CGMA - Animation for Beginners

2020 | Fall Registration - Only 3 Weeks Left!

Registration for our Fall Term closes in 3 weeks. Enroll Now!

Animation for Beginners

A 4-week introduction to animation basics designed for people with little to no previous animation training

Course overview Course overview

Course Overview

An animation starter

The animation industry has revolutionized storytelling not only in feature animation but also in live-action film, games, commercials and most recently AR/VR experiences. This course will cover an introduction to animation and some of its basic principles. The goal is to get acquainted with Maya's animation tools and ultimately decide if Animation is for you. This course serves as a foundaton for all Animation Master Academy Programs. The Animation for Beginners course is complimentary, but please note seats are limited. A $50 application fee is due when you submit your application; this fee is held pending your acceptance and will be refunded if you are not selected to participate in the course.


Course Format:   Special Workshop: recorded lecture videos; feedback is not guaranteed for all students every week)
Lecture Type:   Pre-recorded
Feedback:   Feedback is not guaranteed for all students every week. Limited feedback is given during the live Q&A sessions
Duration:   4 weeks
Assignment:   Due each week
Q&A:   Once a week
Materials:   Maya, Bouncer rig (provided)
Skills level:   Beginner
Prerequisites:   Installation of Maya. The starting .mb file downloaded to the scenes directory.

Animation for Beginners WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

What you'll learn

The more you know, the better.

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Why animation?| Overview of the class and its goals | An introduction to Maya, timeline, keyframes and the graph editor/curve | Introduction to the basic translation controls of the ball rig | How to set keyframes (translate y only.) | Bonus content – An introduction to Ease Ins and Ease Outs and breaking tangents
Continuation- Ease Ins and Ease Outs and breaking tangents | Moving the ball along a path (translate x) and an introduction to Arcs | Copying and modifying curves. Breaking up the cycle and varying/reducing the height of the bounces | Introducing some additional controls in the ball rig | Adding some squash and stretch | Bonus content – Adding some complexity in the ball's path
Continuation- adding more complexity to the ball's path interacting with the set | Make the ball come to a stop and demonstrate the difference between a bounce and a jump | An introduction to anticipation | Bonus content – reveal full ball rig. An introduction to secondary action and follow through
Continuation-secondary action and follow through | Blinks and look direction | A quick demonstration on how to render

Your Journey Starts Here

Todd Elliott has over 25 years of experience in the animation industry. Immediately after college, he worked as a production assistant with many of his childhood heroes on ABC's Muppets Tonight. However, as much as he loved The Muppets, he always knew his true passion was animation. He earned first big break in 1996 as an assistant animator on Space Jam and he never looked back. With over 15 film credits from Tippett Studio, Rhythm & Hues, Sony Pictures Animation, and a portfolio of freelance work, including Emmy award winning Arrested Development, he has found his home at Disney's Blue Sky Studios. Some of the more notable movies Todd has contributed to are Hotel Transylvania, Epic, Ice Age: Collision Course, Rio 2, The Peanuts Movie, Ferdinand, Spies In Disguise and he is currently animating on Nimona. Todd now looks forward to sharing his knowledge with students and artists interested in discovering all that animation has to offer.


October 3rd!

Fall TERM Registration

Jul 27, 2020 - Oct 12, 2020




October 3rd!

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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