As a result of the dissemination of the Internet and the digital media outlets, the creation and distribution of animated content have increased dramatically on an international scale and in every relevant sector: advertising, TV series and specials, feature films, the increasingly popular short films and docufiction films, not to mention the growing demand for animations in the fields of video games and cross- and trans-media projects for the Web, tablets, and mobile devices. Animation skills are also in increasing demand in terms of special effects for cinema and television productions.
Participants can enter the professional field of Animation and Crossmedia/Transmedia production, which currently includes: independent production companies, research and design studios, service agencies, internal departments at broadcasting corporations, and specialised departments at Publishing Houses.
The Masters course prepares and qualifies the participants for the following positions: Concept artist, Character designer, Ambient designer, Story board (+ Layout) artist (Preproduction); 2D Character Animator; 3D Character animator; Production Assistant; Compositor (Production).
The Masters course is primarily aimed at consolidating and updating participants' skills in terms of animation concept design, with special attention being dedicated to the themes, content and styles that characterise modern animations.
It highlights certain points of the modern production workflow, which have been introduced by studios that are currently using new artistic solutions and techniques (Emerging Tools) to create series and feature films:
- 2D / 3D integration;
- Cut-outs (Puppet Animation);
- Frame-by-Frame Paperless Animation;
- Post-production, VFX.
These "nodes" also include the pursuit of style, which is taken to mean the synthesis of the concept's foundations - the expressive and aesthetic purposes - and the creative choices.The programme is divided into three main sections: Design, Technical/Instrumental Skills and Production/Marketing.
The programme initially focuses upon a number of modules dedicated to improving and fine-tuning the students' skills in terms of concept design, preproduction and animation, which are then flanked by other lessons that provide the necessary technical and instrumental expertise.
Once these topics have been covered, the teachers will monitor the design and creation of a number of projects:
- a project dossier, either individually or as part of a team, to be presented to the Pitch committees of the most important international Festivals (Appel à Projects in Annecy; Pitch Me! at Cartoons on the Bay);
- a communication project (with simulated client brief) on a social or educational topic;
- a thesis project: consisting of a short-film, a series pilot, or a cross-media project, either individually or as part of a team;
At the end of the Masters course the students are required to present a personal showreel (self-presentation) updated to include their latest projects.
The design Section:
- Concept Design for animation
- Character Design
- Ambient Design
- Preproduction: from the subject to the storyboard (Bible)
- Previsualisation techniques: from the videoboard to the layout and the preparation of the 3D set
- ANIMATION: stylistic research, recitatives, innovation
- Development of interactive digital content (Cross and Transmedia)
The Technical/Instrumental Section:
- 3D Character Animation (Autodesk MAYA)
- Indepth study of Rigging, Shading, Lighting and Rendering (Autodesk MAYA)
- Previsualisation techniques (3D set construction, posing, camera movements)
- 2D Animation: ToonBoom Harmony, T.B. Storyboard
- Compositing (advanced techniques) and effects
- Workshop: Stop Motion - PerformanceCapture, etc.
Production and Marketing:
- Production Management
- Business management: financing, international co-productions, licensing and distribution.
The enormous heritage of international creative ideas, words and deeds is a worldwide acknowledged IED value, demonstrating that respect for cultural diverity and multidisciplinarity and the resulting ‘culture of jointness’ approach to education are an unquestionable key to success.