This morning while perusing my feeds, I stumbled across a post on the Topic Simple blog entitled “Top 5 Myths About Animation“. It’s a nice post that’s short and simple and focuses on the process of animation more than anything else and is well worth reading.
However, animation is so much more than just the actual nuts and bolts. It’s a wonderful technique that creates fantastic moving art for all to see. So here are 5 more myths about animation that go above and beyond the five in Topic Simple’s post.
1. Animation is a genre
Plenty of awards, stores and lists make animation out to be a genre. If this were true, then every animated film would be the same, which blatantly isn’t the case. There are all kinds of animated films, from musicals to horror and everything in between. Animation is far from a genre, but is sadly often treated as one.
2. Animation is just for kids
This myth may have held more ground in perhaps the 1930s, but not any more. There have been times when adult-friendly animation has been scarce, but it has always existed, ever since The Flintstones first popped up on TV. Today, there’s a wide range of animation that’s geared solely towards adults, and it’s all broadcast friendly too!
3. Hand-drawn animation is dead
Toy Story (and Pixar in general) are normally noted as being the film (and studio) that wrote the death warrant for traditional, hand-drawn animation. Again, this is far from the truth. Yes, Disney shuttered their unit, only to open it up again. CGI has been a hit with audiences, but it remains to see how long its legs are. Traditional animation has evolved to take advantage of technological progress with the likes of Toon Boom, etc. providing plenty of software that can be utilised to enhance hand-drawn animation. Don’t bury this technique just yet, it’ll be around for a long time to come.
4. Only the big studios make animation that’s worth watching
In fairness, the big studios do have an advantage in terms of scale and budgets, but that doesn’t mean that anyone with a great idea is relegated to the rubbish heap. Great animation has always been made on a shoestring budget, from the early TV stuff put out by Hanna-Barbera to Sita Sings the Blues by Nina Paley. Meanwhile blockbusters with massive budgets like Sinbad the Sailor crash and burn. Cost and quality are not as joined at the hip as this myth would have you believe.
5. Animation is not a viable career choice
This myth is one of the more prevalent ones among those not in the know, i.e. not working in the industry. A career in animation is just as viable as any other. Oh sure, it has its pitfalls just like any other, but at least artistic skill is easily carried an highly transferable, unlike say, civil engineering; which is more secure, but whose technical skills aren’t very transferable at all.
Animation is a fine career choice, provided one is willing to work hard to achieve success, just the same as one would want to be in any career.