Friday, December 11, 2015

Before Ever After: The Lost Lectures of Walt Disney’s Animation Studio - ESSENTIAL

Hahn, Don and Tracey Miller-Zarnecke Before Ever After: The Lost Lectures of Walt Disney’s Animation Studio, 440 pages.  Disney Editions, 2015.  $40. 

Anyone who knows anything about Walt Disney knows that he had high standards of quality and pushed himself more than he ever pushed any individual.  In order to create high quality shorts and prepare the entire studio of the herculean task of animating an entire feature length film, he created his own in-house art school, drawing upon experts close by and experts in house to give regular lectures to the lead artists and the in-betweeners.  Meet many of the original Disney artist – not all of the well-known to Disney-philes, but key figures nonetheless. Read their own words from their original lecture pages and enjoy the added commentary by Han and Miller-Zarnecke to paint a picture of the time and get into the details of the craft.

An artist, an animator, a computer animator, a story teller, an art teacher, and even a movie director would learn much by slowly digesting the words on these pages.  440 is a hefty amount of information, even interspersed with photos and drawings.  I can think of a half dozen people in my own circles who would benefit greatly and be highly entertained by this.  I don’t think it is for school libraries, however.


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