When I heard a few years ago that Jason Ryan was about to start iAnimate, I was instantly excited about the idea and wanted to be part of the first group of students. I had taken online classes before, but I felt I needed to refine my skill set. You can imagine that I was really excited about the iAnimate concept to prepare animators for feature productions by working closely together with top notch feature animation instructors and mimic a production environment during the classes. I was blown away by the quality of the classes and the knowledge of the mentors during the one-on-one weekly reviews. It’s a very special feeling when you can discuss your work directly with your mentor in person when you are at the other side of the ocean.
Also the rigs that iAnimate provides are top quality fast rigs that are a joy to work with. They have so much appeal that I felt at times that we were spoiled a bit with these new toys that were given to us every workshop.
In our 34 episode, we speak with talented animator & iAnimate creature instructor, Johnny Spinelli. Johnny is a proud Montrealer, and has worked in just about every aspect of CG animation from, feature animation, VFX, and video games (both in-game & cinematic), as well as realistic, cartoony, and creatures. He's worked on the award winning Rango from ILM, and is currently working on the highly anticipated Jurassic World movie. This was a great casual discussion with some practical insight.
Our friends over at 3D Total recently did an interview with one of our amazing Creature workshop instructors, James Bennett. They chatted with James Bennett about an animation career spanning King Kong and How to Train your Dragon, plus we get his pro tips for taking control, as well as his top showreel advice!
Each week at iAnimate, in addition to students normal lecture time with their instructors, Jason Ryan does a workflow class by taking an animation assignment, similar to what members would receive (i.e. body mechanics, dialog, etc.), and animates the shot live. This process allows members to see how a top professional animator would approach planning, breaking the shot down, polishing, etc. And because it's live, as well as recorded for later viewing, attendees are able to ask questions. It's like having a second instructor. For this demo, Jason animated a two person dialog shot with our characters Jake and Angela.