2 Day Creature Short Course

The Creature Animation School is offering 2 day intensive training courses (for more experienced animators) in realistic creature/character animation technique. This is a great opportunity to learn the vital techniques employed to create the highest quality film VFX animation first hand from a highly experienced film professional.

The techniques learnt will help you to create animations from start to finishing, so that you will confidently try creating more complex sequences.

The venue

For group bookings the venue can be of your own choosing, we are prepared to travel, otherwise we hold the animation classes at our Hertfordshire venue, UK, which is located just a 35 minute train ride from central London and just 19 miles from Heathrow. It is easily accessible for those travelling from London and further afield.

The location is in the beautiful Buckinghamshire countryside, a tranquil setting and mix of relaxation and business facilities are designed to enhance the learning experience. Indoor pool, mini-gym, spa bath and sauna will help you to unwind after a long day, you can then relax in the bar, before enjoying a local dish in the restaurant if you so choose.

animation school day course

Rob Hemmings came to visit us for a  two day on site course here at Jagex. All of the team gained valuable insight into detailed methods that use simple techniques to get the best from blocking and refining animation. The course is practical and the better for it and we all produced a fine piece of work within the two days which most of us will be using on our personal reels. I would not hesitate to recommend Rob and his course for your animation team/studio. His teaching style is laid back but really incisive, as a 15 year veteran I still found myself hungrily learning the tips and tricks he was teaching us. The course was excellent value as the concepts can directly be used on our project in cut scene production, and the work flow ideas have an even larger and longer lasting impact. Thumbs up and five stars!
Roger Barnett
Animation Manager, Transformers Universe
Jagex Games Studio

The aim of the course is to teach each student vital techniques he or she will need to succeed as a 3D animator in the demanding global VFX and games industries.

Much of the art of creating great animation is down to good technique, it is essential to learn, not least so that you can focus more on performance than the technology you use to achieve it.

The excellent working practices taught on this course will enable you to confidently tackle any project.

These methods are not taught at universities or colleges or anywhere because there is no standard approach to VFX realistic animation, 3D animators work in a very individual way and develop their own procedures through years of practice.

Indeed, the 3D techniques being taught on this course are my techniques and mine alone, ones that I have developed and honed through years of working to tight deadlines at the highest possible level in feature film VFX.

*My instruction will involve the demonstration of techniques on the Lcd Projector, then walking round and communicating with each student individually as opposed lecturing in front of the class.

*You will be designing your own animation sequence or finishing a project you are already engaged in, I will then direct your approach to animating/finishing this sequence. You will be required to animate in the various exercises as we progress through the stages of development. Although you may not finish the entire sequence in the time allocated, you will walk way with the knowledge and skills to finish it to the standard expected at film level.

*To help keep costs to a minimum, you are required to bring your own laptop or PC with animation software of your choosing installed, preferably Autodesk Maya.

*Each class will consist of no more than 6 students so that individual attention to each student can be maximised.

*Visiting creature animation specialist working on current feature film project (subject to availability)

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2 students on the April course.

Creature 2 Day Short Course Modules:

*Module 1/Day1

You will be working on one sequence that you design.

1.Study online live action movies of relevant creature.

Observe creature behaviour and typical personality traits with close attention to timing and poses. These studies will be directly related to your storyboard idea

2. Creation of walk/trot/run cycles.
Demonstration of how to create convincing cycles quickly.


*Module 2/Day1

3. Use of world locators and TimeWarps.

4.Animation on path
Path animation will help you when you have lots of repetitive cycling action in your sequence, i.e runs. trots etc.

I will show you how to setup a unique path system and get high quality animation into you scene fast.

5.Blocking animation.

I will direct you in the use of stepped keys to create important key poses.

6.Inbetween blocking

Adding in more key poses, I will also demonstrate how you can employ some great techniques that enable you to re-time your poses quickly.



7. Splining the block poses:

8. Smoothing the block



9. Polishing Techniques

10. Weight techinques, simple methods that instantly give your creature/animal some gravity.


Please direct any questions about these details here.

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