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shinkai's road to success..is it hard to become an animator?
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Laetitzia
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Joined: 02 Feb 2008
Posts: 10


Location: Romania

PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 12:37 pm    Post subject: shinkai's road to success..is it hard to become an animator?  Reply with quote

so how's the deal with becoming an animator? (i guess i'm not the only one who thought "i wish i could do such magical things too" when seeing mr. shinkai's works)
i've read the infos about makoto shinkai on http://daike.hp.infoseek.co.jp/02_profile/profile.html but i was wondering (...because i have a dream of becoming an animator myself Embarassed) ... from where can one begin? the same place as mr. shinkai?...i wonder if it is hard to learn 2d animations?....i wonder what programs does mr. shinkai use in order to do such extraordinary animations? ...i wonder what's a CG....

...is it the fortunate chance of meeting the right people at the right place?... does one need to find a good ...animation teacher (if such a teacher really exists) or someone to initiate him/her?... does one need to struggle a lot to begin professional animating like mr. makoto?

after my long list of possible-naive-questions maybe there's someone who might have a similar dream or who knows many things about animes and mr. shinaki. Very Happy ...and who might want to enlighten me
Embarassed
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zitch
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Joined: 04 Feb 2008
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Location: Louisiana, USA

PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the good news is thanks to the progress of modern computing and the development of software, one can have all the tools needed to create a high-quality animation with the investment of several thousand U.S. dollars on decent computer hardware and software.  A few thousand dollars might sound alot, but this is microscopic compared to the old days of cell sheets, ink, and film-transferring equipment.

The bad news is that it still requires extremely hard work and dedication to the craft to create animations even in the same league as Makoto Shinkai's early work.  Shinkai also had the advantages of his interests in photography and landscape paintings, and working in the Japanese game industry gave him the skills and knowledge to simply start down the path of being an animation director.  In his case, the game industry in Japan is pretty key, as they have been relying a style that resembles short TV-caliber animations for their games for some time now, much like how the Western game industry is starting to take cues from live-action movies for scripted events.  I just don't think there's an equivalent path to get into animation here.  

In any case, the easiest path seems to be to go to a high-quality CG school or based degree (CG = Computer Graphics), while trying to keep an interest in photography, landscape and still-life painting, and live-action movie directing, and while studying a broad range of animation (I.E., not just keeping to Japanese-style animations, but to look for and get ideas from other types of animations from around the world.).  At the same time, you work on practicing 2D animations and compositing that with 3D CG.

Another way may be to get under the wing of an established animator, but those aren't easy to find in the Western world.

Then again, I'm working from the perspective of an American; I'm even less sure about what the situation is like in Romania.  And this could all be completely off the mark, too.

But yeah, the want to create something was something Shinkai had sparked in me as I watched more and more of his work.
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Dy.laneA
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Joined: 27 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zitch said it all to well. But. If you have a pencil and some paper you already have enough to hone your skills. DRAW! Sit out side draw people passing by, take photo's draw off them.

Learn how the body moves, study the anatomy of the body. I don't think Shinkai ever planed on becoming an animator at the start. I think just his fascination with the world around him and the beautiful scenery. Naturally helped him get there.


I would suggest a few anatomy books as well "The Animator's Survival Kit" by Richard Williams.

For what he is making now a basic run down of what is using.

For the paintings.

A powerful computer (He uses a mac)
A high quality computer screen. (His looks lik it could go for a few thousand us dollars alone)
Adobe Photoshop CS 2
Adobe After Effect 6.5 (May be higher now)
Light wave (for 3-d animation)
Wacom Intuos 3 (The pen tablet for drawing on computer)

But this isn't just him making them, he has a whole team to back him up. I believe his main job is directing the team to create, the story He makes the story, and his team helps him tell it. Sure you have the beautiful backgrounds and animated characters.

But what impacts the me the most is the story. His movies are only a medium he is using to tell his stories.

So if you have a pencil and a piece of paper. WRITE! Go to the library get books to read. Look up words your don't quite understand in the dictionary, look up the words very precise words. I think what also helped Shinkai to get to where he is, is it story telling ability.
Find the books that tell the stories you enjoy, and learn from them. Writers read alot writers write alot. Animator's draw alot animator's copy life alot.

He has both if at least a little. His passion and dedication is one thing, but Japan has a huge animation industry compared to most the world and he's able to find the people he needs for his projects. (He's actually quite bad at drawing characters and animating XD)

So basically if you want to do what Shinkai does. I feel we both need to learn to tell stories then draw. IF you want to make beautifle backgrouds we both need to learn to draw.

