Animation By Way of Clay

The oldest form of mold making and sculpturing is with clay. Clay is a simple and readily available material that is easy to use as well. So much so that even children enjoy rolling the clay and molding it into various three-dimensional shapes. 

But not many people know that clay is also used in animation works. Animation with clay is known as stop motion animation or claymation. 

How does it work? 

Clay modeling is simple as the soft clay can be easily shaped into various figures and characters. The only likely problem is that the clay will not be able to support its own weight in the model. Therefore, artists generally design a wire armature and then build the figure on it.

Clay models are inherently flexible and can be bent or moved in different ways. In fact, claymation artists design the model as per the movements required from them. 

The animation is created through a series of photographs. The stage is set and the clay figures are moved ever so slightly in every frame. This calls for a lot of careful planning and attentive coordination.

When the pictures are combined sequentially, it creates an animated effect. This illusion of movement through clay figures became popular with Gumby and Pokey, Wallace and Gromit and the California Raisins. 

Which clay to use? 

Water-based clays are very common in the art world. However, they harden on exposure to air. Non-hardening variations are also available and better suited for clay modeling and animation works. These flexible clays can be oil or wax based. 

Artists choose the clay type depending on the potential use as well as their personal preference in terms of texture and hardness.

You can source different types of clay from the leading house of art supplies, EnvironMolds. The website stocks all kinds of mold making and casting materials along with tools, supplies and equipment.

1 Response to "Animation By Way of Clay"

  1. Revathy says:
    March 29, 2018 at 1:58 AM

    it was very help full for Boom Lift my new site.

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