1. AM Blog
  2. Animation Mentor
  3. Top 10 Animation Blog Posts of 2017

Top 10 Animation Blog Posts of 2017

by | Dec 19, 2017


To help you get a head start on 2018, we’ve compiled our top animation posts of the past year! Learn the seven things animators need to start (or stop) doing immediately, figure out if your demo reel makes the cut, learn how to approach an acting test, and more! You’ll want to bookmark this one to stay inspired all year long.


7 Things All Animators Need to Start (or Stop) Doing Right Now

By Brian Mendenhall

Complete with helpful explanatory images, here’s a comprehensive list of common body mechanics mistakes that mentor and Tippett Studio Animation Supervisor Brian Mendenhall sees beginning animators making all the time. Here are 7 things all animators need to start—or stop—doing right now!


Is your demo reel ready for a major studio?

By Shawn Kelly

In August, Animation Mentor Co-founder and Industrial Light & Magic Lead Animator Shawn Kelly took a little break from working on Avengers 3 to critique some student demo reels and to talk about do’s and don’ts, creature animation, and what studios are looking for when they review reel. It was awesome sauce and we learned so much! And you can still watch the replay.


Animation Mentor and the 12 Basic Principles of Animation

By Various Mentors

Take a deep dive on the 12 Basic Principles of Animation in our ever-popular 12-part series—each principle is covered by a different mentor! Get the basics, check out examples, and learn essential tips and tricks for becoming a better animator. Gain some knowledge from amazing professional animators who are out in the field!


What does a game animator do? Demo and Q&A with Skylar Surra

By Skylar Surra

In May, we had an amazing demo and Q&A with Skylar Surra, Riot Games Senior Animator and one of our Game Animation Mentors! In case you missed the webinar, here’s a recap video and a Q&A with some great questions we weren’t able to get to that night. Thanks, Skylar, for showing us the amazing world of Game Animation!


Alvise Avati Talks Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Essential Creature Animation Advice for Students

By Animation Mentor

At age 32, Alvise Avati decided to switch careers and become an animator. Now he has films like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Avatar, and King Kong on his resume. Learn more about Alvise’s unique journey and get some great tips on getting your creature animation skills blockbuster ready!


How to Approach an Acting Test

By Jason Martinsen

Coming up with a great idea for an acting test is difficult. What are some things that can help make it more interesting and less generic? How do you choose the right audio track? What kind of things do people want to see in a reel? Too often you see a medium shot of a character standing in the middle of a room, quoting a popular movie and gesturing at the camera. This is unoriginal and will not stand out in a reel, no matter how well it is animated. So, what can you do to spice it up? Jason Martinsen can tell you!


I’ll Never Be As Good an Animator as So-and-So

By Shawn Kelly

In the animation world, sooner or later—usually sooner—someone is going to come along and blow you out of the water. But that’s a GOOD thing! If you’re in that situation, we sure hope you use it as an opportunity to refocus and learn what you can from your new peer in order to push your animation game to a whole new level! In this post Shawn Kelly shares some words of wisdom—and inspiration—to help you stay on track.


How I Got My Dream Job with Alumnus and Framestore Animator Usman Olumu

By Usman Olumu

We caught up with Usman Olomu, Summer 2016 Animation Mentor graduate and now Framestore London animator! Usman shared some incredible advice for current animation students to help you follow in his footsteps and land you dream jobs too. You’ll want to take some notes!


How to Maximize your Productivity when Animating

By David Tart

Animation is a time-consuming art form—there’s just no way around it. Something that many people don’t understand when they first get into animation is that the quality of a shot is directly related to available time. So what do you do when time is limited? How do you squeeze the most productive time out of your week? Learn top time management tips from David Tart, animator for Toy Story, Monster’s Inc., and Finding Nemo!


Twinning and Why You Should (Usually) Avoid It

By Shawn Kelly

With twinning—as with everything in the animation world—there’s always room to break the rules. But first thing’s first…what the heck is twinning and why should I (mostly) be avoiding it? Shawn Kelly shares the don’ts (and occasional do’s) that go along with twinning in animation in this in-depth post. Soak up the wisdom!

We hope you learned a lot! If you want even more good stuff, read our round-up of the top animation posts from 2016

Want to learn from professional animators?

Start your journey by learning with professional animators from a variety of major studios and career paths! Get more information about Animation Mentor’s Character Animation Courses.

Related Articles