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Aesthetic Morphology of Animation
Andrian Wikayanto
, Nuning Yanti Damayanti, Banung Grahita, Hafiz Aziz
Ahmad
Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia
Submitted: 2023-01-04. Revised: 2023-08-24. Accepted: 2023-10-04
Abstract
Aesthetic morphology does not judge whether a work is good or bad but is a study of form in art
that focuses on description, comparison, and stylistic analysis. Aesthetic morphology emphasizes
great attention to the discussion of form, content, and style. However, this theory is still general,
and there needs to be more research that explicitly discusses how it applies to animated artworks.
This research will use the Comprehensive Literature Review (CLR) method. CLR is a methodo-
logical approach for critical and in-depth research activities on a particular topic in several stages
of the research process. The CLR research process consists of three phases: exploration, inter-
pretation, and dissemination. The result of this research is that the form consists of aspects of
animation design, movement and kinetics, and sound and structural design. The content aspect
consists of 2 main elements: story and character. Meanwhile, the style aspect is influenced by two
main elements, namely the technology used in the production process and the appearance of the
animation. The results of this research are expected to be used to explore the characteristics of
animation works of certain creators, countries/locations, or periods in the history of the develop-
ment of the aesthetic form of animation in the world.
Keywords: aesthetic; morphology; animation; methods
How to Cite: Wikayanto, A., Damayanti, N. Y., Grahita, B., & Ahmad, H. A. (2023). Aesthetic Morphology of Animation.
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education, 23(2), 396-414
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023), 396-414
Available online at http://journal.unnes.ac.id/nju/index.php/harmonia
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15294/harmonia.v23i2.41668
objects by focusing on the study of the
form of artworks in aesthetic morphology.
Aesthetic morphology is the study of form
in art that focuses on describing, compa-
ring, and analyzing style and its details,
parts, materials, and ideas (Munro, 1943).
The goal is to gain a comprehensive kno-
wledge and understanding of an art ob-
ject based on a scientific and systematic
approach. Aesthetic morphology is indi-
rectly concerned with the nature of beauty
or evaluation in artworks, the psychology
of creation or appreciation. It refers to the
form and content of a work of art to be ana-
lyzed, compared, described, and classified.
INTRODUCTION
As an empirical science, aesthetics
comprises two sets of phenomena (Munro,
1970). The first focuses on the phenomenon
of works of art, and the second consists of
phenomena related to various kinds of hu-
man activities related to works of art. The
first group of phenomena is related to ae-
sthetic morphology, which is the study of
form in art. The second group of phenome-
na is part of aesthetic psychology, which is
closely related to sociology, anthropology,
and other humanities.
Thomas Munro offers a study of art

Corresponding author:
E-mail: andr038@brin.go.id
p-ISSN 2541-1683|e-ISSN 2541-2426
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 397
Aesthetic morphology describes the natu-
re and variety of forms in art and other
objects of human creation insofar as they
can be understood as stimulating aesthe-
tic understanding. Aesthetic morphology
classifies all types of forms in art and iden-
tifies and characterizes works to show the
level of relationship between similarities,
differences, and formal analysis of stylistic
features (Haldani, 2013).
Aesthetic morphology emphasizes
the discussion of form, content, and style
(Michael & Munro, 1971). These three ele-
ments are always interrelated and insepa-
rable in any human artistic activity. This
means that in addition to focusing on the
artwork, this theory also pays attention to
the “psychological” and “social” side of
the human being (context) who uses and
produces the artwork. In other words, the
main issues examined include physical and
psychological elements by considering the
psychological and cultural influences be-
hind them.
Researchers must consider the form
and content together when analyzing the
visual style of one or more objects. Form
refers to how the basic components are
structured and arranged. Content refers to
the essential spirit, meaning, message, ide-
as, and psychological aspects of the people
who produce and use it. Form and content
refer to the style or characteristic that dis-
tinguishes one artwork from another.
The discussion of tendencies places
greater emphasis on the analysis of style.
This analysis determines the pattern or si-
milarity of analysis between artworks. A
style is not independent; it combines, mo-
difies, adapts, adopts, or influences one or
more reference forms or styles. Therefore,
Aesthetic Morphology attempts to facili-
tate the description of the form, style, and
expression of an artwork rather than sub-
jectively judging a work as good or bad.
Aesthetic morphology can be used
for the identification of forms and styles in
various art objects, such as photography,
sculpture, dance, architecture, film, and
animation. In animation, aesthetic mor-
phology can be used to identify forms and
styles used by animators, study animation
characteristics in a particular country, and
study animation styles that are popular or
developed in a specific era. Thus, aesthe-
tic morphology is similar to the study of
animation’s aesthetic history.
The animation style in a particular
country can be formed from the length of
animation development in that country
(Wikayanto et al., 2019). The style is ob-
tained from the collective accumulation of
all animation works in the country, which
are influenced by the same social and cul-
tural conditions. Therefore, character ani-
mation style in a country is determined by
its creators’ habits. Every artwork an artist
creates reflects the culture around him,
which is influenced by life experience, en-
vironmental conditions, religion, ethnicity,
and nationality (Ahmad, 2008).
Research on form and style in ani-
mation has grown in recent decades due
to increased awareness of aesthetic charac-
teristics in animation, animation identity
in a country, or popular animation styles
in particular periods (Batkin, 2017; Brito,
Yahaira Moreno ; Cho, 2017; S. H. Donald,
2008; Herhuth, 2017; Holohan, 2016; Lee,
2011; Lenburg, 2012; S. Mac Donald, 2016;
Mohd Khalis et al., 2020; Neupert, 2012;
Pikkov, 2016; Rutherford, 2003; Swale,
2015; Wells, 2003). This research was con-
ducted because globalization has caused
the lines between cultures and countries to
become increasingly indistinct. Identity in
animation is fundamental because anima-
tion can be used as a representation of a
particular culture or country. Studying the
form and style of animation is critical be-
cause it can be used as material to identify
the characteristics of animation in a parti-
cular country, such as Japanese animation
(anime), which has an aesthetic form that
differs from the aesthetic form of animati-
on in the United States and Europe. Anime
is an animation style with visual charac-
teristics strongly influenced by manga vi-
sualization and has long been inspired by
Japanese tradition and culture (Cavallaro,
2013). This example of the development of
anime highlights the significant impact of
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
398
cultural diversity on the narrative, artistic,
and cinematic aspects of animated works.
If Japanese animation has its uniqueness
due to its locality, it can be assumed that
other animations in other regions of the
world have equally interesting characteris-
tics. Based on this issue, aesthetic morpho-
logy provides a complete set of methods
for describing, comparing, and analyzing
styles in animation.
There are still few studies that are
specifically concerned with the operational
model for the use of this aesthetic morpho-
logy method in animation. According to
Thomas Munro’s book Form and Style in
the Arts, each artwork holds a unique aest-
hetic structure. Although the theory of ae-
sthetic morphology is still general, further
research is needed to deepen its applicati-
on to specific art objects, such as animati-
on. Identifying unique characteristics in an
animation can be a differentiating factor
between animation and another. Not all
of these characteristics can be found in the
visual elements alone but in other funda-
mental elements of animation formation,
such as movement, sound, or narrative sty-
le. Therefore, this research explores how to
apply the aesthetic morphology method
of animation media. The research results
are expected to be used to explore the cha-
racteristics of animation works on certain
creators, places, or eras in developing the
aesthetic form of animation worldwide.
METHOD
This study uses the Comprehensive
Literature Review (CLR) methodology.
CLR is a methodological approach to cri-
tically and deeply inform research activi-
ties on a particular topic into several sta-
ges of the research process that optimally
involves using mixed research techniques
such as culture, ethics, and multimodal
texts and settings (Onwuegbuzie & Frels,
2016). CLR involves examining, analyzing,
incorporating, and communicating publis-
hed and unpublished data in a methodical,
comprehensive, collaborative, and iterati-
ve approach.
The CLR research process consists
of three phases: exploration, interpreta-
tion, and dissemination. The exploration
phase starts, first, exploring the topic to
be discussed, namely the theory of aesthe-
tic morphology (form, content, and style)
with animation formed from a combinati-
on of audio, visual, motion, and narrative.
Second, starting the data search by looking
for data related to the topic to be discussed
in primary sources such as international
journals and textbooks related to the rese-
arch topic. Third, storing and organizing
information, the primary data search pro-
cess results will be grouped according to
the topic under study to facilitate the exp-
loration process later. Fourth, selecting and
evaluating information choices is when
researchers analyze the results of primary
data searches and set aside data unrela-
ted to the research topic. Fifth, expanding
the data search to one or more elements
of MODES (Media, Observation(s), Docu-
ments, Expert(s), Secondary Data) related
to aesthetic morphology and animation.
The second phase is interpretation,
which is interpreting the information in
the previous five stages. This interpretati-
on occurs through the path of analysis and
synthesis, which makes it the culminating
phase of the process of analysis, evaluati-
on, and interpretation of the selected sour-
ces of information, which are then synthe-
sized into what is called meta-inference,
which are conclusions from each selected
source of information that are combined
into a coherent narrative.
The final phase is disseminating the
CLR results to the appropriate audience.
This process can be in the form of presen-
tations, multimedia, or written form in po-
pular or scientific media such as journals
and proceedings. This phase aims to make
the research report available and acces-
sible to others so that it can contribute to
the knowledge network.
RESULT AND DISCUSSION
The Role of Aesthetic History
History is defined as events that hap-
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 399
pened in the past. The past does not have
to be understood solely in terms of time;
it can also be seen through past human
works in the form of historical artifacts. In
more detail, animation history can be di-
vided into three categories: First, anima-
tion history serves as a historical source,
encompassing the collection of historical
sources related to animation, including
artifacts of animation works, animation
technology, and interviews with indivi-
duals involved in animation. Second, ani-
mation history forms an integral part of
history research. Third, animation history
involves reconstructing past events into
a historical narrative on animation deve-
lopment. In this case, visual art history
is expected to fulfill three historical func-
tions: forming identity, identifying trends,
and teaching values (Dienaputra, 2012)the
work of art history iseasier to find in the
form of scientific work at university, either
essay of undergraduate (skripsi.
Animation can also be classified as a
film genre (Beckman, 2021). and an evol-
ving film studies discipline. Film theory,
history, and criticism have been conside-
red the main branches of film studies, with
animation being a part of them. However,
film theory and criticism heavily influence
the study of film history. The fundamen-
tal distinction between film historians is
their ability to observe the evolution or
changes that occur in the film itself over
time (temporal dimension). Three main
factors will always influence the study of
film history: (1) The history of film as an
academic discipline, (2) Film as an audio-
visual art and cultural form, and (3) The
technological and economic forces that af-
fect film development. Consequently, the
historiography of animation will always
remain linked to these other dimensions
(Linsenmaier, 2008).
Robert Allen divides research acti-
vities in the field of film history into four
interrelated dimensions in his book. These
are the history of aesthetic films, the histo-
ry of film technology, the economic history
of film, and the history of social film (Allen
& Gomery, 1985). In this case, the aesthe-
tic morphology of animation is an integral
part of the discussion on the aesthetics of
film. The aesthetic history of animation will
be related to the history of animation as an
aesthetic artwork. The breadth or narrow-
ness of the historical meaning of this film
depends on the understanding of what is
meant by “art” and “aesthetics”(Faulstich,
1989)in most cases only implicitly. In cont-
rast to such implicit statements, I will try
here to make these theoretical and metho-
dological positions explicit and demonstra-
te them with examples. First of all, I should
like to refresh our memory about the basic
theoretical premises of what I call “film ae-
sthetics” (a concept which was presented
in 1982 at great length.
According to some film historians,
the aesthetic aspect of film history involves
identifying, describing, and interpreting
film works. Other film historians prefer to
define the aesthetic history of film in broad
terms, including all aspects that can lead
to enjoyment in watching a film, as well as
how the audience interprets the film. Thus,
the history of film aesthetics includes not
only the study of directing, filmmaking
styles, and the use of background sound in
films but also why one production method
continues to develop/be used by film crea-
tors over time while others are abandoned.
Therefore, to understand the historical de-
velopment of aesthetics in a country, it is
necessary to consider the diachronic his-
tory and other aspects that directly or in-
directly influence it. If it is related to aest-
hetic morphology, it can be concluded that
research on aesthetic appeal in animated
works will be related to other branches of
disciplines, even though it has a research
focus on aesthetics and art science. This
aesthetic appeal is derived from form, con-
tent, and emotional expression, which led
to the creator analysis model of formalism,
symbolism, and expressionism.
The study of style is one of art
history’s most important critical concepts.
