Animation &Animation Artifacts &Hubley &Independent Animation 29 Sep 2010 07:48 am

Littlejohn’s Snake – 1

- Bill Littlejohn, to me, was one of THE GREAT animators. It took years of my working on his animation for John Hubley before I finally met him. We’d spoken often enough on the phone since I was the production manager, Assistant, Animator and Layout guy for Hubley for about 6 years. I did any assisting needed on Bill’s work – and there was rarely much to do. He and his wife, Fini, were so amiable, affectionate and cordial in person; exactly the people I expected after all the phone conversations.

His animation seemed to be done in a straight-ahead style, and he did everything needed for the scene.

As promised I found a scene animated by him from Hubley’s Everybody Rides the Carousel. It’s not the best scene, but it showcases the almost calligraphic style Bill used for Hubley. The animation drawings just flowed out of his pencil (though he usually animated in pen for Hubley.) The only assisting I did on the following drawings were some of the outer balloons for the characters.

The scene represents the animal figures that constantly fight in the heads of the characters. For this stage there was a snake and a phoenix; one representing positive, the other representing negative.


2 3

4 5

6 7

8 9





















The following QT movie represents the drawings above
from Bill Littlejohn.
I don’t have the X-Sheets, so I exposed on two’s
except where there were gaps in the numbers.
There I treated part of it as a cycle – which is what it was.

I suspect the scene actually was exposed to last longer
using three’s and a couple of very short holds.

Click left side of the black bar to play.
Right side to watch single frame.

One Response to “Littlejohn’s Snake – 1”

  1. on 01 Oct 2010 at 11:53 am 1.Steven Hartley said …

    Michael, were you the person that described Bill Littlejohn as an “animation god”, because his snake is certainly a great animation and its shapes so I see your point.

    The animated film he worked on “Watership Down” is brilliant I can say and wasn’t he the person who animated the beginning sequence with Prince El-ahrairah with the John Hubley style because it looks like Phil Duncan did work on that or something. The last sequence with the death of Hazel is certainly some strong emotional stuff and great animation!!

Trackback This Post | Subscribe to the comments through RSS Feed

Leave a Reply

eXTReMe Tracker
click for free hit counter

hit counter