2D and Stop Motion Animation TASK 1

Everything for task 1 and all research things (hope, animation, timelines and etc.) will be on this post

Research and Planning

Research on Hope

Vocabulary definition of Hope:
a feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen.
Synonyms: aspiration, desire, wish, expectation, ambition, aim, plan, dream, daydream, longing.
Opposites: dejection, hopelessness, despair.

Almost all major philosophers acknowledge that hope plays an important role in regard to human motivation, religious belief or politics. Historically, evaluations of hope change together with the prevailing view of the relationship between human action and the future.

Ancient thoughts of Hope

In early Greek thought, hope is often seen as an attitude of those who have insufficient knowledge or are easily swayed by wishful thinking. It has a primarily negative reputation. In the dialogues of Thucydides, it is similarly noted that those who hope typically have a poor understanding of their situation, fail to come up with good plans, and things go badly for them in war.

A slightly more nuanced perspective is often seen to be reflected in Hesiod’s version of the tale of Pandora.


Short summary of the story:

In Greek mythology, Pandora was the first human woman created by the gods. As Hesiod related it, each god helped create her by giving her unique gifts. Zeus ordered Hephaestus to mold her out of earth as part of the punishment of humanity for Prometheus’ theft of the secret of fire, and all the gods joined in offering her “seductive gifts”. According to the myth, Pandora opened a jar, in modern accounts sometimes mistranslated as “Pandora’s box”, releasing all the evils of humanity, leaving only Hope inside once she had closed it again.

It must be noted, however, that there are many competing interpretations of why Hope remained in the jar. Was it to keep hope available for humans or, rather, to keep hope from man?

Hope can be looked in a good and bad way:
“a comfort to man in his misery and a stimulus rousing his activity”  or
“idle hope in which the lazy man indulges when he should be working honestly for his living”

These different interpretations of Pandora’s myth are taken up throughout the history of Philosophy.

Greek philosopher Plato also adopts a rather negative attitude towards hope 
by recounting a myth according to which the divine beings give us “those mindless advisers confidence and fear, (…) and gullible hope”. In the “Philebus”, by contrast, he seems to also allow for a more favorable view of the role of hope in human life. The relevant discussion of hope takes place in the context of an argument about “false pleasures”.

Christian authors on hope

Christian philosophers such as Augustine and Thomas Aquinas analyse hope as one of the most central virtues of a believer and that Hope is a part of rational faith. Saint Paul states that we can only hope for what is uncertain. Nevertheless, such hope can be the product of the experience of suffering. He also emphasises the way in which hope goes beyond the evidence.

Augustine of Hippo discusses hope systematically in chapter two of his Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love.

Hope is there distinguished from faith. First, hope is necessarily directed to future events, whereas faith can also relate to past events (such as Christ’s resurrection).Second, hope only relates to what is good for the hopeful person, whereas faith can also relate to what is bad (such as punishment for one’s sins).

The hope for a life after death also plays an important role in Augustine’s political philosophy. Augustine finally emphasises that the hope for a future life underlies all true human happiness.

Hope in 17th and 18th century philosophy

In 17th and 18th-century philosophy, hope is discussed by most philosophers as a part of their general theories of motivation and cognition and often discussed as a “passion”. Emotions and desires together are classified as passions that generate action, of which hope is one of them. Hope is seen by most philosophers in this period as a motivating factor in human agency. 

According to René Descartes, hope is a weaker form of confidence and consists in a desire (a representation of an outcome to be both good for us and possible) together with a disposition to think of it as likely but not certain. This means that hope and anxiety always accompany each other. Hope also underlies the more complex passions of boldness and courage.

Thomas Hobbes adopts a similar analysis.
For him, hope is a complex passion or a “pleasure of the mind”, a pleasure that arises not from direct sensation but from thinking.

Spinoza, however, understands hope as fundamentally irrational. He argues that it must be the result of false belief inasmuch as it does not correctly represent that everything is governed by necessity. Additionally, in the Ethics, Spinoza describes hope as one of the causes of superstition, especially as it is always accompanied by fear.