Style is deemed essential since it reflects
the inner essence of a creator, social group,
or period. Suppose one can comprehend a
style as it appears. In that case, they will
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
400
obtain direct entry to the total value sys-
tem of culture in prior eras and the key to
interpreting cultural advancement. Becau-
se style is believed to reflect the values of
a society, it can be considered a significant
resource in aesthetic history. Style refers
to three elements in art: motifs, form rela-
tionships, and the quality of expression in
a work’s form and content. Style is valid
only when considering a group of artifacts
rather than a single artifact. To identify an
object’s style, it is essential to indirectly re-
cognize the existence of other objects that
share common features. A style’s distincti-
veness is most evident when compared to
other styles. So, to investigate the aesthe-
tic morphology of animation, researchers
should gather data on animation artifacts,
conduct field observations, collect relevant
documents, interview relevant stakehol-
ders, and obtain secondary data related to
the research (Media, Observation(s), Do-
cuments, Expert(s), Secondary Data - MO-
DES).
Form in Animation
Form in aesthetic morphology refers
to elements with aesthetic value that serve
a specific purpose. It is important to note
that the aesthetic value of an object does
not depend on whether it is natural or arti-
ficial because all objects have aesthetic va-
lue. Every object possesses artistic aspects,
including line, shape, and color, whether
natural or artificial (Munro, 1956:161).
The visible physical structure of an
artwork is called form. Everyone has an
opinion about how to evaluate an object.
This results in numerous evaluations based
on the person’s preferences. The task of ae-
sthetic morphology is to objectively clarify
the various viewpoints on the form based
on the object’s elements, details, materials,
and other components. Aesthetic morpho-
logy emphasizes the relationship between
form and its forming elements. The ele-
ments that make up an object are interre-
lated and mutually supportive. Therefore,
these constituent elements cannot be se-
parated when analyzing objects using an
aesthetic morphology approach. The ma-
terial used to create the object determines
how it appears (Munro, 1956:183-185).
The form is the fundamental element
that forms an animated work that can be
seen (visually) or heard (auditory) by the
five human senses if drawn to animation.
The aesthetic of animation can be seen in
form and style. The form consists of the
formal elements and content of animation,
while style is formed by production, looks,
and realism technology.
Figure 1. Form and style in animation aesthet-
ics.
The Formal Elements of Animation
The formal elements in animation
that are the aspects examined in analyzing
form in the aesthetic morphology of ani-
mation are divided into three categories:
Animation design: an animation ele-
ment that contains a composition of visual
material visible (sight), such as character
shapes, backgrounds, colors, cinemato-
graphy, and visual editing.
Movement and kinetics: This ele-
ment consists of the motion and action of
the character (action and performance)
and the perception of motion caused by
camera movement (perceived motion).
Sound and structural design: ani-
mation elements the human ear can hear,
such as dialogue, sound effects, and music.
Figure 2. The formal elements of animation
aesthetics.
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 401
Animation Design
Animation design is a fundamen-
tal component of animation that includes
the composition of visible (sight) visual
materials such as character shapes, backg-
rounds, light and color, cinematography,
and visual editing. These visual animation
components can be classified into character
images and environmental images of the
animation world (Cavallaro, 2010). Tony
White affirms that animation in animation
can be traced to three domains: character,
property, and environment (White, 2009).
The animated film’s visual style and color
palette also impact the audience’s emotions
and overall mood. For this reason, the ani-
mation design must effectively illustrate
and visualize all events in the animation,
such as scene transitions, time, location,
and character actions (Glebas, 2017).
Image Design
There are two components to image
design: world setting and character design.
The setting is essential to the storytelling
process and can influence how characters
behave or act as an additional narrative
element. The context of characters, backg-
rounds, and properties is unified in the
same world/universe (Wright, 2005). The
Aladdin and Kung Fu Panda films provide
examples of effective character and setting
design. The Aladdin animation takes place
in the Arabian Peninsula, resulting in cha-
racter visualization, building shape, sur-
rounding nature, and property adorned
with typical Arab and Islamic ornaments.
Similarly, Kung Fu Panda features Chine-
se ornaments that characterize all visual
elements in the film. These visual elements
may refer to specific cultures or locations
depending on the theme and story.
The ambiance or setting of an anima-
ted scene is an important factor in estab-
lishing the desired mood or scenario that
complements the animated characters (Bin
dan Ghani 2015). The environment also
plays an important role in the storytelling
process. The environment may be static
and less dynamic than the characters, who
constantly move and directly communica-
te with the audience through movements,
gestures, facial expressions, and words. A
well-crafted environment design can cap-
tivate the audience, immersing them in the
scene of the movie. Ultimately, this attenti-
on to detail creates an effective impression
on the audience. Creators often research
specific locations related to the setting of
the animated story to accurately describe
the environment’s visualization and cre-
ate an immersive atmosphere. Unsurpri-
singly, classic Disney animated films are
renowned for their breathtaking backg-
rounds and capacity to establish the mood
and subject matter using their visual style
to absorb the viewers in the animated plot
(White, 2006).
Character design is a critical element
of the animation storytelling process. The
lack of characters in animation makes it
difficult for the audience to understand the
story. Character design is visually consti-
tuted by two factors: physical features and
costumes. The physical form of an anima-
ted character can include the character’s
body shape, skin tone, hair color, gender,
body weight, and age. Meanwhile, a cos-
tume consists of make-up, character ac-
cessories, and colors representing a speci-
fic identity and serving as the character’s
background. In animation character de-
sign, identity is shaped by the character’s
cultural background and life experiences.
For instance, the character design in the
movie Kung-fu Panda, set in China, draws
inspiration from the surrounding cultu-
re. Panda Po, the lead character, is an in-
digenous animal from China who wears
traditional Chinese shoes and pants. A
well-crafted costume can aid the audience
in identifying the key protagonist, suppor-
ting actors, or antagonists by visually rep-
resenting their personality and demeanor.
A unique identity can differentiate charac-
ter design (Kerlow, 2009). There are three
character designs: Cartoon Characters, hu-
man or animal caricatures with exaggera-
ted body parts. Realistic Characters aim to
imitate the realistic shape of their real-life
counterparts. Finally, Stylized Characters
strikingly blend cartoon and realistic sty-
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
402
les.
Lights & Color
Light and color play a pivotal role
in animation. They may serve as tools for
dramatizing animation scenes and also as
aesthetic enhancers in a story (Katatikarn
& Tanzillo, 2016). In the early years of ani-
mation development, animation was per-
formed in black and white. However, the
introduction of color technology in film
revolutionized the visual aesthetics of ani-
mation. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
was the first full-length animated feature
in color ever made. The use of color in this
animation was a key factor in Disney Stu-
dios’ global success. Animators can utilize
light and color to create distinct qualities
in their animation works. Both can be emp-
loyed in character design and environment
to build a fully realized animated realm.
Lighting has a psychological effect
that sometimes runs deeper than other
image design elements. It need not be
overtly prominent in a scene but controls
the audience’s emotions. Generally, au-
diences respond to and feel the effects of
lighting without consciously realizing it.
Lighting directs the viewer’s gaze toward
darkness, contrast, color, and other sig-
nificant details that must be emphasized.
Without light, it would be impossible for
audiences to perceive all objects in an ani-
mated world.
In animation, all artists work toget-
her to tell the same story. A lighting artist
in animation has three primary objectives:
(1) directing the viewer’s attention to the
scene’s focal point, which is particularly
important for short shots when the audi-
ence has limited time to focus on the main
point of the scene; (2) adding visual inter-
est to each scene by defining the shape of
all visible objects; and (3) contributing to
the storytelling by setting the tone. Color
is a primary tool in animation for effecti-
vely creating mood. Figure 3 illustrates
that conveying a scene’s atmosphere can
be achieved through verbal dialogue and
using a basic color palette of warm and
cool lighting.
Colour is a component of light
(Ward, 2003). Specific waves within the
light spectrum create colors. Color compri-
ses three attributes: hue, saturation, and
brightness. Hue identifies the colors, such
as yellow like Spongebob, blue like Dora-
emon, or black like Mickey Mouse. Satura-
tion describes the intensity or strength of
a color. For instance, SpongeBob’s yellow
character design is brighter than Homer’s
character in The Simpsons animation. The
brightness of a color indicates how light
or dark it is and can be measured using
grayscale.
Cinematography
Cinematography is the act or process
of deciding on the factors that give mea-
ning to a film or animation. Shooting ang-
les, action and direction, lens type, camera
movement, and lighting are all aspects of
cinematography. In other words, cinema-
tographers combine several different but
complementary tasks to add structure and
nuance to the visual style of animation. In
this case, the role of technology and crea-
tor/author in planning cinematography in
animated works becomes critical. Cinema-
tography can be divided into three catego-
ries when analyzing aesthetic morphology
in animation: camera action, spatial di-
mension, and framing.
Figure 3. Different lights and colors can lead
to different impressions in a scene/shot (Kata-
tikarn & Tanzillo, 2016).
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 403
Camera Action
The mobility of animation is one of
its most exciting aspects (Cui, 2019). Ani-
mators have complete control over the ca-
mera movements they use to shoot scenes.
They can utilize various camera positio-
ning techniques, such as pan, tilt, zoom,
track, dolly, follow, and pedestal shots. The
camera’s movements are also displayed
through various shooting angles, inclu-
ding high, low, over-the-shoulder, bird’s
eye, and dutch angles.
Image visualization in cinemato-
graphy is determined by the context of
each shot and the overall visual approach
or how the animation creator intends to
convey the story objectively. The creator
can use a deductive or inductive appro-
ach while visualizing the content during
the shooting process. The deductive ap-
proach progresses from general to specific
visualization and conforms to film visual
narration conventions. This is the traditio-
nal cinematic approach to visual narrating.
Simultaneously, the inductive method
commences with particular scenes and
moves towards general ones. It has a more
notable visual impact than the deductive
approach and is perfect for smaller video
screens. Animators can choose their pre-
ferred camera approach using the camera
features in any animation software.
Space Dimention
In animation, composition refers
to arranging visual elements within the
camera’s frame. Scene composition, which
involves arranging visual elements to con-
vey a message to the audience, is neces-
sary for designing and animating images
or directing motion (Zettl et al., 2011). In
order to achieve this, it is important to un-
derstand compositional and spatial devi-
ces. The arrangement of elements within
the picture frame is crucial in communica-
ting the creator’s intended meaning to the
viewer. An effective composition guides
the viewer’s eye to the aspects the maker
wants them to see while communicating
the visual sense and articulating the space
within the frame. An effective composition
guides the viewer’s eye to the aspects the
maker wants them to see while communi-
cating the visual sense and articulating the
space within the frame. The visual sense is
essential in conveying the work’s meaning
and guiding the viewer’s interpretation.
A video or movie screen offers a dis-
tinct living space that intensifies events
while providing an aesthetic field. The
screen’s structural factors, such as aspect
ratio, image size, and object aesthetics, de-
termine screen space. Unlike painting and
photography, which allow for any shape
or orientation, video and movie screens
are standardly rectangular and horizontal,
ranging in aspect ratio from 4:3 to 16:9. Dif-
ferent aspect sizes yield varying aesthetic
effects, as exemplified by a vertically ori-
ented smartphone screen versus a horizon-
tally oriented movie theater screen (Zettl,
2016).
Size aesthetics concerns the objective
perception of object size when presented
on a screen. People and their surroundings
are perceived as standard size, regardless
of whether they appear in long shots or
close-ups on a large movie or small video
screen or whether we are relatively close
or far from the screen. Abbreviations for
technical terms should be explained upon
their first instance. When showcased on
a screen, object size is indicated by the
object’s relationship to the screen, contex-
tual scale, and viewer knowledge of the
object.
In animation, a three-dimensional
world must be projected onto a two-di-
mensional screen surface (Zettl, 2016).
Although the z-axis is an illusion, it is the
most aesthetically pleasing dimension. The
aesthetics of the three-dimensional plane
are characterized by three concepts: z-axis,
graphic depth factor, and lens depth cha-
racteristics. While the x-axis and y-axis of
the screen have specific spatial limits, the
z-axis is almost without limit. As a result,
the view and camera movement have more
freedom along the z-axis compared to the
horizontal and vertical axes. The z-axis ex-
tends from the screen towards the horizon.
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
404
Editing
Editing is selecting and sequencing
shot material from an animation produc-
tion. It affects the communication process,
storytelling, and style. In this case, editing
will refer to how the director organizes the
material in the context of time and makes
it into a visual narrative.
