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Post Reply Prevalence of CGI over Traditional Animation
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21 / M / Massachusetts
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Posted 4/19/16 , edited 4/19/16
This is just something I'd like everyone's thoughts on. Western animation has in recent times taken a hard turn for computer generated animation. This is true mostly for big budget pictures, though to a lesser extent it does show up on TV as well.

And I can't help but feel a little disappointed by this. I have nothing against CG animation in theory, and many of the newer disney flicks have been great movies and I understand why this has happened. It's just far easier and less costly to make. But whenever I see Let it Go, I just can't help but think about how much more enthralling the visuals would be in a traditionally animated style ala the classic disney canon.

Hand drawn animation for me is simply more fluid and allows for more imaginative visual expression. CGI is far more static and thus doesn't lend itself to the same spectacles we used to see.

Again I understand why this change has happened, but a part of me just can't help but feel sad about it.

What are everyone else's thoughts on this?

EDIT:
Just to clarify given a few misunderstandings. I'm not saying I dislike 3D CGI movies by default. I have personal stylistic preferences for traditional animation for reasons I've described above. The reason I find the current prevalence of CGI animated features dismaying is simply because there are very few traditionally animated movies being released in the west. I don't dislike the CGI movies we get, I'm just saying I'm a little bummed that we aren't getting any traditional stuff.
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Posted 4/19/16 , edited 4/19/16
hav u seen kabaneri of the iron fortress?

cg has potential dependin on how its used lol
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Posted 4/19/16

RedExodus wrote:

hav u seen kabaneri of the iron fortress?

cg has potential dependin on how its used lol


I'm not denying that it does, and my commentary was mostly concerning Western Animation. Again I don't think all CGI is bad. I'm just a little bummed out that traditional animation seems to have been left by the wayside in the west.
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Rabbit Horse
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Posted 4/19/16
chances are, series you enjoyed have cgi in them. you just didn't notice.
look closely at the credits at the end.
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Posted 4/19/16 , edited 4/19/16

namealreadytaken wrote:

chances are, series you enjoyed have cgi in them. you just didn't notice.
look closely at the credits at the end.


Dude I'm aware of the use of cgi in other shows. It's not as though I dislike CGI by default. I like many of the newer cgi movies. I loved Frozen and thought it was one of the best disney films in years. All I'm saying is that I'm disappointed that predominantly traditionally animated movies don't really get made anymore. The focus of major western studios has shifted to full cgi films.
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Posted 4/19/16
I think both are fine when they are done well. Crappy CG is really terrible, but there were crappy hand drawn shows as well.

I think hand drawn is still a little better, but as technology and technique improves that gap will get smaller and smaller. There is already some CG work that looks incredible.

It is also more efficient and cost effective to do CG. So if that translates into longer and more detailed anime that is a good thing.
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Posted 4/19/16
As long as looks then I don't mind.

I just hate the 00's anime cg (especially the first half when they went from hand-drawn to cg).
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Posted 4/19/16
Different transitions between CG and traditional animation can be jarring, and honestly disappointing as well. Even when the CG is well done, for me at least, there is never a moment I don't notice the transition. Perhaps I am just being nit picky.
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19 / M / east coast. Let t...
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Posted 4/19/16

kinga750 wrote:

I think both are fine when they are done well. Crappy CG is really terrible, but there were crappy hand drawn shows as well.

I think hand drawn is still a little better, but as technology and technique improves that gap will get smaller and smaller. There is already some CG work that looks incredible.

It is also more efficient and cost effective to do CG. So if that translates into longer and more detailed anime that is a good thing.


I must agree.
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Posted 4/19/16 , edited 4/19/16
I pretty much agree with you, OP.

I get why studios go to CGI now, but it often lacks the...what's the word? Majesty? Of some hand-drawn stuff. When I think of Prince of Egypt, or Miyazaki films, it's so much more spectacular than even the best CGI. Which definitely isn't to say CGI is auto-bad. But great CGI stuff will always be a 9.5 compared to great hand-drawn's 10.

This is especially noticeable with backgrounds. I think so many CGI movies are set in mountains and deserts, and especially snow (Frozen, Ice Age, Happy Feet, freaking Norm of the North, etc.) because it's so easy and lazy to just do flat white backgrounds with a couple jags for ice/mountains. Hand-drawn backgrounds are like beautiful paintings, while CGI focuses mainly on the character models.

Which do look good, especially now. Zootopia looks awesome, and the animation is really smooth and nice. But even that world sometimes feels barren, despite being a metropolis. There are a few awesome establishing shots, and then the rest feels like a film "set," relying on your memory of those earlier establishing shots to feel bigger and fuller.

The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a perfect example of that. The world is just a ghost town, despite being New York. It's all character models, and very little background and atmosphere (just blocky buildings). Compared to a newer hand-drawn Nickelodeon show like Avatar/Korra, it doesn't feel like a fully realized world, and can appear flat and uninteresting sometimes (even if it's really entertaining otherwise).
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Posted 4/19/16
im partial to traditional animation. however CG done well can compete. the big problem is most of it is not done well and the ones that are done well most don't even notice there CG.
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Posted 4/19/16
Like others here I'm split. While I truly appreciate a good classic hand-drawn animated title or movie I also love a really well done CGI title. I think this is why when it comes to US-Based animation both Ralph Bakshi and Pixar are among my favorites. I think as long as it's good, whether it's CGI or hand-drawn doesn't matter to me as much these days as it did when CGI was first introduced to films/tv,
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Posted 4/19/16 , edited 4/19/16
Posted 4/19/16
I agree with you poster, I miss the hand drawn cartoons and I will say some movies have done ok using CGI.

Here are 2 movies that I walked out of surprise- Scorpion King with the rock, Indiana Jones Temple of Doom I walked out of them the CGI was so glitchy and bad I asked for a refund.
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Posted 4/19/16
I'm fine with either, as long as the creators stick to one. If they mix the two it just looks messed up and yucky.

It would be weird to tell big CG animation companies like Pixar that they are doing it 'wrong', despite them making many movies that are considered classics and masterpieces for 20-30 years now.

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