Invention of an Animation Technique

We are currently in the early stage of production in our English National Opera film process and I have been struggling over a decision I’ve made. The choice was between using Adobe Animate to create the animation of the film or to take the path less travelled and attempt to animate only in between Illustrator and After Effects.

Before this we had for a large part used illustrator to clean the shots for the animatic stage of the process and it is a software I and one of my teammates knows well. Conversely, Animate is a software made for animation so it includes important tools that will speed up the animation process. Unfortunately, non of my teammates have used Animate before.

Initial Rough made by in TVpaint.

Having decided to go ahead with using Illustrator, I am trying to figure out how I can streamline the process. For example, linking the project between Illustrator and After Effects has given us a sort of makeshift way of checking the

Frame cleaned in Adobe Illustrator.

animation, the use of plugins in After Effects has sped up the process of laying out each frame from Illustrator. We are also heavily reliant on the roughs of the shots made in TVpaint before we can clean them in Illustrator.

Still from shot composited in After Effects.

I’ve also been looking other technique inventors, I’ve reintroduced myself to one of my favorite animators Caroline Leaf. The academy award nominated animator created three landmark films and created a new animation technique with each of her films. Below is an interview she gave in 1975 where she demonstrates the technique of sand animation that she has invented:

I hope with this decision I haven’t doomed my project to remain incomplete.

Docued (2014) Screening Room with Caroline Leaf and Mary Beams - PREVIEW. Available at: (Accessed: 1 November 2018).

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