The process brought to mind a number of unexpected thoughts. I remember my father talking about time and motion and being economic with body and time when completing tasks. He taught me a number of unusual things ..like how to make trousers for a doll..he had made repairs to his own during his time in POW camp..and learned the hard way using flour sacks..he also made a case to bring home his belongings.
He also taught me to chop wood with an axe and to build a bridge over a stream...and how to read maps when you are deep in a forest!! All these things require a certain awareness of your body in space and I found myself pondering on this while putting my 120 sheets through the line tester in the animation room.
From where I sit I see a picture I have of Norman on the wall...deep in concentration leaning over his animation work. I keep in the back of my mind the knowledge that there is engineering in our combined genetic inheritance. I feel like I could have been at an engineer's workbench instead of an animation table!
Norman McLaren said in his first teaching book that animation requires muscle memory so that your body remembers what you are drawing.....and I realised today that this covers the whole process, not just the drawing. I got into a kind of rhythm and keen observation mode as I worked...even being subconsciously aware before I looked at the film that something was not quite right.
Basically I missed a flake ..which just vanishes 1/2 way through the cycle!!!....and because I was drawing 8 on one sheet at one point, it is not simple to correct...but I am in the midst of that...
When I was drawing them, carefully following the tracks I had mapped, I could not resist putting two extra ones in which do not follow a track!!! It works though.The focus wandered a little as I was drawing, however and about half way through I started making my own interpretation of the timing..and leaving spaces on some of the tracks...this does not work so I will have to go through each sheet and fill the spaces....time consuming..but what learning!!