Time
Examining the various theories and
applications of time and motion in the con-
text of new media, such as video, film and
animation, is one of the essential steps in
this discussion of various aesthetic fields
(Rabiger & Hurbis-Cherrier, 2013). After
all, moving images are the basis of anima-
tion and film. In addition to the spatial pla-
ne, animation and film require articulating
and manipulating the space/time plane.
Objective (clock) time, subjective
(psychological) time, and biological time
are three types of time. In animation or
film-making, both objective and subjective
time are crucial. Objective time is the quan-
titative measurement of what the clock
says. Abbreviations for technical terms
will be explained when first used. Subjecti-
ve time refers to the perceived and proces-
sed duration. Objective time is represented
by a horizontal vector that shows quantity.
Objective time is a measure of clock time
independent of our level of involvement in
an event.
In contrast, subjective time measures
our level of engagement in an event and
our lack of awareness of clock time. When
viewers are engrossed in an animated sto-
ry, they tend to be less aware of the elap-
sed clock time, which they later interpret
as having a shorter duration. In contrast,
when they are not actively engaged in an
event, they become aware of clock time,
which they perceive as making the event
longer. Biological time is another form of
subjective time that can be measured less
accurately. It functions like an alarm clock,
signaling the appropriate time to perform
certain activities.
Time is one-way and cannot be
changed. The video editor cannot create
a causal effect before its cause. Although
past and future events can be designated
“addresses” in the time continuum, the
same cannot be done with the present. The
density and intensity of events in an ani-
mated story and the intensity of experien-
ces can be manipulated by video editors
to govern subjective time. Consequently,
the present is perceived as a component of
subjective time instead of objective time.
Time perception is influenced by subjec-
tive factors rather than solely by objective
measurements. One’s awareness of indivi-
dual moments and actions can impact their
perception of the present. In heightened
states of awareness, time may be perceived
more clearly.
The Form of Movement & Kinetics
Movement & kinetics in this motion
element consists of character motion and
action (action and performance) and the
perception of motion caused by camera
movement (perceived motion).
Action & Performance
Each character has unique persona-
lity traits when in action. Character mo-
vement, gestures, actions, and reactions
make up these qualities. The motion ele-
ment, comprised of three components -
gestures or body language, facial expres-
sions, and voice tone - sets animation apart
from other forms of media, such as comic
books and traditional films (Steve Roberts,
2007). We often see the adaptation of comic
book stories into animation. Although the
storyline remains consistent, the animati-
on provides a more immersive experience
than the comic book due to the ability to
witness the movements of each character.
This is particularly important because the
unique body gestures of each character are
not conveyable through comic books.
Whereas traditional movies rely on
actors to perform both the acting and voi-
ce of the characters, animation separates
these roles into two parties: the animator
creates the movement. At the same time,
the dubber provides the character’s voice
(Furniss, 2014). When filming, the actor
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 405
directly explores the character’s charac-
terization by acting in front of the camera.
The animator must envision and convey
the character’s traits through movement
using 2D images or 3D models during ani-
mation. In contrast, animation dubbers are
pivotal in characterizing the character’s
sound. Thus, the actions in animation are
collaboratively executed by two entities
(Webster, 2012).
Animation media has distinct advan-
tages in creating exaggerated impressions
of body language, voice tone, or facial
expressions to distinguish character mo-
vement in animation and movies. These
elements are intertwined to showcase a
visible manifestation of a character’s emo-
tional side (Steve Roberts, 2007). We often
observe animation movements that do not
exist in reality, like eyeballs popping out
during an intense or frightening scene or
legs spinning before running in a scene
where a dog chases someone.
Additionally, these movements are
influenced by the characterizations of the
characters. Due to the various backgrounds
of the characters, each character appearing
in the animation may have unique move-
ments. For instance, a character hailing
from India will typically move their head
while conversing, as is the norm in India.
Additionally, they may speak English or
Indonesian with a noticeable Indian ac-
cent. In contrast, a character with Javanese
heritage may employ more subdued ges-
tures in their body language and maintain
a distinct Javanese accent regardless of
whether they speak English or Indonesian.
Meanwhile, the character movement
element’s role concerning other animation
elements is to advance the plot (narrati-
ve element) through the character’s body
language and facial expressions. In cont-
rast, the Lipsync sound synchronized to
the character’s motion corresponds to the
dialogue (audio element) that contributes
to the animation’s storyline with each
character’s traits (Mitchell, 2016).
As a result, a character’s movement
in animation will not be separated from
the character’s background. These mo-
vements, actions, and emotions originate
from the character’s cultural background,
giving rise to distinct characteristics and
identities from other characters. Therefore,
a connection can be established between
the character’s local culture, and the acting
movements displayed on the screen by the
animator.
Perceived Motion
Humans typically perceive motion
when an object changes its position in a
stable environment. For example, indivi-
duals notice a car approaching or receding
and a child running after it as it passes
through the swings and slides of a playg-
round. In such instances, people compre-
hend that the car and child move steadily
in a stable environment. This applies even
when individuals watch scenes in movies
or animations despite understanding that
the motion in the scene is a mere illusion
conjured by a screen. Perceived motion
refers to the aspect of animation that the
human brain perceives and comprehends
(Pikkov, 2010; Webster, 2005)especially
within recurrent neural network (RNN. It
arises from the camera lens movement that
records a scene, which is prompted by the
movement of specific characters or objects.
The Form of Sound & Structural Design
Sound is an animated audio element
that features dialogue, sound effects, and
music. Animated films visually represent
an idea, and audio must complement the
visual elements in terms of their coheren-
ce, synchrony, and mutual enhancement.
Frequently, new objects appear in anima-
tions but do not exist in reality. Therefore,
a sound designer must create a new sound
effect that appears realistic and easily un-
derstood by the audience. According to
Beauchamp’s book “Designing Sound For
Animation,” sound design in animation
involves three vital audio elements, name-
ly dialogue, sound effects (SFX), and music
(Beauchamp, 2005). A separate division
in the animation pipeline oversees eve-
rything related to the sound components
utilized in animation. Every sound compo-
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
406
nent has a designated function. Finally, all
the sound components will be combined to
generate a novel environmental experien-
ce that makes sense to the audience while
viewing an animated production.
Dialouge in Animation
In the early years of animation, ani-
mators conveyed stories using character
movements and gestures inspired by the
pantomime and theater scenes favored by
performance artists at the time. Since Dis-
ney introduced sound into animated cha-
racters, dialogue has become a prominent
means of storytelling that plays a signifi-
cant role in creating the on-screen reality.
Often, the audience values the dialogue
more than the music and special effects.
Dialogue can take various forms, including
on-screen dialogue that may be lip-synced
or not synchronized with the character’s
mouth, as in scenes where the character’s
back is shot, but the audience still under-
stands the character’s voice..
Presenting animation with a com-
pelling and intriguing plot involves using
fundamental dialogue (Beauchamp, 2005).
Dialogue has six functions: it reveals cha-
racter, provides the necessary information,
moves the plot along, shows what one cha-
racter thinks about another, reveals con-
flict and builds tension, and shows how a
character feels.
As previously stated, the dialogue
conveys the storyline in the animation’s
storytelling process. Casting choices
for voice actors are often tailored to the
character’s background and development.
In animation, the character is created by
the animator rather than played by an ac-
tor. A skilled voice actor can breathe life
into the character on screen. As such, choo-
sing a voice actor capable of bringing an
animated character to life is crucial. For
example, in animation, objective factors
such as a character’s origin can influence
their accent or dialect, distinguishing them
from other characters. If a character is from
Tokyo, the creator should avoid emplo-
ying a dubber from Bangkok, for instance,
as the dubber may require assistance spea-
king with a smooth, nuanced Japanese ac-
cent. Typically, Bangkok residents use a
loud and rapid tone when speaking, which
does not align with the pace and tone that
the animation requires. Character deve-
lopment in animation is not exclusively li-
mited to humans. In animation, characters
can be car objects (Cars, Tayo) or animals,
such as snails (Turbo). The animation cre-
ator may employ the element of personi-
fication to these characters, necessitating
a dubbing actor who can imbue inanima-
te objects or non-human creatures with a
sense of meaning to the audience through
both sight and sound.
Sound Effects
Any sound variation that conveys
a character’s or object’s atmosphere, set-
ting, time, place, or action is called sound
effects (SFX). Alternatively, SFX are origi-
nal or artificial sounds that portray imagi-
nation and interpretation of the situation
displayed. SFX enhances the natural feel of
movies or animations. SFX can be created
simultaneously during filming. On the ot-
her hand, sound effects (SFX) are created
independently of animation’s visual and
motion creation processes. SFX in anima-
tion are often based on the original sound
of a specific object or event, but they can
also imitate other off-screen objects. As sta-
ted by Beauchamp (2005), sound creators
can only occasionally record sounds in the
real world due to numerous distractions
and a lack of control over natural sounds
(Beauchamp, 2005). As a result, sound ef-
fects must be produced in a studio using
various objects. Foley is the process of
creating sound effects, which consist of a
literal component (what is heard) and a
moving component (what is felt). In this
case, each sound element has denotative
and connotative meanings that the audien-
ce perceives.
SFX is categorized into hard effects,
soft effects, Foley, and ambiance. Hard ef-
fects refer to narrative sounds correspon-
ding to the objects or actions on the screen.
Ambiance denotes the background sound
that defines the setting in the animation,
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 407
while Foley records sounds that occur in
screen scenes. SFX serves several purposes,
including (Kerner, 1989): Define the set-
ting or location. For example, the sounds
of chickens, ducks, and goats can be used
to establish the setting of a conversation
in a farmer’s village while also conveying
the time in the setting. For example, birds
and insects can indicate the time of day.
They are to create the desired effect on the
program part of a scene, such as tension,
calmness, or pleasantness. For example,
the sound of the breeze and waves at the
beach can portray two teenagers roman-
tically seducing each other. The meaning
of a scene or event is conveyed through its
appearance or conclusion.
Creators can use ambiance to
construct animation’s reality based on their
logic rather than being confined by real-
world laws. This principle of exaggerati-
on only applies to animation movements
and sound effects. The sound design must
remain objective and coherent even if not
produced in the audience’s environment.
In the animated movie A Bug’s Life, the
sound of raindrops falling to the ground
is depicted with amplified rockets or exp-
losions, enabling the audience to partake
in the insect character’s perception of the
rain. The text adheres to academic writing
principles and language requirements, and
no changes are necessary. In the animated
movie A Bug’s Life, the sound of raindrops
falling to the ground is depicted with amp-
lified rockets or explosions, enabling the
audience to partake in the insect character’s
perception of the rain. Even so, when the
audience hears the original sound from a
source (Reality), it often needs to be more
convincing and entertaining. Music, sound
effects, and background noise are power-
ful auditory elements for creating a fictio-
nal narrative. When used effectively, plau-
sibility will cause the audience to willingly
suspend their disbelief in unbelievable
laws or events to maintain and believe in
the laws that govern the imaginary world.
Musical Scores
Music has a significant impact on
shaping the experience of watching a mo-
vie (Mollaghan, 2015). The tense and frigh-
tening effect is lost if a war or horror mo-
vie is muted. The creator can use different
music to abruptly change the impression
of the setting and atmosphere in a scene.
For example, they use fast-tempo music
in panic and horror scenes, while a slower
tempo can provide a calm atmosphere.
Music in film or animation can evo-
ke a genuine emotional response from the
audience, which can be leveraged to rein-
force the narrative. Music serves several
purposes, according to Robin Hoffman
(Hoffmann, 2011):
Music can influence the emotions
of the audience when viewing animated
works. Furthermore, music can set the
mood and atmosphere of a scene by repre-
senting its social, cultural, geographical, or
historical setting. Creators can use music
to evoke sadness or happiness in the au-
dience.
Additionally, music can aid in the
development of a character’s personality.
For instance, when a hero character ap-
pears, he is always accompanied by heroic
music.
Music can represent an atmosphere
in a scene in a specific cultural/geographi-
cal/period. This is possible when the crea-
tor utilizes fitting and available music for a
specific era or culture.
Music acts as a means to transition
from one scene to another, creating cohe-
rence and meaning for the audience. Mo-
reover, it can help connect all emotional
elements, facilitating better film compre-
hension.
Music can also manipulate a specific
scene. In a martial arts scene, the creator
can employ music that goes against the
scene itself. Suppose a silat/fighting scene
usually features tense music. However,
the creator may include dangdut music to
transform the tense atmosphere into a pa-
rody, portraying the fighting characters as
dancing.
