How to dance animation style

Step into Choreomation – Keyframe

Like all of the characters in Encanto, Mirabel’s personality is reflected in the way she dances.

Choreographers are nothing new to the process of crafting animated musicals, but as technology advances, so does the desire to one-up every aspect of making a film. For the Disney musical Encanto, that meant having a choreography consultant on hand throughout the entire production for the first time in Disney history. 

An ambitious tale of the family Madrigal, living in an enchanted place called Encanto in the mountains of Colombia, the movie leaned heavily on its choreographers because “it was a huge project to be able to tell clear stories about the 12 main characters,” says Co-Director/Co-Writer Charise Castro Smith. “Movement definitely contributed to separating them.”

“We got to fine-tune each character and their movement. Really find the particularities of their footfalls or weight transfers.”—Kai Martinez

Each Madrigal child, with the exception of central character Mirabel, has a magical trait, such as seeing the future or controlling the weather. But to differentiate them further, walking tests were done early in the process, and according to Animation Supervisor Michael Woodside, there was a strong push to integrate music into the way the characters walked. 

One of the reasons for this is that in Colombia music is always on, and people are always dancing—even if a person is just crossing the kitchen to get an ingredient, says Head of Animation Kira Lehtomaki. “We wanted that rhythm to be in the bones of these characters.”

In order to make sure it was done authentically, Jamal Sims was brought in. A prolific live-action choreographer with animation credits also under his belt, he and a key member of his team, Kai Martinez, a dancer of Colombian descent who would serve as the film’s long-term reference consultant, were introduced to initial storyboards and layout. “We hadn’t done a whole lot of animation by that point,” says Lehtomaki, “so we got to explain who these characters were [and the choreographers] could start designing the dances that felt appropriate for each of them. ” 

Visual development images explored Encanto’s Mirabel in motion.

This gave the choreographers “a lot of context for us to dive into [the Madrigal] world,” says Martinez, and helped them use dance to make the most of the body shapes that the artists had designed. One example is Luisa, the middle Madrigal sister, whose magical ability is super strength. “Luisa leans heavily on reggaeton dance moves because she has great mass that we can really throw around and show the effect of the power of that,” says Woodside, referring to a mix of several genres, including reggae, hip hop, and other Caribbean and Latin American influences. Mirabel, on the other hand, is prone to mistakes, making salsa cali (a kind of double-time salsa) a perfect tool to play with her awkward nature.


Before the animators could get deep into their work, though, they needed choreography references. Armed with their introduction to the story and characters, Sims and his team had to bring a great deal of imagination to the big, empty studio space where they began to map out the sequences. According to Martinez, there was plenty of creative improvising, as when some of the dancers moved shoe boxes in and out to the beat of the music to simulate drawers opening and closing. 

The rough draft choreography references were given to production, accompanied by Martinez who served as a guide. At first she was hesitant about what the animators could accomplish. Woodside recalls talking to her early on, and her surprise when she realized that the characters weren’t going to be too cartoony. “I was like, oh, you guys can really do this,” Martinez says. “I knew it was game on.”

One of the exciting discoveries Martinez made during production was that dancers and animators speak the same language: “We are obsessed with how things move and where they initiate from.” She remembers one of the first animated sequences she viewed and how the film’s other Head of Animation Renato dos Anjos pointed out that [eldest sister] Isabela’s hip was a little too turned out: “I was like, wow, you saw that too!”

This was the first time Lehtomaki and dos Anjos had worked so closely, so early on, and for such a long period of time with a choreographer over the course of a film—an opportunity they appreciated since Martinez “really understood the characters and understood their drive,” says dos Anjos. Martinez, in turn, loved working with the animators after the dancers had finished a reference because “we got to fine-tune each character and their movement. Really find the particularities of their footfalls or weight transfers.” At times, says Woodside, what this meant was the animators showing her their work via video and “she would just stand in her living room and dance it out.” 

Going in Circles

Encanto’s collaborative process was not linear, with much of the back and forth relying on which stages the songs were in. “Until a song gets written, I don’t think we know the full scope of what even the character needs to do in that moment,” says Director Byron Howard. “So there was this great sort of circular workshopping of the characters and the story” with Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote the film’s eight original songs, the heads of animation, and the story team, being boarded and reboarded along the way. 

