Timeline of Animation

By toob
  • Thaumatrope

    A thaumatrope was a simple toy used in the Victorian era. A thaumatrope is a small circular disk or card with two different pictures on each side that was attached to a piece of string or a pair of strings running through the centre. When the string is twirled quickly between the fingers, the two pictures appear to combine into a single image. The thaumatrope demonstrates the Phi phenomenon, the brain's ability to persistently perceive an image. Its invention is variously credited to Charles Bab
  • The Persistence of Vision with regard to moving objects

    Peter Roget presented his paper 'The persistence of vision with regard to moving objects' to the British Royal Society.
  • The Phenakitstoscope

    Dr. Joseph Antoine Plateau (a Belgian scientist) and Dr. Simon Rittrer constructed a machine called a phenakitstoscope. This machine produced an illusion of movement by allowing a viewer to gaze at a rotating disk containing small windows; behind the windows was another disk containing a sequence of images. When the disks were rotated at the correct speed, the synchronization of the windows with the images created an animated effect.
  • Zoetrope

    The modern zoetrope was produced in 1834 by William George Horner. The device is essentially a cylinder with vertical slits around the sides. Around the inside edge of the cylinder there are a series of pictures on the opposite side to the slits. As the cylinder is spun, the user then looks through the slits to view the illusion of motion. The zoetrope is still being used in animation courses to illustrate early concepts of animation.
  • Flip Book

    The first flip book was patented in 1868 by a John Barnes Linnet. Flip books were yet another development that brought us closer to modern animation. Like the Zoetrope, the Flip Book creates the illusion of motion. A set of sequential pictures flipped at a high speed creates this effect. The Mutoscope (1894) is basically a flip book in a box with a crank handle to flip the pages.
  • Kinetoscope

    Thomas Edison announced his creation of the kinetoscope which projected a 50ft length of film in approximately 13 seconds.
  • Theatre Optique

    Emile Renynaud, combining his earlier invention of the praxinoscope with a projector, opens the Theatre Optique in the Musee Grevin. It displays an animation of images painted on long strips of celluloid.
  • Vitascope

    Thomas Armat designed the vitascope which projected the films of Thomas Edison. This machine had a major influence on all sub-sequent projectors.
  • The First Animated Film

    J. Stuart Blackton made the first animated film which he called "Humorous phases of funny faces." His method was to draw comical faces on a blackboard and film them. He would stop the film, erase one face to draw another, and then film the newly drawn face. The Ôstop-motionÕ provided a starting effect as the facial expressions changed be fore the viewerÕs eyes.
  • First Paper Cutout Animation

    Emile Cohl makes En Route the first paper cutout animation. This technique saves time by not having to redraw each new cell, only reposition the paper.
  • Numerous techniques for Animation

    John R Bray applies for a patent on numerous techniques for animation. One of the most revolutionary being the process of printing the backgrounds of the animation.
  • Cell Animation

    Earl Hurd applies for a patent for the technique of drawing the animated portion of an animation on a clear celluloid sheet and later photographing it with its matching background. [Cel animation]
  • Disney

    Walt and Roy Disney found Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio.
  • First Feature Length Animated Film

    The first feature-length animated film called "El Apostol" is created in Argentina.
  • Synchronized Sound

    Walt Disney created the first cartoon with synchronized sound called "Steam Boat Willy".
  • 3-color Technicolor method

    The first animation to use the full, three-color Technicolor method was Flowers and Trees (1932) made by Disney Studios which won an academy award for this work.
  • Directly Drawing onto Film

    Harry Smith produced animation by drawing directly onto film.
  • Animation Scripting Language

    University of Utah, Ed Catmull develops an animation scripting language and creates an animation of a smooth shaded hand.
  • First Facial Computer Animation

    University of Utah, Fred Parke creates first computer generated facial animation.
  • Jurassic Park

    Jurassic Park use of computer graphics for realistic living creatures
  • First Full Length 3D Feature Film

    Toy Story first full-length 3D computer feature film