Narrative Content
Meanwhile, narrative and character
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
408
elements play important roles in the aest-
hetic morphology of animation. The cha-
racter element focuses on their behavior
and habits within the animation (Figure Be-
havior), while the narrative element helps
us understand the story structure and plot
of the animation. In animation, narrative
elements communicate the animator’s in-
tended message and illustrate the story’s
development in the film through logically
structured sequences that may be linear or
non-linear. The narrative component of a
film or animation consists of two primary
parts: the story and the characters (Mou,
2015).
Figure 4. The content elements of animation
aesthetics.
The material that will be processed
in the animated film’s story is referred to
as the narrative element in film or anima-
tion (Wright, 2005). This element closely
relates to the movie’s theme and encom-
passes characters, conflicts, problems, set
locations, and time. These elements inter-
act with one another to form narrative ele-
ments linked by the law of causality. This
law of causality, in conjunction with space
and time, is pivotal to creating a film. For
instance, a scene depicting a car accident
(effect) will be introduced by a scene featu-
ring a speeding or drowsy driver (cause).
Story
Animation creators are similar to
other artists in their approach to creating
artwork. Ideas can arise from their sur-
roundings or after viewing another artist’s
animation. Inspiration can occur cons-
ciously or unconsciously. Psychologists
like Sigmund Freud and Ernst Kris have
suggested that artists may get ideas for
their artwork from daily life experiences
(Freud, 1962; Kris, 1953). Since childhood,
these experiences have motivated them to
produce artworks based on their thoughts
and life experiences. These influences ma-
nifest unconsciously in their artworks be-
cause they have blended with their daily
activities. For instance, the local culture
in Indonesia can impact the storytelling
style of local animation creators through
their everyday interactions with their sur-
roundings. This results in an unconscious
influence on their language, behavior, and
thinking. Their animated stories can diver-
ge from folklore or arise from problems
around them, instilling anxiety in anima-
tors’ minds. This anxiety is then combined
with imagination and realized into anima-
ted works.
As Jean Ann Wright notes, story ide-
as can derive from anywhere. According
to Wright (2005), creators can develop
animation ideas by reflecting on their life
experiences since they are already familiar
with them. Solitude, introspection, and
contemplation of one’s past or childhood
can lead to the generation of fresh ideas.
(Wright, 2005).
Wright suggests that after deciding
on the theme and story, creators should
contemplate the type of characters that will
feature in the animation story. In this case,
an animation character is an object that
will be used as one of the critical points in
the animation story’s storytelling process
(Mou et al., 2013). Therefore, the character
must possess a unique and captivating per-
sona that effectively conveys the creator’s
intended narrative to the audience. Crea-
tors can derive inspiration from the perso-
nalities of those in their circles when craf-
ting animated characters. Given a diverse
cast of characters, each persona will have
numerous characterizations. These charac-
terizations may give rise to conflicts of in-
terest between characters, which a creator
can use as material for weaving together a
compelling narrative.
The creator always considers the
story’s setting when developing the the-
me, characters, and plot. Each animation is
set in a specific time and location (Wright,
2005). Thus, everything depicted in the
animation inevitably influences the cur-
rent world or situation. If a creator were to
make an animation with a story and theme
set in Bandung, everything in the anima-
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 409
tion would undeniably reflect the identity
of the city of Bandung. For instance, the
primary character speaks Sundanese, and
there are Sundanese clothing and weapon-
ry, as well as building backgrounds and
natural objects like the Satay building or
Tangkubanparahu mountain. Thus, ani-
mators must appreciate that the location
setting will greatly influence the visual,
audio, and motion components since each
tribe or nation has distinct and different
bodily gestures. Because of its substantial
impact on other aspects (audio, visual, and
motion), it is not surprising that this narra-
tive element is often considered the basis
of a film or animation piece (Marx, 2010).
The narrative element and these other as-
pects are interrelated and influenced by
one another since they all contribute to the
story the creator intends to convey.
Character Archetypes
In the discussion of image design,
it is important to acknowledge that a
character’s visual form alone cannot fully
bring it to life. A character also requires a
distinct “soul” that differentiates it from
others. Thus, a well-designed character
must possess a personality and habits that
align with its designated role. To achieve
this, animation creators must establish a
unique archetype for each character, con-
sidering at least three key factors:
In an animated story, what is the
character’s role as an antagonist, protago-
nist, or helper?
What are the character’s background
and life experience that underpins his/her
personality (patient, timid, cunning, lo-
ving)?.
How does the background story in
the animation affect the character design?.
This is exemplified by Rapunzel’s long
hair or Pinocchio’s long nose, which does
not appear out of anywhere, but has a sto-
ry behind it.
Psychology, physiology, and socio-
logy are the three dimensions crucial in
comprehending an animated character.
Defining these dimensions is key to un-
derstanding an animated character. The
psychological aspect is fundamental to
a character’s personality, encompassing
traits, habits, strengths, weaknesses, hob-
bies, intelligence, temperament, and other
aspects. Physiology refers to the character’s
body shape, which involves costumes, ac-
cessories, skin tone, clothing color, and
other visual elements. This physiological
dimension is impacted by the character’s
traits, habits, and emotions and pertains
to their character psychology. In animated
storytelling, the sociological dimension is
linked to the character’s story elements
and life history, including their backg-
round, social status, residence, family, reli-
gion, culture, and relationships with other
characters. This sociological dimension is
closely tied to the story’s setting.
Style in Animation
The art style is a quantitative com-
parison within the compound descriptive
genre of art, requiring numerous clearly
defined specifications. An animation sty-
le comprises traits or characteristics fre-
quently recurring in different works or
across various places and periods. Typi-
cally, a set of characteristics must appear
repeatedly in many animations, as deemed
necessary by historians and critics, to be
considered a distinct style. It is important
to consider style as a significant organiza-
tional principle rather than a superficial
artwork aspect. Styles in art are identified
as recurring complexities, with few consi-
dered central or primary historical styles.
Figure 5. The Style elements of animation
aesthetics.
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
410
A single animation work can also
define a style if it is the only known work
by a particular animator. Historical styles
refer to features of art that are believed to
have existed during a specific historical
period or are uniquely associated with a
particular artist or group of artists. Some
styles are abstract or repetitive and can be
applied to works from various periods and
locations.
The style is analyzed through its
form and content elements in examining
the animation work being studied. Thomas
Munro provides numerous examples of
creating a distinct name for an artistic sty-
le to set it apart from earlier. These names
may be based on a period (e.g., Renaissan-
ce style, Post-Colonial style), location (e.g.,
European/Scandinavian style, Northern
Italian style), person - including race/tri-
be, country, or religious group (e.g., Isla-
mic style, Japanese style, Hayao Miyazaki
style), or even derived from another ani-
mation style as evidenced by production
techniques or aesthetic in certain literature.
Technology of Production
Style can typically be identified by
distinct production techniques utilized in
animation, including 2D techniques such
as frame-by-frame, limited animation, cut-
out animation, 3D, stop motion, Rotosco-
pe, motion capture, motion graphics, or
hybrid animation that blends live-action
with animation on film.
Over time, technological advance-
ments have played a significant role in
how animation incorporates and evolves
its visual, audio, character performance,
and storytelling elements. This influence
has given animation creators many choi-
ces for expressing their desired animati-
on concept. Modern animators have more
production options than those in the early
1900s. Not only has equipment for anima-
tion production been developed, but soft-
ware that enables anyone to learn and cre-
ate animation works has also been created.
Since the late 20th century, animati-
on techniques have been extensively used
in production, advertising, movies, cre-
dits, and visual effects, making them an in-
dispensable element of film and television.
The rapid advancement of technology has
led to the diversification and widespread
implementation of computer-generated
animation techniques in all production
industries. Depending on the timeframe,
scenario, and content, computer animati-
on techniques can save time and money
while enabling producers to utilize them
in either two dimensions (2D) or three
dimensions (3D). Computer modeling
techniques can easily create and animate
fictional characters or objects, as well as
people, events, and locations that are diffi-
cult, costly, or infeasible to capture on film.
These specialized animation techniques
are now being widely employed across va-
rious industries. The rise in demand and
expanding application areas have empha-
sized aesthetics and design, adding a fresh
perspective to the application process.
Looks
New animation styles have emer-
ged with the advancement of animation
production technology. There are at least
four familiar looks in animation, namely
the cartoon-style animation looks seen in
Western animation, animation with heavy
manga visual influence at the anime looks
in the East, the realist look that tries to
display the original form of visuals in the
real world, and the abstract looks that tend
to be accessible according to the creator’s
expression. Nowadays, many animation
creators, such as those behind “The Ama-
zing World of Gumball,” incorporate a mix
of visuals in their works. The Gumball ani-
mation series blends different techniques,
such as live-action footage, 2D animation,
3D animation, Claymation, stop-motion
animation, and traditional hand-drawn
animation.
Paul Wells divides animation into
three styles: orthodox, experimental, and
development (Wells, 2013a). Animation
in its traditional form alludes to the typi-
cal form of animation centered on visuals
and narrative pioneered by Disney. This
indicates that this form of animation was
Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 411
initially intended for mass reception and
is industrial. Its conventions are founded
on those that have been commercially suc-
cessful. Experimental animation is the an-
tithesis of traditional animation, defined
by abstract elements instead of figurative
ones, non-continuity, and a creative in-
terpretation of meaning. It is important to
note that experimental animation prioriti-
zes the creator’s expression over traditio-
nal linear narrative styles. Instead, it high-
lights abstract visual elements that may
not have an inherent purpose or meaning.
Unlike orthodox animation, experimen-
tal animation is an individual endeavor
showcasing the creator’s style. Meanwhile,
development animation is a type of anima-
tion that melds the structure and essence
of orthodox and experimental animation.
In some respects, animation development
is more conventional, while in others, it is
more explorative.
Realism in Animation
As stated previously, this theory of
aesthetic morphology considers the con-
text of the art object being studied and its
physical attributes. In animation, this re-
fers to the degree to which the creator’s
work is connected to and reflective of rea-
lity. In this case, Ulo Pikkov argues that
animation strives for realism, bringing the
representation of reality as close to the ori-
ginal as possible to create an illusion of fan-
tasy (Pikkov, 2010). Realism in animation
involves modifying conventional fictional
codes to persuade us of the reality and ma-
teriality of what we see in the animation,
despite our awareness that it is not real but
simply an image created by the animation
artist (fantasy). In Disney animation studio
films, Paul Wells elucidates the concept of
realism in animation, as evidenced by the
viewers’ acceptance of a mouse charac-
ter (Mickey Mouse) speaking and perfor-
ming human-like activities (Wells, 2013b).
Although the world of Disney animation
is fantastical, its components strongly re-
semble real-world objects. The illusion of
realism in this animation style is often re-
ferred to as hyper-realism. Wells introdu-
ced four factors that should be considered
to determine the level of realism in anima-
tion: design concepts, characters, sound,
and movement. Meanwhile, Stephen Row-
ley took the more complex route of asses-
sing the level of realism in animation using
five different parameters (Rowley, 2005):
Visual Realism: the degree to which
the audience can understand the world
settings and animated characters, as oppo-
sed to the world and characters from the
actual physical world.
Aural Realism: the degree to which
the audience perceives the sounds in the
animated world/environment and cha-
racters as the sounds in the actual physical
world.
Realism of Motion: the extent to
which the characters in the animation
move in a way that the audience under-
stands to resemble how humans move in
the real world.
Narrative and Character Realism: the
extent to which the story/events and cha-
racterizations of the fictional characters in
the animation are constructed to make the
audience believe that they are watching a
story and characterizations that feel real.
Social Realism: the extent to which
the animated film is constructed to make
the audience believe that the fictional
world in which the events occur is as
complex and diverse as the real world.
When evaluating the level of realism
in animation, it is crucial to examine how
the audience perceives the reality port-
rayed in animated works rather than how
closely physical parameters match the real
world (Rowley, 2005). Despite this, both
Wells and Rowley stress the significance of
scrutinizing the creator’s connection with
the animation or, more generally, questio-
ning the creator’s genre. Patterns or struc-
tures used to describe individual works of
art and their construction are referred to as
genres. In this case, the animation creator’s
chosen genre is closely related to realistic
animation. Discussing the animation gen-
re is equivalent to discussing the form and
style of animation selected by the creator,
including formal aspects and content
Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414
412
Figure 6. A complete chart of the aesthetic
morphology of animation.
CONCLUSIONS
This research demonstrates a strong
connection between the history of anima-
tion aesthetics and the study of aesthetic
morphology in animation. Therefore, the
analysis of the aesthetic morphology of an
animation requires a considerable amount
of data. Figure 6 shows a comprehensive
chart of animation’s aesthetic morphology.
