HISTORY OF ANIMATION
Long before cartoons were invented, people were figuring out how to animate things. We’re talking a long time – 4,000 years ago in fact! For example, back in Ancient Greece, artists would paint a series of images that look very much like a storyboard we’d use in animation today. While there were lots of attempts at making animated images, it wasn’t really until the 1800s that things began to get interesting. For starters, there was the creation of something called a zoetrope. Invented by William E Lincoln in 1865, these were cylinders with a series of images on the inside of them. You could see the pictures through slits and, when the zoetrope was spun, the images would look like they were moving. Magical!
It wasn’t long after that the first cartoons started to appear. CharlesÉmile Reynaud was one pioneer, who painted characters onto a transparent film reel and projected it onto walls.
Later, with the invention of the film camera, loads of new styles of animation began to be invented. As we moved towards the 1900s, it was found that by taking a picture of an object, then moving that object and taking another picture of it, you could make it look like it was moving on its own. This is called stop-motion animation, and loads of films are still made like this today. In 1908, French artist Émile Cohl created what is said to be the first traditionally animated film, Fantasmagorie, with each frame drawn by hand. Things have really changed since then!