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Online Animation Course

To register in this course, please respond by email.

Posting: July 2010.

I realize I haven't been keeping up with this page for a while and I apologize to anyone who has contacted me recently about it. My summers have been taken over recently with freelance work and teaching at Seneca College so, for the forseeable future, this course will not be available online.

You can still use the material here in the website in the Animation School section as well as the two books and DVD on your own.

Hopefully I'll run another course again next summer.


Animation Drawing Course

By Brian Lemay


Welcome and thank-you very much for considering enrolling in this course. You're about to begin a very exciting part of your life. You're taking the first steps towards hopefully developing your drawing skills to a new and higher level. This will require an awful lot of drawing on your part as well as a lot of thinking and analysis.

One of my big drawing rules is: "THINK WHEN YOU DRAW". If you don't think when you draw, then you're mindlessly doodling. If drawing was like handling heavy machinery, and you're not thinking about what you're doing, you could loose a limb!

You need to be very serious about both your actual drawing and the time you allot to your drawing. It's like any skill, you have to practice. You may fall off the skateboard a few times but you have to get back on and try again. Very soon, through much of this practice you begin to get better and better. Pretty soon you're doing some amazing tricks and all your friends are amazed at what you're doing.

Now substitute "drawing" for this same statement:

You may make some pretty ugly looking drawings but you have to get back to your drawing table and try again. Very soon, through much of this practice you begin to get better and better. Pretty soon you're doing some amazing drawings and all your friends are amazed at what you're doing. (This time it's not just your Mom.)

Like I said before, you have a lot of drawing to do. You should be looking toward about 2 hours each night on average.


This course is a series of related exercises that will help you to better understand the process of drawing cartoon character heads and expressions. Through the use of written instructions as well as video tape demonstrations I'll show you the steps to take to get each assignment done. Remember though, it's you that has to do the work. If you don't draw and do the assignments, you won't get anything out of it.


This course is not a guarantee that you will be able to get accepted into a College offering an Animation. Since you are the person holding the pencil, you're the only one that can do the drawing. Everyone's drawing skills are at a different level and each College has it's own acceptance level.

This course will not teach you about animating, layout, storyboarding or any other aspect of the animation process. This course is focused on the basic principles of drawing the cartoon head and that's it. Each of those other areas require a course of their own and may be offered at some point in the future.

This course is not accredited and can't be used towards an exemption in an accredited College program. It will be your drawings and ability which will determine whether or not you can apply for a Prior Learning Assessment. Each College handles this on an individual basis. They will require a body of work that is the equivalent to what they are teaching to prove that you already know and can demonstrate the information that is required at that level.

You will face the same thing after you've graduated from a College program. A studio will require that you provide them with a portfolio of your work in order to show what you can do artistically. They may then even require you to do a test of some sort that will prove that you can actually do what your portfolio shows.


This course is 8 weeks long. You will be given a series of assignments, in a specific order, that will progressively take you through the basics of cartoon head construction.

Once you've completed the assignment, you scan the drawings into your computer then send them to me as an attachment with your e-mail. Once I receive it, I'll review it and then sit down at my desk and video tape myself going over the assignment and making suggestions. If necessary, I'll do some new drawing to show what it is I'm talking about. I'll then send the assignment, drawings that I've done and the video tape back for you to look at. Each review will be 5 - 15 min long depending on how much I need to say about your work.

The next assignment you send back to me by postal service, with the video tape cued to the end of the last review that I gave you and I'll repeat the process again. By the end of the course you should have about an hour and a half of video review that you can look back over as many times as you like.

Because you will be sending me things as you get them done, (hopefully by each deadline) and I need time to review the assignment and then mail it back to you, there will be an overlap on each assignment.


It will be expected that you will read the outline for each assignment, review any video, and read any support material as required. Then you actually have to do the assignment. Without it I can't give you any feedback which is the most valuable part of the course. You must send in the assignment by the due date in order for it to be reviewed in a timely manner. If you don't hand in an assignment, it wonÍt be reviewed and we'll move on to the next one. It's up to you to do the work.

It will be expected that I will provide you with the written outline for each assignment, a video review, and the support material required. Each of these will be sent out on a weekly basis via e-mail, one package per week for a total of 9 packages. (This includes the 8 lessons and the final review..)

Within this I will provide you with a personalized review of your own work as it is provided to me on both paper and video as necessary.


The first package will consist of the following:

- Lessons 1 - 8. (Designing Cartoon Characters for Animation Book 2.

- Introduction video.

- Designing Cartoon Characters for Animation Book 1 (optional if you already have it, mandatory if you don't. See: course FEES.)

- Unlimited access to the online version of Designing Cartoon Characters for Animation Vol. 2.


The total cost for this course is $500.00. This includes the cost for the Designing Cartoon Characters for Animation Vol. 1.

If you already have the Designing Cartoon Characters for Animation Vol. 1, the total cost is $475.00.

You can pay by Cheque or Money Order. (Sorry, no VISA payment available.)

Make Cheque or Money Order payable to: Brian Lemay.


The final deadline for applying with payment for this course is April 30th, 2004.

The course begins the second week of May.

This course will be limited to a maximum of 12 students. Acceptance is based on a first come, first served basis. Once the course is filled, all overflow applications and cheques will be returned to sender.

Due to the timing of the assignments and weekly mailings, any late applications will not be accepted and the cheques will be returned.

All late and overflow applicants will be notified as to the possibility of another course being offered next May.

This course will allow you to work on assignments and receive feedback that will help you to develop your drawing skills further. If you're interested in getting into the animation field and know that you need some training first then this is a good place to start. Many animation programs these days are in such high demand that the number of applicants has skyrocketed. Lots of the schools now have a 20 to 1 acceptance rate which means that the odds are not in your favor. This Animation Drawing Course will give you the head start that you'll need if you want to get into the schools and then into the industry.

I've worked in the animation industry for 24 years, been teaching for the last 15 years and have been looking at applicant portfolios for Sheridan and Seneca College for 8 years. I know what the animation industry is looking for, I know what the top schools are looking for and I know how to deliver the information that you need to help improve your portfolio.

If you're serious about this, this Animation Drawing Course will give you the motivation and information you need. As with anything, 95% of the work is up to you. I can't do the drawing for you. YOU have to take the initiative and DO THE WORK! Animation drawing is not something that can be learned overnight, in a week, a month or even a year. It takes a lifetime of dedicated, hard work. This course can give you that start if you really want to do it.

If you're really interested in this, e-mail me for more information and I'll write back.


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