When researchers study the aesthe-
tic morphology of animation, they need to
consider many factors. Researchers must
consider not only the visual aspects but
also the motion, narrative, and sound as-
pects in a balanced manner. Animation
comprises four intertwined elements; the-
refore, disregarding any one element can
skew research on the characteristics of ani-
mation.
Additionally, the study’s findings
indicate that researchers should analyze
the animation artifacts and the context in
which the art object is situated. This refers
to the degree to which an animation work
created by the artist connects and mirrors
the real world.
An animation style may be identified
by referencing a specific period, location,
person, or cultural reference. The term
denotes the quantitative accumulation
of similarities among various animation
works. Due to common interests, cultural
similarities, geography, ethnicity, race,
and nationality, many animation creators
can disseminate or adopt various animati-
on styles. The naming convention aims to
differentiate one piece of animation from
another.
Comprehensive analysis of style
falls under the umbrella of morphological
description or analysis. It characterizes the
object not only in the abstract traits and
types, such as red, blue, tragic, comic, and
so forth, but also in the recognized styles
- combinations of characteristics that have
tended to recur throughout art history.
Thus, naming must be based on particular
goals and uses.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
This research was conducted with
financial support from the SAINTEK scho-
larship. Therefore, the author would like
to express his gratitude to the SAINTEK
Scholarship Management at the Indonesi-
an Ministry of Research and Technology-
BRIN. The main author of this article is
Andrian Wikayanto, and the second aut-
hor is Nuning Yanti Damayanti, Banung
Grahita, Hafiz Aziz Ahmad.
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  • 1. 396 Aesthetic Morphology of Animation Andrian Wikayanto , Nuning Yanti Damayanti, Banung Grahita, Hafiz Aziz Ahmad Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia Submitted: 2023-01-04. Revised: 2023-08-24. Accepted: 2023-10-04 Abstract Aesthetic morphology does not judge whether a work is good or bad but is a study of form in art that focuses on description, comparison, and stylistic analysis. Aesthetic morphology emphasizes great attention to the discussion of form, content, and style. However, this theory is still general, and there needs to be more research that explicitly discusses how it applies to animated artworks. This research will use the Comprehensive Literature Review (CLR) method. CLR is a methodo- logical approach for critical and in-depth research activities on a particular topic in several stages of the research process. The CLR research process consists of three phases: exploration, inter- pretation, and dissemination. The result of this research is that the form consists of aspects of animation design, movement and kinetics, and sound and structural design. The content aspect consists of 2 main elements: story and character. Meanwhile, the style aspect is influenced by two main elements, namely the technology used in the production process and the appearance of the animation. The results of this research are expected to be used to explore the characteristics of animation works of certain creators, countries/locations, or periods in the history of the develop- ment of the aesthetic form of animation in the world. Keywords: aesthetic; morphology; animation; methods How to Cite: Wikayanto, A., Damayanti, N. Y., Grahita, B., & Ahmad, H. A. (2023). Aesthetic Morphology of Animation. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education, 23(2), 396-414 Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023), 396-414 Available online at http://journal.unnes.ac.id/nju/index.php/harmonia DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15294/harmonia.v23i2.41668 objects by focusing on the study of the form of artworks in aesthetic morphology. Aesthetic morphology is the study of form in art that focuses on describing, compa- ring, and analyzing style and its details, parts, materials, and ideas (Munro, 1943). The goal is to gain a comprehensive kno- wledge and understanding of an art ob- ject based on a scientific and systematic approach. Aesthetic morphology is indi- rectly concerned with the nature of beauty or evaluation in artworks, the psychology of creation or appreciation. It refers to the form and content of a work of art to be ana- lyzed, compared, described, and classified. INTRODUCTION As an empirical science, aesthetics comprises two sets of phenomena (Munro, 1970). The first focuses on the phenomenon of works of art, and the second consists of phenomena related to various kinds of hu- man activities related to works of art. The first group of phenomena is related to ae- sthetic morphology, which is the study of form in art. The second group of phenome- na is part of aesthetic psychology, which is closely related to sociology, anthropology, and other humanities. Thomas Munro offers a study of art  Corresponding author: E-mail: andr038@brin.go.id p-ISSN 2541-1683|e-ISSN 2541-2426
  • 2. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 397 Aesthetic morphology describes the natu- re and variety of forms in art and other objects of human creation insofar as they can be understood as stimulating aesthe- tic understanding. Aesthetic morphology classifies all types of forms in art and iden- tifies and characterizes works to show the level of relationship between similarities, differences, and formal analysis of stylistic features (Haldani, 2013). Aesthetic morphology emphasizes the discussion of form, content, and style (Michael & Munro, 1971). These three ele- ments are always interrelated and insepa- rable in any human artistic activity. This means that in addition to focusing on the artwork, this theory also pays attention to the “psychological” and “social” side of the human being (context) who uses and produces the artwork. In other words, the main issues examined include physical and psychological elements by considering the psychological and cultural influences be- hind them. Researchers must consider the form and content together when analyzing the visual style of one or more objects. Form refers to how the basic components are structured and arranged. Content refers to the essential spirit, meaning, message, ide- as, and psychological aspects of the people who produce and use it. Form and content refer to the style or characteristic that dis- tinguishes one artwork from another. The discussion of tendencies places greater emphasis on the analysis of style. This analysis determines the pattern or si- milarity of analysis between artworks. A style is not independent; it combines, mo- difies, adapts, adopts, or influences one or more reference forms or styles. Therefore, Aesthetic Morphology attempts to facili- tate the description of the form, style, and expression of an artwork rather than sub- jectively judging a work as good or bad. Aesthetic morphology can be used for the identification of forms and styles in various art objects, such as photography, sculpture, dance, architecture, film, and animation. In animation, aesthetic mor- phology can be used to identify forms and styles used by animators, study animation characteristics in a particular country, and study animation styles that are popular or developed in a specific era. Thus, aesthe- tic morphology is similar to the study of animation’s aesthetic history. The animation style in a particular country can be formed from the length of animation development in that country (Wikayanto et al., 2019). The style is ob- tained from the collective accumulation of all animation works in the country, which are influenced by the same social and cul- tural conditions. Therefore, character ani- mation style in a country is determined by its creators’ habits. Every artwork an artist creates reflects the culture around him, which is influenced by life experience, en- vironmental conditions, religion, ethnicity, and nationality (Ahmad, 2008). Research on form and style in ani- mation has grown in recent decades due to increased awareness of aesthetic charac- teristics in animation, animation identity in a country, or popular animation styles in particular periods (Batkin, 2017; Brito, Yahaira Moreno ; Cho, 2017; S. H. Donald, 2008; Herhuth, 2017; Holohan, 2016; Lee, 2011; Lenburg, 2012; S. Mac Donald, 2016; Mohd Khalis et al., 2020; Neupert, 2012; Pikkov, 2016; Rutherford, 2003; Swale, 2015; Wells, 2003). This research was con- ducted because globalization has caused the lines between cultures and countries to become increasingly indistinct. Identity in animation is fundamental because anima- tion can be used as a representation of a particular culture or country. Studying the form and style of animation is critical be- cause it can be used as material to identify the characteristics of animation in a parti- cular country, such as Japanese animation (anime), which has an aesthetic form that differs from the aesthetic form of animati- on in the United States and Europe. Anime is an animation style with visual charac- teristics strongly influenced by manga vi- sualization and has long been inspired by Japanese tradition and culture (Cavallaro, 2013). This example of the development of anime highlights the significant impact of
  • 3. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 398 cultural diversity on the narrative, artistic, and cinematic aspects of animated works. If Japanese animation has its uniqueness due to its locality, it can be assumed that other animations in other regions of the world have equally interesting characteris- tics. Based on this issue, aesthetic morpho- logy provides a complete set of methods for describing, comparing, and analyzing styles in animation. There are still few studies that are specifically concerned with the operational model for the use of this aesthetic morpho- logy method in animation. According to Thomas Munro’s book Form and Style in the Arts, each artwork holds a unique aest- hetic structure. Although the theory of ae- sthetic morphology is still general, further research is needed to deepen its applicati- on to specific art objects, such as animati- on. Identifying unique characteristics in an animation can be a differentiating factor between animation and another. Not all of these characteristics can be found in the visual elements alone but in other funda- mental elements of animation formation, such as movement, sound, or narrative sty- le. Therefore, this research explores how to apply the aesthetic morphology method of animation media. The research results are expected to be used to explore the cha- racteristics of animation works on certain creators, places, or eras in developing the aesthetic form of animation worldwide. METHOD This study uses the Comprehensive Literature Review (CLR) methodology. CLR is a methodological approach to cri- tically and deeply inform research activi- ties on a particular topic into several sta- ges of the research process that optimally involves using mixed research techniques such as culture, ethics, and multimodal texts and settings (Onwuegbuzie & Frels, 2016). CLR involves examining, analyzing, incorporating, and communicating publis- hed and unpublished data in a methodical, comprehensive, collaborative, and iterati- ve approach. The CLR research process consists of three phases: exploration, interpreta- tion, and dissemination. The exploration phase starts, first, exploring the topic to be discussed, namely the theory of aesthe- tic morphology (form, content, and style) with animation formed from a combinati- on of audio, visual, motion, and narrative. Second, starting the data search by looking for data related to the topic to be discussed in primary sources such as international journals and textbooks related to the rese- arch topic. Third, storing and organizing information, the primary data search pro- cess results will be grouped according to the topic under study to facilitate the exp- loration process later. Fourth, selecting and evaluating information choices is when researchers analyze the results of primary data searches and set aside data unrela- ted to the research topic. Fifth, expanding the data search to one or more elements of MODES (Media, Observation(s), Docu- ments, Expert(s), Secondary Data) related to aesthetic morphology and animation. The second phase is interpretation, which is interpreting the information in the previous five stages. This interpretati- on occurs through the path of analysis and synthesis, which makes it the culminating phase of the process of analysis, evaluati- on, and interpretation of the selected sour- ces of information, which are then synthe- sized into what is called meta-inference, which are conclusions from each selected source of information that are combined into a coherent narrative. The final phase is disseminating the CLR results to the appropriate audience. This process can be in the form of presen- tations, multimedia, or written form in po- pular or scientific media such as journals and proceedings. This phase aims to make the research report available and acces- sible to others so that it can contribute to the knowledge network. RESULT AND DISCUSSION The Role of Aesthetic History History is defined as events that hap-
  • 4. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 399 pened in the past. The past does not have to be understood solely in terms of time; it can also be seen through past human works in the form of historical artifacts. In more detail, animation history can be di- vided into three categories: First, anima- tion history serves as a historical source, encompassing the collection of historical sources related to animation, including artifacts of animation works, animation technology, and interviews with indivi- duals involved in animation. Second, ani- mation history forms an integral part of history research. Third, animation history involves reconstructing past events into a historical narrative on animation deve- lopment. In this case, visual art history is expected to fulfill three historical func- tions: forming identity, identifying trends, and teaching values (Dienaputra, 2012)the work of art history iseasier to find in the form of scientific work at university, either essay of undergraduate (skripsi. Animation can also be classified as a film genre (Beckman, 2021). and an evol- ving film studies discipline. Film theory, history, and criticism have been conside- red the main branches of film studies, with animation being a part of them. However, film theory and criticism heavily influence the study of film history. The fundamen- tal distinction between film historians is their ability to observe the evolution or changes that occur in the film itself over time (temporal dimension). Three main factors will always influence the study of film history: (1) The history of film as an academic discipline, (2) Film as an audio- visual art and cultural form, and (3) The technological and economic forces that af- fect film development. Consequently, the historiography of animation will always remain linked to these other dimensions (Linsenmaier, 2008). Robert Allen divides research acti- vities in the field of film history into four interrelated dimensions in his book. These are the history of aesthetic films, the histo- ry of film technology, the economic history of film, and the history of social film (Allen & Gomery, 1985). In this case, the aesthe- tic morphology of animation is an integral part of the discussion on the aesthetics of film. The aesthetic history of animation will be related to the history of animation as an aesthetic artwork. The breadth or narrow- ness of the historical meaning of this film depends on the understanding of what is meant by “art” and “aesthetics”(Faulstich, 1989)in most cases only implicitly. In cont- rast to such implicit statements, I will try here to make these theoretical and metho- dological positions explicit and demonstra- te them with examples. First of all, I should like to refresh our memory about the basic theoretical premises of what I call “film ae- sthetics” (a concept which was presented in 1982 at great length. According to some film historians, the aesthetic aspect of film history involves identifying, describing, and interpreting film works. Other film historians prefer to define the aesthetic history of film in broad terms, including all aspects that can lead to enjoyment in watching a film, as well as how the audience interprets the film. Thus, the history of film aesthetics includes not only the study of directing, filmmaking styles, and the use of background sound in films but also why one production method continues to develop/be used by film crea- tors over time while others are abandoned. Therefore, to understand the historical de- velopment of aesthetics in a country, it is necessary to consider the diachronic his- tory and other aspects that directly or in- directly influence it. If it is related to aest- hetic morphology, it can be concluded that research on aesthetic appeal in animated works will be related to other branches of disciplines, even though it has a research focus on aesthetics and art science. This aesthetic appeal is derived from form, con- tent, and emotional expression, which led to the creator analysis model of formalism, symbolism, and expressionism. The study of style is one of art history’s most important critical concepts. Style is deemed essential since it reflects the inner essence of a creator, social group, or period. Suppose one can comprehend a style as it appears. In that case, they will
  • 5. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 400 obtain direct entry to the total value sys- tem of culture in prior eras and the key to interpreting cultural advancement. Becau- se style is believed to reflect the values of a society, it can be considered a significant resource in aesthetic history. Style refers to three elements in art: motifs, form rela- tionships, and the quality of expression in a work’s form and content. Style is valid only when considering a group of artifacts rather than a single artifact. To identify an object’s style, it is essential to indirectly re- cognize the existence of other objects that share common features. A style’s distincti- veness is most evident when compared to other styles. So, to investigate the aesthe- tic morphology of animation, researchers should gather data on animation artifacts, conduct field observations, collect relevant documents, interview relevant stakehol- ders, and obtain secondary data related to the research (Media, Observation(s), Do- cuments, Expert(s), Secondary Data - MO- DES). Form in Animation Form in aesthetic morphology refers to elements with aesthetic value that serve a specific purpose. It is important to note that the aesthetic value of an object does not depend on whether it is natural or arti- ficial because all objects have aesthetic va- lue. Every object possesses artistic aspects, including line, shape, and color, whether natural or artificial (Munro, 1956:161). The visible physical structure of an artwork is called form. Everyone has an opinion about how to evaluate an object. This results in numerous evaluations based on the person’s preferences. The task of ae- sthetic morphology is to objectively clarify the various viewpoints on the form based on the object’s elements, details, materials, and other components. Aesthetic morpho- logy emphasizes the relationship between form and its forming elements. The ele- ments that make up an object are interre- lated and mutually supportive. Therefore, these constituent elements cannot be se- parated when analyzing objects using an aesthetic morphology approach. The ma- terial used to create the object determines how it appears (Munro, 1956:183-185). The form is the fundamental element that forms an animated work that can be seen (visually) or heard (auditory) by the five human senses if drawn to animation. The aesthetic of animation can be seen in form and style. The form consists of the formal elements and content of animation, while style is formed by production, looks, and realism technology. Figure 1. Form and style in animation aesthet- ics. The Formal Elements of Animation The formal elements in animation that are the aspects examined in analyzing form in the aesthetic morphology of ani- mation are divided into three categories: Animation design: an animation ele- ment that contains a composition of visual material visible (sight), such as character shapes, backgrounds, colors, cinemato- graphy, and visual editing. Movement and kinetics: This ele- ment consists of the motion and action of the character (action and performance) and the perception of motion caused by camera movement (perceived motion). Sound and structural design: ani- mation elements the human ear can hear, such as dialogue, sound effects, and music. Figure 2. The formal elements of animation aesthetics.
