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Thread: Is Hand Drawn Animation Dead?

  1. #1
    Heroic Warrior mbaker's Avatar
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    Is Hand Drawn Animation Dead?

    I certainly hope not. At least in cinemas.


  2. #2
    Heroic Warrior
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    Hand drawn animation is dead because even if you get a 2D animated film they still use computers to animate it. Though I do enjoy cgi animated films it would be nice to get some 2D ones that are not from foreign films or limited releases.

  3. #3
    Shivering Isles resident diosoth's Avatar
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    It's dead mostly because Flash(or some other similar program) is far cheaper to animate with and far faster to draw with. Hand painting cels and backgrounds is a time consuming process as is photographing every frame whereas Flash can do the same in a fraction of the time. Plus it's far smoother than what you'd get out of a typical daily cartoon series. By the 80s those cartoons we remembered were doing 3-4 frames per second, not the 30 or more FPS that you'd get in old Disney or Fleischer cartoons. I know this is a He-Man board, but I think most everyone knows that Filmation was practically a budget studio that recycled frames quite heavily. This cheapness started in the 70s, you can see a drop in quality in HB cartoons compared to their 60s work, and shows like Bullwinkle were done on a low budget(Jay Ward outsourced all his animation to Mexico, I believe, to save money). That's not to say the shows themselves were of poor quality because of it but the animation itself was not high end 40 FPS like you'd get in a large studio film. Those animated movies from the 80s and 90s had better FPS at the cost of costing a lot more to animate.

    Modern computer animation is not only cheaper with good results but it's much more accessible. Lots of Youtube channels are packed with homemade Flash animations done by individuals who would never be able to do a series if they had to rely on traditional animation cel work.

    We'll occasionally get traditional cel animation done here and there, it seems a bit more favorable in Japan especially with the older animators, but the new techniques always come in and replace the old eventually. You wouldn't give up your 1 TB hard drives or 64 GB flash storage devices to go back to 1.44 MB floppies, would you?

  4. #4
    Heroic Warrior mbaker's Avatar
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    I'm not saying 'bring back cels'. Computer programs like Flash, and Photoshop do make things much easier. I just want to see something that looks like 2D animation made in theaters. Even if it's done on the computer.

  5. #5
    Shivering Isles resident diosoth's Avatar
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    It's like 2D sprite-based videogames- it's seen as an unprofitable niche market. Why spend the budget on a major film in 2D hand drawn cel style that might not make its money back when Frozen has drawn in piles of cash? It's a format that's going to be used for cheaper stuff, not major media stuff.

  6. #6
    Heroic Warrior
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    I just miss the old Disney movies. Not saying the Pixar films are bad but it just isn't the same as Aladdin or Beauty and the Beast. That right I am a man and I love Beauty and the Beast.

  7. #7
    Shivering Isles resident diosoth's Avatar
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    Like it or not but Disney's best era outside of the Walt years were when Eisner was around. These current studio heads are too concerned with thumbing their angry noses at Eisner to even want to do things remotely the way he did them.

  8. #8
    Heroic Warrior
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    Quote Originally Posted by j-manbp View Post
    I just miss the old Disney movies. Not saying the Pixar films are bad but it just isn't the same as Aladdin or Beauty and the Beast. That right I am a man and I love Beauty and the Beast.
    Agree 100%, that period from Little Mermaid through to around Tarzan was just brilliant. I love Pixar and they've managed to be consistently great but whilst they've never reached the lows that Disney has, they've also never quite managed to reach the same heights either. Beauty and the Beast remains an absolute master piece (I prefer Aladdin but I'm perfectly willing to admit that Beauty is, critically, the better film).

  9. #9
    Drinking Innocence TheDeviot's Avatar
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    One of my favorite shows was actually one of the last hand drawn, hand painted animated shows made.



