Richard Williams' "The Animator's Survival Kit"

I've been hanging around the 10 Second Club lately, and everyone has been recommending this book, The Animator's Survival Kit by Richard Williams. I already own Preston Blair's Cartoon Animation and Shamus Culhane's Animation From Script to Screen, and I've read numerous other books on animation that I recommend whenever anyone asks, but I had to see why this book comes recommended so highly, so I checked it out from the library.

It's a great book. I've learnt new things, and been reminded of things I'd forgotten. His writing is clear, instructive, and doesn't get muddled down too much in archaic or obsolete terminology or methods. An old-school animator who has a clear love for his animation mentors, masters of the art who are no longer living, Williams acknowledges and embraces the modern ways of doing things. And of course the principles and tips are universal to any animation medium, whether modern or old-fashioned.

There is a large and detailed section on how to animate a walk. Preston Blair showed many different walk and run cycles in his book, but Williams doesn't just show you how, he shows you why. This book has given me an understanding of walks that I didn't get from Preston Blair, or even from having animated many walks in my own experience!

Anyway, it looks very useful, and I think I need to get my own copy. I probably won't get rid of my Preston Blair book, but I don't think I'll have much occasion to refer to it anymore.

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