Showing posts with label dancing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dancing. Show all posts

Friday, July 22, 2016


For the kind of model session that Theory Corner cartoonists might like, I'd I like to see a catwalk made of collapsible tables.

The model would walk on that.

If the model was a dancer, even an amateur dancer, that would be great. 

Of course the catwalk makes possible a dance that's also a walk. I see the individual poses as lasting no more than three or four minutes. I kinda like the idea of overlapping some of the drawings to get the effect you see above.

A catwalk makes it easier to do funny walks and eccentric dancing.

There's no end of funny walks.

Some walks and dances look better when more than one dancer does them. No problem. You just sketch in the clones after class.

Two models can become eight, as in this dance of Fosse's: The Rich Man's Frug."

Or one man becomes three. The choreography for a session like this could be improvised or planned. Me, I'd love to think of moves  for sidemen to do.

Poses involving animals like horses are no problem. You draw the model-driven rider poses then add the cartoony horses later. 

Or the cow.

If you had two models doing different walks at the same time you could combine the drawings in a sort of collage.

Remember to bring some tape.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


Expect nothing in this rambling Theory Corner post to make any sense. I've been fooling around with Photoshop effects and become obsessed with this picture of a girl walking (above) at an angle. I can't get over the fact that the girl is askew but the world around her is normal.

Rotate the screen as shown above and the girl becomes normal and it's the world around her that's askew. If she dropped an apple it would roll down the hill to screen left. Interesting, eh?  I envision a city built on a steep hillside where people learn from childhood how to walk the way the girl's walking here. 

No doubt the inhabitants of such a town would travel horizontally most of the time. Going up or down would require too much energy. 

Now put aside the concept of a diagonal city, and imagine a normal city where everybody danced to where they were going rather than walked.  Of course high energy dances like the Lindy Hop (above) or Hip Hop wouldn't be very practical for distance dancing. For that, you'd need something less strenuous, something like.... the Peabody or the Madison (above).

Or the "Wild and Crazy Guys" walk from Saturday Night Live.

I imagine that walkers would think of lots of variations to make the walk dances more interesting.

Haw! A good dance/walk (above) is a thing of beauty!

In such a world what would happen if a boy and girl met on the street?

Well, I guess they'd dance in place while they spoke to each other.

After speaking they'd say good-bye and take off in opposite directions (above, left)...or they'd dance together in the same direction (above, right).

If they needed to stop and talk for a minute they'd go back to dancing in place. 

Friday, February 28, 2014


That's (above) the old Chouinard art school in the 30's, the school that later morphed into Cal Arts. It was Walt Disney's idea to combine the Chouinard Art Institute and the LA Conservatory of Music so that different artistic disciplines would be taught under the same roof. It was an interesting idea...cross pollination and all that...but did it work?

One problem was that formal modern dance got very serious more than half a century ago...too serious... and dancers committed to that might not have been the best people to inspire comedic animators.

You have to wonder what would have happened if a showbiz dancer like Bob Fosse had supervised the Cal Arts dance program. Imagine the young Fosse lecturing to an animation class.

He would have shown them things like the Astaire tilted hat, the Jolson extended arms, face-open palms like a minstrel, clowning pantomimes, hiccuping joints, locking arms and legs that take a pose then suddenly drop it, tiny stepping like Jimmy Durante with knees bent and arms dangling would have been quite a show.

Fosse believed in keeping the actors moving, in establishing a stylized, confident flow that's never contradicted by a wrong gesture. He was influenced by what vaudevillians used to call "eccentric dancing," and he combined that with ballet.

Wow! What a teacher he would have made! What an influence such a teacher might have had on subsequent animation styles. Hmmmm....if any Cal Arts students are reading this will you write to Theory Corner to let us know how the dance/music/ animation synthesis is working out these days?

Friday, August 21, 2009


I wish dancing were easier to animate. The poses dancers take are hilarious.

Actually, they were always funny.

Even dances designed to fit with stately court music (above) were funny. Something about moving to rhythm makes people want to imitate roosters and ducks.

Not only that, but dandies seem to have had a big influence on high society dancing.

Manly men did their best to look virile while dancing (above), but they were swimming upstream. The dandies got there first, when the dances were created.

In order to suck in with high society, men had no choice but to immitate the dandies. The rule was: brawl in the street if you must, but be dainty on the dance floor.

Manly Renaissance men (above) had the additional humiliation of having to wear tights and pantaloons and little capes while dancing.

Even George Washington had to hop around the dance floor in a way that would have gotten him arrested if he'd done it on the streets.

I do like some of these old dances, though. Here's (above) one from the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet. The person who posted it on YouTube cut out some of the steps, but there's enough here so that you get the idea.