Big Screen Traditional Animation is Back!!!

This being my first post on my new blog it is only fitting that I discuss something really important to me, traditional animation.

As a kid there was only one thing I wanted to do as a career (besides fight crime with the Ninja Turtles) and that was draw. One day, it came to me that I could merge my two passions drawing and storytelling with animation. Now, in graduate school I am starting to realize that dream as a hand drawn animator. First, I want to make something clear and say that I love all forms of animation. 3D, cut-out, clay and puppet, etc… I mean, the Pixar films are some of my favorite animated films and the Wallace and Gromit stop motion films are amazing. For now I just want to take some time to talk about hand drawn animation for two reasons. One, it is my personal preferred style of choice. Two, because for a while now any time I said I wanted to be a hand drawn animator I was made to feel as if that ship had sailed. For instance, many have said that hand drawn animation is a dying art form. This was very disappointing to me when I was going through college. Constantly hearing people say things to me like “Do people do that anymore?” Or when I’d say well Walt Disney started his own company with hand drawn animation and look what happened. They’d reply that that was a different time. However, through all the discouraging answers no one and nothing has ever been able to turn me away from my ultimate dream of making my own animated films that stir the emotions of those who view them. Now, you may be wondering if there really is a future for hand drawn animation or if I am just some stubborn animator who wants to continue in a nonexistent field. Well, as I continue to get more and more in the animation industry I have found that the true professionals will tell you that traditional animation has never left. It continues to thrive in commercial work, independent films, and the highly successful foreign films.

So, if there are any young animators out there reading this who are concerned as I once was about the state of hand drawn animation I can assure you that it will go on. How do I know this? Because when everyone else has traded in there pencils for a mouse I’ll still be working those late hours with a good old pencil and some punched paper.

-DM

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