2D Animation and Storyboarding Courses at Cogswell College

2D Animation and Storyboarding Courses


Introduces the principles of animation drawing: gesture, simplified geometric construction for anatomy, technique to capture movement and weight. Students develop the graphic language to maximize expression and movement for animation and learn methods for using line to convey overlap, form, torque/compression, and the line of action.


A continuation of Drawing Animation 1. Further life studies of human figures and animals emphasizing anatomical simplification, clarity, and motion. Introduction to facial construction and expression. Students learn to incorporate layout, perspective, and backgrounds into character drawing.


Introduction to the basic principles of traditional, hand-drawn animation: squash and stretch, anticipation, secondary action, staging, easing in and out, arcs, timing, exaggeration, solid drawing and character appeal. The study of motion to understand mass, movement through space, and reaction to external forces. Concepts of keys, in-betweens and breakdowns, along with methods for recording drawings for playback, pegging, and using exposure sheets to record/adjust timing. The process for creating moving and sequential imagery from a bouncing ball thru a basic walk cycle. Students produce an animated scene that demonstrates mastery of principles.


Continuation of 2D Animation 1. Students design and develop characters which they animate in a scene. Advanced study of facial animation and expression with introduction to animal characters and animation. Pantomime, silhouette, strong acting and posing are emphasized along with careful timing to maximize expression and personality. Analysis of what makes a character look like it is thinking and what makes an expressive pose. Students produce an animated scene using their character in a layout.


This class focuses on principles of Storytelling in a visual medium and concentrates on film or editorial boards used to pre-visualize animation or live action film. Topics include scale and camera angle, camera movement, character staging, composition and basic editing processes. Students pitch their ides in class and get feedback on projects that include dialogue and action sequences from selected scripts as well as building animatics and story reels.


This class is a continuation of Storyboarding 1. Students will continue to board and pitch to pre-selected scripts as well as create boards for advertising, in-game progressions and work with other students to build a solid pre-visualized script short. Topics include developing quality emotion boards, value and color scripts and their implied meanings. Students must have a solid foundation in drawing skill and film and editorial methodology.