  • 6. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 401 Animation Design Animation design is a fundamen- tal component of animation that includes the composition of visible (sight) visual materials such as character shapes, backg- rounds, light and color, cinematography, and visual editing. These visual animation components can be classified into character images and environmental images of the animation world (Cavallaro, 2010). Tony White affirms that animation in animation can be traced to three domains: character, property, and environment (White, 2009). The animated film’s visual style and color palette also impact the audience’s emotions and overall mood. For this reason, the ani- mation design must effectively illustrate and visualize all events in the animation, such as scene transitions, time, location, and character actions (Glebas, 2017). Image Design There are two components to image design: world setting and character design. The setting is essential to the storytelling process and can influence how characters behave or act as an additional narrative element. The context of characters, backg- rounds, and properties is unified in the same world/universe (Wright, 2005). The Aladdin and Kung Fu Panda films provide examples of effective character and setting design. The Aladdin animation takes place in the Arabian Peninsula, resulting in cha- racter visualization, building shape, sur- rounding nature, and property adorned with typical Arab and Islamic ornaments. Similarly, Kung Fu Panda features Chine- se ornaments that characterize all visual elements in the film. These visual elements may refer to specific cultures or locations depending on the theme and story. The ambiance or setting of an anima- ted scene is an important factor in estab- lishing the desired mood or scenario that complements the animated characters (Bin dan Ghani 2015). The environment also plays an important role in the storytelling process. The environment may be static and less dynamic than the characters, who constantly move and directly communica- te with the audience through movements, gestures, facial expressions, and words. A well-crafted environment design can cap- tivate the audience, immersing them in the scene of the movie. Ultimately, this attenti- on to detail creates an effective impression on the audience. Creators often research specific locations related to the setting of the animated story to accurately describe the environment’s visualization and cre- ate an immersive atmosphere. Unsurpri- singly, classic Disney animated films are renowned for their breathtaking backg- rounds and capacity to establish the mood and subject matter using their visual style to absorb the viewers in the animated plot (White, 2006). Character design is a critical element of the animation storytelling process. The lack of characters in animation makes it difficult for the audience to understand the story. Character design is visually consti- tuted by two factors: physical features and costumes. The physical form of an anima- ted character can include the character’s body shape, skin tone, hair color, gender, body weight, and age. Meanwhile, a cos- tume consists of make-up, character ac- cessories, and colors representing a speci- fic identity and serving as the character’s background. In animation character de- sign, identity is shaped by the character’s cultural background and life experiences. For instance, the character design in the movie Kung-fu Panda, set in China, draws inspiration from the surrounding cultu- re. Panda Po, the lead character, is an in- digenous animal from China who wears traditional Chinese shoes and pants. A well-crafted costume can aid the audience in identifying the key protagonist, suppor- ting actors, or antagonists by visually rep- resenting their personality and demeanor. A unique identity can differentiate charac- ter design (Kerlow, 2009). There are three character designs: Cartoon Characters, hu- man or animal caricatures with exaggera- ted body parts. Realistic Characters aim to imitate the realistic shape of their real-life counterparts. Finally, Stylized Characters strikingly blend cartoon and realistic sty-
  • 7. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 402 les. Lights & Color Light and color play a pivotal role in animation. They may serve as tools for dramatizing animation scenes and also as aesthetic enhancers in a story (Katatikarn & Tanzillo, 2016). In the early years of ani- mation development, animation was per- formed in black and white. However, the introduction of color technology in film revolutionized the visual aesthetics of ani- mation. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was the first full-length animated feature in color ever made. The use of color in this animation was a key factor in Disney Stu- dios’ global success. Animators can utilize light and color to create distinct qualities in their animation works. Both can be emp- loyed in character design and environment to build a fully realized animated realm. Lighting has a psychological effect that sometimes runs deeper than other image design elements. It need not be overtly prominent in a scene but controls the audience’s emotions. Generally, au- diences respond to and feel the effects of lighting without consciously realizing it. Lighting directs the viewer’s gaze toward darkness, contrast, color, and other sig- nificant details that must be emphasized. Without light, it would be impossible for audiences to perceive all objects in an ani- mated world. In animation, all artists work toget- her to tell the same story. A lighting artist in animation has three primary objectives: (1) directing the viewer’s attention to the scene’s focal point, which is particularly important for short shots when the audi- ence has limited time to focus on the main point of the scene; (2) adding visual inter- est to each scene by defining the shape of all visible objects; and (3) contributing to the storytelling by setting the tone. Color is a primary tool in animation for effecti- vely creating mood. Figure 3 illustrates that conveying a scene’s atmosphere can be achieved through verbal dialogue and using a basic color palette of warm and cool lighting. Colour is a component of light (Ward, 2003). Specific waves within the light spectrum create colors. Color compri- ses three attributes: hue, saturation, and brightness. Hue identifies the colors, such as yellow like Spongebob, blue like Dora- emon, or black like Mickey Mouse. Satura- tion describes the intensity or strength of a color. For instance, SpongeBob’s yellow character design is brighter than Homer’s character in The Simpsons animation. The brightness of a color indicates how light or dark it is and can be measured using grayscale. Cinematography Cinematography is the act or process of deciding on the factors that give mea- ning to a film or animation. Shooting ang- les, action and direction, lens type, camera movement, and lighting are all aspects of cinematography. In other words, cinema- tographers combine several different but complementary tasks to add structure and nuance to the visual style of animation. In this case, the role of technology and crea- tor/author in planning cinematography in animated works becomes critical. Cinema- tography can be divided into three catego- ries when analyzing aesthetic morphology in animation: camera action, spatial di- mension, and framing. Figure 3. Different lights and colors can lead to different impressions in a scene/shot (Kata- tikarn & Tanzillo, 2016).
  • 8. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 403 Camera Action The mobility of animation is one of its most exciting aspects (Cui, 2019). Ani- mators have complete control over the ca- mera movements they use to shoot scenes. They can utilize various camera positio- ning techniques, such as pan, tilt, zoom, track, dolly, follow, and pedestal shots. The camera’s movements are also displayed through various shooting angles, inclu- ding high, low, over-the-shoulder, bird’s eye, and dutch angles. Image visualization in cinemato- graphy is determined by the context of each shot and the overall visual approach or how the animation creator intends to convey the story objectively. The creator can use a deductive or inductive appro- ach while visualizing the content during the shooting process. The deductive ap- proach progresses from general to specific visualization and conforms to film visual narration conventions. This is the traditio- nal cinematic approach to visual narrating. Simultaneously, the inductive method commences with particular scenes and moves towards general ones. It has a more notable visual impact than the deductive approach and is perfect for smaller video screens. Animators can choose their pre- ferred camera approach using the camera features in any animation software. Space Dimention In animation, composition refers to arranging visual elements within the camera’s frame. Scene composition, which involves arranging visual elements to con- vey a message to the audience, is neces- sary for designing and animating images or directing motion (Zettl et al., 2011). In order to achieve this, it is important to un- derstand compositional and spatial devi- ces. The arrangement of elements within the picture frame is crucial in communica- ting the creator’s intended meaning to the viewer. An effective composition guides the viewer’s eye to the aspects the maker wants them to see while communicating the visual sense and articulating the space within the frame. An effective composition guides the viewer’s eye to the aspects the maker wants them to see while communi- cating the visual sense and articulating the space within the frame. The visual sense is essential in conveying the work’s meaning and guiding the viewer’s interpretation. A video or movie screen offers a dis- tinct living space that intensifies events while providing an aesthetic field. The screen’s structural factors, such as aspect ratio, image size, and object aesthetics, de- termine screen space. Unlike painting and photography, which allow for any shape or orientation, video and movie screens are standardly rectangular and horizontal, ranging in aspect ratio from 4:3 to 16:9. Dif- ferent aspect sizes yield varying aesthetic effects, as exemplified by a vertically ori- ented smartphone screen versus a horizon- tally oriented movie theater screen (Zettl, 2016). Size aesthetics concerns the objective perception of object size when presented on a screen. People and their surroundings are perceived as standard size, regardless of whether they appear in long shots or close-ups on a large movie or small video screen or whether we are relatively close or far from the screen. Abbreviations for technical terms should be explained upon their first instance. When showcased on a screen, object size is indicated by the object’s relationship to the screen, contex- tual scale, and viewer knowledge of the object. In animation, a three-dimensional world must be projected onto a two-di- mensional screen surface (Zettl, 2016). Although the z-axis is an illusion, it is the most aesthetically pleasing dimension. The aesthetics of the three-dimensional plane are characterized by three concepts: z-axis, graphic depth factor, and lens depth cha- racteristics. While the x-axis and y-axis of the screen have specific spatial limits, the z-axis is almost without limit. As a result, the view and camera movement have more freedom along the z-axis compared to the horizontal and vertical axes. The z-axis ex- tends from the screen towards the horizon.
