5 Day Creature Short Course

Animation course in Buckinghamshire

Our short courses in creature animation are designed for individuals who are looking for an intensive course where they can design and start their own animation sequence or finish a project they have already started. With continuous tuition and feedback from a professional animator with years of experience in the industry, you can develop and hone your animation skills.

Perfect for those with some experience in animation or advanced animators, our realistic creature/character short course will arm you with an array of techniques and skills that will give you the confidence to go on and create more complex sequences.

Average number of students attending the 5 Day classes is three. This means I can give maximum attention to each student for the entire week.

“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 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


"I'm currently at Dneg where I worked on Godzilla then I moved to In the Heart of the Sea, a new film directed by Ron Howard" –  Luca, Spain. Student of the 5 Day Course.

"I picked up a couple of very important things along those five days, that in my opinion, any creature animator should have as part of their skillset”
-Edwardo Mateo, MPC, London

"Thankyou for sharing the techniques and tips, I finished my animation 1 day ahead of schedule at work (not showing off!)” – 
Friska, UK

“I really enjoyed the course and found the techniques taught very useful and intuitive. I don’t think I had any moment on the course when I found myself thinking, ” oh, i’ve done this before” (a pretty common feeling on courses, even good ones). ” -Marc, UK.


The venue

Learn essential animation techniques whilst relaxing in Latimer Place, a countryside hotel in the picturesque Buckinghamshire. Our animation course takes place in this tranquil setting and students are encouraged to make full use of the hotel facilities whilst not on the course.


Located just a 35 minute train ride from central London and just 19 miles from Heathrow, our creature animation short course is easily accessible for those travelling from London and further afield.


animation school day course

Facilities available to students include:

  • Indoor pool
  • Mini-gym
  • Spa bath
  • Sauna
  • Bar area
  • Restaurant

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.

The 3D techniques being taught on this course are ones that I have developed and honed through years of working to tight deadlines in feature film VFX.

My instruction will involve a series of short demonstrations 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)

Course structure

Day one

1. Choose your creature rig
2. Storyboard ideas
3. Study online live action movies of relevant creature
4. Creation of walk/trot/run cycles

Day two

1. Use of world locators and TimeWarps
2. Animation on path
3. Blocking animation
4. In-between blocking

Day three

1. Splining the block poses and smoothing the block

Day four

1. Polishing  and re-timing techniques 1

Day five

1. Polishing and re-timing techniques 2
2. Weight techniques


For more information contact us here.
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