Laban for Animators: Foundations

In my 22 years as an animation professor at Emily Carr University of Art + Design, I find my students always wanting to know:

“How can I animate a character who shows their thoughts, feelings, and emotions? How can I feel confident and creative while animating expressive characters?

The Principles of Animation teach you how to move characters. What most people don’t realize is that they don’t teach you what movement expresses.

Once you know the links between character movement, expression and acting, everything changes!

This gives you the path to:

  • Understand what movement expresses, and how to animate it.

  • Take the guesswork out of creating the best acting for a scene.

  • Create authentic and memorable character performances.

I’ve seen:

  • monotonous and formulaic character animation,

  • incomplete actions,

  • lack of coordination and connectivity,

  • dialogue without supporting body action,

  • characters whose weight just doesn’t feel “right,”

  • …and pantomimed action that just looks weird!

Having a framework for understanding movement expression solves all these problems!

It all comes down to learning a robust set of movement concepts that animators will find both practical and intuitive.

Laban for Animators teaches you about how we express our inner intentions outwardly through movement. Animators can use this to help them make acting choices and design authentic character animation performances. Laban for Animators is the glue between animating and acting!

  • Enhance character performance and animate believable characters.

  • Go deeper with animating weight and body coordination while taking movement and acting to the next level.

  • Act out your own reference footage with confidence.

  • Lead your team with clear feedback and guidance.

  • Find new creative inspiration to help you grow as an artist.

Laban for Animators: Foundations

This is the inaugural course that teaches you Laban Movement Analysis (LMA) specifically for animation! LMA was developed by Rudolph Laban (1879-1958), and used today in dance and theatre training, psychology, sports, ergonomics, and a wide array of somatic practices.

You will learn about the categories of movement: Body, Effort, Shape, Space and Phrasing. The course will highlight Phrasing and Effort, as these two categories are unique and different from Principles of Animation and will give you the foundation for understanding and creating expressive movement.

Applying LMA principles, you’ll work on two short animation assignments, receive in-class critique of your work, and have a 30-minute one-on-one coaching call with Leslie

  • 5 weekly 2-hour live video calls, with all participants on Zoom. All sessions will be recorded.

  • 2 animation assignments (approx. 10 seconds combined).

  • 1 individual 30 min. coaching call with Leslie.

  • Weekly feedback, Facebook group to share work-in-progress.

  • Saturdays from 10am-12pm PT.

  • October 15 through November 12, 2022.

Attention students! I am giving away one full student scholarship to Laban for Animators: Foundations!