Computer animation is probably the most successful application of digital technology in the creative arts.
It complements the work of traditional animators by providing an exciting, flexible medium for undertaking more ambitious and imaginative animated films. It has revolutionised the world of film special effects and has created a totally new leisure activity - computer games, which at a global level is a billion-dollar industry
Qualification equivalent to a UK Honours degree 2:1 or above.
A portfolio of work and show reel and an interview will be required.
A graduate with a 2:1 or above honours degree in the fields of art, media or design
An applicant with a professional qualification or diploma recognised to be equivalent to an honours degree
An applicant with Industrial experience deemed to be equivalent to an honours degree
Exceptionally well-qualified applicants from other disciplines may be considered at the discretion of the interviewing panel.
Moving Image Theory
This unit contains the general image theory elements of the programme, and is shared across the taught Masters programmes. It incorporates lectures on digital cinematography, supporting screenings of films and animations, lectures on art, science and technology and a programme of lectures by visiting speakers from the computer animation, digital effects and computer games industries. This is assessed by an essay.
The Group project aims to simulate a production environment, where students are asked to complete a project within a specific timeframe. Students from all three Postgraduate courses (MA3D, MSc, Digital Effects) are asked to present a concept for a short animated piece, from which groups can be formed. This is a student led activity lasting the entirety of the term.
Computer Animation Techniques
This unit aims to enable students to initially develop skills and knowledge in computer animation principles and practice. This will permit them to deal skilfully with changing theories and techniques in their continuing careers. The intention is that Software Tools and Best Practise are underpinned by the theories introduced in the parallel unit Computer Animation Principles - The indicative content of these classes are:
Character and Environment Modelling
Animation and Motion Capture
Spacing and Timing
Body Mechanics 101
Squash and stretch
Silhouette and appeal
Line of action
Computer Animation Principles
This unit aims to introduce students to the underlying theories within Computer Graphics and Animation, in parallel to the development of practical skills in using systems that apply the theory in production tools. A number of projects are set during this first term; two of them are animation pieces. These ensure that students have grasped the technical and artistic concepts that have been taught in class. The projects are essential in helping students develop their fundamental understanding of animated movement, encompassing both inanimate and character driven entities. The indicative content of these classes are:
FK and IK
Traditional and CG Lighting Techniques
Modelling and Deformations
Non-linear Animation Tools
Motion Capture and Crowd Systems
Photoreal and non-Photoreal Rendering
Keys, Extremes and Breakdowns
Introduction to walks
Weight and Mass
Cause and Effect
Motion Studies field trip
Computer Animation Principles and Techniques
This unit aims to enable students to further develop skills and knowledge in computer animation principles and practice, which will extend their learning experience during the course and enable them to deal more skilfully with changing theories and techniques in their continuing careers. This will again augment their transferable skills and knowledge; helping improve the quality of their productions in the project units. Students will become conversant in the language, concepts and techniques relating to the course.
This unit is a tutorial supported research unit, shared with the other taught Masters animation courses. This provides students with an opportunity to pursue research into areas which interest them, but may be outside of the normal parameters of the programme teaching. This runs from the start of term 2, and is assessed at a research symposium in the middle of term 3, when the students present the results of their research to their fellow students and staff.
The focus of fourth term is on completing the Masters component of your education. During this project, you are assigned a number of tutors that will help guide and facilitate your project. This project can be either a standalone project, or a continuation of the group project. In either case you can work alone or with other student members.
The year ends with a Computer Animation Show, which gives the students from all of the NCCA´s postgraduate courses the opportunity to showcase their work to industry professionals and potential employers, alongside friends, family, and past graduates from the course. This show is usually held in London.
They can be found throughout the animation and effects world, from entry-level positions through supervisory and lead roles to company directors. Indeed Avatar, recently confirmed as being the most profitable film of all time, and whose effects and animation have set a new standard in the industry, employed more than 50 NCCA graduates during its production.
As well as Avatar, graduates have worked on a number of film and games projects including:
Lord of the Rings triliogy
Monsters vs Aliens
Guardians of Ga´hoole
The entire ´Harry Potter series
Clash of the Titans
Where the Wild Things Are
The Golden Compass
Grand Theft Auto
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