Since 1985 I have been the managing director of an animation company in Manchester, UK called Catalyst Pictures. At Catalyst we have been using Lightwave for character animation since 1998. The reason is totally pragmatic; it is the cheapest program to offer all the facilities needed for TV quality character animation. Indeed, as I write the first full feature to use Lightwave throughout is just opening in UK theatres, Jimmy Neutron, for which I wrote a little character animation plug-in called ‘Bendypoints’. As you no doubt gather I am something of a CG fan. Having spent the best part of 12 years doing drawn animation for clients who seem to like
blessing. If the character changes colour or has to move faster or should be viewed from the left, right, top or bottom, then the CG work has the blessing of being constantly editable. This is in marked contrast to drawn animation, where almost all changes mean starting from scratch. The character that you see in this chapter was created from a clean sheet and animated in a morning by one person. There is no way that a drawn character could ever be done in that time. OK, let’s look at the process.