Hired by Warner Brothers to work on Looney Tunes  Created Road Runner & Wile E. Coyote, Pepe LePew, Marvin the Martian, and Michigan J. Frog
  9. 9. Chuck Jones (1912-2002)  Directed 10 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons ◦ #1 – “What’s Opera, Doc?” (1957) ◦ #2 – “Duck Amuck” (1953)  “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” (1966)  Won 3 Oscars, Lifetime Achievement Award
  10. 10. Richard Williams (1933)  Created “The Animator’s Survival Guide” textbooks  Teaches sold-out animation masterclasses  Academy Award for “A Christmas Carol” short adaptation in 1971  Animated titles for the Pink Panther movies  Directed animation for Who Framed Roger Rabbit
  11. 11. Richard Williams (1933)  “The Thief & The Cobbler” project started in 1964  Incredibly detailed, scenes redrawn constantly  Failed to complete the project on time, film was handed over to substitute animators  Heavily edited, unnecessary dialogue added  Released as “Arabian Knight” in 1995, poorly received  Fan-made “Recobbled Cut” available on YouTube
  12. 12. Hayao Miyazaki (1941)  Studio Ghibli called “The Japanese Disney”  Films all hand drawn, less than 10% computer effects  Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro (1979)  Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (1984), adapted from his own manga series  My Neighbor Totoro (1988)  Princess Mononoke (1995)  Spirited Away (2002), won Academy Award for Best Animated Feature
  13. 13. Hayao Miyazaki (1941)  Gorgeous natural backgrounds  Detailed character mannerisms  Delicious-looking food  Strong, fierce heroines  Rosy-cheeked youngsters  Flight, avation, transportation  Morally gray villains  Protection of nature  Magic, wonder, innocence
  14. 14. John Lasseter (1957)  Voted “Best Artist” by his senior high school class  Sword in the Stone inspired him to work at Disney  Graduated from CalArts Character Animation program  Was fired from Disney after his experimental projects didn’t work out  Joined the Lucasfilm computer graphics team that would eventually form Pixar
  15. 15. John Lasseter (1957)  Brought character animation skills to a technical team  Early short films: The Adventures of Andre & Wally B, Luxo Jr, Red’s Dream, Tin Toy  Received Special Achievement Academy Award for Toy Story, first computer-animated feature film  Re-worked Toy Story 2 nine months before release  Currently serves as Chief Creative Officer for both Disney and Pixar
  16. 16. If you want to learn more… Visit my blog at cartoonology.tumblr.com!

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