I'm confused, I want to be an animator but...

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This topic contains 7 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by Pyrite 4 years ago.

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    I have been doing animations on my own on toon boon harmony, its been 6 months, I want to be an animator, I love 2d and I think in future I need to learn 3d too, to keep up with the market.

    Currently, I have these problems:
    1.) I can't afford a good school in my country/there seems to be no good institute...(there is one school but it goes way ahead of my budget and there is an entrance exam(general aptitude and other 2) instead of portfolio review which seems stupid for me)
    2.) I came across animation mentor, animschool but they're directly 3d, still scared to invest that big amount
    3.) I want to learn 2d as fast as possible then go 3d(how should I go about it)

    Is forcedrawing website best way to start learning 2d, and how to go about frame by frame, I started doing frame by frame by looking at references from youtube and I do pose gesture practice from this site itself I do it under 2 minutes, though not that good.

    The only thing is how do I go about 2d and then for 3d is animschool the best way to approach?
    Are there better budget alternatives?

    After all, it depends on the portfolio, so I want deep strong learning.

    thanks a lot!

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    What I'd recommend is that you ditch the animation school thing entirely. What art-based schools usually teach you is

    1. How to approach your art (animation in your case) as a job
    2. How to critically look at your art and accept critique
    3. The basics concerning your artform as well as exploring different mediums.

    All of these things can be achieved by yourself and if you need a mentor there are cheaper ways online for example animatorsguild.com and you can do that once ever two months or so. Post your animations on forums and receive critique, do some online research. There is a big community that can help educate you and further you on your journey that can be tapped into either for free or a much lower cost.

    I hope this helps!


    School is a shortcut, if you get in one you'll learn faster.
    Try the entrance exam if you can, maybe it will give you an idea of your current level.
    If it's only been six months since you started animated/drawing it will be extremly difficult to achieve the same kind of work you do in school all on your own. There are some course online ( schoolism and stuff like that) but they are mostly master classes, not dedicated to beginners.
    I really don't think online classes can replace direct criticism from someone of experience.

    Anyway you'll need to work a lot.
    Good luck


    I like to add that the principles of animation are the same no matter the medium (traditional, 3D, stop motion, etc.). A good staring point is to read the book The Animator Survival KIt, there is also a video version of the book http://www.theanimatorssurvivalkit.com/. I know people in the industry that were self taught, they learn by watching cartoons, books, videos. Learn animation in the medium that is easier for you. I recommend drawing because it train your eye and is cheaper.

    Good luck!


    As someone that paid to go to a top-tier school for animation, I recommend learning as much as you can beforehand, trying to get some job experience beforehand, and then re-evaluating whether you really need school to advance yourself. A degree does not get you a job as much as your portfolio and reel will. Additionally, having tuition debt and working in an industry that you may not get paid very well to start is very stressful.

    All that being said, for 3D it can be really helpful to be at a good school if you need access to expensive software, and learning how to use it quickly is hard without a little help from an actual teacher. In picking schools, make sure you go to one where the teachers have significant and somewhat recent industry experience.

    For 2D, I had a teacher that had worked at Disney for over 15 years and all he really did was teach us this book: The Animator's Survival Kit by Richard Williams. If you master all the concepts in that book, you will be an outstanding 2D animator.

    Gesture drawing is important and you should keep going with it, not just because it will help you learn form and movement, but it will actually make you faster at drawing. And you need to be fast because you will be drawing a lot! It will also help you do a first pass at what you're animating quickly and get your ideas about the motion into it before getting into the nitty-gritty of adding detail or secondary animation like fabric or hair moving. Also having those expressive poses in your head gives you a library of reference when you are trying to make your characters act/show emotion/tell a story.

    Everything you learn with 2D animation will make you a better 3D animator. I learned 2D first and it made 3D easier for me because I could focus on learning how to use the software and not worry about learning arcs and eases and basic aspects of motion at the same time.

    I wish you the best of luck! Just keep practicing! :)


    Well, i did it backwards, i was a terrible 3d animator 10 years ago, i learned the 12 principles of animation in 2016 i am still a rookie but, at least i know the basics and know how to continue learning, i read animsquad has a 2d workshop, but you should have a good reel to learn more in that workshop.

    Begin to draw inbetweens, but is not the only way to learn 2d animation, is just my point of view, and try to create your own style, but its not a thing of 2 years of study (for some pleople maybe) is a thing to learn for life.

    And about the job, there is everything out there, a man didnt took any 3d course, just did a technical degree of design and animation of 1 year, and after 8 years learning he is now at a big studio, a man has made the animd squad courses and he achieved a job at mpc. And a man studied at animation mentor and a university degree of 5 years and he has only local jobs, so you see, its not a perfect formula, like the members of the group had told you, keep practicing, reading, and almost forgot, learn acting from theatre

    Bless for your luck


    Blender - Grease Pencil

    It is a free 3D program with a full 2D animation section now. Check out the tutorials from the Blender artists. Sign up for some of the forums. Sign up for ArtStation. View livestreams from various artists who work in animation (Aaron Blaise for instance). Post your work in as many places as you can.

    Interact. Interact. Interact.

    If it's in the budget, go to a con or two and speak to artists there.

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