Animation &Fleischer &walk cycle 21 Nov 2007 09:13 am

Betty Walks

– Back when I wanted to become an animator, there was always the same statement by the hardened professionals: it takes ten years to become a decent animator. I always wondered what happened in that ninth year. I wondered if you could do it sooner. Ward Kimball and Myron Waldman were considered boy wonders who quickly rose to the top of their respective studios. Not only did they become animators; the became directing animators.

Nowadays, all you have to do is register with Flash, and you’re an animator.

As I entered the business, it became obvious that the walk cycle was the make or break point for an animator. You had to be able to master the walk cycle and be able to do something interesting with it – something interesting that helped define the character. (Although, Adam Elliot did boast that he’d never done a walk cycle in all of his films including the half-hour Harvie Krumpet which won the Oscar.)

However, even in Flash you often have to make characters walk. That’s why I’ve put a lot of focus on walk cycles, lately. The Fleischer films seem to have created cycles that are more manageable, so it’s easy to focus on them. Here’s a cycle of Betty from the short, A Little Soap and Water (1935). I’m pretty sure it’s Myron Waldman‘s work. It’s not really a cycle, but I’ve maneuvered into one for viewing.

____(Click any image to enlarge.)


Betty and Pudgy walking on three’s

4 Responses to “Betty Walks”

  1. on 21 Nov 2007 at 10:19 am 1.Mark Mayerson said …

    Somewhere I remember reading a Ward Kimball quote where Kimball said that you could tell an animator everything he needed to know in two weeks, but it would take him 5 years to master what you told him.

  2. on 21 Nov 2007 at 6:16 pm 2.Tom Sito said …

    I recall Frank Thomas telling us at Lincoln Center in 1973 that it took 5 years to make an animator. At first I thought he meant from the moment you turned pro, in five years you’d be promoted to animator. But only many years later did I understand his meaning. That after being made an animator, it took that many years to feel comfortable with your medium.

    Thirty years ago George Bakes used to say Tytla told him “animation is 80% what not to do…” I’m still trying to figure that one out.

  3. on 21 Nov 2007 at 9:11 pm 3.Julian said …

    All of art is selection.

  4. on 29 May 2009 at 9:31 pm 4.Minako Aino said …

    More Betty Boop Walks and Moving!!! and doing stuff!!!

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