Carlos Romero’s storyboards set up the dynamic between energetic Gabi and wary Vivo in Vivo’s “My Own Drum” sequence.

A similar approach was used in Netflix’s Vivo, a musical about a kinkajou (rainforest honey bear) whose deep partnership with an elderly street musician named Andrés sends him on a mission from Havana to Miami, picking up Gabi, a free-spirited tween, along the way. According to Story Artist Carlos Romero, the directors, layout artists, story artists, and writers would gather in a room and discuss their vision for how a song should feel. Then, says Co-Director Brandon Jeffords, the team had to be willing to jump around, from the songwriter (Miranda, who also wrote the original songs for Vivo) to the choreographer to various other departments—“then back into storyboarding again, and then over to layout again … it becomes this cyclical process until you find something that’s working.”

Kai Martinez (right) and a fellow dancer created references for Mirabel and Dolores for Encanto’s “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” sequence.

Also important in this process was the development of the characters—something that the choreographers influenced at various points. Lehtomaki says that the first time the Encanto character of Dolores was tackled in a significant way was early on while developing the song sequence for “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” Dolores is the family gossip with the magical power of super hearing, and “Kai thought, well, if she can hear everything, she’s going to want to be very quick and quiet about all of her movements, and so she likened her to moving like a cat.”

The team took this as a source of inspiration going forward so that whenever Dolores appears, she pops up where you least expect her. The balls of her feet touch the ground first, rather than in the usual heel-toe manner, because she’s purposefully trying to be quiet. Having the cat verbiage for Dolores was great, Woodside, says, because “as we’re looking at her on-screen, [we ask ourselves,] does she feel like a cat? If she doesn’t, then we can talk about why. This was a place where choreography definitely drove animation.” 

Choreographer Calvit Hodge led his dance team in moves that would help shape the opening musical sequence of Vivo.  

Choreography also played a role in helping to shape the mood that sets up Vivo. For the opening musical sequence, “One of a Kind,” many different approaches were explored. “Vivo was jumping from this building to that building,” sliding down laundry lines and jumping into a soccer game, says Head of Cinematography Layout Yong Duk Jhun. But when the filmmaking team brought in choreographer Calvit Hodge to provide some live-action dance references for how the scene could unfold, “we realized that when Vivo’s jumping from building to building, we’re not really focused on Vivo and Andrés,” says Jhun. “We immediately knew, oh my God, that’s it! Those two characters dancing together—that’s the whole point of the sequence. [It’s about] how much they’ve been doing together for such a long time.”

This sequence laid the foundation for the characters’ friendship, heightening the emotional scenes to come and making them more meaningful. It also grounded the movie before it took off with more eclectic and raucous musical sequences that made creative use of 2D, 3D, and 2D/3D hybrids.

In Encanto, the Madrigal’s magical house had a life of its own. It was not enchanted, though, says Lehtomaki. Rather, “anything that was physically attached to the walls or floors of the house, the house could move like limbs. But if there was a chair sitting on the dining room floor, the chair couldn’t move on its own. The house would have to move the tiles underneath to move the chair.”
To Dance or Not to Dance

Another task before developing dance sequences is to answer the question posed by Howard: “How much of a musical is it if you’re going to use music? Is it a film with songs? From the get-go, all of us wanted Encanto to be a capital M musical.”

Next comes deciding where to put the sequences, something that isn’t always a pre-planned choice. “At some point the movie, the feel of it, the vibe of it, the structure of it says, this is a good place for music, or this is a character worthy of singing a song,” says Director/Co-Writer Jared Bush. “As we were going through the script,” Castro Smith adds, “Jared and I would say, okay, we think this is a song moment and kind of talk to Lin about it and see what he thought and trade ideas and thoughts about what the character was thinking and what we needed out of the moment. It was pretty organic.” 

Once a song finds its place, explains Romero of his work on Vivo, “It was important to get visuals and storytelling that kept the flow and the timing of the song as a priority to help the song feel as connected as possible—you’re trying to connect where the non-musical parts of the film have taken us so far, and fusing that with where the song is going to take us.”