I hope to be able to do both =P Will I eventually become an animator? I have no idea...

It would be wonderful if we could both help each other. Ill critique anything you do. I find good critique's help you improve alot since you will see things you did not consider before.
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Laetitzia
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Joined: 02 Feb 2008
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Location: Romania

PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thank you so much to both of you!!! *big hug*...your answers were very complete and helpful!!

zitch..your answer was extremely helpful and clear for my blurry head...you actually told me what i wanted to find out for a long time...

Quote:
He's actually quite bad at drawing characters and animating XD)
...i didn't know that...he's not the one who animates the characters?...and i was so impressed of how realistic the characters move...but still...he is a genius for his landscape-painting ability

menasha...i know you are right...i thought about that as well: that a good animator must know how to tell stories and draw...I do love to read and i also love to write (at this part i think i'm a little rest-assured...i won a couple of prises at prose and poetry...i am not showing of!) and i also love to draw people...i'm not sure how are my scenery-drawing abilities...but i want to learn CG too. actually i'm planning on going to an art college here...but because i haven't studied at an art high-school and i'm not familiar with all the theories and stuff..."being talented is not enough" i was told...so maybe i might not get in...but i'll try next year too.

Quote:
I hope to be able to do both =P Will I eventually become an animator? I have no idea...

It would be wonderful if we could both help each other. Ill critique anything you do. I find good critique's help you improve alot since you will see things you did not consider before.


i hope i'll become one eventually too. i'm even thinking about going to japan one day ...and studying there...gaining experience...i don't know how things will develop for me but i'll sure be an animator one day even if that happenes when i'm 100 years old
thank you menasha for offering your help! here is the link to my deviantart account...if you want to take a look
Razz http://laetitzia.deviantart.com/ ...as i said i'm not very bright...

thanks again to both of you for your replys Razz
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Dy.laneA
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

By first glance I can tell you are well on your way. Apply at the college when you can better to find out sooner then later. I'm guessing you will get in, you have well developed technical skill. Along with your pieces seem alive, your years ahead of me! It's actually inspiring... I feel a need to become better now seeing your work!

I would love to see some of your writing to!

Well Shinkai overviews everything in the production, and makes corrections. He does not work in every field though.
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Laetitzia
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Joined: 02 Feb 2008
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Location: Romania

PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 7:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thank you for your encouragement!Smile...i'm really curious to see some of yours too...as for my stories and poems...they are in Romanian...i haven't translated them in English...but they aren't a big deal Razz

i always wondered... so many people take part in the production of an animation...and yet not all of them get to be famous or internationally recognized for their work....like mr. shinaki is... (..i'm not saying he doesn't deserve it...he does! it's his story, the backgrounds) as you said he doesn't do everything by himself... but he is the one mostly recognized for the splendor of these animations.....
so...how is it?...  is the director the one who usually gets the praise?...or the one who wrote the story?

i'm so full of questions Shocked  Razz
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Dy.laneA
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The director because there the one overseeing the project. In reality it's there project, they have assistants to help them make it. Animation is a VERY long task and is produced better when jobs are split up.

Directors in Japan usually are the ones who write the stories, but here in North America it's usually someone else. Not all the time though, for either end there's exceptions.

No, there recognized in there field, just usually don't become famous with the public. If you are a very talented animator and background painter people will recognize your work and employ you.

One thing though, Japan is still very closed to foreigners, I'm sure it still happens but it's hard to get jobs there for foreigners. Expetually the ones they can just get there citizens to do.    

Europe has a nice small animation industry how ever. North America's animation industry is more 3-d. But still there's 2-d animation. Just not in movies anymore.  Which I think is a shame kind of. 2-d animation has this organic feeling to it that I really enjoy!

I do have a deviant art account. But I have more things on this site then there haha! Anything that's Menasha's thread is my stuff...

http://cherryblossomsfalling.myfastforum.org/forum16.php
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Laz
Laz


Joined: 09 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 1:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wish Angry posted on here more ... he'd be able to give you some opinions straight from Mr. Shinkai.

Laz
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ここにいるよ. - Voices of a Distant Star
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Dy.laneA
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Must not find the time or drive to post on this little forum XD

This is his deviant art page though, he's on there frequently.

http://angryookami.deviantart.com/
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Laz
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 2:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a link to one of the other threads  ...


http://cherryblossomsfalling.myfastforum.org/about56.html


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