From this research we can learn different attitudes towards Hope:

1. It can have a negative reputation, because people doesn’t understand their situation and are too lazy to change something, which is why they hope for something to happen.
2. Hope can be gullible. People can get easily persuaded to believe something (false hope).
3. Hope can be a product of the experience of suffering.
4. We can only hope for what is uncertain.
5. Hope is distinguished from faith.
6. Hope can be seen as motivating factor.
7. Hope and anxiety might accompany each other.
8. Hope can also be a passion of boldness and courage. When people hope for something they can become more courageous.
9. Hope can be a “pleasure of the mind”. People help themselves feel better when hoping for something good to happen.
10. Hope can be accompanied by fear.


References that are informed by Hope

Grave of the Fireflies

Release date: 1988
Director: Isao Takahata 
Story by: Akiyuki Nosaka

This story is about a teenager charged with a care of his younger sister. The action is happening after an American firebombing during World War II, which separates these two children from their parents. This is a tale of survival and represents the struggles of this period of time. These siblings must rely completely on each other in order to survive and stay alive.
In this tale we can see hope to find food and a place to sleep, hope to survive and find your parents, or at least hope them to be alive.
Hope keeps them on going. Without hope they would have probably given up and just waited to die.
However, as mentioned before, sometimes hoping on something doesn’t always mean it is possible. Sadly, at the end the little sister didn’t survive. There was nothing her brother could do, but at least he knew he done everything, which makes him feel better. If he gave up, he would grieve himself that it was his fault his sister died.
This tale shows that hope can keep us on going and gives us strength, even if it is just a tiny possibility that a certain thing will happen.



Investigating 2D animation

Animation – the process of making the illusion of motion and the illusion of change by means of the rapid display of a sequence of images that minimally differ from each other.

Animation history timeline

Paleolithic cave paintings


Animals were often represented with multiple legs in superimposed positions. It has been claimed that the flickering light of flames can induce an illusion of motion in these paintings.

There are other early examples of animation, but it is not sure if those were meant to be animation because of a very low frame rate. However, the practise of illustrating movement over time provided a development towards animation art.

Here are some examples:

5,200-year old pottery bowl discovered in Shahr-e Sukhteh, Iran. The bowl has five sequential images painted around it that show phases of a goat leaping up to nip at a tree:



An Egyptian mural approximately 4000 years old, found in the tomb of Khnumhotep at the Beni Hassan cemetery, features a very long series of images that apparently depict the sequence of events in a wrestling match.


Vitruvian Man
Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man drawing shows
multiple angles, implying movement.


Animation Before Film

With the spread of the Industrial Revolution in Europe and North America in the 18th and 19th centuries came experimentation with machines that would make images appear to move.

Magic Lantern
The Magic Lantern is an image projector using pictures on sheets of glass. Since some sheets contain moving parts, it is considered the first example of projected animation.
Christiaan Huygens sketches for magic lantern slides have been dated to that year and are the oldest known document concerning the magic lantern.

Parts (for instance limbs, hands, etc.) painted on one or more extra pieces of glass moved by hand or small mechanisms across a stationary slide which showed the rest of the picture.[

The Magic Lantern:

Christiaan Huygens sketches (1659):


The thaumatrope housed a rotating mechanism with a different picture on each side.
When rotated, you saw a combined picture (known as persistence of vision).
It is a small disk with different pictures on each side and is attached to two pieces of string.



The phenakistoscope featured spinning disks reflected in mirrors that
made it seem like the pictures were moving. It was invented in 1831, by the Belgian Joseph Plateau and the Austrian Simon von Stampfer.
Technique:  It is made of a disk with a series of images, drawn on radii evenly spaced around the center of the disk. Slots are cut out of the disk on the same radii as the drawings, but at a different distance from the center. The device would be placed in front of a mirror and spun.


The zoetrope was a hollow drum that housed images on long interchangeable
strips that spin and made the images appear to move. It was invented by William George Horner.