Right Angles

Filming choreography is about more than just capturing movements like the turn of a hip or the swish of a skirt. It’s also about capturing angles. Woodside felt fortunate, with production during Covid, that he was allowed to attend Encanto’s choreography sessions to film different viewpoints. This way, if the directors told the animators, “you’re going to animate Mirabel walking through a crowd,” Woodside was able to share reference choreography from various angles that had been shot for that specific sequence. The directors then chose the angles they felt worked best, and this gave the animators the confidence to know that if they used those references, they were working in the right direction.  

This photography also helped the cinematographers frame the musical sequences. “All dance choreography isn’t designed to shoot at 360 degrees,” says Vivo’s Jhun. “A lot of dance choreography [should be shot] from certain angles. For example, when the dancers are moving back and forth and left to right, if you shoot from the side, it’s not going to work. You have to shoot from the front.”

Jhun appreciated that Hodge’s team helped guide him as he shot the choreography sessions “because there’s an intention of how they want to dance to show it to the audience,” he says. “It was a bit of collaboration between Calvit and his dancers and me and my camera crew to come up with [how to film] the song ‘My Own Drum.’ It was super fun.”

“…the magic of animation is picking and choosing everyone’s best elements and infusing it into the scene for the story and characters.”—Renato dos Anjos

Despite all of the efforts to achieve authenticity—from precise body movements to carefully crafted camera angles—reality is not the goal. Instead, the hoped-for result is the perception of reality as it relates to the character, according to dos Anjos. When he was watching choreographers interpret a song, he says it was tempting to just copy and paste, “but the magic of animation is picking and choosing everyone’s best elements and infusing it into the scene for the story and characters.” 

“What an animator does is take liberties,” says Vivo’s Jeffords, while Encanto’s Lehtomaki adds, “we’re always going for believable over realistic.” Easier said than done? Definitely. As dos Anjos notes, dance in animation always involves more than just specific moves. It also has to incorporate everything from the rhythm on the music track to the character’s acting in the scene. Because of this, he says, “it’s one of the most challenging things an animator can do.”  

Bending Reality

Bryan “Chibi” Gaynor (in gold) performing with Dragon House Crew on “So You Think You Can Dance” (photo by Adam Rose/FOX)

When Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer of Dragon House Crew auditioned for Season 9 of “So You Think You Can Dance,” fans were blown away by his “new” style: animation. The fascination continued in Season 10, when judges selected not one but two animators—Jade “Soul” Zuberi and Dorian “BluPrint” Hector—for the Top 20. And while we’re still waiting for an animator to be crowned America’s Favorite Dancer, one thing’s for sure: America’s caught the animation bug.

But what exactly is animation? Dance Spirit went to the pros to find out.

Where did animation come from?

This style isn’t new. Some sources say it originated in the late 1980s. Old-school animators, like Boppin Andre, drew inspiration from a form of stop-motion animation called dynamation, which brings inanimate models to life within a live-action film—think the early versions of King Kong and Godzilla. Most animators trace their history back to the 1958 dynamation movie The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (which is why Boppin Andre used to call the style “Sinbad dance”). Claymation films are also a source of inspiration for animation dance.

The resulting movement is almost human, but not quite. “When you’re animating, you’re pretending to be an inanimate model that’s trying to move like a human,” says Bryan “Chibi” Gaynor of Dragon House and RemoteKontrol crews.

“Animation is about bending reality,” adds Soul. “You want to make the audience question whether what they’re seeing is real.”

Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer (left) and Stephen “tWitch” Boss performing Like a Criminal on “SYTYCD” Season 9 (photo by Adam Rose/FOX)

How Do You Become an Animator?

Anyone can pretend to be a robot on the dance floor, but becoming a master animator takes a lot of time and research. “As with any style, start by doing your homework,” says Soul. When Soul first began animating, he would spend hours on YouTube watching animation-dance videos to pin down the basics.