  • 9. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 404 Editing Editing is selecting and sequencing shot material from an animation produc- tion. It affects the communication process, storytelling, and style. In this case, editing will refer to how the director organizes the material in the context of time and makes it into a visual narrative. Time Examining the various theories and applications of time and motion in the con- text of new media, such as video, film and animation, is one of the essential steps in this discussion of various aesthetic fields (Rabiger & Hurbis-Cherrier, 2013). After all, moving images are the basis of anima- tion and film. In addition to the spatial pla- ne, animation and film require articulating and manipulating the space/time plane. Objective (clock) time, subjective (psychological) time, and biological time are three types of time. In animation or film-making, both objective and subjective time are crucial. Objective time is the quan- titative measurement of what the clock says. Abbreviations for technical terms will be explained when first used. Subjecti- ve time refers to the perceived and proces- sed duration. Objective time is represented by a horizontal vector that shows quantity. Objective time is a measure of clock time independent of our level of involvement in an event. In contrast, subjective time measures our level of engagement in an event and our lack of awareness of clock time. When viewers are engrossed in an animated sto- ry, they tend to be less aware of the elap- sed clock time, which they later interpret as having a shorter duration. In contrast, when they are not actively engaged in an event, they become aware of clock time, which they perceive as making the event longer. Biological time is another form of subjective time that can be measured less accurately. It functions like an alarm clock, signaling the appropriate time to perform certain activities. Time is one-way and cannot be changed. The video editor cannot create a causal effect before its cause. Although past and future events can be designated “addresses” in the time continuum, the same cannot be done with the present. The density and intensity of events in an ani- mated story and the intensity of experien- ces can be manipulated by video editors to govern subjective time. Consequently, the present is perceived as a component of subjective time instead of objective time. Time perception is influenced by subjec- tive factors rather than solely by objective measurements. One’s awareness of indivi- dual moments and actions can impact their perception of the present. In heightened states of awareness, time may be perceived more clearly. The Form of Movement & Kinetics Movement & kinetics in this motion element consists of character motion and action (action and performance) and the perception of motion caused by camera movement (perceived motion). Action & Performance Each character has unique persona- lity traits when in action. Character mo- vement, gestures, actions, and reactions make up these qualities. The motion ele- ment, comprised of three components - gestures or body language, facial expres- sions, and voice tone - sets animation apart from other forms of media, such as comic books and traditional films (Steve Roberts, 2007). We often see the adaptation of comic book stories into animation. Although the storyline remains consistent, the animati- on provides a more immersive experience than the comic book due to the ability to witness the movements of each character. This is particularly important because the unique body gestures of each character are not conveyable through comic books. Whereas traditional movies rely on actors to perform both the acting and voi- ce of the characters, animation separates these roles into two parties: the animator creates the movement. At the same time, the dubber provides the character’s voice (Furniss, 2014). When filming, the actor
  • 10. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 405 directly explores the character’s charac- terization by acting in front of the camera. The animator must envision and convey the character’s traits through movement using 2D images or 3D models during ani- mation. In contrast, animation dubbers are pivotal in characterizing the character’s sound. Thus, the actions in animation are collaboratively executed by two entities (Webster, 2012). Animation media has distinct advan- tages in creating exaggerated impressions of body language, voice tone, or facial expressions to distinguish character mo- vement in animation and movies. These elements are intertwined to showcase a visible manifestation of a character’s emo- tional side (Steve Roberts, 2007). We often observe animation movements that do not exist in reality, like eyeballs popping out during an intense or frightening scene or legs spinning before running in a scene where a dog chases someone. Additionally, these movements are influenced by the characterizations of the characters. Due to the various backgrounds of the characters, each character appearing in the animation may have unique move- ments. For instance, a character hailing from India will typically move their head while conversing, as is the norm in India. Additionally, they may speak English or Indonesian with a noticeable Indian ac- cent. In contrast, a character with Javanese heritage may employ more subdued ges- tures in their body language and maintain a distinct Javanese accent regardless of whether they speak English or Indonesian. Meanwhile, the character movement element’s role concerning other animation elements is to advance the plot (narrati- ve element) through the character’s body language and facial expressions. In cont- rast, the Lipsync sound synchronized to the character’s motion corresponds to the dialogue (audio element) that contributes to the animation’s storyline with each character’s traits (Mitchell, 2016). As a result, a character’s movement in animation will not be separated from the character’s background. These mo- vements, actions, and emotions originate from the character’s cultural background, giving rise to distinct characteristics and identities from other characters. Therefore, a connection can be established between the character’s local culture, and the acting movements displayed on the screen by the animator. Perceived Motion Humans typically perceive motion when an object changes its position in a stable environment. For example, indivi- duals notice a car approaching or receding and a child running after it as it passes through the swings and slides of a playg- round. In such instances, people compre- hend that the car and child move steadily in a stable environment. This applies even when individuals watch scenes in movies or animations despite understanding that the motion in the scene is a mere illusion conjured by a screen. Perceived motion refers to the aspect of animation that the human brain perceives and comprehends (Pikkov, 2010; Webster, 2005)especially within recurrent neural network (RNN. It arises from the camera lens movement that records a scene, which is prompted by the movement of specific characters or objects. The Form of Sound & Structural Design Sound is an animated audio element that features dialogue, sound effects, and music. Animated films visually represent an idea, and audio must complement the visual elements in terms of their coheren- ce, synchrony, and mutual enhancement. Frequently, new objects appear in anima- tions but do not exist in reality. Therefore, a sound designer must create a new sound effect that appears realistic and easily un- derstood by the audience. According to Beauchamp’s book “Designing Sound For Animation,” sound design in animation involves three vital audio elements, name- ly dialogue, sound effects (SFX), and music (Beauchamp, 2005). A separate division in the animation pipeline oversees eve- rything related to the sound components utilized in animation. Every sound compo-
  • 11. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 406 nent has a designated function. Finally, all the sound components will be combined to generate a novel environmental experien- ce that makes sense to the audience while viewing an animated production. Dialouge in Animation In the early years of animation, ani- mators conveyed stories using character movements and gestures inspired by the pantomime and theater scenes favored by performance artists at the time. Since Dis- ney introduced sound into animated cha- racters, dialogue has become a prominent means of storytelling that plays a signifi- cant role in creating the on-screen reality. Often, the audience values the dialogue more than the music and special effects. Dialogue can take various forms, including on-screen dialogue that may be lip-synced or not synchronized with the character’s mouth, as in scenes where the character’s back is shot, but the audience still under- stands the character’s voice.. Presenting animation with a com- pelling and intriguing plot involves using fundamental dialogue (Beauchamp, 2005). Dialogue has six functions: it reveals cha- racter, provides the necessary information, moves the plot along, shows what one cha- racter thinks about another, reveals con- flict and builds tension, and shows how a character feels. As previously stated, the dialogue conveys the storyline in the animation’s storytelling process. Casting choices for voice actors are often tailored to the character’s background and development. In animation, the character is created by the animator rather than played by an ac- tor. A skilled voice actor can breathe life into the character on screen. As such, choo- sing a voice actor capable of bringing an animated character to life is crucial. For example, in animation, objective factors such as a character’s origin can influence their accent or dialect, distinguishing them from other characters. If a character is from Tokyo, the creator should avoid emplo- ying a dubber from Bangkok, for instance, as the dubber may require assistance spea- king with a smooth, nuanced Japanese ac- cent. Typically, Bangkok residents use a loud and rapid tone when speaking, which does not align with the pace and tone that the animation requires. Character deve- lopment in animation is not exclusively li- mited to humans. In animation, characters can be car objects (Cars, Tayo) or animals, such as snails (Turbo). The animation cre- ator may employ the element of personi- fication to these characters, necessitating a dubbing actor who can imbue inanima- te objects or non-human creatures with a sense of meaning to the audience through both sight and sound. Sound Effects Any sound variation that conveys a character’s or object’s atmosphere, set- ting, time, place, or action is called sound effects (SFX). Alternatively, SFX are origi- nal or artificial sounds that portray imagi- nation and interpretation of the situation displayed. SFX enhances the natural feel of movies or animations. SFX can be created simultaneously during filming. On the ot- her hand, sound effects (SFX) are created independently of animation’s visual and motion creation processes. SFX in anima- tion are often based on the original sound of a specific object or event, but they can also imitate other off-screen objects. As sta- ted by Beauchamp (2005), sound creators can only occasionally record sounds in the real world due to numerous distractions and a lack of control over natural sounds (Beauchamp, 2005). As a result, sound ef- fects must be produced in a studio using various objects. Foley is the process of creating sound effects, which consist of a literal component (what is heard) and a moving component (what is felt). In this case, each sound element has denotative and connotative meanings that the audien- ce perceives. SFX is categorized into hard effects, soft effects, Foley, and ambiance. Hard ef- fects refer to narrative sounds correspon- ding to the objects or actions on the screen. Ambiance denotes the background sound that defines the setting in the animation,
  • 12. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 407 while Foley records sounds that occur in screen scenes. SFX serves several purposes, including (Kerner, 1989): Define the set- ting or location. For example, the sounds of chickens, ducks, and goats can be used to establish the setting of a conversation in a farmer’s village while also conveying the time in the setting. For example, birds and insects can indicate the time of day. They are to create the desired effect on the program part of a scene, such as tension, calmness, or pleasantness. For example, the sound of the breeze and waves at the beach can portray two teenagers roman- tically seducing each other. The meaning of a scene or event is conveyed through its appearance or conclusion. Creators can use ambiance to construct animation’s reality based on their logic rather than being confined by real- world laws. This principle of exaggerati- on only applies to animation movements and sound effects. The sound design must remain objective and coherent even if not produced in the audience’s environment. In the animated movie A Bug’s Life, the sound of raindrops falling to the ground is depicted with amplified rockets or exp- losions, enabling the audience to partake in the insect character’s perception of the rain. The text adheres to academic writing principles and language requirements, and no changes are necessary. In the animated movie A Bug’s Life, the sound of raindrops falling to the ground is depicted with amp- lified rockets or explosions, enabling the audience to partake in the insect character’s perception of the rain. Even so, when the audience hears the original sound from a source (Reality), it often needs to be more convincing and entertaining. Music, sound effects, and background noise are power- ful auditory elements for creating a fictio- nal narrative. When used effectively, plau- sibility will cause the audience to willingly suspend their disbelief in unbelievable laws or events to maintain and believe in the laws that govern the imaginary world. Musical Scores Music has a significant impact on shaping the experience of watching a mo- vie (Mollaghan, 2015). The tense and frigh- tening effect is lost if a war or horror mo- vie is muted. The creator can use different music to abruptly change the impression of the setting and atmosphere in a scene. For example, they use fast-tempo music in panic and horror scenes, while a slower tempo can provide a calm atmosphere. Music in film or animation can evo- ke a genuine emotional response from the audience, which can be leveraged to rein- force the narrative. Music serves several purposes, according to Robin Hoffman (Hoffmann, 2011): Music can influence the emotions of the audience when viewing animated works. Furthermore, music can set the mood and atmosphere of a scene by repre- senting its social, cultural, geographical, or historical setting. Creators can use music to evoke sadness or happiness in the au- dience. Additionally, music can aid in the development of a character’s personality. For instance, when a hero character ap- pears, he is always accompanied by heroic music. Music can represent an atmosphere in a scene in a specific cultural/geographi- cal/period. This is possible when the crea- tor utilizes fitting and available music for a specific era or culture. Music acts as a means to transition from one scene to another, creating cohe- rence and meaning for the audience. Mo- reover, it can help connect all emotional elements, facilitating better film compre- hension. Music can also manipulate a specific scene. In a martial arts scene, the creator can employ music that goes against the scene itself. Suppose a silat/fighting scene usually features tense music. However, the creator may include dangdut music to transform the tense atmosphere into a pa- rody, portraying the fighting characters as dancing. Narrative Content Meanwhile, narrative and character
