Characters: Meet Roko

I enjoyed the work of OpenToonz user Jame who animated a short cartoon called ‘Roko and Roka’ enough that I thought I’d try drawing Roko myself.

I may not speak the language but animation bridges the gap.  Here’s the cartoon:

Fun stuff.   And I’m intrigued by the critter sleeping (?) on Roko’s head.  :)

And here’s my tribute drawing of Roko in it’s MotionMonster setting:making-of-roko

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Random Doodle

I’m troubleshooting/gap checking and trying to improve workflow.

This guy/gal represents an issue with quickly laying down line work that doesn’t easily fill with color.


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Revisiting Leonardo

One of the first posts on this blog pointed to Leonardo Da Vinci as an early pioneer of animation.  I still stand by that assessment.

In that post I pointed to the sequence of poses from Leonardo’s notebooks that sketch the motion of a man chopping wood:

Man chopping wood - Leonardo DaVinci

Man chopping wood – Leonardo DaVinci

I recently came across a book that had these images in a bit clearer format and in clearer context and was tempted to purchase the book.  However, I realized those tiny images would very likely be the whole reason for buying the book.  As with most notebooks Leonardo added notes to these images so there is much more to be gleaned from studying the originals.  Maybe some other day…

The thing that set Leonardo apart from other artists (as an ‘animator’) is his intense and never ending study of movement.

Yes, my friends… animation may be ‘the illusion of life’ but movement… basic movement of all types is present in animation too.   In fact that ‘movement’ is what creates a compelling illusion.

Leonardo understood movement and how it relates to us in ways that even in our day and age we often do not.

Another recent book on Leonardo that I have not purchased covers theories of how he created the illusion of movement in still paintings.  I should buy that book too.  Some day…

Keep on animating!


And here for the curious are some additional ‘pose studies’ by Leonardo.


If anyone can share links to larger images of Leonardo’s motion studies on the internet or provide additional context concerning his affinity with motion/animation I will be most grateful to you.


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A:M, OpenToonz and Motion Monster (Together again for the first time)

The latest Motion Monster has been released!

Turtletooth Studios cutting edge branch of the powerful OpenToonz animation software is a welcome addition with features not yet incorporated into the official OpenToonz branch.

This latest release is primarily designed to provide a view of new icons but incorporates a long list of other features previously added to the software

And what does Animation:Master… the 3D animation program that everyone should be using… have to do with any of this?  Wouldn’t you like to know.  ;)


Go here to get the latest release of Motion Monster:




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The most realistic render I’ve yet attempted in OpenToonz/Motion Monster

So I was…doodling… then I started blurring things… then this came out of the Motion Monster renderer:



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Andreas Deja, Clean Up and Color Models

Here courtesy of legendary Disney animator Andreas Deja is a frame from ‘Alice in Wonderland’ that I’ve used OpenToonz to clean up and color.  I’m tempted to work the entire sequence for the practice (and to demonstrate the benefits of the process).colorModel

OpenToonz is a wonderful tool to analyze animation with… and more on that in the future.

Clean up    .Check

Color Model    .Check

And here we’ve created an example of the principle of ‘Silhouette’ too!

(Using an RGBFade effect from OpenToonz applied to the Color level in the Schematic view.)

If you don’t follow Andreas’s blog you should correct that immediately.

Check it out!


And I dare ya to use OpenToonz to animate the images Andreas posted.😉

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What is… Motion Monster?




MotionMonster is a byproduct of OpenToonz brought to you by the ever prolific Turtletooth, maker of the portable release of OpenToonz.  It brings some features forward that aren’t included in the primary release of OpenToonz.  No huge changes but some that aren’t yet ready to be included in main program.

Motion Monster… Sounds like fun to me!  :)

Download and install it here:

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