Lighting for Animation is designed with one goal in mind - to make you a better artist. Over the course of the book, Jasmine Katatikarn and Michael Tanzillo (Senior Lighting TDs, Blue Sky Studios) will train your eye to analyze your work more critically, and teach you approaches and techniques to improve your craft. Focusing on the main philosophies and core concepts utilized by industry professionals, this book builds the foundation for a successful career as a lighting artist in visual effects and computer animation. Inside you’ll find in-depth instruction on:
• Creating mood and storytelling through lighting
• Using light to create visual shaping
• Directing the viewer’s eye with light and color
• Gathering and utilizing reference images
• Successfully lighting and rendering workflows
• Render layers and how they can be used most effectively
• Specific lighting scenarios, including character lighting, environment lighting, and lighting an animated sequence
• Material properties and their work with lighting
• Compositing techniques essential for a lighter
• A guide on how to start your career and achieve success as a lighting artist
This book is not designed to teach software packages—there are websites, instructional manuals, online demos, and traditional courses available to teach you how to operate specific computer programs. That type of training will teach you how to create an image; this book will teach you the technical skills you need to make that image beautiful.
- Stunning examples from a variety of films serve to inspire and inform your creative choices.
- Unique approach focuses on using lighting as a storytelling tool, rather than just telling you which buttons to press.
- Comprehensive companion website contains lighting exercises, assets, challenges, and further resources to help you expand your skillset.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Why We Light
The Role of Lighting
Creating Visual Shaping
Directing the Viewer’s Eye
Interview with Chris Wedge – Director :: Blue Sky Studios
Chapter 2: Observing the World Around Us
Interview with Sharon Callahan - Lighting Director of Photography :: Pixar Animation Studios
Chapter 3: The Lighter’s Toolbox
Common CG Lights
Basic Properties of Light
Interview with Andrew Beddini – Technical Supervisor of Imaging :: Blue Sky Studios
Chapter 4: The Lighter’s Workflow
Understanding the Roles of Each Light
Let There Be Light!
Interview with Mike Knapp – Art Director :: Blue Sky Studios
Chapter 5: Dissecting a Well-Lit Shot
Telling the Story By Emphasizing the Mood
Directing the Viewer’s Eye
Interview with Josh Staub – Visual Effects Supervisor & Lighting Supervisor :: Walt Disney Animation Studios
Chapter 6: Lighting Scenarios
Interview with Haji Uesato :: Blue Sky Studios
Chapter 7: Materials and Compositing
Simulating Specific Materials
The Final Touches
Interview with Brian Hill – Materials Supervisor :: Blue Sky Studios
Chapter 8: Honing the Artistic Eye
Interview with Gabriel Portnoff – CG Supervisor :: Dreamworks Animation
Chapter 9: Lighting Walkthroughs
Lighting Scenario One :: Character Beauty Lighting
Lighting Scenario Two :: Character and Environment
Lighting Scenario Three :: Multiple Characters
Interview with Yann Mabille – Creative Director/Partner :: Interstate
Chapter 10: Master Lighting
Look Development and Master Lighting
Creating a Clean Rig
Interview with Eldar Cholich– Lighting Lead :: Blue Sky Studios
Interview with Kurt Kaminski – Lighter :: Walt Disney Animation Studios
Chapter 11: Closing Statements
Getting Started as a Lighting Artist
Thriving in the Industry
Interview with Deb Stone – Manager, Talent Development :: Blue Sky Studios
P. Jasmine Katatikarn is a Senior Lighting Technical Director at Blue Sky Studios. She holds a B.A. in economics/art history from Vassar College and received her Master of Science in Digital Imaging and Design degree from NYU. After graduate school, she began working in the field of 3D medical visualization and moved onto vfx/commercial work, working at The Mill, Framestore, and Rhinofx for seven years before moving into feature animated film work at Blue Sky Studios. Her lighting credits include Peanuts, Rio 2, Epic, Ice Age: Continental Drift, Rio, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Ghost Town, and The Nanny Diaries.
Michael Tanzillo is a Senior Lighting Technical Director at Blue Sky Studios. He began his career as a photographer and studio artist after completing his BFA degree in Photography from Ohio State. Michael switched his career focus and freelanced as a 3D artist before attending the Savannah College of Art and Design and receiving his MFA in Visual Effects. In 2008, Michael joined the lighting team at Blue Sky Studios and his lighting credits include Peanuts, Rio 2, Epic, Ice Age: Continental Drift, Rio, Scrat’s Continental Crack-up, and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. Michael has also been credited as a compositing artist on multiple projects.
In 2012, Jasmine and Michael co-founded the online school tdu (www.td-u.com). Together they teach lighting courses and develop web-based curriculum in multiple disciplines to train students on the artistic side of animation and visual effects.