Glitch stresses that you need to master the fundamentals of popping—hard hits, stopping, isolations, etc.—before you can animate. “Then you can begin to experiment and find out what feels good on your body,” he says. “For example, you can add movement—waving, tutting, gliding—to the hard hits of popping to make it look less mechanical.”

While it’s essential to learn the fundamentals, it’s equally important to develop your unique way of moving. “It’s easy to mimic someone else’s style,” Chibi say. “It takes time to find you.”

Why Now?

If animation has been around since the late ’80s, why the sudden surge in popularity? Soul explains that animation, like any form of street dance, requires exposure to grow. “Now that we have YouTube and camera phones, we can record our stuff and put it out there—and it spreads like wildfire,” he says.

When Chibi auditioned for “SYTYCD” in 2007, he not only introduced America to animation, but also set the standard for what it’s supposed to look like. The animators who have followed him—on “SYTYCD” and “America’s Got Talent,” in the Step Up movies, on YouTube and on TV commercials—continue to raise the bar. “The young people coming up are gonna have something that really amazes us,” Chibi says.

Dorian “BluPrint” Hector (left) and Jade “Soul” Zuberi performing Trigger on “SYTYCD” Season 10 (photo by Adam Rose/Fox)

A Note on Music

Jade “Soul” Zuberi of “So You Think You Can Dance” Season 10, Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer of Season 9 and Bryan “Chibi” Gaynor of Dragon House and RemoteKontrol crews all note the importance of music to style development. Because animation hit the commercial dance scene around the same time dubstep music exploded, many mistakenly call it dubstep dance. “Animation is not dubstep dance,” says Glitch.

Glitch’s music preference depends on his mood. When he wants to be expressive, he performs to slow music. Hip-hop helps him convey strength and power, and glitch-hop (a form of electronic music with deliberate “glitches” or malfunctions in the sound) is perfect for crisp, small movements.

Soul prefers dancing to classical, ambiance or glitch-hop music.

But just because animation isn’t dubstep dance doesn’t mean you can’t perform animation to dubstep music. Chibi likes using it because it offers a lot of sounds he can capture. “It can be a simple ‘tick, tick, tick’ or a big move that emphasizes the sound,” he says.

Animation dances as a means of developing organizational and leadership qualities in adolescents

Today, in our modern world, animation programs have become a kind of integral attribute, that is, they are in demand at holidays and folk festivals. The word "animation" itself comes from the Latin "anima" - which means "animation" or "revival".

What is an animator? An animator must be an artistic, sociable, creative person with a good sense of humor. To be able to subtly feel people, here you need the skills of a psychologist, a teacher, and an artist.

The animator is a professional, he can easily and confidently "ignite" the audience and at the same time not be intrusive.

Animator - creates a mood, including contests, games, drawings in his work. But above all, this is communication, he can “joke”, he must be able to dance and sing. There is no routine and monotony in his profession.

Becoming an animator is not easy. That is, they are not born, but become. To become an animator, you need to learn how to dance and speak to master certain skills and abilities. And also the animator must be psychologically prepared for this work. The activity of animators is very wide and fruitful.

Animation program - a game celebration for adults and children. It necessarily contains games, contests, quizzes. Often, the main attribute becomes an animated dance, led by a leading holiday, which acts as an explanation for showing the movement of an animated dance. And in my report I want to emphasize exactly - animated dances. At this time, all our children's entertainment events and holidays, which are held in accordance with the plan of educational work of the educational program "Druzhby Round Dance" of the teenage club "Swallow", do not pass without animators and animated dances. And the animators of all our events and holidays are pupils of the senior group of the creative associations "Contrast", i.e. children of adolescence.

Adolescents are both more interesting and complex in terms of behavior. At this age, puberty begins, the whole organism is being restructured. This category of children wants to appear to everyone around them as adults, but the interests and opportunities are still childish. Teenagers need activities to use up their boundless energy. However, often the proposals of the elders are perceived with skepticism, so it is much more difficult to captivate them. But they are happy to dance in discos, communicate with peers, participate in beauty contests and other events. And therefore, teenagers should be included in the development of events, preparation and conduct of games and competitions, trusting them with the role of leader.