  • 13. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 408 elements play important roles in the aest- hetic morphology of animation. The cha- racter element focuses on their behavior and habits within the animation (Figure Be- havior), while the narrative element helps us understand the story structure and plot of the animation. In animation, narrative elements communicate the animator’s in- tended message and illustrate the story’s development in the film through logically structured sequences that may be linear or non-linear. The narrative component of a film or animation consists of two primary parts: the story and the characters (Mou, 2015). Figure 4. The content elements of animation aesthetics. The material that will be processed in the animated film’s story is referred to as the narrative element in film or anima- tion (Wright, 2005). This element closely relates to the movie’s theme and encom- passes characters, conflicts, problems, set locations, and time. These elements inter- act with one another to form narrative ele- ments linked by the law of causality. This law of causality, in conjunction with space and time, is pivotal to creating a film. For instance, a scene depicting a car accident (effect) will be introduced by a scene featu- ring a speeding or drowsy driver (cause). Story Animation creators are similar to other artists in their approach to creating artwork. Ideas can arise from their sur- roundings or after viewing another artist’s animation. Inspiration can occur cons- ciously or unconsciously. Psychologists like Sigmund Freud and Ernst Kris have suggested that artists may get ideas for their artwork from daily life experiences (Freud, 1962; Kris, 1953). Since childhood, these experiences have motivated them to produce artworks based on their thoughts and life experiences. These influences ma- nifest unconsciously in their artworks be- cause they have blended with their daily activities. For instance, the local culture in Indonesia can impact the storytelling style of local animation creators through their everyday interactions with their sur- roundings. This results in an unconscious influence on their language, behavior, and thinking. Their animated stories can diver- ge from folklore or arise from problems around them, instilling anxiety in anima- tors’ minds. This anxiety is then combined with imagination and realized into anima- ted works. As Jean Ann Wright notes, story ide- as can derive from anywhere. According to Wright (2005), creators can develop animation ideas by reflecting on their life experiences since they are already familiar with them. Solitude, introspection, and contemplation of one’s past or childhood can lead to the generation of fresh ideas. (Wright, 2005). Wright suggests that after deciding on the theme and story, creators should contemplate the type of characters that will feature in the animation story. In this case, an animation character is an object that will be used as one of the critical points in the animation story’s storytelling process (Mou et al., 2013). Therefore, the character must possess a unique and captivating per- sona that effectively conveys the creator’s intended narrative to the audience. Crea- tors can derive inspiration from the perso- nalities of those in their circles when craf- ting animated characters. Given a diverse cast of characters, each persona will have numerous characterizations. These charac- terizations may give rise to conflicts of in- terest between characters, which a creator can use as material for weaving together a compelling narrative. The creator always considers the story’s setting when developing the the- me, characters, and plot. Each animation is set in a specific time and location (Wright, 2005). Thus, everything depicted in the animation inevitably influences the cur- rent world or situation. If a creator were to make an animation with a story and theme set in Bandung, everything in the anima-
  • 14. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 409 tion would undeniably reflect the identity of the city of Bandung. For instance, the primary character speaks Sundanese, and there are Sundanese clothing and weapon- ry, as well as building backgrounds and natural objects like the Satay building or Tangkubanparahu mountain. Thus, ani- mators must appreciate that the location setting will greatly influence the visual, audio, and motion components since each tribe or nation has distinct and different bodily gestures. Because of its substantial impact on other aspects (audio, visual, and motion), it is not surprising that this narra- tive element is often considered the basis of a film or animation piece (Marx, 2010). The narrative element and these other as- pects are interrelated and influenced by one another since they all contribute to the story the creator intends to convey. Character Archetypes In the discussion of image design, it is important to acknowledge that a character’s visual form alone cannot fully bring it to life. A character also requires a distinct “soul” that differentiates it from others. Thus, a well-designed character must possess a personality and habits that align with its designated role. To achieve this, animation creators must establish a unique archetype for each character, con- sidering at least three key factors: In an animated story, what is the character’s role as an antagonist, protago- nist, or helper? What are the character’s background and life experience that underpins his/her personality (patient, timid, cunning, lo- ving)?. How does the background story in the animation affect the character design?. This is exemplified by Rapunzel’s long hair or Pinocchio’s long nose, which does not appear out of anywhere, but has a sto- ry behind it. Psychology, physiology, and socio- logy are the three dimensions crucial in comprehending an animated character. Defining these dimensions is key to un- derstanding an animated character. The psychological aspect is fundamental to a character’s personality, encompassing traits, habits, strengths, weaknesses, hob- bies, intelligence, temperament, and other aspects. Physiology refers to the character’s body shape, which involves costumes, ac- cessories, skin tone, clothing color, and other visual elements. This physiological dimension is impacted by the character’s traits, habits, and emotions and pertains to their character psychology. In animated storytelling, the sociological dimension is linked to the character’s story elements and life history, including their backg- round, social status, residence, family, reli- gion, culture, and relationships with other characters. This sociological dimension is closely tied to the story’s setting. Style in Animation The art style is a quantitative com- parison within the compound descriptive genre of art, requiring numerous clearly defined specifications. An animation sty- le comprises traits or characteristics fre- quently recurring in different works or across various places and periods. Typi- cally, a set of characteristics must appear repeatedly in many animations, as deemed necessary by historians and critics, to be considered a distinct style. It is important to consider style as a significant organiza- tional principle rather than a superficial artwork aspect. Styles in art are identified as recurring complexities, with few consi- dered central or primary historical styles. Figure 5. The Style elements of animation aesthetics.
  • 15. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 410 A single animation work can also define a style if it is the only known work by a particular animator. Historical styles refer to features of art that are believed to have existed during a specific historical period or are uniquely associated with a particular artist or group of artists. Some styles are abstract or repetitive and can be applied to works from various periods and locations. The style is analyzed through its form and content elements in examining the animation work being studied. Thomas Munro provides numerous examples of creating a distinct name for an artistic sty- le to set it apart from earlier. These names may be based on a period (e.g., Renaissan- ce style, Post-Colonial style), location (e.g., European/Scandinavian style, Northern Italian style), person - including race/tri- be, country, or religious group (e.g., Isla- mic style, Japanese style, Hayao Miyazaki style), or even derived from another ani- mation style as evidenced by production techniques or aesthetic in certain literature. Technology of Production Style can typically be identified by distinct production techniques utilized in animation, including 2D techniques such as frame-by-frame, limited animation, cut- out animation, 3D, stop motion, Rotosco- pe, motion capture, motion graphics, or hybrid animation that blends live-action with animation on film. Over time, technological advance- ments have played a significant role in how animation incorporates and evolves its visual, audio, character performance, and storytelling elements. This influence has given animation creators many choi- ces for expressing their desired animati- on concept. Modern animators have more production options than those in the early 1900s. Not only has equipment for anima- tion production been developed, but soft- ware that enables anyone to learn and cre- ate animation works has also been created. Since the late 20th century, animati- on techniques have been extensively used in production, advertising, movies, cre- dits, and visual effects, making them an in- dispensable element of film and television. The rapid advancement of technology has led to the diversification and widespread implementation of computer-generated animation techniques in all production industries. Depending on the timeframe, scenario, and content, computer animati- on techniques can save time and money while enabling producers to utilize them in either two dimensions (2D) or three dimensions (3D). Computer modeling techniques can easily create and animate fictional characters or objects, as well as people, events, and locations that are diffi- cult, costly, or infeasible to capture on film. These specialized animation techniques are now being widely employed across va- rious industries. The rise in demand and expanding application areas have empha- sized aesthetics and design, adding a fresh perspective to the application process. Looks New animation styles have emer- ged with the advancement of animation production technology. There are at least four familiar looks in animation, namely the cartoon-style animation looks seen in Western animation, animation with heavy manga visual influence at the anime looks in the East, the realist look that tries to display the original form of visuals in the real world, and the abstract looks that tend to be accessible according to the creator’s expression. Nowadays, many animation creators, such as those behind “The Ama- zing World of Gumball,” incorporate a mix of visuals in their works. The Gumball ani- mation series blends different techniques, such as live-action footage, 2D animation, 3D animation, Claymation, stop-motion animation, and traditional hand-drawn animation. Paul Wells divides animation into three styles: orthodox, experimental, and development (Wells, 2013a). Animation in its traditional form alludes to the typi- cal form of animation centered on visuals and narrative pioneered by Disney. This indicates that this form of animation was
  • 16. Andrian Wikayanto et al., Aesthetic Morphology of Animation 411 initially intended for mass reception and is industrial. Its conventions are founded on those that have been commercially suc- cessful. Experimental animation is the an- tithesis of traditional animation, defined by abstract elements instead of figurative ones, non-continuity, and a creative in- terpretation of meaning. It is important to note that experimental animation prioriti- zes the creator’s expression over traditio- nal linear narrative styles. Instead, it high- lights abstract visual elements that may not have an inherent purpose or meaning. Unlike orthodox animation, experimen- tal animation is an individual endeavor showcasing the creator’s style. Meanwhile, development animation is a type of anima- tion that melds the structure and essence of orthodox and experimental animation. In some respects, animation development is more conventional, while in others, it is more explorative. Realism in Animation As stated previously, this theory of aesthetic morphology considers the con- text of the art object being studied and its physical attributes. In animation, this re- fers to the degree to which the creator’s work is connected to and reflective of rea- lity. In this case, Ulo Pikkov argues that animation strives for realism, bringing the representation of reality as close to the ori- ginal as possible to create an illusion of fan- tasy (Pikkov, 2010). Realism in animation involves modifying conventional fictional codes to persuade us of the reality and ma- teriality of what we see in the animation, despite our awareness that it is not real but simply an image created by the animation artist (fantasy). In Disney animation studio films, Paul Wells elucidates the concept of realism in animation, as evidenced by the viewers’ acceptance of a mouse charac- ter (Mickey Mouse) speaking and perfor- ming human-like activities (Wells, 2013b). Although the world of Disney animation is fantastical, its components strongly re- semble real-world objects. The illusion of realism in this animation style is often re- ferred to as hyper-realism. Wells introdu- ced four factors that should be considered to determine the level of realism in anima- tion: design concepts, characters, sound, and movement. Meanwhile, Stephen Row- ley took the more complex route of asses- sing the level of realism in animation using five different parameters (Rowley, 2005): Visual Realism: the degree to which the audience can understand the world settings and animated characters, as oppo- sed to the world and characters from the actual physical world. Aural Realism: the degree to which the audience perceives the sounds in the animated world/environment and cha- racters as the sounds in the actual physical world. Realism of Motion: the extent to which the characters in the animation move in a way that the audience under- stands to resemble how humans move in the real world. Narrative and Character Realism: the extent to which the story/events and cha- racterizations of the fictional characters in the animation are constructed to make the audience believe that they are watching a story and characterizations that feel real. Social Realism: the extent to which the animated film is constructed to make the audience believe that the fictional world in which the events occur is as complex and diverse as the real world. When evaluating the level of realism in animation, it is crucial to examine how the audience perceives the reality port- rayed in animated works rather than how closely physical parameters match the real world (Rowley, 2005). Despite this, both Wells and Rowley stress the significance of scrutinizing the creator’s connection with the animation or, more generally, questio- ning the creator’s genre. Patterns or struc- tures used to describe individual works of art and their construction are referred to as genres. In this case, the animation creator’s chosen genre is closely related to realistic animation. Discussing the animation gen- re is equivalent to discussing the form and style of animation selected by the creator, including formal aspects and content
  • 17. Harmonia: Journal of Arts Research and Education 23 (2) (2023): 396-414 412 Figure 6. A complete chart of the aesthetic morphology of animation. CONCLUSIONS This research demonstrates a strong connection between the history of anima- tion aesthetics and the study of aesthetic morphology in animation. Therefore, the analysis of the aesthetic morphology of an animation requires a considerable amount of data. Figure 6 shows a comprehensive chart of animation’s aesthetic morphology. When researchers study the aesthe- tic morphology of animation, they need to consider many factors. Researchers must consider not only the visual aspects but also the motion, narrative, and sound as- pects in a balanced manner. Animation comprises four intertwined elements; the- refore, disregarding any one element can skew research on the characteristics of ani- mation. Additionally, the study’s findings indicate that researchers should analyze the animation artifacts and the context in which the art object is situated. This refers to the degree to which an animation work created by the artist connects and mirrors the real world. An animation style may be identified by referencing a specific period, location, person, or cultural reference. The term denotes the quantitative accumulation of similarities among various animation works. Due to common interests, cultural similarities, geography, ethnicity, race, and nationality, many animation creators can disseminate or adopt various animati- on styles. The naming convention aims to differentiate one piece of animation from another. Comprehensive analysis of style falls under the umbrella of morphological description or analysis. It characterizes the object not only in the abstract traits and types, such as red, blue, tragic, comic, and so forth, but also in the recognized styles - combinations of characteristics that have tended to recur throughout art history. Thus, naming must be based on particular goals and uses. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT This research was conducted with financial support from the SAINTEK scho- larship. Therefore, the author would like to express his gratitude to the SAINTEK Scholarship Management at the Indonesi- an Ministry of Research and Technology- BRIN. The main author of this article is Andrian Wikayanto, and the second aut- hor is Nuning Yanti Damayanti, Banung Grahita, Hafiz Aziz Ahmad. REFERENCES Ahmad, H. A. (2008). A Thesis On Imple- mentation Of Culture And Its Visual Representation In Indonesian Anima- tion. Based On Case Study Of Japanese And Korean Animation. Woosong University. Allen, R. C., & Gomery, D. (1985). Film History Theory and Practice. Newbery Award Records. Batkin, J. (2017). Identity in animation: A journey into self, difference, culture and the body. In Identity in Anima- tion: A Journey Into Self, Difference, Culture and the Body. https://doi. org/10.4324/9781315725215 Beauchamp, R. (2005). Designing Sound For Animation (1st ed.). Focal Press is.
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