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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind, truly *the* animation "bible"
poopypants is unbelievably clueless. I first read this book when I was in high school, and it was out of print. The temptation to steal the book was overwhelming! About 8 years ago, it came back into print and I immediately bought it.
If all you're looking for is some hold-my-hand-and-teach-me-how-to-draft-sequential-drawings-book , check out Tony White's book, or...
Published on June 23 2004 by Travis Cutbirth

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7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I must've missed the magic
I realize I'm alone on this one, so I don't think my voice will be heard very well against the crowds saying otherwise, but I didn't find this book to be very useful. I was so excited when I first got it because I've heard nothing but good things about it, but I was unfortunately dissappointed. It's really more of a history and recollection of "the good ol'...
Published on May 23 2004 by Stephen Elliot


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind, truly *the* animation "bible", June 23 2004
By 
Travis Cutbirth "tcutbirth" (Fort Collins, CO USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
poopypants is unbelievably clueless. I first read this book when I was in high school, and it was out of print. The temptation to steal the book was overwhelming! About 8 years ago, it came back into print and I immediately bought it.
If all you're looking for is some hold-my-hand-and-teach-me-how-to-draft-sequential-drawings-book , check out Tony White's book, or Preston Blair's excellent text, or one in the Juvenile section of the library, but if you want to know how to *breathe life into your animation*, this books is a MUST HAVE. Period.
Also check out Richard William's "The Animator's Survival Kit" for a good "sequel" (in a way), and some advanced nuts & bolts stuff.
This is still the single best animation book available, and will be the animation "bible" for years to come. I'm at a loss as to why someone wouldn't be able to glean an amazing amount of wisdom from this book - it confounds me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Animation Book Ever!, March 10 2011
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
Everybody has written a book. There are How To books on just about everything. Few of these books were authored by two guys that were the best at what they did for over a half a century. Frank and Ollie were two of the best animators ever and they worked with the rest of the best animators ever. These guys didn't invent animation, but they were two of the Nine Old Men that perfected it.

In this book, they show you how they created some of the most memorable moments in movie history. Animation is more than drawing. It is acting, emotion and draftsmanship. It is timing, squash and stretch and follow through. It is story telling. These are some of the principles of animation which are detailed in this book. The Illusion of Life also walks you through the thought behind what makes these principles work to create characters and movies we love and cherish so much.

The book is filled with illustrations, from rough character sketches, pose sheets, layout drawings, background paintings and production stills. One of the best gifts this book has is the animation flipbook. The reader is treated to some amazing line drawing animations, flipping at your fingertips. Stop and examine every drawing and maybe learn the secret of animated movement.