Objectives: Realization of organizational and creative abilities of teenagers through animated dances

Tasks: 1. To introduce children to the new program of animated dances;

2. Study new programs and pedagogical technologies;

3. Analyze the desire of children in an entertainment program with animated dances;

4. Carry out the event;

5. Social adaptation of migrant children and children living at the State District Power Plant on the territory of the Industrial District;

6. Create conditions for the formation of an active life position;

7. Develop organizational and creative abilities in adolescents.
The number of animation team may vary, but the backbone usually consists of 5-6 people.

Animation programs for children

At each of our events (children's holidays, concerts, competitions, theatrical performances, performances and a New Year's fairy tale), animators (pupils of the senior group) hold a children's disco - MINI-CLUB, according to the plan of educational work according to the educational program "Dance of Friendship". In addition to the above activities of the creative association "Contrast", you can also hold a Mini-club in summer health and labor camps. That is, the Mini-Club is held, as usual, not only at expensive children's parties (kindergarten graduation party, birthdays in restaurants and cafes, resort holidays in 4 * and 5 * hotels), where mainly children with materially secure parents, it can also be carried out for children of the social contingent and in the micro-society in which children of different nationalities live (migrant children), where the issue of tolerance, fostering respect for each other, for different cultures (street playgrounds, camps) is acute.

The purpose of the mini-club animators is to keep the children entertained as much as possible, to give parents the opportunity to relax in peace or go about their business without worrying about them, their whereabouts and safety.

For parents giving their children to animators, the most important factor is to ensure their safety, so it is very important that the animators are attentive, helpful, and, if necessary, can provide the child with first aid.

The work of animators in mini-clubs has its own specifics. First of all, professional animators with special pedagogical training and experience working with children should work here. And the teenagers who study do not have a special pedagogical education and experience working with children, and therefore the senior teacher of additional education must control and observe the conduct of the event by the animators. Animators should be kind, sensitive, sociable and attentive people. They have to solve interpersonal conflicts of children, direct their activities, interest, captivate. The animator must provide each member of the children's group with the opportunity to actively participate in all matters, constantly changing the composition of the participants and the distribution of roles in groups.

It is advisable that before starting work in the mini-club, animators take a course in practical animation and mandatory safety briefing. Training of animators in practice (work planning, rehearsals, preparation of costumes, development of holidays, analysis of events, etc. ) and improvement of their activities should continue throughout the entire period of their work in the mini-club.

Each year in the “Swallow”, events are held as a holiday of English culture, the Day of National Unity, a New Year's fairy tale for younger groups, New Year's show for middle groups, New Year's party for senior groups, Valentine's Day, Defender of the Fatherland, Day of the Fatherland Day, International Women's Day (beauty contest "Miss Swallow", "Come on, girls", etc.). And all of the above activities are our pupils of the senior group, that is, the animators conduct themselves. The senior teacher of additional education, together with his wards (animators), develop scenarios, costumes and repertoire of animated dances (famous children's animated dances Aram-Zam-Zam, Ducklings, Pinocchio, DJ Radikov, Fixies, Paravoziki, Soku-Soku-Bachi-Vira and many well-known children's animation repeat dances). And the movements of animation dances are very simple, accessible to every child. For example, we hold hands, 4 steps forward, 4 steps back, clap our hands, stomp our feet, blink our eyes, jump around ourselves ... and then accelerate. Children simply adore such dances and teenagers who run a mini-club also really like it. Children also really like the song "I draw, DJ Radikov." It is very fun and spectacular if you give the children ribbons in their hands and repeat the words from the song with movements ...

