How an Animator Can Bring Your Characters to Life

One of the central features of any animated production is the character that populates it. You provide the vision for those characters. A skilled animation company sharpens that vision and brings it to life. There are many ways in which the animator develops characters perfectly suited for whatever type of project you need, from advertising animation to educational animation and more. The following are just a few of the valuable contributions the 2D animation studio can make to character design. The art of creating pitch winning storyboards is full of challenges for our animatics artist Sydney.

Target The Desired Audience

The exact look and feel of any animated project depends in large part upon the audience for which it is intended. For instance, an educational program geared toward children would use bold patterns and bright colors, whereas an animated explainer video for business executives would use more restrained design elements. The studio you choose to provide animation for your project will enhance its effectiveness by creating characters that are appropriate for the audience you wish to reach.

Animation studios will help you define the correct style for your audience right from the start by also providing you with concept design services. These services formulate vague ideas into a specific overall style. A skilled team of animators can walk you through the development of your concept and then create unique characters that fit both your vision and the audience who will be enjoying the finished product.

Visually Depict Personality

Each character in your animated project will have a distinct personality. This personality is one of the traits that will set them apart from the animated characters already out there. Through concept design and character design, your animation partner will work with you to determine the personality that each character possesses. Developing this personality may involve creating a back-story to give them history and depth. The animator will then use this background to inform their understanding and development of the character.

The animator will use their skills to take the traits that were fleshed out earlier in the process and visually depict them in the character’s body shape, facial expressions, and movements. For instance, the animator will use lines to create a body for the character that reveals their personality. Soft lines may denote gentleness, while sharp corners may reveal stronger or negative aspects of the character’s personality. Animator Moritz Schneider, for instance, explains that he used sharp edges on one of his characters to depict that character’s hidden strength and integrity. These sometimes subtle design elements convey to the viewer aspects of the character’s personality that may not be explicitly articulated in the dialogue or actions and give him or her added depth and intrigue.

In addition, the animator will use design elements such as accessories and colors to reveal a character’s thoughts, feelings, and preferences. These elements can become integral parts of the character. For instance, the yellow complexion of the Simpsons has become their trademark look, one of the reasons they first captured viewers’ attention. Reds and blues can convey a sense that the character has something in common with comic book heroes, while dark colors will give viewers the impression that the character has some less than pleasant aspects to his or her personality. Accessories can give viewers a glimpse into the character’s circumstances (such as whether they are rich, stylish, plain, or simple).

Finally, 2D animation companies can add other design features, such as facial expressions, to give the viewer visual clues to the character’s personality. At times, they will exaggerate these features to emphasize certain aspects of the character’s personality, or swerve away from strict realism to create cartoon characters that will have greater appeal to the sensibilities of the target audience. Regardless of the specific techniques they use, however, animators will all strive to produce characters that fit comfortably into the purpose and overall feeling of the project.

Create An Environment To Complement The Character Design

Finally, traditional animation studios can bring your characters to life by creating environments that complement or further reveal their personalities. For instance, an animator may choose to reflect the conflict a character is facing by inserting elements into the surrounding environment that visually clash with the character. Alternatively, the animator may choose to insert small details into certain scenes (such as background objects or colors) that match the proportions or interests of the character. A good animator will understand how the environment interacts with the characters being created so that all the elements of a project fit together convincingly. In fact, a skilled animator will be intentional about nearly every detail they add into a scene, so that the entire project comes together as a realistic and cohesive work of art.

Character design is essential to the animation process, because the characters’ personalities, appearances, and actions have the ability to affect the success of the entire project. Viewers will relate to or be turned off by their experience with those characters. As a result, the animator will work carefully to choose the colors, shapes, styles, and environmental details around the character to create a personality and role within the project that will satisfy your vision and appeal to your audiences. A skilled animator can help you not only flesh out your vision for the characters populating your project but also build them and the world around them into a form that will charm, enchant, instruct, and motivate the audiences you wish to reach.

Powerhouse Animation is a traditional 2D animation studio based in Austin, Texas with offices in Burbank, California. Since 2001, Powerhouse has been bringing ideas to life through animation, illustration, and motion graphics. With a staff of 35 in-house artists, animators, video graphers and designers, Powerhouse works on a wide variety of projects and has created animation for companies including Disney, Sony, Marvel, DC, Old Spice, Miramax, the USO and more. To learn more about some of these projects visit http://www.powerhouseanimation.com

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Anime Vs Cartoons: What’s the Difference?

In the “Anime” community, for most fans and followers, “Anime” is “Anime and “Cartoons” are “Cartoons”. For them both of the things are really different from each other. Concept board frames artist Sydney work closely with you during the initial design/concept stage to ensure the product you end up with is exactly the one you imagined, and require.

