Take a closer look at the two-story camera Walt Disney invented for his animated films
I’ve always appreciated Disney’s animated films. They were so entertaining for me and even my parent’s during our childhoods. Drawings coming to life to tell some heart-full stories were enough for me to appreciate the films. It wasn’t until I grew older that I found out why I should appreciate the films even more so.
Modern-day animation and animated full-length feature films began with Walt Disney, but as with anything that had a beginning with Walt, it had to be great. One thing he noticed about his animated films early on was that they were flat. They didn’t have any sense of depth to them and therefore would disturb the believability of them.
To fix that, he designed a great camera; Great in every sense of the word!
It was two stories tall and consisted of multiple layers, each one with a layer of animation painted onto glass plates that would then be operated by a team of people. Those people would then move those plates in very small incremental movements after having the cameraman on top operate the shutter to capturing scenes.
As Walt himself will describe in the rare video above, it was a tedious process that lasted months if not years to finish an animated film. It was all worth it to him though, all in an effort for us to believe in his stories.
That’s something we can appreciate very much.
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