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Foundations in Modern 2D Animation

An 9-week course where students will digitally create modern short animations that are fun and engaging to watch

Course overview Course overview

Course Overview

Jump Start into Animation!

Put down your pegbars and pencils, because this class is about learning animation the modern way. Students will dive head first into a series of projects specially designed to get you animating fast. Starting with the foundation, we will get an introduction to Adobe Animate CC and learn about the principles of motion. Students will practice being an animation clean up artist, design their own animation friendly characters, and build a walk cycle. This class will introduce students to basic 2D rigs (IE: Symbols), and we’ll learn to combine these new tools with traditional animation techniques. We will go over the process for finishing animation, including inking, coloring and even lighting. In the final project, students will animate their own short loop. 


Course Format:   Standard
Lecture Type:   Pre-recorded
Feedback:   Individually Recorded
Duration:   9 weeks
Assignment:   Due each week. Expect to spend 8-10 hrs/wk viewing lectures, q&a, and time on assignments.
Q&A:   Once a week
Materials:   Adobe Animate CC, Wacom Tablet (or equivalent), Adobe Premiere | Recommended reading: The Animators Survival Kit by Richard Williams
Skills level:   Beginner to Intermediate
Prerequisites:   Course pre-req: Analytical Figure Drawing, Fundamentals of Character Design

Foundations in Modern 2D Animation WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

What you'll learn

The more you know, the better.

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Get a Crash course in Flash, No wait! Please don’t crash flash, I forgot to save! | Create a Standard Animation Document | Go over basic drawing tools| Practice animating Text | Learn to animate a bouncing ball based on the principles of motion. | Discuss Timing charts | Learn how to export gif's
Hand drawn, I thought Animation was done a computer? | Continuing the basic principles of traditional animation | Learn how to rough out a drawing and create a more dynamic ball bounce with squash and stretch. | Animate a simple blob character | Add in-betweens to smooth out animation | Traditionally Animate a flapping flag
It’s like your first day on the Job! | We learn to animate by cleaning up rough animation | Learn advanced flash drawing techniques | Drawing on model | Coloring animation | Coloring line art | Brush coloring modes are explained | Work on a scene from Kitchen Magician, An animation by Jack Cusamano
Design your own Animation friendly character! | Draw a complete Animated Character turnaround. | 8 poses on the Photoshop Timeline. | Track facial features to retain likeness. | Hone our rotation abilities and keep designs very consistent. | IMPORTANCE OF SIMPLICITY
This is a BIG one! | We learn about walk cycles, and the Richard Williams way of constructing them. | Discuss the 4 poses needed to make a walk cycle | Complete a practice walk cycle | Then create an original walk cycle with your own character | Study the arcs, bounces and timing of a walk cycle | Discuss secondary animation on a walk cycle. | Demonstrate how to effectively loop a walk cycle.
Design your own character based on a voice over provided | Learn the 10 mouth shapes needed for basic speaking | build a simple face rig and animate a character talking! | Discuss Flash tricks and puppet style animation | Nested symbols and how they are used. | Learn about the FRAME PICKER | Classic Tweens and how to use them effectively with EASES | Demonstration on Layer Parenting and simple puppet rigs. | Alternative cleanup methods using the pen and pencil tool.
Movin' on up! |Animate a scene from a short film with a layered Background. | Discuss more concrete animation methods and how to draw "ON MODEL." | Using a character turn around sheet effectively. | Rough out character animation based on an animatic. | Smearing, anticipation, timing and arcs. | Pose to pose style animation. | Applied secondary animation.
It all comes together now. We’ll Learn about the entire animation pipeline | Complete and execute your own idea from storyboarding, to final animation | Learn to export animation for final compositing | Importance of PNG Sequences | This is a mini After Effects and Premiere Pro tutorial | Add lighting and shadows and other compositing tricks in After Effects to our animation. | Exporting lossless video formats | Sound and final touches | getting your animation ready for social media. | The importance of completing independent animation projects, such as submitting to "Loopdeloop." | Students will have two weeks to work on final assignment.
Students will continue to work on the final homework assignment.

Unleashing your creativity

Andrea Gerstmann is an artist and animator with a BFA in painting who has worked in the animation industry several years. She is known for her work Storyboarding on TV shows such as 'BoJack Horseman' (Netflix); 'Tuca and Bertie' (Netflix); 'Human Discoveries' (Facebook); and 'The Great North' (Fox) and her work Background Painting on TV shows including: 'Apple and Onion' (Cartoon Network); 'Pinky Malinky' (Nickelodeon); 'Pig Goat Banana Cricket' (Nickelodeon); and 'Summer Camp Island' (Cartoon Network). She is also the Creator and Director of the Nickelodeon animated short 'Dog and Squirrel' and has a YouTube Channel with instructional videos about art and animation. Andrea enjoys working on all parts of animation. In her personal work, she actively creates many animations where she comes up with the ideas, storyboards, creates the designs and animates it.


April 25th!

spring TERM Registration

Feb 10, 2020 - Apr 18, 2020




April 25th!

Pricing & Schedule

Even though our courses are the most affordable for the quality of education.

These Finance Options allow you to focus on your goals instead of the barriers that keep you from reaching them.

Employer Reimbursement

Animation Guild CSATTF

Payment Plan

Companies that hire our students

  • Naughty Dog
  • Luma Pictures
  • Google
  • EA Games
  • DreamWorks Animation
  • Blizzard Entertainment

environment design Benefits


What makes this learning experience unique?

Personal Feedback

Receive personal individual feedback on all submitted assignments from the industries best artist.

1+ Year Access

Enjoy over 365 days of full course access. This includes all lectures, feedback, and Live Q&A recordings.

Certificate of Completion

Earn a Certificate of Completion when you complete and turn in 80% of course assignments.

Flexible Learning

Learn anywhere, anytime, and at your own pace with our online courses.

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