Clay Animation Courses
Find out what clay animation is, what these classes teach and where this training may be found. Read further to see if courses may be completed online.
What Will I Learn?
Clay and stop-motion animation courses teach you how to design and sculpt characters, props and scenery out of pliable material, such as clay or Plasticine. Clay animation incorporates elements of filmmaking and storytelling, such as screenwriting, lighting, camerawork and editing. Depending on the program you enroll in, you might also learn how to integrate clay animation and digital animation using industry software.
The goal of many clay animation courses is to complete a short, stop-action film. Some examples of stop-motion courses include the following:
Using drawings, puppets and other objects, students learn the foundation of animation. This includes finding out how to create life-like stop-motion animated characters within the framework of an engaging story.
Storytelling and Storyboard Creation
Since most clay animated productions tell a story, students learn how to craft a tale and visually communicate that narrative in their animation. That story would then be transferred to the storyboard, which is a series of drawings detailing the plot and sequence of the animation to be produced.
Drawing for Animation
Students enhance their understanding of anatomy and gesture through the practice of sketching from a live model. By developing their drawing skills, students will be able to transfer their knowledge of proportion, color theory, and composition to their clay characters and scenes, creating dynamic visual interest.
Traditional and Digital Animation
When students develop animated characters and storylines using traditional methods, they create a strong foundation for digitally created animation in both 2D and 3D. Storyboards can also be hand drawn or digital.
Technical Skills and Production
Students learn how to use production and software technology to create stop-motion animated films. Since stop motion means adjusting and then filming the clay figure in tiny increments to create a movement, photography, sound, lighting, and post-production techniques are vital to the clay animation process.
Where Can I Take Clay Animation Courses?
Clay animation courses are typically offered through visual arts colleges, film schools and universities that have an animation degree program. You might find some stop-motion filmmaking courses that include clay animation within the syllabus, especially when the course emphasizes using traditional animation techniques.
Can I Learn Online?
Online clay animation courses for college credit are rare; however, online tutorials are available through educational organizations and a few universities. Undergraduate and graduate degree programs in animation might offer a combination of online and on-campus courses, including those in stop-motion animation.
To view tutorials or participate in online learning, you'll need a computer with high-speed Internet access, as well as a movie viewing application, such as Apple's QuickTime. Animation courses often have additional software requirements specific to each course that might be provided by the school or available for trial download.