Technique:  It is a cylindrical spinning device with several frames of animation printed on a paper strip placed around the interior circumference. As the cylinder spins, the viewer looks through vertical slits around the sides to view the moving images.

Zoetrope’s technique is similar to Phenakistoscope’s.  Zoetrope’s advantages are that it can be viewed by several people at once, and it doesn’t require a mirror. 



The flip-book, also known as the kineograph, reached a wide audience and is credited
with inspiring early animators more than the machines developed in this era.
The first flip book was painted by John Barnes Linnett.

A flip book is a small book with pages, each having one in a series of animation images located near its unbound edge. The user with a thumb then flips all pages.

The first flip book:


The praxinoscope expanded on the zoetrope, using multiple wheels to rotate images.
It is considered to have shown the first prototypes of the animated cartoon. The first animated projection on a screen was by Charles-Émile Reynaud. He projected the first animation in public, Pauvre Pierrot.



“Pauvre Pierrot”:


The Silent Era

The early 20th century marks the beginning of theatrical showings of cartoons. Many animators form studios, with Bray Studios in New York proving the most successful of this era. Bray helped launch the careers of the cartoonists that created Mighty Mouse, Betty Boop, and Woody Woodpecker.

This year was created the first entirely animated film, using stop-motion photography to create action. It is called “Humorous Phases of Funny Faces“.

Length: 3minutes
Directed by: James Stuart Blackton

Humorous Phases Of FunnyFaces - Blowing Air.jpg

This year was created the first animated film using hand-drawn animation, and is considered to be the first animated cartoon. It is called “Fantasmagorie“.
Directed by: Émile Cohl.


Katsudō Shashin
, sometimes called the Matsumoto fragment, is a Japanese animated filmstrip that is the oldest known work of animation from Japan. The film lasts three seconds at sixteen frames per second.
Creator unknown
Unlike in traditional animation, the frames were not produced by photographing the images, but rather were impressed onto film using a stencil.


Gertie the Dinosaur is an animated short film which is is the earliest animated film to feature a dinosaur (an appealing character).

Directed by: Winsor McCay
Hand drawn animation


Rotoscoping invented by Max and Dave Fleischer. Rotoscope means to transfer (an image from live action film) into another film sequence using a rotoscope.


The artist is drawing on a transparent easel, onto which the movie projector at the right is beaming an image of a single movie frame.

Released animated classics:

Betty Boop (on image we can see the caricature and the real human Helen Kale)


Popeye the Sailor Man


Ko-Ko the Clown




Musical Mews and Feline Follies introduced Felix the Cat—often considered the first animated movie star.

Created by: Pat Sullivan, Otto Messmer.


Steamboat Willie
featuring Mickey Mouse—becomes the first cartoon with the sound printed on the film,
and is the first notable success for Walt Disney Studios. It was the first cartoon that included a fully post-produced soundtrack, featuring voice and sound effects printed on the film. 

Creators: Walt Disney, Ub Iwerks.


Original sketch and storyboard for Steamboat Willie:



The Golden Age of American Animation

These years are defined by the rise of Walt Disney (Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Silly Symphonies), Warner Brothers, MGM, and Fleischer (Betty Boop, Popeye).

The first animation to use the full, three-colour technicolor method was made. It’s called Flowers and Trees.

Diretor: Burt Gillet


Color animation soon became the industry standard

Warner Bros was founded and Merrie Melodies series were released.



Random fact: Disney’s studio was known for its releases being strictly controlled by Walt Disney himself, Warner brothers allowed its animators more freedom, which allowed for their animators to develop more recognizable personal styles.

Snow White and Seven Dwarfs

Walt Disney releases Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first animated film to use hand-drawn animation.


Random facts: It took almost two years to come up with the final renderings of the Seven Dwarfs.
1.5 Million Cels were used to create the animation of Snow White. ( Cel is transparent sheet on which objects are drawn or painted for traditional, hand-drawn animation. )


The American Television Era

Studios created many cartoons for TV. By the mid ‘80s, with help from cable channels such as The Disney Channel and Nickolodeon, cartoons were ubiquitous on TV.


