Animation Training
June 16, 2004 7:07 PM   Subscribe

AnimationMentor. [Flash].
In case you want to learn animation from home.
posted by Gyan (9 comments total)
Here's the Quicktime video.

Some of the people behind it:

Gini Santos (Pixar)
Gavin Moran (Dreamworks)
Tracie Horie (Tippett)
Jeff Vacanti (Wild Brain)
Matt Logue (WETA)
Kevin Martel (ILM)
Jeremy Cantor (Sony Imageworks)
Dylan Brown (Pixar)
Scott Robideau (Disney)
Mike Belzer (Disney)
Jay Rennie (ILM)
Mark Behm (Blue Sky)
Mark Walsh (Pixar)
Mike Gasaway (DNA)
Mariko Hoshi (PDI/Dreamworks)
Rick O'Connor (ILM)
Jeff Riley (stop motion animator)
Carlos Baena (Pixar)
David Weinstein (ESC)
Glen McIntosh (ILM)
Bobby Beck (Pixar)
Mike Thurmeier (Blue Sky)
Delio Tramontozzi (ILM)
Cameron Miyasaki (Pixar)
Pepe Valencia (Sony Imageworks)
Shawn Kelly (ILM)
posted by Gyan at 7:08 PM on June 16, 2004

Disclaimer: I've no affiliation with Animation Mentor.
posted by Gyan at 7:12 PM on June 16, 2004

is it free? how come nothing but the quicktime? what software? mac or pc or both?

I'm surprised none of the above questions were answered on the site anywhere.
posted by amberglow at 8:03 PM on June 16, 2004

The site does not work with Opera 7.5
posted by jaronson at 8:59 PM on June 16, 2004

The site does not work with Opera 7.5

That made me sad, too. Here's the page that's supposed to open (without the annoying fullscreen):
posted by boredomjockey at 9:14 PM on June 16, 2004

Their FAQ:

Questions answered below:
1. How much will AM cost?
2. How are the mentors chosen by AM?
3. What format is Professional Critique given in?
4. Can I join at any time?
5. Should I take AM courses instead of traditional college classes?
6. How long does it take to complete a course?
7. Can I get feedback more than once on a particular assignment?
8. Can I see other student's assignments and hear the feedback given to
9. What if I need to go on vacation? Do I miss out on those classes?
10. How long are the classes?
11. Is there an application process or can anyone sign up?
12. When can I sign up?

1. Q: How much will AM cost?

A: We have carefully designed AM as a one year intensive character
animation boot camp. Our school will consist of 4 courses, each made up of
12 video classes focused 100% on various aspects of character animation, and
each with a corresponding assignment tailored to reinforcing the topic of
that class. While you are encouraged to work at your own pace, 1 class per
week will get you through a course in about 3 months.

Because we are dedicated to bringing you only the absolute best personal
mentors available, and due to our exceptionally high bandwidth demands, the
cost of a full course will be comparable to art school prices; however, the
intensity of our program allows you to finish in 1/4 the time it would take
at a traditional art school, providing you with a much cheaper and more
focused experience! In order to ensure that AM is as customizable as
possible, students will also have the option to sign up for the individual
classes they are most interested in rather than the entire 12-class course.

2. Q: How are the mentors chosen by AM?

A: All mentors are carefully selected by a team of professional animators
and teachers at AM. Decisions are based on both teaching ability and
animation skill, and all mentors are professionals currently working in a
animation studio. As currently working animators, we have a unique
first-hand knowledge of the skill sets of many of today's top feature
animators and we are dedicated to using that knowledge to bring you only the
best animators available.

Q: What format is Professional Critique given in?

A: VIDEO! That's right! No text feedback from Pros - it is all recorded
personally by your mentor as he/she interactively reviews your work!

Q: Can I join at any time?

A: Yes! AM is the next evolution of education. Old ideas such as
semesters and rigid start-dates are a thing of the past. Join whenever you

Q: Should I take AM courses instead of traditional college classes?