Events for the 2015-2016 academic year at Lastochka


Event name



English Cultural Festival

Martynovskaya Lisa, Tarabykina Karina


National Unity Day

Martynovskaya Liza, Tarabykina Karina


New Year's fairy tale "The Snow Queen" for younger groups

Masha Sleptsova, Evelina Permyakova, Sasha Torduin and Zabava Theater Studio of the Warm House Library


New Year's show in the style of "Dandies" for medium groups

Talanova Luda, Taranova Nastya


New Year's Gatsby Party for Senior Groups

Sleptsova Masha


3 in 1 Party Event

Martynovskaya Lisa, Nikiforova Veronika

Events for the 2016-2017 academic year at Lastochka


Event name



English Cultural Festival

Brundukova Sveta, Talanova Luda


National Unity Day

Bloodless Alina


New Year's fairy tale "Seven months" for younger groups

Angelina Karnyshova, Masha Sleptsova, Evelina Permyakova, Sasha Torduin and Zabava Theater Studio of the Warm House Library


New Year's show performance dedicated to the Year of Cinema for middle and senior groups

Sleptsova Masha, Talanova Luda


Valentine's Day


Defender of the Fatherland Day


Miss Swallow beauty contest dedicated to International Women's Day

In all of the above events where young children are involved, our animators traditionally end the holiday with a MINI-CLUB with animated dances. Recently, we have renamed the mini-club with an interesting name - "Children's Club".

Participation of animators in design work for the 2016 academic year



Design work title



City competition “Choice. PROF. Yakutsk", in the direction of "Variety dramaturgy"

Scenario of the traditional event p/c "Swallow" "In a single family", dedicated to Unity Day

Martynovskaya Liza


Children's research and design competition “Idea. Creation. Science»

Research work on the topic: "The similarity and difference between the traditional folk holidays of the Yakut and Ukrainian peoples"

Sleptsova Masha


City Research Conference "Step into the Future"

Research work on the topic: "The similarity and difference between the traditional folk holidays of the Yakut and Ukrainian peoples"

Sleptsova Masha

In order for parents and their children to be informed about the work of the mini club, it is necessary to carry out colorful promotional events in the form of an announcement at the beginning of each week, and then daily and in more detail. The brighter and more interesting information about the upcoming event is given, the more participants will be attracted to it.
The forms of presenting information can be very different: an announcement on the radio, showing prepared videos, posting colorful announcements on an information board, etc. etc.

Animation in the mini-club of the creative association "Contrast" should differ from the entertainment of children at school or kindergarten in its festivity, colorfulness, spectacularity, so that children will be remembered for a long time, so it is important to carefully select interesting games, entertainment, contests and often change them. And the main feature of the mini-club is mass entertaining repetition dances, i.e. children's animated dances. Alternative arrangements should be considered in case of bad weather or any other unforeseen circumstances. Programs for children should be differentiated by age (from 3 to 6 years, from 6 to 9and from 9 to 12 years old) and are made taking into account the characteristics of this age.

A brief description of age characteristics is proposed:

- Young children are inquisitive, mobile, active, but quickly get tired, so a quick change of activity is necessary. Children of this age have great authority of their elders, they try to imitate them in everything, play and dance with pleasure. However, we must remember that they must be monitored very carefully, as they quickly get tired. They know little and know little.

- Middle-aged children are characterized by increased excitability, emotionality and even conflict. They are easily addicted to play, competition, creative work. However, it is important to keep this interest with bright events and interesting things.

For animated dances, the age of children is unlimited. Animated dance movements are accessible, positive and interesting for everyone, that is, they unite everyone. After the children's disco Mini-club, the children leave all happy, with a good positive mood.

To make it more interesting and fun for children, the hosts can dress up as clowns, pirates, Indians, etc. The mini-club animators also organize and organize children's shows. Rehearsals start a week ahead. The main thing is to involve everyone who wants to, but it is impossible to impose something on children if they do not want it. Many children are engaged in dance, sports, music circles at the place of residence and have ready-made numbers. This makes it easier for the animators. For those children who do not have special training, dances with light movements are offered. Children willingly sing songs to the soundtrack, parodying famous singers. At the end of the show, all the children are invited to the stage, they perform a club dance.

Preparing for the final animation event requires a lot of time, effort, energy, but on the other hand, the return from it is great, because parents with great pleasure watch the performances of their children, who have matured, tanned, learned to play on stage, dance or have mastered any other skills and abilities. Parents will always be satisfied with the rest if the child liked it.

Since theme days and preparation for them are of great importance in animation programs for children, let's dwell on one of them in more detail.

