Creature Workshop 1

Quadruped Locomotion

11-Week Class
This introduction to the creature animation program will mainly focus on quadruped locomotion. Different workflow will be presented during this 11 weeks workshop and practice with various assignment. The goal is to make sure by the end of it you are comfortable to animate animal locomotion that is realistic and believable.


The goal of this first workshop is to comfortably be able to breakdown and animate basic quadruped locomotion and animate simple creature locomotion that is realistic and believable.

Week 1: Anatomy – Bipedal vs quadupedal

  • Anatomy studies sketches
  • Structural sketches of locomotion poses
  • Using reference/Pose tests for character using rigs

Week 2-4: Low and High speed gaits (Walks and Runs)

  • Walk and amble
  • WORKFLOW DEMO: layered approach
  • Pace and trot
  • Transverse gallop vs rotary gallop
  • WORKFLOW DEMO: pose to pose approach
  • Comparisons of variance in different quadrupeds (different gaits for different sizes)

Week 5: Changing speeds

  • Transitioning from one low speed gait to high speed gait (or vice versa)

Week 6: Change of direction

Start with either high or low speed gait, have creature do a distinct change of direction.

  • Low speed turning
  • High speed turning

Week 7: Jump

Breakdown preparation, antic, jump, land

  • Jumping a gap
  • Jumping up onto a higher object

Week 8 - 9: Climbing and non ground based locomotion

  • Comparison of feline and primate climbs
  • Swinging and tree locomotion (orangutan, chimpanzee, monkey) [DEMO: Redback]

Week 10 - 11: Combine previous assignments into a sequence

  • Planning of sequence (reference, thumbnails, what's the story etc) (stalking prey to strike or walking prey gets startled and runs from predator...etc)
  • Try to use as much material from previous classes, stitch it together and perform a rough edit. (should look like a nature documentary)