I've been approached three times in recent years to write a book about Stop Motion. I've turned down all requests mostly because I can't really think of anything else to add to the multitude of books already written on the subject. Instead, I'd much rather put together something on my website. That way, I can include videos, photos as well as words, when I feel inspired to do so. I am not sure when I will finish it but you can now take a look at what I have so far.
The Stop Motion Animator's Handbook will be a series of animation lessons using mostly easily attainable materials to explain animation techniques. Over the weeks and months to come, I will be adding new animation lessons to the Handbook, eventually getting into more advanced techniques. These are the chapters I've started so far:
Frame Rates, Ones & Twos, Ease In & Out, Anticipation, Style
WALKING AND RUNNING
Notes and examples on styles of Walk and Runs
In addition to these chapters, I've started a production blog where I'll be chronicling the progress of a new Gumby project. You can visit the GLog here.
I will be working with a simple 4'L x 2'W x 4'H table with a white 4' x 8' PVC sheet creating a sweep lit by 3 lights, an Apple laptop running Dragonframe capture software, and shooting with a Canon 40d DSLR. If you are looking for frame grabbing software or puppet armatures, there are several options listed on the Resources page. For the first few lessons, I will be animating a Stikfas action figure. You can order Stikfas online from places like Amazon.com or you can use your own puppet. I chose Stikfas because they are inexpensive and easy to find, limited but fairly posable. They are small and light so they don't need tie-downs in their feet to secure them to the set, I will use things like White Tak and Stikki Wax to stick the puppet to the set and aluminum armature wire for flying rigs.