Technology for the creation and implementation of animation programs

Technology for the creation and implementation of animation programs means a set of animator's work methods, the organization of this work, the use of special technical means (objects, structures, tools and devices). This is a complex and multifaceted process, since it solves the following tasks: the creation of animation programs, the economic calculation of the cost of each program, their implementation, and, finally, the creative implementation of the programmed animation events with subsequent analysis. This technological process is a complete system in which all components interact.

The technology for creating and implementing animation programs as a system consists of several interconnected subsystems:

- organizational - organization of joint activities of the animation team, economic, technical, advertising departments;

- instructor-methodical - creation and development of scenarios for events, texts of excursions, selection of sports games and competitions, compilation of hiking routes with subsequent development of methodological recommendations based on generalization of experience;

- directing - distribution of roles, drawing up a plan of rehearsals, staging a play, show;

- technical - preparation of technical means (objects, structures, instruments, etc. ), platforms (stages) for animation events, props, scenery, lighting, musical accompaniment, etc.

All subsystems make up a technology system that serves the basis for the functioning of the animation service. Animation activity is a real and very special world with its own rules of action, which are performed by professionals in order to include as many people as possible in the process of their implementation. Here there are specific patterns of functioning of animation activity.

At the moment, the senior teacher of additional education is a methodologist-animator (choreographer), who is engaged in staging dances, preparing scenarios and shows, developing costumes and conducting rehearsals, and an organizer-animator who ensures the organization of the process of animation activities with everything necessary.

In addition to the senior teacher of additional education, who is directly part of the animation team, the artist who designs the scenery for the performances, draws announcements, posters and other materials for them, and the tailor who sews and is responsible for evening costumes of animators.

Expected result:

- acquaintance with new modern pedagogical technology;

- increasing the cognitive activity of adolescents;

- development of acting skills and stage speech;

- self-realization and self-disclosure of the personality of adolescents through animated dances;

- development of organizational and creative abilities in adolescents.

Lose Yourself in the Dance: Tips for Boogie Your Characters

Tips on how to animate your characters as if they were in a real club.

It's time to get up off your desk and get boogie-woogie - or if that sounds too burdensome, you can just bring the characters to life to do the same.

But while it's relatively easy to replicate walking or running with something like After Effects or Photoshop, it's another story when it comes to the art of getting characters into the rhythm of the music.

Despite this, over 110 animators tried their hand at presenting short little clips for The Big Jig, Seed Animation's virtual "animation festival" celebrating all things cartoon and choreography. Find a selection of the best jigs below according to the killer loop at the home of Sam Worskett of Mcasso. “It's a bop, peeping out.

Through Seed, we got in touch with some of the artists who shared their tips for creating the perfect animated dancer, as you can read below with sketches, GIFs, and shooting reels to show the process. Thanks to everyone who participated for their advice, and good luck getting your kids to lose themselves to dance Daft Punk.

“Because I'm not really into dancing and don't know much about current trends, my work started with research. I soon found a dance called Shuffle, which I thought was perfect for the Big Jig's techno vibe.

“After that, I began to develop character. Since the shuffle dance mainly involves legs, I gave my character long and massive ones.

“Particular attention was paid to his legs, as they are the main expressive elements of the dance. Even though my animation was in 2D, the legs were modeled in 3D, which I hope helped create a believable sense of movement."

TILT animators explain how they made their unique performances.

Article content

  • 1 James Carbutt
  • 2 Pip Williamson
  • 3 Richard Behrens

James Carbutt

“For my Big Jig, I wanted to create a parade. I wish I could say it was an original idea, but I basically stole the concept from Parallel Tooth's CVISION Christmas bumper, with other heavy inspiration coming from Eran Hillely's Pictoplasma titles and Andrew Bell's Instagram animations. There's something special about having so many characters moving at the same time, it makes you want to watch the animation more than once.

“My plan was to create a rough patchwork of characters, each swaying and bouncing together, each doing their own thing to the music. If you've ever seen a dance scene from the movie Hot Rod where all the characters are dancing completely uncoordinated outside of 7-Eleven or whatever, that's the kind of good mood I've been aiming for. I danced a lot in the mirror to suppress movement.

