Animation &Articles on Animation &Books &commercial animation &Illustration 03 Dec 2012 07:55 am

Heath Book – 1

- Back in the days when animation books were a rarity and actual lessons in books were few and far between, there were Heath Books and equipment. This was a company, if I can remember correctly, which was situated in Florida. They had several books for sale, the most well known was “Animation In Twelve Hard Lessons”. It was spiral bound book and over-sized like the Preston Blair book, it contained detailed instruction on the mechanics of animation.

Bob Heath, I believe, was a former cameraman in animation, and his partner in writing was Tony Creazzo, a former Assistant Animator. If I remember correctly, he was closely aligned with Vinnie Bell in New York. The two were always connected; if you wanted Vinnie to animate, you also hired Tony to assist.

Well, not only did Bob Heath sell How-to books on animation, but he also sold equipment. Paper, pencils, hole punches, even an Oxberry Jr. camera stand could be bought from the company. They had an original design of a light box for sale. Lots of things that could help you set up in the animation business if you had no idea who “Cartoon Colour” was.

I’ve decidded to post this relic of a book, Here in the first chapter is Bob Heath’s “How to Animate in 12 Hard Lessons.”

Front Cover

Chapter Index




















Back Cover

6 Responses to “Heath Book – 1”

  1. on 03 Dec 2012 at 8:41 am 1.Rudy Agresta said …

    Hi Michael,
    I also have a copy of the Heathbook you pictured. What I remember saying after receiving it was about how stiff the drawings looked – at the time I attributed their having been drawn with a Wolf’s Carbon Pencil which could be notorious for drag (at least for me)! Great post to rekindle the memories of times past.

  2. on 03 Dec 2012 at 10:39 am 2.Michael said …

    I lusted after this book for many years. When I saw it, I wondered why. The Preston Blair book had so much more to offer. But it really is a major part of New York animation world. Tony Creazzo could draw, I can vouch for that with all the LETTERMAN episodes he did with Vinnie Bell. They had a great look and were well drawn.

    You’re right, the word is “stiff”. But somehow there’s a lot of great technical information which was rare in books back then.

  3. on 03 Dec 2012 at 11:08 pm 3.Alfred von Cervera said …

    For me, everything helps to understand animation. Thank you so much for posting this book, and Tissa Davis lessons and the Fleischer exercises. Learning animation on my own has been a terrific experience thanks to persons like you.

  4. on 04 Dec 2012 at 2:21 am 4.RodneyBaker said …

    I’ve long heard of this book but have never seen a hint of it’s content. Thank you for posting this. All the best to you in everything.

  5. on 04 Dec 2012 at 6:18 am 5.Michael said …

    Hi Rodney,
    I intend to post the entire book though it is rather large and difficult to copy. The book contains material you don’t generally find in this type book. Since it is written by a couple of Assistant Animators, the animation they’re teaching is often of a more limited variety but delves deeper into some of the problems professionals face. This doesn’t always get expressed, and I think it’s good for people to see and learn.

  6. on 05 Dec 2012 at 11:14 am 6.David Nethery said …

    I had this book , too , and did all 12 of the lessons. The drawings are certainly in the style of “TV limited animation” , but you’re correct that the amount of technical information provided was very helpful, especially to a beginner. I actually learned how a dialogue track is broken down phonetically and how to calculate pan moves with slow-outs and slow-ins on a sliding peg bar and other useful/necessary things to know in those pre-computer days.

    Although the drawings were very simple and often “stiff” I did in fact learn how to read charts and do inbetweens from this book. It supplemented a lot that Preston Blair either did not mention or only hinted at.

    However, when I was working through Preston Blair’s book (books because by then he had published the second one) I was pleased to find that if I wrote to Mr. Blair asking him to explain something in more detail he would actually write back !

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