CSS 105 –

Computer Animations

University of Washington, Bothell

Computing and Software Systems

Spring 2007
UW1 121; T/TR 11:00am – 1:05pm



Instructor: Kelvin Sung

Phone: (425) 352-5420

Email: ksung@u.washington.edu

Office Hours:  TR: 1:30-3:30pm

                        (or by appointment)

Office: UW1-339


We will be learning:

In this course we will use the creation of computer generated animations as means to study the field of Computer Graphics. Specifically, we will study the essential foundations of Computer Graphics: Modeling, Rendering, and Animation. We will acquire the knowledge behind each of these foundations with hands-on experimentation and practices. Through these interactions, we will gain in-depth understandings of how special effects in mass media are created. At the same time, we will become more confident computer users with comprehensive appreciation for sophisticated modern applications and how information is organized on modern computer systems.



Required Text:

Isaac Victor Kerlow, The Art of 3-D Computer Animation and Effects, 3rd edition, John Wiley & Sons, 2003.


Reference Tutorial (there are 6 copies of this book on-reserved in the library):

Learning Maya 5 | Foundation, Maya Press, ISBN: 1-894893-34-4, 2003.

(This tutorial is on-reserved shelved behind the Information Commons Desk. You can check this out for the entire quarter. The due date for this would be June 8, 2007 5pm. Please note that if you forget to return this tutorial by the due date you will be fined! Make sure you get a copy of the accompanied DVD!).


Reference Text:

Dariush Derakhshani, Introducing Maya 5: 3D for Beginners, Sybex, 2003.


Anne Morgan Spalter, The Computer In the Visual Arts, Addison Wesley, 1999.


Michael O’Rourke, Principles of Three-Dimensional Computer Animation 3rd edition, Norton & Company, 2003.



Final Project                                                               25%
Computer Projects (4)                                                55-65%

                       In-class Quiz (4-6)                                                       10-20%

                        In-class participation                                                   10-20%


Approximated Schedule:








Story telling and Computer Animation

Intro to Modern Animation Tools

In class: Initial story pitch (vote)

Chap 1 & 2
LMF:1, 2 & 3

Mar 27, 29

Assign: Project 1


Modeling: Coordinate Systems and Transformations

In class: refine story with scene/shot breakdown  (one drawing per shot)

Chap 3

LMF: 5 & 6

(Reading only)

Apr 3, 5

Due: Story 0.5


Modeling: Techniques

In class: refine story timed AVI (3 drawings per shot)

Chap 4
LMF: 12 (stop at p225)

Apr 10, 12

Due: Project 1

Assign: Project 2


Modeling: Organization

In class: Storyboard (5-7 drawings/shot) with timed AVI

LMF: 13 (stop at p263)

Apr 17, 19

Due: Story 1.0


Rendering: Basics + Camera

In class: AVI with audio

Chap 6+7

LMB: 11

Apr 24, 26

Due: Project 2

Assign: Project 3


Rendering: Lighting/Shading/Texturing

In class: hero model design

Chap 8 + 9

LMB: Finish 12 & 13

May 1, 3



Animation: Basics + Key frame interpolation

In class: lighting/texturing/shading

Chap 10 + 11

LMF: 9 & 10

May 8, 10

Due: Project 3

Assign: Project 4


Animation: Skeleton + Constraints

In class: still frames replacing drawings in storyboard


LMF: 9 & 10

May 15, 17



Post processing: Compositing

In class: animation of hero

Chap 14

May 22, 24

Due: Project 4


Post Processing: Image and Video

In class: Work on the final project!

Chap 15

May 29, 31



Final Project Presentation


Jun 5

Jun 7

Due: Final Project: Storyboard + movie presentation


*Chapter numbers are reference to our textbook.

*LMF #–Refers to Learning Maya Foundation 5 Lesson #

Here are some general information/policies for this class

If you believe that you have a disability and would like academic accommodations, please contact Disability Support Services at 425.352.5307 or at rlundborg@uwb.edu. In most cases, you will need to provide documentation of your disability as part of the review process. I will coordinate with the University to ensure that the appropriate accommodations are made in this class.

If you have any problem with this course, please talk to me as soon as possible.  Please let me help in anyway I could, but I have to know there is a problem. If you should fall behind in this class, it will be difficult to catch up.


This course is inspired and heavily influenced by:

o       Genevieve Orr, “How to produce a 3D Computer Animated Short in One Semester,” Tutorial, Consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges Northwestern Conference (CCSC-NW), October 2006, Cheney, Washington.

o       Here is a link to Professor Orr’s animation class: http://www.willamette.edu/~gorr/classes/ids252.