Course overview

This course is the second of a two-course sequence, which is a Digital character animation production including principle of animation, advanced animation techniques, inverse and forward kinematics, facial animation, binding techniques, video referencing, rotoscoping, cinematography, lighting, compositing, and editing for the final production.


Required materials for this course

  • USB external hard/USB+Firewire drive at least 250GB and up!
  • Stop watch
  • Optional for addition carry on storage; such as USB Thumb /flash drive (at lest 4GB)
  • Several CD/DVD R/RW blank discs
  • Williams, Richard and Sutton, Imogen. The Animator Survival Kit. Faber and Faber Publishing, 2001


Recommended Reading

    • Online document under Maya help menu (highly recommended)
    • Murdock, Kellyl. Body Language: Advanced 3d Character Rigging. Sybex Publishing, May 2008
    • Osipa, Jason. Stop Staring; Facail Modeling and Animation Done Right. Sybex Publishing, 2007
    • Goldberg, Eric. Character Animation Crash Course. Silman-James Press, LA, July 2008
    • Hooks, Ed. Acting for Animation. Heinemann publishing, 2003
    • Thomas, Frank. Johnston, Ollie. The Illusion of Life Disney Animation. Hyperion New York, 1995
    • Maraffi, Chris. Maya Character Creation. New Riders Publishing, 2008
    • Auto Desk. Learning Maya 2009 series.
    • Clark, Kyle. Inspired 3D Character Animation, Premier Press Publishing, 2002 Demers,
    • Digital Texturing and Painting. New Riders Publishing, 2002.
    • Birn, Jeremy. Digital Lighting and Rendering. New Riders Publishing, 2002.


Note* Due to the natural complexity of 3D Computer animation, you will need to work outside of the class to complete your products. You must be a self-motivated and please have fun with your project.

Approximate Grade Emphasis (see above)

Grades are based on the quality and quantity of your work. I will also consider your participation, ambition, commitment and development of your work from one project to the next. The following will be considered on grading:
Craft - Technical ability and craftsmanship
Concept - Visual thought process. The ability to interpret course concepts inventively, the ability to search for and discover methods and ideas with insight, and the ability to organize clear visual relationships.
Ambition - The ability to study effectively during class hours, the ability to accomplish work on a weekly basis, and the ability to apply constructive discussion during the class.
Productivity - The amount of work completed and how complete the works are.
Development - How much of your work has been developed and improved since the beginning of the semester.

A = Outstanding, excellent work 100 - 90 points
B = Above average work 89 - 80 points
C = Average work 79 - 70 points
D = Below average work 69 - 60 points
F = Failing work 59 - 0 points



3d art is time extensive and the technology associated with it is always changing. Learning the fundamentals is a must. Techniques, concepts and ideas discussed in this class are essential for a 3d Artist. Because of these, attendance is essential.

1 absences = excused
2 absences = grade lowered 1 letter grade
3 absences = grade lowered 2 letter grades
4 absences = grade lowered 3 letter grades
5 absences = fail course.

Dropping course recommended Being late to class three times will be counted as one unexcused absence. Likewise, leaving class early will be counted as an absence unless approved by instructor.


Student Needs

Any student who wishes to discuss accommodations on the basis or a disability, please come and talk to me after class or during office hours.

Class and Lab Rules:

  • No food or drink in the lab.
  • No cell phones, or beepers on during class.
  • ALWAYS remember to turn off your cellphone before class.
  • No sleeping during class. • No using head/ear phones, chatting online, emailing, my space/facebook/ or other online surfing during class
  • No playing video games during the class time
  • Hardware: No student is permitted to disconnect, reconnect, or reconfigure any workstation without the permission of a digital arts instructor. Any problems with hardware or software must be reported to a digital arts professor, preferably by email. Report should include name of workstation and exact nature of problem.


If you do not obey the rules, you will receive a first warning. If it happens again, you will be asked to leave the classroom plus receive one half a letter grade drop and a third time you will receive a full letter grade drop on your final grade.