As promised, the interview with Director Giancarlo Volpe continues. I'm going to create a thread on the forums for folks to comment on what you think so far. What fans are finding interesting may have an impact on where our discussions go next. This 'interview' is an evolving process, which makes it all the more exciting. Now, on to the good stuff!
UJoF: You say you storyboard as well as direct. Do you have a favorite character to draw?
GV: Is it crazy if I say my favorite character to draw is Azula? It's not just the way she's drawn, but the way she moves and acts. So I guess more accurately, she's my favorite to animate. She's just so confident and evil, it makes for a fun challenge.
UJoF: But Giancarlo, you do storyboards...isn't Avatar animated overseas?
GV: Well, yes and no. Forgive me if this gets too technical. In animation, the main drawings or poses are often referred to as "keys" for "key animation." The "inbetweens" are what we call all the tedious drawings that go inbetween the keys to make the animation move fluidly. It is not entirely uncommon for a storyboard artist to include keys in the actual storyboard. This happens most often during the kung fu sequences, or heavy acting sequences. To get very precise nuances of expression and emotion, I'll often include an extra pose or so during a line delivery or whatever. It is, in essence, animating- providing the keys but not the inbetweens. But again, this is only in very specific cases- most of the animation is done quite beautifully by the overseas studios, I don't want to take anything away from what they do.
UJoF: Speaking of overseas, will we get a chance to learn more about the Korean animators?
GV: One thing I'm excited to see are the interviews with the Korean animators (I think they're putting these on the box set DVD collection). They add an extraordinary level of "life" to each episode and I'm glad they're getting a chance to shine.
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