“So the process side of things was pretty simple. I sketched the characters in pencil and dragged them into Illustrator. This is where I did most of my designing and getting my characters ready for After Effects. They were animated using layers of shapes and a small amount of Rubberhose (for the legs). The animation makes heavy use of path and mask animations and is incredibly messy.

“It was important that all the guys bounce and bounce to the song even though they were all doing their own thing, so I used the bouncing ball animation as a guide for slowing down and timing.

“All the characters in the frame are moving in time with the ball, with slight offsets and secondary animations to make things spicy. Then I added bounce to the whole gang."

Cool beans, James. Cool beans.

Pip Williamson

"The Big Jig intro was based on a true story. One of the great things about festivals is that you will often see stewards and crowd safety personnel just enjoying the music and taking a few steps forward. Job.

“I wanted to make sure my character's dance would tell you something about him. In this case, it meant bringing his appearance as close as possible, showing that the father's work uniform and body didn't mean he wasn't having any fun.

“When asked to create a dancing character, the first thing that comes to mind is a particular well-known or viral dance move. I think Seed was also wise, since the brief specifically requested that we avoid the toothpick!

“But I'm an animator, not a choreographer, so I did a little research and took references from the play by Donald Glover and Major Lazer Method Studios. My advice is to always use links, especially when it comes to dance.

“More technically, the dancing character is likely to shift his weight from foot to foot, so it's best to animate the hips first. They can help you set the pace before worrying about your legs and weight distribution. .

“Rigging plugs can also help, as they give you the freedom to move the ends of your limbs (arms and legs) while the base is attached to your already moving hips. (I used Rubberhose for the legs and limber for the arms).

“I also decided to use frame-by-frame animation for the secondary movement only, once I had the main body move. It was important that all my main movement was in time, and After Effects is simply the best tool for this, as the graph editor works with charm. "

Richard Behrens

“Dance, festival vibes, hot summer days. For the Big Jig, I started creating some concepts with these keywords in mind. But I quickly discovered that all my ideas turned out to be a bit of a cliché. some dance moves in the head, some guys with booze and a rock star who dived on stage and danced while he was being held down by the crowd. I think the last one is still pretty cool as a little concept.

“At the same time, I wanted to practice blurring frames and cel animations for the character. But I also didn't want this project to become too labor intensive. I wanted to stay away, but I also wanted to stand out and have something cool. It all ended with the creation of this particular stereotype. I decided to make him too useless, so useless that he couldn't dance anymore and he just passed out.

"I 'borrowed' some ideas from my fellow animators. The tan idea was shamelessly stolen from a snapshot of Ross Plaskiw's Instagram page, and the sitting pose was inspired by an Emanuel Colombo movie. ok in the plan and idea i had in mind so i just went ahead.

“I drew my character (Pip and James said his name is Chad) in general terms and in various poses.

“I decided to cut out the limbs and body parts in After Effects and make a simple rig to get the rough motion right in the animatic. I used my animatic as a reference for a rough animation I made with Rough Animator on the iPad Pro.

“When I was happy, I cleaned up the animation in Adobe Animate. From Animate, I exported various layers with transparent backgrounds so that I can open them in After Effects and still be able to change the colors.

“I drew the background in Procreate and did the coloring, camera movements, background crowd and some other small changes in After Effects.

"The big jig was definitely a blast and I'm ready for more."

It was fun to make this dancing grandpa for #thebigjig hosted by @seedanimation. Equipped with #bendylimbs Rig @eyedesyn!

— Marina Nakagawa (@lambcoke) July 10, 2019

“Because I don't know anything about dancing, I checked a lot of dance videos and photos for reference. This video was especially helpful."

See how Marina faked and brought her main character to life below. Marina used a Bendy Limbs Rig designed by E.J. Hassenfratz aka Eyedesyn.

のニメーションの behind the scenes animation ちょこっと。 #animation #3Dart

— Marina Nakagawa (@lambcoke) August 24, 2019

“I find Flash/Adobe Animate to be a pretty good program to smooth motion, so all my rough work was done in this one. I then used Photoshop to clean it up, simply because I prefer brushes in it.

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