Learning animation Animation mentor style

Who’s in?

I want to start a group of people interested in learning animation the way I think it should be, Starting off with concepts and and working your way up to amazing animation. I am going to start by trying to get the concepts down like what they do in animation Mentor.

Here is what I have so far, Here is a picture:

Here is the blender file:

sounds like fun!

did you plan do rig him? and do you want to release video tutorials?

I do not have a rig for him yet, I would like to do Video tuts once I learn how to do it correctly:)

I have an older version of Camtasia so I can record if that helps.

I need to learn to rig/model/animate in Blender. I am sort of a blender newb. I used Modo to Model the “character”. I am not a 3D newb, so I think I can pick this up. I am already starting to prefer blender for a few things. Mancandy FAQ is good and I have Big Buck Bunny on order

Not sure what you are talking about, is the concept a char made of balls, so you made the char?
Or the Ballman is a char concept for a story that evolves into a film? Using blender to make 3d concept sketches?

Animation Mentor is an online school where people from all of the Major Studio’s teach at. Here is a link to what one of their students did in the first term:

I was thinking we could get a group of Blender animators together and learn the fundamentals as a group and try and animate like pro’s. I figured we would come a lot farther as a group rather than by ourselves. Can I animate and make things and make a small movie, yes. I can not however make anything that closely resembles Pixar or the latest open source movie, “Big Buck Bunny”.

While we will not have any professional animators from Pixar, donating time, for our little project. But I think there are a group of us who could learn from each other and in the end make something really cool.

For those who do not know what Animation Mentor is, do a search on youtube.com and take a look. For me that is what I would like to aspire to someday.

I would look at this as a group effort. I am looking to learn, who else is?

i am interested, I have taken a long time to learn what little I know about modeling. I was trying to find out a little more about the approach tho. I kinda looked into animation mentor before but not sure how we would go about learning on our own. Would it be trying various tuts on line, working out of Intro to character animation by tony mullen? I have that book my self?

i’m interested, but i might not be able to actively join for the next couple weeks

Animation Mentor is definitely on bucket list though so this looks like fun :slight_smile:

I own Intro to character animation by tony mullen as well. that could be a good place to start.

As for the learning process, I think if we do this as a group we will learn through osmosis and the little bits of info we all bring to the table. If we start off with the basics. Start with Learning how to do a simple lower 1/2 rig for the Model I provided. I like the Mancandy set up. I am sure we could not get something like that right off the bat, but go for a version approach. like I said. I would be happy to do video tuts if someone could teach me how to do this.

Animation Mentor requires a lot of $$ and a lot of time. Being a home owner with a wife who likes to shop and working 60 plus hours a week I don’t have much of either. I picture this being a free, learn as we grow approach. If all of us are working with the same model and similar scene this could be cool.

Yeah. I have Tony Mullen’s book on Introduction to Character Animation. I’ve skimmed through the book several months ago to get a good insight on just about everything he covers.

I really enjoy this thread. I’m led to thinking, “There are game projects called “Noobs United”, “Noobs 2.0”, etc… Why can’t there be one for character animation?”

Count me in! {BOOKMARKED} However, I am a student graduating from high school, and where I attend, we have culminating projects/exams around this time of month (April/May). I sincerely hope I can juggle Blender and projects/study at the same time, but I would like to join because I foresee this as a great experience for me! Keep us informed koots2!

~ Darren

I would look at this as a group effort. I am looking to learn, who else is?

oh me! … me! …me!
how wil it be?

Sounds like a blast, so just rig the legs of Ballman to start?

i just bought Tony Mullen’s book - great book
i also have the ManCandy FAQ

Darren I’m in the exact same boat your in

The ball 'n legs is already made and nicely rigged. I have to look for it.

Cool, I’m in if I remember to come back and check this thread.

hi, it may be a good idea to read this.
take care.

thanks for that tip MA

we can always start by going through the Introducting Character Animation with Blender to start and develop our own simple characters to work with

Well… Looks like we are going to have to change the base model a bit.

Hello, my name is Bobby Beck from Animation Mentor. It was pointed out to me that you have very similar rigs to that of ours at Animation Mentor. I even read your nice words about being inspired by the work that our students do. I can tell you are supporting what you see and we are flattered, however our characters are protected under copyright for a reason, which I will do my best to explain. We have worked very hard at Animation Mentor to create a brand that is unique to us. Our little characters, simple as they may be required a lot of time and effort to create them. When you think of Bugs Bunny you think of Warner Brothers, Mickey Mouse/ Disny, luxo/ Pixar, Scrat/ Blue Sky, etc. When people see our characters we want them to think of Animation Mentor.

For this reason I would like to politely ask that you remove your characters as it creates confusion when people see “our rigs” or similar rigs. We want to be clear about who Animation Mentor is. I hope you find this email to make sense as I wanted to send this email to you directly so that you understand how important it is to us at AM to protect the Animation Mentor brand, look and feel. I look forward to hearing from you.


I am little confused because AM directly takes the Sonic and Knuckles ball and tail idea… Sonic came out several yrs before AM did. Anyhow… I will see what I can do and revise the model to not offend anyone. I highly doubt people will confuse our models with AM… but anyhow…

I would be happy to do video tuts if someone could teach me how to do this.
hey koots2! a start would be to look at a few screen capture softwares, i would recommend you try these two, so you could get fired up and start the vid tuts :smiley:


for the character, how about starting with something like “cuby”?
edit: a character with cubical/rectangular limbs, feet, etc…

All of this talk about AM and look what i found today:
A free ebook from AM

As for the Screen Capture program, I own an older copy camtasia it works great.

Cuby, sounds great, don’t square shapes not work as well for animating?

If you really want to learn to animate the “right” way, I would recommend working from a book called “The Animator’s Survival Kit” by Richard Williams. You need to really understand timing and spacing (at the very least) in order to get the types of results that AM produces. A lot of those animation techniques are very systematized. That is the foundation that they work from. The Tony Mullen book, as great as it is, will not teach you that. It’s main focus is how to set things up in Blender. I definitely recommend it but you must have some other resource that covers the actual art of animation. These techniques are very well documented so there’s no need to re-invent them. Work from “The Animator’s Survival Kit” (and other similar books) and the Tony Mullen book and you’ll have a great start down a long road. Good Luck, it sounds like a great project!