Pre-College Animation students learn essential techniques of character animation, experimental motion, and cinema through individual projects and group exercises. Students choose between 2D Animation, 3D Computer Animation, and Stop Motion Animation. Classes spend time evaluating animated sequences from classic cartoons, as well as independent and experimental films. Students gain technical skills in storytelling, squash and stretch distortion, staging, timing, exaggeration, and many other animation principles.

A guest animator from a local animation studio such as Pixar, located just three miles away, visits the class. Students also take a trip to the Walt Disney Family Museum, located in the Presidio of San Francisco—a truly inspiring place for aspiring animators to see!

2D Animation
This studio focuses on working by hand with drawing tools and capturing with pencil test software. Projects include drawings, flipbooks, acting sketches, storyboards, and Quicktime movies. By the end of this course, students will understand the fundamentals of animation and should be able to animate characters successfully using dynamic design, smooth motion, and acting.

3D Animation
This all digital studio is an introduction to the basic principles of 3D computer animation using Autodesk Maya. Students learn essential animation principles to create dynamic movement and expressive acting using a pre-rigged character, while gaining experience with Maya’s powerful interface.

Stop Motion
This studio teaches the principles of animation through a variety of stop motion techniques. Students experiment with animating found objects, cut outs, simple puppets, and pixilation to create believable movement and acting. Students also gain a familiarity with the use of cameras, lights, and capturing software to create their films.

2D Animation, 3D Animation, and Stop Motion are all-day studios.