Monday, September 25, 2006

Acting - Bashful Buzzard (1945) & Baby Bottleneck (1946) McKimson and Scribner

Hey folks, how many of you made it to the shows at the Animation festival? At the Clampett panel, I talked about some of the different talents Clampett had and how he used them in his cartoons. Acting was the first topic. Clampett had the best personality animation of anyone during the Golden Age of Cartoons. Say hi in the comments and tell everyone what they missed!
Here are two examples of 2 different aproaches to animation acting.
Bob McKimson tends to use body poses, attitudes and gestures to convey his characters' emotions. He watches Clampett act out a scene and then draws all of Clampett's motions and gestures. McKimson uses a limited range of expressions-they are kind of generic (not as limited as the other studios)-but the characters' movements are full of personality and meaning.

Rod Scribner on the other hand tends to use very specific custom designed facial expressions. He listens really carefully to the voice track and makes up an original drawn expression for every little nuance he hears. Scribner was completely unique during the golden age of cartoons. I don't know anyone else who did this. He gave me the idea to do it in my cartoons.

Bob McKimson Acting:
Here's a scene from Bashful Buzzard. Note how Mckimson doesn't veer much from the model sheet, but he does so much with the body language that he doesn't really need to. (Actually, I think the model sheet in this case was made from the animation drawings-which is a great idea)

(Model sheet taken from Kevin Langley's GOOBER SLEAVE - thanks Kevin!)

Acting - Bashful Buzzard
Uploaded by chuckchillout8

Rod Scribner

Here's an example of a model sheet of Daffy Duck from 1940:

(This model sheet is from Kevin Langley's GOOBER SLEEVE - thanks Kevin!)

As you can see, the expressions on the model sheet are typically generic 40s cartoon expressions. They are "broad stroke" emotions, and sufficient for general cartoon type production, but not good enough for Clampett. (It looks like a Friz model sheet.)

Now watch Rod Scribner's great animation of Daffy Duck. It still looks like the Daffy on the model sheet, but he is much more alive and real, because he acts as if he is constantly being confronted with new challenges, thoughts and emotions and reacts instantly with unique custom-tailored expressions. Clampett's characters act as if they are motivated from within, as opposed to Chuck's who act as if the director is pushing them around and guiding them to their marks that have been pre-planned on stage.



"Mister Dionne..."


(To see more images from this scene, head on over to DUCK WALK....)

Acting - Baby Bottleneck
Uploaded by chuckchillout8