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Drawn to Life: 20 Golden Years of Disney Master Classes: Volume 1: The Walt Stanchfield Lectures Paperback – Mar 23 2009


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Drawn to Life: 20 Golden Years of Disney Master Classes: Volume 1: The Walt Stanchfield Lectures + Drawn to Life: 20 Golden Years of Disney Master Classes: Volume 2: The Walt Stanchfield Lectures + The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Focal Press; 1 edition (March 23 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0240810961
  • ISBN-13: 978-0240810966
  • Product Dimensions: 27.4 x 21.6 x 2.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #75,316 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

For nearly thirty years, the artists that passed through the gates of Disney Animation, and even non-artists like myself, were influenced by the craft, skill, wisdom, writings and sketches of Walt Stanchfield.

Roy Disney

Walt was a kind of Mark Twain for us at Disney. He always taught with humor and skill. You learned to see the world through his eyes. I remember him one day encouraging us to leap into our drawings with boldness and confidence, "Don't be afraid to make a mistake. We all have 10,000 bad drawings in us so the sooner you get them out the better!" Sitting in Walt's class was as much a psychology course as it was a drawing class. One couldn't help walk away with your mind and soul a little more open than when you entered.

Glen Keane, Walt Disney Animation Studios

Walt Stanchfield's classes and writings were little distillations of the man: quirky, strongly stated in a genial voice, and brimming with a lifetime of sharp observations about story telling and graphic communication. Whether he drew with a ball point pen or painted with a brush dipped in his coffee cup, he got to the essence of things and was eager to share what he learned to his eager disciples, myself among them. He was grizzled and he was great and proof that there was more than one Walt at the Disney Studio that could inspire a legion of artists.  

John Musker, Walt Disney Animation Studios

Walt Stanchfield was one of Disney Animation's national treasures. His classes and notes have inspired countless animation artists, and his approach to drawing of caricature over reality, feeling over rote accuracy, and communication over photographic reproduction gets to the heart of what great animation is all about. Huzzah to Don Hahn for putting it all together for us!

Eric Goldberg, Walt Disney Animation Studios

During the Animation Renaissance of the 1990s, one of the Walt Disney Studio's best kept secrets was Walt Stanchfield. Once a week after work, this aged but agile figure jumped from drawing board to drawing board, patiently teaching us the principles behind the high baroque style of Walt Disney Animation drawing. Being in a room with Walt made you feel what it must have been like to have been taught by Don Graham. Having one of your life drawings be good enough to be reproduced in one of his little homemade weekly bulletins was akin to getting a Distinguished Service medal! Senior animators vied with trainees for that distinction.

Tom Sito, Animator/Filmmaker/Author of Drawing The Line: The Untold Story of the Animation Unions from Bosko to Bart Simpson

This exciting collection of master classes by the great teacher Walt Stanchfield is destined to become a classic on the order of Kimon Nicolaides' exploration of the drawing process. Stanchfield (1919-2000) inspired several generations of Disney animators and those of us outside the studio fortunate enough to happen upon dog-eared copies of his conversational notes, which we passed around like Leonardo's Codex Leicester. Stanchfield beautifully communicates the essence and joy of expressing ideas through the graphic line and accumulating a visual vocabulary. DRAWN TO LIFE is a treasure trove of cogent, valuable information for students, teachers and anyone who loves to draw.

John Canemaker, NYU professor and Academy Award-winning animation filmmaker

Walt Stanchfield, in his own unique way, taught so many of us about drawing, caricature, motion, acting and animation. Most important to me, was how Walt made you apply what you had observed in his life drawing class to your animation. Disney Animation is based on real life, and in that regard Walt Stanchfield's philosophy echoed Walt Disney's:

'We cannot caricature and animate anything convincingly until we study the real thing first.'

Andreas Deja, Walt Disney Animation Studios

Walt Stanchfield's renewed emphasis on draftsmanship at the Disney Studios transformed the seemingly moribund art of animation. His students were part of a renaissance with The Little Mermaid and Who Framed Roger Rabbit, a renaissance that continues with films ranging from The Iron Giant to Lilo and Stitch to Wall-E.

Charles Solomon, Animation Historian

I'm so grateful to Focal Press for publishing these fabulous Walt Stanchfield books. They are veritable 'gold dust' for the serious (and aspiring) animator! So 'hurrah' to Focal and 'hurrah' to Don Hahn to committing himself to compiling them. I ordered my copies the minute I saw them and will of course hope my students are smart enough to do so too! 

Tony White, DigiPen, Author of 'Animation: From Pencil to Pixels' and 'How to Make Animated Films'


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Parka HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 4 2009
Format: Paperback
Length: 0:18 Mins
Drawn to Life is a collection of lectures from long-time Disney animator Walt Stanchfield. He has worked for Disney since the 1950s.

There are two volumes, each with over 400 pages. The reason for two volumes is probably to make the books easier to handle. Both are on gesture and life drawing, even though the cover art might suggest otherwise, especially the one with the lion. You can start reading from any book and any lecture. The order isn't important.

There are plenty of essays in the books. Each is a lesson relating to drawing and animation. It can be tangent drawings, creating believable characters, learning to observe, understanding gestures, etc. There are tips on almost anything relating to drawing. Loose and sketchy sketches serves as examples to the lessons.

These books are more thinking than drawing technique books. For example, the lessons are not about how to draw perspective, the lessons are about how to use perspective. You can view sample pages for volume one and volume two on amazon.com to get an idea.

The books represent a tremendous wealth of information and insight into drawing, animation and observation. After all, Walt Stanchfield has more than 50 years of experience in animation.

This book is recommended to those who are into animation and drawing.

There are more pictures of the book on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Professional Art Guy on Oct. 18 2009
Format: Paperback
Excellent for certain purposes. If you are simply looking to draw disney-style characters etc. then this is not the book the book for you. If you are looking for some valuable insight into approaching drawing in general, as taught to disney artists and used as some of the inspiration behind their work, then this can be an excellent foundation for self improvement as an artist. In lecture format, so you can explore for a long time, just trying things without fear of missing out through continuity; it is quite extensive and again, very insightful, even for the professional artist.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A massive, overweight paperback (and this is just the first volume!) collecting the wisdom of the legendary life-drawing instructor at Disney. Brimming with lots of great ideas, and fun to dip into anywhere. Stanchfield was obviously an intelligent, creative and thoughtful teacher, and he comes at the craft of life drawing from many different angles and conceptual frameworks ... though all circle around his major insight that you need to draw with a sense of dynamic empathy and with an emphasis on clear storytelling (both necessary for creating effective Disney-style animated films). These lectures are really off-the-cuff critiques that flow into larger musings on different approaches to the topic; they are, in fact, just long notes that were posted or circulated in the classroom, and this informal quality works to their advantage (especially in combination with the many student drawings reproduced here). As other reviewers have said, these precepts apply mainly to animators: there are many other ways to approach life drawing, of course, and following Stanchfield's advice may well lead you to adopt a somewhat caricatural, exaggerated style of rendering the human body that may not be desirable in every circumstance. My only real criticism: an unbelievable number of typos, sloppy editing ... though maybe this just adds to the 'immediacy' of the critiques.
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He has gotten this book from the library several times and finally decided to buy it. We already knew it was something he was going to use!
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