The Animation Information Revolution

David Low

There is a quiet revolution happening in the animation community, and it’s all thanks to the Internet. With the explosion of blogs in the past year, a wide range of difficult-to-find historical material is becoming publicly available for the first time. The availability of this material, which includes artwork, documents, films, and analysis, doesn’t only benefit historians; it also benefits artists in all parts of the world, who now have open access to examples of quality animation. In other words, there’s no longer any excuse for cartoons that look like this. It can be a full-time job keeping track of all the amazing knowledge being posted on blogs nowadays, but here is a brief look at just a few of the gems which have been posted on-line recently:

Kevin Langley posted some gorgeous BG paintings from the MGM shorts RED HOT RIDING HOOD and MOUSE IN MANHATTAN.

Hans Perk has posted the complete animator’s draft to the 1940 Disney short MR. DUCK STEPS OUT.

Jenny Lerew offers a who-animated-what analysis of the “All the Cats Join In” sequence from Disney’s MAKE MINE MUSIC (1946). Thanks belong to historian Michael Barrier who provided the drafts. Also, for easy reference, “All the Cats Join In” can be viewed on-line HERE.

Brandon Vietti, a director on BATMAN at Warner Bros., has written an amazing analysis of the Anthony Mann live-action Western WINCHESTER 73. Brandon does a superb job of breaking down the composition in the film and explaining why he likes particular shot choices. He also does original sketches of the scene compositions to visually describe his points.

Mark Mayerson shares a letter he received in 1976 from Golden Age animator/director Dick Lundy (Disney, Lantz, MGM) wherein Lundy discusses the specifics of his career.

Jaime Weinman writes an appreciation of the minor Chuck Jones character Frisky Puppy and offers two cartoons in their entirety: TWO’S A CROWD and TERRIER-STRICKEN.

Matt Jones has started a Ronald Searle tribute blog.

Oscar Grillo’s “inspiration” blog is at the top of my favorite blogs list right now. He’s posting the mouth-watering works of one incredible artist after another: David Low (whose illustration leads off this post), Florencio Molina Campos, Cal�, Carel Wright, Rudolph Schlichter, Vlado Kristl, the list goes on and on. It’s kind of like the Animation Archive except with the exquisite visual taste of a master animator like Grillo.