Studio AKA

From Studio AKA’s Vimeo page.

STUDIO AKA is a multi-BAFTA winning & Oscar Nominated independent animation studio based in London. We’re known internationally for our idiosyncratic & innovative work, expressed across an eclectic range of projects. Our story involves a creatively diverse group of artists who often work in close collaboration with each other as part of our studio process. We love to work with interesting people & we aim to create work that lasts. We have built a studio by finding ways to make that happen.

Below is their montage reel and a few other projects they have worked.

To see more of their videos, check out their Vimeo page and their website!

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How the Father of Claymation Lost His Company

A great article about Will Vinton from Priceonomics! Below is an excerpt. Read the full article here!

On a rainy autumn afternoon in 2002, Will Vinton sat alone in a board room, reviewing his severance package.

His desk, now barren, had once displayed the emblems of a storied career: an Oscar, six prime-time Emmys, a slew of Clios and innumerable other honors. He had brought clay animation back to life. But his creations, once animated on silver screens, were now housed in cardboard boxes, frozen in various states of bewilderment.

Over thirty years, Vinton had built his firm, Vinton Studios, into a $28-million-a-year enterprise. He’d produced, directed, and brought to life the most memorable characters of the 80s and 90s — the California Raisin, Thurgood Stubbs, the “Red and Yellow M&Ms.” He not only coined the term “claymation,” but was its unheralded king.

And now he was in the board room, tracing over the language that seized his kingdom. Hours earlier, he’d handed over his company and all of its trademarks to Nike co-founder Phil Knight. The billionaire’s son, an animation intern and ex-rapper with no management experience, would be assuming his place.

But thirty years earlier, long before the corporate chaos, Vinton picked up a ball of clay and saw a world of potential.

Read the full article here!

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DON’T FORGET: Animation Spring Festival Screening on May 9/Friday!

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Enroll Now for Summer 2014! Studio X

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Leading Ladies and Femmes Fatales: The Art of Marc Davis (April 30 to November 3, 2014)

From the Walt Disney Family Museum:

The Walt Disney Family Museum is excited to present the exhibition Leading Ladies and Femmes Fatales: The Art of Marc Davis. On view in the museum’s Theater Gallery from April 30 to November 3, 2014, this exhibition co-curated by the museum’s director of collections and exhibitions, Michael Labrie, and animator Andreas Deja spotlights some 70 original pencil animation drawings, conceptual artwork, paintings, cels, and photographs from animator and Imagineer Marc Davis (1913–2000). Davis, who was named a Disney Legend in 1989, was assigned and executed some of the most difficult animation for Walt Disney’s leading ladies and femmes fatales from classics such as Peter Pan (1953), Sleeping Beauty (1956), and One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961). It was Davis’ mastery of the human form and authority on anatomy and movement that brought these iconic female characters to life and made them believable.
Although his work and accomplishments could fill a much larger gallery, selected artworks mainly from Davis’ personal collection, Walt Disney Imagineering, several private collectors, and the Walt Disney Family Foundation’s collection, intend to focus on a part of Davis’ life and career with his mastery of the human form. Leading Ladies and Femmes Fatales highlights Davis’ female characters in film—such as Peter Pan’s Tinker Bell, Sleeping Beauty’s title heroine Aurora, its villain Maleficent, and One Hundred and One Dalmatians’ Cruella de Vil—as well as in live entertainment, his fine art, and through his beloved wife Alice Davis.

The exhibition is aptly timed with MAGIC, COLOR, FLAIR: the world of Mary Blair, on view from March 13 through September 7, 2014 in the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall.


10am to 6pm, Wednesdays through Monday; closed on Tuesdays and the following public holidays: New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.


$20 adults, $15 seniors and students, and $12 children ages 6 to 17.
Admission is free for members.
Admission to this exhibition is free with paid museum admission or for members.


The Presidio of San Francisco, 104 Montgomery Street, San Francisco, CA 94129

For more information, click here.

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Jim Henson’s Creature Shop

I came across a BuzzFeed post called 26 Things I Learned At Jim Henson’s Creature Shop. The BuzzFeed writer documents his visit to the Jim Henson’s Creature Shop as he meets the mentors from the Syfy network’s current show, Jim Henson’s Creature Shop Challenge

The Jim Henson’s Creature Shop Challenge is a reality television game show where SFX artists, sculptors, creature costumers come together and compete for a cash prize and a contract at the Jim Henson’s Creature Shop. Check out the videos below to see what the show is about and a few of their creature features.

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Smears, Multiples and Animation Gimmicks

Looking for animation smear references? Click here or the Animation Smears link under the Industry resources and information on the right ->

Below are a few examples from

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Animating for Fun

Where is this dog going? Perhaps they are running to check out Wayne Unten’s blog here!

Unten describes his blog as “The goal of my new after-work hobby is to animate for fun and let creativity flow, flexing those muscles more, and doing it on a regular basis. It’s good exercise. This blog will document my progress.”

To see more of his work, you can also find his blog link under the Industry resources and information on the right side ->

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HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 – First 5 Minutes

From the DreamWorks Animation YouTube page.

Watch the first five minutes of How to Train Your Dragon 2!


The thrilling second chapter of the epic HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON trilogy brings us back to the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years after the two have successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island’s new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons.

US Release: June 13, 2014

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The Making of “Ernest & Celestine”

Interested in knowing how Ernest & Celestine was made?

Director Benjamin Renner started a blog to explain the step by step process of how Ernest & Celestine came alive on the big screen. He used playful illustrations to describe his first meeting with the producer, Mister Didier, to questioning how to adapt Gabrielle Vincent’s books, and to Renner’s emotional state when Ernest & Celestine was screened at the Cannes Film Festival. To check out this blog, click here.

Visit the official Ernest & Celestine website to look at the production work. You can find a few examples below.

If you want to hear from the man himself, below is a video with Benjamin Renner explaining how he made the film by using hand-drawn and computer animation techniques with a splash of watercolor effects and Flash.

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