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Lesson 000a – Welcome

Welcome to the Stop Motion Beginners – T1 course. 

This course is designed and built to take you from absolute zero in knowledge of animation principles to, once completed, a thorough understanding of both animation principles and practices in relation to stop motion animation. I like to look at this class as a white belt level class if you were to compare it to studying a martial art. By the end of his course you should be able to execute animation techniques that will serve you well in your own pursuit of making animation art. All of these techniques are used in professional animation environments in relation to stop motion animation.

Topics:

The course covers many topics and because of this broad overview of techniques it will give you an edge in the world when compared to other individuals who try to just do and learn on their own without training. This is a training course and you will get better with time and instruction. One of the advantages to taking a course like this is the professional level instruction by your instructor. You will also be able to have access and direct communication with the instructor along with being able to take the course at your own pace.

The subjects covered in this course are:

  • Overview of Stop Motion
  • History of Animation
  • Setup for Stop Motion
  • Materials
  • Animation Principles
  • Paper Animation
  • Clay Animation
  • Pixelation
  • Animating Simulated Elements (Water/Fire/Wind)
  • Toy and Found Object Animation
  • Squash and Stretch
  • Replacement Animation Techniques
  • Movement Through Space
  • Timing for Animation
  • Television/Film/Animation Standards

Length:

The length of the course is 3 total months from the day you are enrolled in the program. You can however complete the course earlier if you desire. This allows you the flexibility to be able to manage work, school, and family time while taking the class when your schedule frees up. The modules/lessons are released to you in a week to week basis where you shouldn’t feel overwhelmed by the material but able to follow along and practice the exercises, complete assignments and quizzes all within the comfort of your home. This course is 100% online so you will need to be able to connect to the internet. Failure to complete the course in 3 months is not a problem since you can pay a small renewal fee and add another 3 months to complete the remaining assignments.

Lessons/Modules:

The course is taught 100% online through Lessons/Modules. Each lesson and module is to be completed in sequence with a few exceptions which will be marked as just extra reading or review. The Lesson/Modules will either contain text, exclusive video instructions, or reference materials for you to build both your knowledge and skills.

Mentor Access:

As a student of the course you will be able to communicate both through direct email/messaging of the instructor along with online video group chats with the instructor and other students. These will be announced to enrolled students when they become available and are completely optional for the student.

Group Forums:

Students will have access to special group forums where they can share their work, ask questions, communicate with each other and build working relationships with their peers. Many topics in the forums will be focused on specific subjects in relation to the course and it is highly encouraged for students to participate in class discussions. These discussions will be announce to the class once the student starts the course.

Quizzes:

On occasion there will be a quiz or two to test you in your knowledge of the material. Don’t worry you will not fail the course if you fail the quiz. They are really just a gauge for both yourself and the instructor to see where you are in terms of the underlining material.

Final Project:

To graduate from the course and earn your certificate you will need to complete the required final project. If you have successfully practiced all the exercises and finished the lessons then you should have no problem in completing the final project assignment and earning your certificate.

Certificate:

This is a certification course as well which means that once you complete the course and turn in your final assignment you will be issued a certificate by Stop Motion University for completing the course. The certification allows you the ability to show to others that you have a grasp of the essential techniques needed to perform stop motion animation. The certificate will also allow for your to advance to higher level courses offered by Stop Motion University.

Accreditation:

Currently, Stop Motion University is not accredited by any accrediting body or organization. The reason for this is the school is brand new and it take years of established and proven educational practices, lessons, and graduate success rates to even file for an accreditation. Also, this program is NOT meant to find you work but to EMPOWER you to be able to build animation techniques that through practice can help you to build a reel in the hopes of gaining access to productions at studios or for independent work. We hope in the future to have the school accredited and to allow for our students to have the ability to transfer their online class credits to Universities or schools as elective credits in a few years but for now we are offering teaching and education without an accreditation.

Stop Motion University vs. College Level Classes:

One of the biggest misconceptions in the world is that a college or institution will provide you with all the tools you need to work in the animation industry. This is a major problem. This program was conceived through the many interactions with students and artists throughout the world who are not getting a proper base education from Universities either large or small. Without naming schools we can tell you that even major University Graduates with Masters Degrees in animation often times lack the base abilities to execute animation even at the amateur level. This is distressing to see and our goal is to fill that gap and build from a base. You would never jump into a boxing ring with a professional boxer if you’ve had zero understanding of how to defend yourself. The same thing is true in animation… You should never try to jump into the entertainment business with zero skill or knowledge of how to do the basics of animation.

*BEWARE OF THOSE CLAIMING TO HAVE MASTERS DEGREES OR DOCTORATES IN ANIMATION!!! Many times they have no professional experience. Professionals who actually works in the industry are those for whom you should be taught by. Not by an amateur with a piece of paper.

 

 

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