ANI 231 3D Animation

Office: CDM 522
Fall 2016-2017
Class number: 33098
Section number: 402
MW 3:10PM - 4:40PM
CDM 00722 Loop Campus


3D Animation

Professor: Suruchi Pahwa

In this course, students will be introduced to the art of animating in 3D through the use of traditional animation principles. Topics will include: principles of animation, storyboarding, transformations and deformations of 3D objects, rigging, camera and light animation. Emphasis will be placed on using the computer as a tool to create animation for cinema and game applications, as well as an instrument of experimentation. PREREQUISITE(S): ANI 230


Recommended TEXTS:

?The Animators Survival Kit?

Richard Williams, Publisher: Faber and Faber Inc. 2001, Cost $30.00.

?Introducing Autodesk Maya 2013?

Derakhshani, John Wiley & Sons, 2011. ISBN: 978-0470900215

Reference Websites


Assignments 80% of grade (assignments and participation)

Final Project 20% of grade

Total 100%

A = 100-93 A- = 92-90

B+ = 89-88 B = 87-83 B- = 82-80

C+ = 79-78 C = 77-73 C- = 72-70

D+ = 69-68 D = 67-63 D- = 62-60 F = 59-0

Standards for Achievement:

Grade A:

Student performs in an outstanding way. Student exhibits achievement and craftsmanship in all work. Design criteria is exceeded and student challenges him/herself in project design. Student exhibits commitment to expanding ideas, vocabulary and performance.

Grade B:

Student performs beyond the requirement of the project. Student exhibits above average progress and craftsmanship. A design criterion is exceeded. Student exhibits above average interest in expanding idea, vocabulary, and performance.

Grade C:

Criteria of assignment is met, and all requirements are fulfilled. Student shows average quality work and minimum time and effort on projects. Student shows moderate interest.

Grade D:

Student performance is uneven and below average. Requirements for projects are only partially fulfilled. Minimal interest is shown and attendance, participation and involvement are inadequate.

Grade F

Student fails to meet minimum course requirements and shows no interest. Levels of participation and craftsmanship are extremely poor. Student?s attendance is inadequate.

Requesting an incomplete grade:

An incomplete grade may only be assigned to a student if the student has experienced an extenuating circumstance near the end of the term, the student is in good standing in the class, and the request is made before


ANI 230


Students are expected to attend every class. We cover an enormous amount of material in every class, and missing even one can be a huge setback.

Three absences will result in the lowering of your final grade one full letter. Any student missing 4 classes will be given a grade of ?F? for the semester.

The student is responsible for any lectures or assignments missed. If an assignment is due a week that you are absent, it is your responsibility to make sure it still arrives on time. A good portion of our class time will be spent doing hands on tutorials, screening films, and critiquing work. Lecture notes will not make up for these missed learning experiences.

You may not miss the final class critique. Doing so will equal an automatic two letter grade reduction of your final grade. If for some reason you cannot make this class contact your instructor BEFORE the class that you must miss. Excuses given after the fact will not be accepted.

No incompletes will be given without documented proof of circumstances beyond your control.


One of the best ways to learn in a classroom environment is through active participation in discussions and critiques. In general, we will be following a pattern of creating animation and then discussing it in critique in the following week. When I open up the floor for you to speak, please make the effort to voice your honest and constructive opinion. You are likely to find that this will greatly improve your overall learning process.

Class Work


Must be handed in on time. ?On time? means submitted through COLWeb one hour BEFORE class on the day the assignment is due. Students who use class time to finish assignments the day they are due will forfeit the right to hand in that assignment.
Late work:
o Late work will not be accepted unless approved of PRIOR to the class in which it is due or accompanied by a valid medical excuse.
o You are allotted one ?freebie? per term that allows you to turn in ONE assignment late for full credit (up until the 10th week of the term). You only get one of these per term. All other late assignments are forfeited.
Written Assignments: Must be typed.
Digital Assignments: Must be submitted in the following format (please note upper and lower case usage)
o lastnameFirstname_projectname.extension
o example: jonesJosh_projectOne.mb

* Special Accommodations: If you have any special considerations please see me.

* BACK UP YOUR WORK: Failure of computer software and or hardware will not be accepted as an extenuating circumstance for late projects or incomplete grades so back up your work on a regular basis.


In most cases (I?ll let you know the exceptions) I request that you use QuickTime H.264 format for the submission of your rendered assignments. AVI?s are difficult to watch frame by frame (something we will be doing a lot of). Handing in something unfinished is always better than nothing at all. Due to the large size of our class, and the limited class time, not everyone?s work will get a full review during class. If you?d like more feedback, arrange to discuss your work with me during my office hours. We will view and discuss everyone?s final project during the last class.

Introduction to 3D Animation



Bouncing Ball Observation and Diagramming

Watch Ani Survival Kit 02: Timing and Spacing.

00:00 to 22:30

Assignment: Animate a bouncing ball frame by frame.

3 Bouncing Balls

Animating with Curves

Rendering an Animation

Assignment: Animate three bouncing balls?basketball, beach ball, and bowling ball. Introducing Character

Intro to working with rigs


Stepping through an animation

Self-propelled ball

Assignment: One legged up/down jump

Watch Ani Survival Kit 12: Anticipations and Accents

00:00 to 9:17 Introduction to simple rigs


Basic Skinning


Component Editor

Creating a simple character Intro to Overlapping Action

Dope Sheet

In Class Exercises:

Tail Wag

Extended Spine


Balance and Weight Intermediate Inbetweening

Breakdown Poses

Basic Splining

Introduction to walks

Advanced foot rigs

Hip and foot movement Full Body Character Rigs

Good rig operation

Parented Rigs

Adding Attributes

Creating Blend Shapes

Blocking for full body character animation

Creating a ?key all? function

Experimenting with timing Advanced Splining Techniques

Camera Moves

Assignment: Breakdown poses for Character Action Assignment

Week 11

In class critiques of final animation

School policies:

Changes to Syllabus

This syllabus is subject to change as necessary during the quarter. If a change occurs, it will be thoroughly addressed during class, posted under Announcements in D2L and sent via email.

Online Course Evaluations

Evaluations are a way for students to provide valuable feedback regarding their instructor and the course. Detailed feedback will enable the instructor to continuously tailor teaching methods and course content to meet the learning goals of the course and the academic needs of the students. They are a requirement of the course and are key to continue to provide you with the highest quality of teaching. The evaluations are anonymous; the instructor and administration do not track who entered what responses. A program is used to check if the student completed the evaluations, but the evaluation is completely separate from the student’s identity. Since 100% participation is our goal, students are sent periodic reminders over three weeks. Students do not receive reminders once they complete the evaluation. Students complete the evaluation online in CampusConnect.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

This course will be subject to the university's academic integrity policy. More information can be found at If you have any questions be sure to consult with your professor.

Academic Policies

All students are required to manage their class schedules each term in accordance with the deadlines for enrolling and withdrawing as indicated in the University Academic Calendar. Information on enrollment, withdrawal, grading and incompletes can be found at

Students with Disabilities

Students who feel they may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact the instructor privately to discuss their specific needs. All discussions will remain confidential.
To ensure that you receive the most appropriate accommodation based on your needs, contact the instructor as early as possible in the quarter (preferably within the first week of class), and make sure that you have contacted the Center for Students with Disabilities (CSD) at:
Lewis Center 1420, 25 East Jackson Blvd.
Phone number: (312)362-8002
Fax: (312)362-6544
TTY: (773)325.7296