My name is Megan. I’m from Australia and I’m an animator at JibJab. I was lucky enough to do some animatin’ on the Year In Review for 2012.
First off, I’m given a character design from one of Jib Jab’s super talented and good looking designers. The character is actually made up of separate drawings for all the different parts. This allows me to animate the character like a puppet in a software program called Adobe After Effects. I move around the limbs, torso, etc on joints I add in. Sometimes, I might need to draw a new shape, or even draw a whole sequence of animation so that the character moves exactly how I want.
In Adobe After Effects, I move the pieces of the character around bit by bit into different poses. All the grey squares in the picture above are when something is moving. They are called ‘key frames’ – these are all the different poses that work together to make it look like the character is moving.
When I work on the computer, I use a digital pen thing called a Wacom tablet instead of a mouse. So, with that I move the character a little bit at a time, then repeat LOTS and LOTS of times and drink lots of tea until…..WOW! I have a fully animated character that I can put into a scene that has a background…and more characters to animate! It is hard work but HEAPS of fun!