Friday, August 31, 2012

2D Animation Class: Day 1- Intro

Day 1 in 2D Animation class was a bit hectic for me. I wasn't aware that I had to have a flash drive on the first day of class. My Professor's first reaction to that wasn't so nice and the quote "I don't care" seemed to be his favorite thing to say, not to mention he was openly insulting students he had yet to introduce himself to. After learning that I had just registered to his class last minute and I had not received his summer homework e-mail, he showed a little mercy but not so much that his attitude would change.

I had shown up early to the class, fully aware that the class was going to start at 5pm instead of 4pm. He was readying the classroom and stocking up the drawers with new supplies; copy paper, sketch books, pencils, erasers and such that he's supposed to be handing out to us throughout the semester. He didn't like that most of us were just sitting around (or should I say "farting around") on the computers while we waited for class to begin, so he called a number of us out of our seats to help him with the class preparations. He had me take sketch books out of a box and count them, then he ordered me to tare old art work off the walls and put them in the garbage. Afterwards I stood around waiting for him to give me something else to do. My classmates were very willing to help out as well. I guess it was their way of sucking up to get an A in his class, however, I felt that no matter how helpful I was, sucking up to him wasn't going to get me an A. Judging by how hard he was on his students at the college as well as the high school he teaches, it would take some real hard work and dedication to pass his class. And when I say hard work, I mean back breaking, slumber missing, stomach starving, work me to the bone dedication!

To begin he had each one of us approach his computer and insert our flash drives to transfer a folder that contained important files to help us with our animation journey. Here is a list of files that folder contained:

BC Syllabus (Folder)
Character Reconstruction (Folder)
Cartoon Animation By Preston Blair (Document)
The Animator's Survival Kit By Richard Williams (Document)
The Vilppu Drawing Manual (Document)
Pete's Odyssey- Final 5 (Video)
Vilppu Studio Drawing Manual Chapter 1: Gesture (Video)
Vilppu Studio Drawing Manual Chapter 2: Spherical Forms (Video)

I have yet to view all of the files, but when I have, I will write about them and post samples. If you wish to view the files yourself please contact me. I will gladly send you a copy! :)

Afterwards the Professor gave us a list of supplies we would need to begin the class. (Needless to say, you should have at least a 4GB flash drive to start) Here are the supplies needed:

Sketch Book (light weight paper, about 40 sheets, 9x11,10x11, or plain paper sized)
One Ream of copy paper (500 sheets)
Animation Pencils Color-Erase Prisma Color (2 Blue, 2 Carmine Red)
One H Pencil (Hard) or 2H
One B Pencil (Black) or 2B
Kneaded Eraser
Sharpener (electric if you can)

We were instructed to take the ream of copy paper and Acme Punch at least 100 sheets before the next class. (If you're in the class, you can acme punch your paper at any time in the classroom as long as it's not during YOUR class hours. Make sure it's alright with the Professor before your acme punch the paper because he may have a class in session and the acme puncher can get loud.)

The Professor also mentioned that you can rent a Light Box for the semester from the School Supply Room (using your CAT ID). I'm really serious about this class so I decided to go out and buy my own. The cheapest light box available was at Jerry's Discount Art Supply Store for $30; which is a great deal!

After giving us a number of things we had to purchase before the next class he showed us some junk on the computer that had to do with his previous classes and how they animated some crap... blah blah blah... It wasn't really all that important... I was so bored and frustrated with the cold of the room at that point that I was almost ready to walk out of the class and drop it. I would have surly regretted doing such a thing because I would have probably found myself in the same exact spot by the end of my last semester at Bloomfield College, trying to pass a class that is taught only by that one Professor. 

As mean and ruthless, arrogant and merciless, as this Professor was, I couldn't bring myself to drop the class. A knight in shinning armor (just kidding; his name is Malcolm) convinced me to hang in there. He told me not to let the Professor get in my head because he's like that to everyone, not just me. He's only cruel and impatient because he wants to prepare us for the real world of animators. If you can't put up with his attitude you'll never survive a real animator's job. Malcolm promised he would help me out and in return I will do the same so that we wont fail. If you're also taking this class, I suggest you partner up in case one of you misses a homework assignment or an important announcement and the other just happens to hear it because the Professor doesn't like to answer questions and I don't think he'll like repeating himself either.

Side Note For Class Mates: Don't forget to bring an Art Portfolio or a couple of drawings to show him what level of drawing you are at. Also, don't forget to e-mail the Professor your name with the subject line: Wednesday Class BC or Thursday Class BC (which ever class you are in) We don't want him to think we're a bunch of lazy kids that aren't even worth teaching. I was told that if you show him you are willing to work, he will help you.

BTW: My partner Malcolm has his own animator career blog. Visit him here:

Good luck fellow classmates and interested viewers on your journey to becoming an animation artist! :)


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