Let the magic begin!

I hope you’re as excited as I am to get started learning more about the world of animation. Let’s dive right into the first two principles of animation. The first of these principles that we’ll discuss are “Squash and Stretch” and “Anticipation”.

What is “Squash and Stretch”? This is one of the most important principles of animation. The purpose is to give weight and flexibility to elements in your story, whether you’re bringing an inanimate object to life or imbuing an animated character with depth and realism. This technique can be used both subtly for realism and to an extreme for comic effect. An animator must account for all three dimensions when animating an object, how it stretches either vertically or horizontally in relation to its width, height and depth.

Here’s an example of the principle of “Squash and Stretch” that one of our animators created…

Squash and Stretch
Squash and Stretch

The second principle is “Anticipation”. Anticipation can be used to indicate the speed of an object, direct the attention of the audience somewhere else or reveal the intention of a character. It also aids in making the action appear more realistic. A great example of anticipation is a batter in baseball. The audience will watch the direction of the bat and note how far back he pulls his swing back to anticipate what will happen to the ball.

In creating an action, an animator breaks it down into three parts: preparation for the action, the action itself and the end of the action. Anticipation is the first stage of the action.

Here our animator created another example to demonstrate the principle of “Anticipation” for you…


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