    Fun fact: The colors were harder to deal with on the old shows because the paint shades would look
    markedly different on Television than they did with the naked eye. Studios spent days remixing colors until they could get them
    to display properly before beginning the work of coloring cels. Mission Hill was particularly hard as the show was trying to
    go for an indie comic book inspired look with a lot of it's color scheme.
    The Deviot
    -------------------------
    "No matter how hot you think they are, Someone. Somewhere. Is tired of their crap."

    -?

  10. #10
    Heroic Warrior MOLKROM's Avatar
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    I just miss the old Disney movies. Not saying the Pixar films are bad but it just isn't the same as Aladdin or Beauty and the Beast. That right I am a man and I love Beauty and the Beast.
    I agree . I had no way describe it other than when you hand draw something , you put your soul into it . CGI and flash animation dont seem to have a soul . I am a hetro Dude and Little Mermaid is one of my favorite movies .
    MOTU and POP transformed my childhood years to gold

  11. #11
    grumpy old dragon scott metzger's Avatar
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    I have no problem with CGI, but Flash animation is the worst thing to happen to the world of animation, ever. It works in something like South Park, where it's actually part of the joke, but a computerized version of moving cardboard cutouts around on the page is horrible to look at in almost every other venue. There are shows I've wanted to enjoy, but I can't get past this lazy excuse for animation when it's used.

    I do agree that there is something in hand drawn animation, even the limited kind used in most TV cartoons, that is lost in other forms. Some bit of heart or life gets left behind, something no computer seems to be able to replicate.
    "I will use this power for all the good that can be done, to work for peace, to encourage virtue, and above all, to preserve life in all its forms..." Superman

  12. #12
    Shivering Isles resident diosoth's Avatar
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    On the plus side, it means never having to sit through some of the awful quality animation that Sunbow was capable of in the 80s. Their animation was never particularly good, and some episodes(looking at YOU, "Carnage In C Minor") were so messed up I sometimes think the animators were making all those errors on purpose just to mess with the audience. And I am aware that Sunbow was just a producer that outsourced the actual work, but did no one over there look at these cartoons and say, "hey, this is lousy!" or did they just stick them on TV without a second thought? While it didn't fare as bad as the Hasbro stuff, Real Ghostbusters animation also had lots of problems- which I think was also done by one of the same animation studios. I know Filmation was a bit of a budget studio but they at least seemed to have much better animation than what Sunbow was giving us by a wide margin.

    This kind of extended into the 90s, too. I recall Tiny Toon Adventures often had episodes where characters looked ballooned out and rubbery unlike other episodes because they had a couple separate studios making episodes just to fill demand. Disney used that studio as well for some of their work- the Darkwing Duck Liquidator origin episode used that same goofy balloon animation where things are rounded and stretched weird and characters move funny, and there were likely others done by them.

    I suppose one advantage to modern animation is that character models remain consistent and there are fewer glaring errors in things like scenery, geometry and all that.

  13. #13
    Heroic Warrior
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    I know "foreign films" and "limited release" were mentioned... but if you want some modern beautiful traditional animation, I highly recommend The Secret of Kells and I'm eagerly anticipating being able to pick up Song of the Sea from the same director. The style is just absolutely beautiful.

  14. #14
    Heroic Warrior
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    I really like Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends and MLP: Friendship is Magic and they are flash animated and look just fine to me. I care more about character designs, world building, story, etc. then I do about the type of animation used.

  15. #15
    Heroic Warrior felgekarp's Avatar
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    I freakin' love all kinds of animation, from Adventure Time, Regular Show, Bobs Burgers, to Roughnecks, Dan Dare, Captain Scarlet, all the way back to things like Robonic Stooges and Laff A Lympics, I like to think that there's something around for everyone. My favourite film of all time is Yellow Submarine, I love the style of that, I like Bakshis stuff and Plymptons stuff as well.

  16. #16
    Searchin' My Soul DisneyBoy's Avatar
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    I think if we look to independent filmmakers, we will continue to see 2D for years to come. It's the generation being born now who might abandon it, with so little of it creeping into their lives, and fewer people around to pass along the skill set.

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