Saturday, March 25, 2017

THE NOBLE APPROACH (2013, Tod Polson)

Tod Polson. The Noble Approach: Maurice Noble and the Zen of Animation Design. San Francisco, Chronicle Books, 2013.

/ PDF / English / 176 pages / 1452102945 / 978-1452102948

Nice book about the most influential animation designer of all time. There's also a bit of a bio here: his humble beginnings at the art school, working with Disney: he was the background painter in many of the Silly Symphonies, notably the Oscar winning The Old Mill (1937), eventually he became a background/layout artist working in Snow Whites, Bambi, Pinocchio, Fantasia and Dumbo... and then, he joined the strike against Disney! he was one of the very few "selected circle" artists to join, he had everything to lose but he did it anyways cause "it wasn't fair to the guys on the lower rungs". So he fought, won and... finally leave :(
During the war time period, started the first of many collaborations with Friz Freleng, Chuck Jones, Bob Clampett, Robert Mackimson.  
In 1951 he joined the Chuck Jones animation unit as layout designer and history was made, thus it begans his work at Warner Bros. Designing and creating background layouts for Duck Amuck, What's Opera Doc?, Kiss Me Cat. Then Working at MGM, retirement and coming out in the 90's. Etc. Etc.

But mainly this is an outline on the design philosophies of Maurice Noble, ilustrated with some of his designs: where to get inspiration from, how to choose color, how to break down the layout, etc. His logical approach to animation design: "Backgrounds and characters should work in harmony" and a simple line art style never interferes with a gag, design should always support a story not the other way around. (by pelida77)     

By the way, if you are any interested in background art take a peek at this amazing blog by Rob Richards:

"The real art of animation is filled with ideas and beauty and is never-ending joy"
(Maurice Noble)


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