Popular animated series in this period:

Flinstones (1960)

Yogi the Bear (1961)

The Pink Phink (1964)
Academy Award for best short film

Fritz the Cat (1964)


The Modern Era

The computer generated imagery revolutionized animation. The drawing is replaced by 3D modeling, almost like a virtual version of stop-motion.

The Adventures of Andre and Wally B was the first fully CGI-animated short film.
It was created by The Graphics Group, the precursor to Pixar.


Toy Story was the first fully computer-animated feature film.



Investigating animation production processes

Corpse Pride (2005)


Directed by: Tim Burton and Mike Johnson

Story: Victor Van Dort and Victoria Everglot are preparing for their arranged marriage. After the shy Victor ruins the wedding rehearsal by forgetting his vows, he flees and practices his wedding vows in the nearby forest, placing the wedding ring on a nearby upturned tree root. The root turns out to be the finger of a murdered woman named Emily.

Main characters:

Victor Van Dort


Victoria Everglot



This is a stop-motion animation. This film was based on Russian folktale, which Joe Raft introduced Tim Burton. The film began production in 2003, which means it took them about 2 years and more to finish this movie.

Character development:


A dozen animators/puppeteers were put to work when production began, but that number had tripled by the end of production. The initial group spent time developing each puppet’s unique characteristics. The puppets were built by Mackinnon and Saunders. Puppets  were typically about 17 inches tall. The three primary characters (Victor, Victoria and Corpse Bride) were fitted with heads the size of golf balls that contained special gearing to allow the animators to manipulate individual parts of the puppets’ faces.

CorpseBride stopmotion puppets.jpg

The advancement for the lead puppets is an ingenious gear mechanism enabling a greater range of incremental movement on the faces. The mechanical faces are a lot more sophisticated, explained director Mike Johnson. It enables us to get much more expressive performances than you could with replacement animation.

The mechanisms that enabled puppeteers to achieve a greater range of emotion on the puppets faces:


The most difficult effect to achieve was getting the Corpse Brides veil to flow fluidly. For the shots that used a practical veil, the filmmakers stitched tiny wires into the lace:


In observing actual shooting on various sets, animators witnessed the aesthetic difference between the two worlds. Land of the Living is a monochromatic world of oppression, comprised of shades of grey and black-and-white. Land of the Dead is more influenced with blue, purple, orange, yellow, green and black.

The most active directing part is when an animator is about to start a shot and well work through the shot and act it out a little bit to get the timing down to the single frames. They got three paces for a shot. The first is a block to check the lighting and then a rehearsal, which is shot on twos or fours, and then they hone in the performance, and the final, which is shot on ones, 24 separate poses for one second of screen time.

Working in the dinning room scene:



The animators’ work was spread over 25 to 35 individual stages, each having its own Canon digital camera. A total of 32 cameras were used on the film.There were eight camera teams, each team including a lighting cameraman, an assistant, a lighting electrician and a set dresser, and they worked with animators to set up the shots.

The digital technology also provided greater flexibility with camera moves, it allowed the cameras to get much closer to the puppets and move three-dimensionally around them and the sets


Each camera team had a workstation, comprising an Apple G4 computer and a monitor to assist in checking lighting and framing, to view TIFF file versions of the camera’s images. Once a shot was approved, the computer was removed and the animators were left to shoot the scene using their still camera and “grabber” computer/camera system to check their work. Corpse Bride was edited on Final Cut Pro.

The film’s story department head Jeffrey Lynch explained that the scenes were developed initially from storyboards created by a team.



Co-director Johnson would go over each scene with the animators, sometimes acting out the scene, if necessary. The animators would sometimes make use of the voice or video recordings of the actors, a practice also common in cel animation.

Different visual types of animation (Moodboards)

Animation moodboard.jpg

animation moodboard 2.jpg







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