First of all, many people get confused between an Anime and a Cartoon, just because both are animated that doesn’t mean that they both are same. There are so many differences in Anime and Cartoons. While both are caricatures that may be animated, anime usually has visually distinct features for characters. So, here I will now explain the difference between these two. Anime are Japanese animated production, that come in different formats like, television series such as dragon ball z, Naruto, one piece etc., animated short films, and full-length movies. But cartoons are two-dimensional illustrated visual art, non-realistic or semi-realistic drawings.

Anime characters have distinct facial and physical features that are very similar to reality, their big eyes and small mouth are created because of cuteness. On the other hand, cartoons physical features are very far from reality than anime. Anime characters also show different kinds of distinguishable facial expressions whereas cartoons don’t.

Cartoons are generally made to make people laugh, so the genre mainly is comedy. But there are also many cartoons that are educational, teaching something good to mainly toddlers and kids in a fun, interactive way. For example, mickey mouse, Donald duck, bugs bunny etc.

Unlike cartoons, anime doesn’t stick to only one or two genres. Anime shows and movies are all based on some kind of plot which continues through the entire series, for example, bleach, one piece, Naruto, etc. Anime is based on real-life issues or something that are closer to human emotions and have many more genres than cartoons such as, drama, school life, slice of life, romance, action, etc.

But if you look at both of them as separate entities, or as same, you won’t be able to find a clear difference between the two, and that is why most of the people get confused between the two and end up calling anime and cartoons are same.

The first cartoon was said to be produced in 1499. It depicted the pope, holy Roman emperor, and the king of France and England playing the game of cards. However, Japanese animation began in the early 20’s, when Japanese filmmakers were experimenting with different techniques. By 1930s, as an alternative to the live action industry, animation was established.

As cartoon are two-dimensional figures drawn and used in animations, as caricatures in newspapers, and books. If we were to define what Anime is then the general idea of some of the common and agreed upon notions would be “Japanese, animation, vivid designs, and hand-drawn” would be predominant buzzwords.

Today, Anime only seems to refer “animations only from Japan” to make it more understandable for people. After all this is human nature to like the things which are easily understandable and easily categorized.

To make the distinction clearer, let’s take the example of the tom and jerry and dragon ball z. So, you may think what’s the difference between the two when they both are animated and have good visuals, backgrounds, sound effects and even the animated drawings are nice. But, there are many differences in them which differentiate them from anime to cartoon. Like, their concepts are totally different, as you know every episode of tom and Jerry is different and is not related to any of the previous episode or continuing some kind of story from a point but in dragon ball z every episode is related to the previous one, and continue the story from where it stopped in the previous episode. And their genres are different too, as tom and Jerry is purely based on a cat and mouse fight and made to make people laugh and their watch time fun. On the other hand, dragon ball z is kind of a journey of a saiyan to save the Earth and the universe from several threats, he fights for saving everyone, with the help of his family, friends and fellow saiyans. Dragon ball z is can be categorized in many different genres, like action, adventure, comedy, super power, etc.

Another thing in which some people may distinct anime and cartoon would be that cartoons are for kids whereas reach of anime can be extended to many other age groups and other areas.

But what I think is, cartoons are not just children material, because as we can see in the newspapers, and on television too, there are many cartoons containing and targeting many political, religious views. Most of these messages are hidden and unrecognizable for children, so that adults can enjoy watching them with kids. Whereas some of the anime contains high adult content and thus are not safe or good for little kids to watch. Those kind of anime are made entirely focusing on adult audience. But there are also some anime series which are absolutely safe to watch with kids. But nowadays, even normal anime’s may have some scenes which are not supposed to be watched by children.

So, I think, where cartoons are safe for kids to watch, anime shouldn’t be considered safe enough for them. But no matter how old you get, you can still enjoy it as it is.

I feel that, anime has deeper thought in them, well developed characters, broad story-line, a solid theme, realistic background animation, real life situations, dialogues, expressions, etc. all of these things bound us together to watch all the episodes (whether there are 12 or 24 or more than a hundred of episodes) of the anime series. Whereas on the other hand, cartoons, regardless of whether they are telling a story or just aiming for comedy, have shallow characters and themes.

Cartoons doesn’t look that creative compared to anime, as anime characters are so different from each other and very well developed too.

There’s one more thing which we can say that differentiate anime and cartoons, that is, for example, in the Simpsons, Bart is the class clown for the entire show but in most of the anime the character’s traits change dynamically, like in the starting they may be kind of shy, or maybe considered as weak or harmless, but later on they become stronger than most of the other characters.

These were some of the points I think which makes anime and cartoons different from each other.

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