Undergraduate Degree




DA9008 Animation: The Asian Perspective​

[Studio Contact Hours: 39 hours; Pre-requisites:Nil; Academic Unit: 3.0]




Academic Unit


3 AU

Course Description


Learning Objective

The aim of this course is to enable the participants to strengthen their individual artistic voice that has been informed by the multi-cultural and cosmopolitan environment of Singapore and by working within Asia.


The special term course will start by introducing the participants to Asian art traditions from diverse cultures in Singapore and how they are reflected in Asian animation-contemporary and historical. Simultaneously the students will be introduced to the basic techniques of animation, storyboarding and animation design and pre-production. The course is flexible to adjust the teaching to the individual strengths and requirements of the students.

  • A beginner can learn the basic animation techniques, storyboarding and pre-production approaches with an “Asian twist” and develop a first project.

  • A more advanced animator can get advice on the more sophisticated application of the animation principles and develop an existing or new project within an Asian environment.

Course Outline




• Introduction to course

• Introduction to Asian art, theatre, film and architecture

2 - 4

• Traditional Asian narratives: Folklore, legends and epics

• The specifics of Asian animation, introduction to South East Asian animation history

• Developing animation design concepts on the basis of Asian art traditions

• Basic principles of animation

• Research methodologies for adapting Asian visual styles for digital animation

5 - 8

• The sophisticated use of the basic principles of animation

• Narrative concept and storyboard development

• Design exploration and visual development, research contextualization

• Character design

• Visual development of environment and props

• Production of final project

9 - 12

• Final project refinement


• Final review of project

Learning Outcome

The students will have learnt to develop animation design concepts informed by Asian art, theatre and film. They also will have acquired basics techniques of animation, storyboarding and animation design and pre-production. The students will also be able to develop methodology for adapting Asian narratives for digital animation.

Student Assessment

  1. Assignments:  30%

Students will be assessed on studio-based exercises and assignments, including individual, group and team-based assignments.

  1. Final Project : 60%

Students will work on projects undertaken individually or as a group.

  1. Interest and Participation: 10%

Students will be assessed on their participation in class discussions and showing of initiative in class activities.


Suggested Reading:

  1. Richard Williams, The Animator's Survival Kit: A Manual of Methods, Principles and Formulas for Computer, Stop-motion, Games and Classical Animators, Faber and Faber, 2002 (expanded edition 2009, adding 'Internet' to the subtitle)

  2. Eric Goldberg, Character Animation Crash Course! , Silman-James PR, 2008

  3. John A. Lent, Animation in Asia and the Pacific, Indiana University Press, 2001

  4. Hans Bacher, Dream Worlds: Production Design for Animation, Focal Press, 2007

  5. Marcos Mateu-Mestre, Framed Ink: Drawing and Composition for Visual Storytellers, Design Studio Press, 2010