Posts tagged SOA

Rise of the Guardians Reel – Jacob Gardner

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Character Animation Reel – Rise of the Guardians from Jacob Gardner on Vimeo.

With the release of Rise of the Guardians on DVD/Blu-Ray, we wanted to share some of the work of our fellow SoA-er Jacob Gardner. He recently cut together a reel of his favorite work from the film for everyone’s viewing pleasure. Enjoy!

Note: Jacob cut it together in 720p so watch it in HD for the full experience. 🙂

Happy Birthday SOA

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Today Speaking of Animation turns one year old!

Last December we launched our site with simple goals like spreading animation knowledge, interviewing amazing artists, and building a pachyderm launching trebuchet.  We’re still waiting on the last one.

We’ve had eight really wonderful and informative podcasts in the past year (with the ninth on the way this weekend) and we’re thrilled to see that you guys have responded positively.  You seem to enjoy listening to all these talented people talk about their craft just as much as we do.  Also, we had our first ever triviriduzzle game (which some of us thought would be a total flop) but ended up entertaining plenty of people for a good amount of time.  The response was overwhelming, so we will probably do something similar again in the future.

Most importantly, though, thank you to everyone who has emailed us with questions, encouragement, or suggestions over the past year.  To everyone who has commented on a post or shared their opinions,  and everyone who has downloaded our podcasts or participated in the give-away game.

It’s been a wonderful year, and we hope to have many more.
-Steve, Jacob, Ben, & Adam :: The Character Animation School

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There’s a new animation school on the block! is a brand new online animation school designed for students at any level of experience and ability.  The school is founded by DigiCel – creators of the animation software Flipbook – and is lead by famed animator and teacher Jason Ryan. There are many animation schools both institutionally and online, but wants to bring something new to animation education.  There are great features that everyone involved is very excited about, including us at Speaking of Animation.  All four of us will be instructors at the school (some immediately and some later on).  And a few of our previous podcast guests will be teaching as well!

The Basics:

  • The full course load is six flexible 14-week semesters.
  • All classes are taught by professional animators currently working in feature animation.
  • Weekly live/recorded workflow lectures with Jason Ryan and other instructors.
  • Weekly live lectures/Q&A with instructors.
  • Weekly live critiques with instructors.
  • Community forums where students can post work for peer/instructor feedback and discussion.
  • Free and exclusive rigged characters
  • Free Jason Ryan Animation Webinars and Turorials
  • Free Digicel Flipbook software
  • Student Discount price for Autodesk Maya

How is unique:

  • Small class sizes.
    The more one-on-one time you can spend with the instructor the better.  That’s why class sizes will be restricted to 10-12 students.  This also means enrollment will be capped when it reaches capacity.
  • LIVE instructor critiques by professional feature animators.
    Where some schools provide prerecorded feedback from the instructor, all assignment critiques will be LIVE sessions. Students will interact with the instructor and ask questions, clarify notes, and discuss options, thus creating an environment similar to ‘dailies.’  These live sessions are also recorded.
  • Opt out of beginning semesters.
    Jason Ryan personally reviews the demo reel of any applicant that wishes to skip ahead.  He provides a realistic and honest assessment of the student’s ability and places them accordingly.
  • Less expensive. wants students to be able to afford to learn animation.  Check out their site for tuition information and multiple payment options.
  • Course structure designed by Jason Ryan.
    Jason has been teaching animation for over 17 years and knows how to create assignments that are both educational and challenging for students while pushing them to deliver their best work.
  • No Grades.
    Many students focus too much on getting a particular grade rather than on improving their skills, and at iAnimate that distraction has been removed.  This also makes it more like working in a studio since you get feedback on improving rather than a letter grade.
  • No minimum age requirement.
    If you want to learn animation, you want to learn animation. You don’t need to reach a certain age to start improving your animation eye.
  • Group work.
    The final semester is designed to simulate working in a production environment on a team of animators.   With the guidance of the instructor, students will work together to create an animated short.

We are very excited to be a part of this new school and look forward to seeing it grow.  Jason is incredibly passionate about teaching animation, so it is really wonderful to see this school come to life.  We are honored Jason asked us to be involved and can’t wait for first semester to start!  It’s going to be a blast and we know students are going to produce some really inspiring work.  It will be an amazing experience for instructors and students alike, so we hope to see you there!

Stay Connected

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Hey Everyone!  We’ve been working hard to make the site as accessible as possible.  You may have noticed we just added some new links at the very top of the sidebar just under the search.  SOA is now on Twitter, Facebook, iTunes, and YouTube.  We’ve also added a simple button for you to quickly add us to your Google Reader or Google Homepage.  We’ll be updating all these sources when a new Podcast is released!  We also plan on bringing you more news and even more original content! Thank you so much for supporting us and for all the great comments!

The SOA Team

-Stephen, Ben, Jacob, and Adam

Ted Ty Talk Back!

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Dear Listener,

Due to the great responses to our first podcast, Ted Ty has graciously agreed to answer any questions you might have regarding what he discussed during the podcast. Our plan is to gather up any and all questions that you might have and ask them to Ted in a follow-up podcast. That’s right. YOU get the chance to dictate the questions we ask Ted Ty.

Here’s how it’ll go:

– Post your questions in the Comments section of this post OR send us an e-mail via the CONTACT page.

– At the end of the year we will gather them up and put them together into a Q&A podcast with Ted Ty.

It’s THAT easy! So get those questions into us soon!  Let’s make this a fun, interactive podcast. We are, after-all, a community of artists and what good would this site be if we we came up with all of the content on our own and never asked what’s most on your mind about animation?

Let’s do this.


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