A: AM has been designed to be an all encompassing source of character
animation instruction for our students. However, traditional art classes
such as figure drawing, sculpting, etc., would be extremely valuable
companions to our program.

Q: How long does it take to complete a course?

A: Ideally we feel you would be best served by following the full path we
have laid out for you - work your way through Level A and then Level B
before moving on to C and D. In an ideal setting you would be able to get
through each course of 12 classes in around 3 months. We encourage you to
move at your own pace, but too slow a pace may negatively impact your
animation education.

Q: Can I get feedback more than once on a particular assignment?

A: Absolutely! You will quickly find that multiple critiques are one of
the most powerful features of our site. Each week you will be allowed one
primary critique, but at the same time you will have an opportunity to
upload up to 2 other assignments of your choosing for recurring critique of
your latest efforts!

Q: Can I see other student's assignments and hear the feedback given to

A: Yes! Our students will be constantly exchanging feedback with each
other, something we feel is the cornerstone of a solid animation education.
In addition, any professional feedback received by the students is viewable
by any other student! You can never hear enough feedback - even if it isn't
about your work!

Q: What if I need to go on vacation? Do I miss out on those classes?

A: No. You learn at your own pace. Review your current class as many
times as you like. Create your assignment at whatever speed you are most
comfortable with. Whenever you are ready for your next class or for
Professional Feedback, AM will be here for you!

Q: How long are the video classes?

A: Our lectures vary in length, but all are at *least* 30 minutes long!

Q: Is there an application process or can anyone sign up?

A: While we can initially only accept a limited number of students,
acceptance will not be based on skill level. You will not have to submit a
portfolio or a demo reel. We feel strongly that if someone has a positive
attitude and the eagerness to learn, they have the potential to be a solid
animator, and we want to make certain that those beginning students have the
same opportunity to learn as the most advanced students have!

12. Q: When can I sign up?

A: If you've entered your email address at our teaser site, you will be
among the first to be notified when the school officially launches and
begins accepting students. Currently we are aiming for a Fall 2004 launch.
posted by Gyan at 9:20 PM on June 16, 2004

was that from the site? I looked for a FAQ page...oh well--unless they mean public college art school prices, it's too rich for my blood.
posted by amberglow at 9:23 PM on June 16, 2004

CLASS STYLE: Each class is about 40 minutes or more in length. We've filmed and edited them in a "documentray" style where it's not just us in front of a black board talking for 40 minutes, but it's us going outside, looking at life, observing, filming footage, breaking it down, thumbnailing, planning methods, Going through shots, all new animations just for the classes as well as having a variety of input from all the amazing people we interviewed. We were also able to get permission to use a variety of different cartoons and film footage so we break this down and study it as well.

ASSIGNMENTS & MEDIUM: Any assignment can be done in any medium or with any software people choose. We offer software training in Maya because that is the largest industry standard package that most of our students will be using when they get jobs. For being a student of AM they will be the student discount of maya if they participate in a full level. Or they can download the personal learning addition for free which will get anyone by for all their needs at AM.

The assignments are based around the topic of each class. Each class builds off the previous class in any given level. Even though Level A might be seen as basic stuff we feel it is almost the most important of all the levels because this is the foundation of everything in animation. Getting to more advanced acting stuff is what everyone wants to do, but without a clear understanding of posing, timing, rhythm, cliche', etc. most acting attempts can be frustrating.

For people who want to "DO MORE" we have "overachievers" exercises to keep everyone challenged.

MENTORS: You can watch and learn from the classes, then practice the examples and assignments given in each class, then come back to the class if you want and watch it again for further understanding, then you can get real feedback from your personal mentor. Ask questions to professional animators in our periodic Live Question and Answer sessions, or on the forums or...the list goes on. There are many more things that make the experience pretty cool.
posted by Gyan at 9:24 PM on June 16, 2004

Everything's Flash-based.

Read more here and in this discussion thread.
posted by Gyan at 9:37 PM on June 16, 2004

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