Certificate Program in Digital Animation (CPDA)

Comprised of two terms, this five-month program develops animation and Computer-Generated Imagery skills including 3D Modeling, Texture Mapping, Animation, Rendering, Compositing, Character Creation, Sound Design, Writing and Editing.  A combination of instruction and hands-on training provide the vital competencies to be a 3D computer animator.


Introduction to 3D »

• Introduction to 3D computer graphics.
• How 3D graphics compare to 2D and 2.5D computer graphics.
• Introduction of different graphical styles from photo-real to stylized.
• Basics of Maya.
• Introduction to working in Cartesian space.
• Introduction to polygonal and spline-based geometry.
• Management of large scenes involving multiple elements
• Application of Maya in the film, television and game industries.


Computer Animation 101 »

• Introductory level.
• Introduction of different animation styles from character-based to abstract.
• Introducing the 12 principles of animation.
• Explaining key frame animation and animation curves.
• Explaining easing-in and easing-out of motion.
• Animating basic primitives in 2D and 3D (e.g. the classic bouncing ball animation).


Computer Graphics 101 »

• Introduction to essential CGI concepts and terms.
• Explaining the alpha channel, how it works and its uses.
• Explaining the persistence of vision and how it relates to animation.
• Introduction to the different stages of a CGI project from conceptualization to completion – idea, brainstorming, storyboarding, animatic, planning, asset production, animation, lighting, rendering, editing, audio, finalizing.
• Introduction to influential individuals and companies in the industry.


Screenwriting 101 »

• Basics of screenwriting format and 3-act structure.
• Brainstorm ideas for stories and screenplays.
• Create story conflict, as well as memorable characters, relationships and dialogue.
• Learn successful storytelling by examining character, structure and genre in the short script.
• Develop, write and workshop producing one short script.
• Learning to write for animation.


Filmmaking 203 »

• Survey of major animated films and technology that helped shape the course of film history.
• Covers important developments and key figures in animation history.
• An overview of different animation techniques – stop motion, CGI, hand drawn etc.


Sound Design 101 »

• Digital nonlinear audio design utilizing Pro Tools.
• Importing, layering, and timeline editing.
• Teaching the vital importance sounds plays in creating an engaging and convincing animation.
• Use sound to add an extra dimension to a silent animation clip.

Sub-total 210

3D Modeling and Texturing »

• Basics of creating 3D models in computer software.
• Learning polygon modeling techniques.
• Learning how to use splines and NURBS to create surfaces.
• Create basic 3D props for animations.
• Authoring 2D textures for 3D models.
• Learning basics of Adobe Photoshop.
• Creating procedural textures for 3D models.
• Techniques for applying textures to 3D models.
• Advanced texture techniques to achieve levels of complexity impossible by modeling.
• Baking 3D geometry and shadow information into 2D textures.
• Using 2D and 3D paint programs.


Computer Animation 201 »

• Intermediate level.
• Supply a pre-made character model and rig for the students to animate with.
• Teaching the walk cycle and how to convey character through movement.
• Adopting acting skills to bring life to a character.
• Learning how to get a character to interact with props and environments.
• Introduction to particle animation.


Lighting and Rendering »

• Real-world principles of light and surfaces and how CGI attempts to recreate them.
• Learning the principles of specular and bump maps to add detail to a model.
• Learning the basic three point light setup.
• Using light to create mood.
• Emotional responses to different colors.
• Merging of 3D rendered objects into film or video.


Sound Design 201 »

• Digital nonlinear audio design utilizing Pro Tools.
• Importing, layering, and timeline editing.


World Cinema 101 »

• Survey of major world cinemas that helped shape the course of film history.
• Covers important developments and key figures in non-Hollywood cinema.


Screenwriting 201 »

• Learn story structure in-depth, including the relation to genre.
• Learn to write inciting incidents, progressive complications, crisis, climax and resolution.
• Study principles from Robert McKee’s “Story”.
• Develop, write and workshop one short script.

Sub-total 210