Animation is used in the media world greatly and is becoming an important form of media. It can be seen in platforms ranging from advertising to mobile phone and internet content. Animation is usually seen in feature films, television and in the games industry.
Stop Motion is a cinematic process, or technique used to make objects appear as if they are moving. This technique is often used in Claymation and puppet based animation. The objects are brought to life by moving the figure in sections and filming/photographing. Roughly 24 images per second are displayed in stop motion animation, however in the gaming industry roughly 60 images are displayed, using stop motion animation, per second. Usually the figure used in stop motion animation is made from particular materials such as clay, cut out pieces of paper or any material that can easily be manipulated to move in certain ways. Although sometimes real models are used to create a more lifelike feel to the animation. The process of stop motion animation involves taking photographs of the object, moving it slightly then taking another photograph. When the images are played back at high speed the object or character appears to be moving on their own. Early stop motion animation was captured with film cameras (unlike today, whereas they are usually captured using DLSR cameras). Animators could not see how their work looked until they got their film processed.
Rotoscoping is used in 3D animation, it is a technique that allows the animator to create an animation that mimics live action video. For example, a live actor being filmed doing a series of actions, then the animator would make the digital character mimic the actions. This technique of animation creates a very realistic feel. Before computers an animation stand called a Rotoscope was used to project a sequence of action frames against a surface or background so that a set of animation frames could be traced or creating (usually using drawing). In modern ages the same type of work can be done using digital images and special computer software.
Cel animation is a traditional form of animation usually used in the production of cartoons or animated movies. Each frame is drawn by hand to produce the animation. A full length film or animation using this technique would often require a million or more drawing to complete it. This type of animation is created using cellulose acetate which is a transparent sheet that can be laid over other Cels and painted on and photographed. Cel animation can create a very appealing, detailed animation, however it is incredibly time consuming and requires plenty of organisation and attention to detail.
Sprite sheet animation is the use of sprite sheets to create a moving image or animation of an object or character. A sprite is a single graphic image that is incorporated into a large scene so it appears to be a part of the scene. This style of animation involves taking photographs of multiple images and then link them together in high speed to create the illusion that the object or image is moving. Sprites are a popular way to create large scenes as you can manipulate each sprite separately from the rest of the scene. This allows the animator to have greater control over the scene, as well as how other people interact with the scene. Many games use spritesheets as they allow the animators to use many individual sheets for different images. It is very common for games to have tens to thousands of sprites because loading each of these as an individual image would consume a lot of memory and power.