My copy of this book is a mess. It is easily the most tattered ragged book in my library and thusly, the most loved. I've read it cover to cover time and time again. I've used it as reference continually during my career and as just something of interest to read. It's time to buy a new version of The Illusion of Life and retire my old one, it's earned the rest.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible Book For Disney Lovers &/or Animators, July 24 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
This book is honestly amazing.
I am not a big reader so it was a gamble for me to get this book but it teaches you so much. It's not really based to teach you animation but to help you understand how it works. There is ALOT of great finished artwork, backgrounds, rough sketches, etc. This book is also written really good so every little detail is described.
This is honestly great for anyone who is interested in animation or even if you're just a Disney lover, collector, etc. This book is a must have, literally!
The pages are nice and thick with a glossy finish, the hardcover is thick, the book is farely big and it contains over 600 pages which I personally thought was amazing. Lol.
Now, if you're a Disney lover and an animation freak, this is definitely a must have. If you see this book elsewhere not for sale, you will regret not buying this. I'm extremely happy I didn't pass up the offer that I originally passed up.
Last thing, this book is written by "Ollie Johnston & Frank Thomas" who were both basically inventors of the hand draw animation you see from the 30's to today's hand drawn cartoons. There's even homeage being paid with some history on animators from the 1800's and the first interactive animated feature with a dinosaur.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This book is NOT an illusion,its the real McCoy., May 30 2004
By 
Rothko70 (Newmarket,Auckland,New Zealand) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
I have yet to read(well...fully..properly..) or for that matter even buy it(this book),but I have seen it in a local bookstore and are dying to get it.It is hellishly expensive,but I have my beady eye on it.
I have flipped through it many times ,and even read a paragraph or two,and I have to say,it is the best book on Disney and/or animation I have ever seen,and it is what I have been looking for ,for a long time.
Strictly speaking it is not a animation handbook,it is not supposed to be,but there is more than enough info on the why's and wherefore's of animation technique and principles to wet the appetite of any animator or lay person,and provide precious insight into the magic of Disney animation.
There is hundreds of photos,diagrams,demos,and stills within the book that will leave any serious animation fan sallivating..and gasping in wonderment....and I haven't even got the book yet..I can't wait to get it..it IS THAT GOOD !!!
This is NOT a book to be overlooked anytime soon.It is a MUST HAVE BOOK!!
Get it soon,get it today,get it NOW!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is a keeper, April 1 2003
By 
M. A. Devlin (Santa Barbara, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
Not a professional animator, I bought this book as a young teen when I was into Classic Disney Animation, along with it's companion volume. I lost both of them in a house fire, and so when I saw The Illusion of Life at the Disneyland Gallery I put several other Disneyland items down to buy it. This book is that good!
Now that I do hand drawn line animation I have found this book to be very helpful and informative. It may not answer all your questions, but it brings up issues you have never thought of, and these small touches are what made Disney animation king for so many years. If you don't want your work to look like Saturday cartoons for the rest of your life, this is a must have.
With both color examples of the layers of animation along with many black and white examples of character movement, this book is for both the professional and Disney fan. More geared toward the professional than the Disney glossy books "The making of..." Illusion will be held dear on your bookcase for years to come.
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5.0 out of 5 stars POR FIN!!!!, June 9 2001
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
Solo nos hacia falta manifestarnos en las calles o hacer una sentada delante de la sede de Hyperion, para que alguien se dignase a escuchar las abundantes suplicas que reclamaban la reedicion de este adorable clasico. Por fin, parece que ha cundido la cordura, y nuevos compradores pueden volver a disfrutar de una de las joyas de la corona (tal vez LA JOYA), en cuanto a animacion se refiere...P>Ni que decir tiene que las mas altas expectativas quedan satisfechas con "The Illusion of Life", no solo es un pilar fundamental(y un caudal de viva memoria de 2 de los más legendarios animadores de la Disney, 2 de los "Old Nine Men")para cualquier animador o aspirante a serlo, sino que se constituye en un libro basico para cualquier biblioteca sobre animacion, cine en general, o sencillamente para cualquier amante de un buen libro, cuidado y lujoso, hasta la extenuacion, y escrito con el amor, y el conocimiento, que da lo vivido.
Hyperion sigue asi su gloriosa lista de estupendos libros sobre Disney, a la que se unen dos que habían estado fuera de sus arcas. Este (que estaba en manos de Abbeville en ediciones mas antiguas) o el tambien genial "Encyclopedia of Animated Characters" de John Grant (que fue originalmente publicado por Harper & Row), tal vez lo mejor hoy por hoy en el mercado sobre el cine de Disney...
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5.0 out of 5 stars They say it's the first book to buy on animation. I agree., July 28 2000
By 
Dewi Morgan (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
I have, for several years, been a member of various computer animation lists, and that's where I'm coming from with this review. This is the one book which has consistently come up on those lists when dealing with general issues (the Principles of Animation, etc), simply because it is the best. It is not the best tutorial book, since it is not written as a tutorial: it is a history of Disney. If you want a tutorial on computer animation, go elsewhere. But that will probably NOT be as much help to you as reading this book, because after reading this, you will be inspired. I think this is why people are so religeously fervent when speaking about it - not because they found it useful for the large number of techniques and tips which are slipped in throughout (though very many of them are out of date or not applicable in the computer animation world), but because the book inspires. I thought it was expensive, but after I bought it and read it the first time, I realised it was cheap at the price. It is gorgeously produced, and filled with colour pics and examples of what it talks about. Worth buying if you are into animation, or if you are interested in the history of Disney.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Animators Bible, Jan. 28 2000
By 
rareoopdvds (San Diego, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
Equivalent to a Holy relic, this masterpiece of a book has inspired me, not only to appreciate Disney's work, but also the animators and animation in general. If you are considering entering the animation field, in particular working for Disney, then by all means purchase this book and read it thouroughly. 2 of the Old Nine Men, Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas, wrote this book sometime in the early eighties. I read this in the early nineties. I was such a good read it amazed. Not only what they were writing about, but how good the writing was. It was humerous, witty, profound and informative in such a way that is easy to retain the knowledge which I found immediately applicable. By far the one book that has stood the test of time beyond all of Disney's "The Art of (Insert Movie Here)" books. Thomas and Johnston give step by step process of how Disney complete a picture from the inception of the first idea to the finalized product on Sunset Boulevard at the El Capitan. I cannot comment on this book enough and cannot reccomend this book highly enough. Five stars is the max, but I can say, of all the books I have read, no other book has inspired me more in my readings, and no other book I treasure more than this one. I say, the earlier edition of this book may have better prints and color, but its not the pictures that matter completely (however nice they are), its what the animators pass on to another animator. Inspiration for motivation and creativity.
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5.0 out of 5 stars There is not such thing as perfect, but this is so close!, July 4 2002
By 
Edward Juan "ghost" (Valencia, CA. USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
As any animation student or fan would know, this IS the book he or she would admires and stares for hours. "The Illusion of Life" is not just a history book about the Disney studio, but it goes beyond the history and concept; it goes in deep into storytelling, character animation, background design, concept/script illustration, character design, and many more. The greatest thing about this book is the author and writer, FRANK THOMAS and OLLIE JOHNSTON!!! Two of the veteran and master of Disney animation. They have been working with Disney since Sleeping Beauty and Peter Pan... the 40s and 50s! The writing is also very descriptive and easy to understand. Not only they get to the point, they also reveal several secrets and tricks in animation.
I strongly suggest every animation fan and animator to get this book. It is expensive, but not rare to get. It is one of a kind! And do get it before it runs out of print!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Illusion Of Life, Dec 6 1997
By A Customer
This review is from: The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (Hardcover)
As fan to the topic of animation, I've read several books on the matter, without doubts this is the best that I've read, especially because it have been written by two of the, perhaps lasts, greaters master on animation. Without doubt animation it has become an art, I have many films of animated cartoons, through of these books I've learnt to appreciate the differences of quality and creativity. Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston they are part of the history of animation, they write on what they lived and in a pleasant style, easy to understan for the non specialists. While I was reading their book,I felt me so fascinated, that I wished the opportunity to express my feelings and admiration to them and all ones in the Disney studios that make this illusion real, therefore I thank this opportunity to express them what has been their book for me. Congratulations.

Eduardo Agrela C.
Santiago,CHILE.
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The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation
The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation by Frank Thomas (Hardcover - Oct. 19 1995)
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