- Hideaki Anno talks about the appeal of "Mobile Suit Gundam" and the importance of original drawings.

Aug 01, 2013

This is the 4th part of the interview.


Anno learned the basics of animation through Yasuhiko's original drawings.

Hikawa: There was an issue of Animage that featured Yasuhiko's original drawings. Did you see it?

Anno: I bought it. This was the first time I learned that original drawings are not drafts, and it was also the first time I thought that original drawings were cool. Being in the countryside, I was never exposed to anything like that.

Hikawa: Like the way he draws the pictures with a pencil.

Anno: I was shocked when I saw the cover of a magazine (which had Seira drawn by Yasuhiko) and learned for the first time that this is how he draws.

Hikawa: You can tell how fast he draws it, how long he lets it rest, and so on, right?

Anno: I can tell.


At the time, Anno says, there were very few ways for people living in rural areas to find out how anime was made. There were only a very few books available, such as Genkosha's "How to Make Anime" and almost all the amateur magazines, he said.


Hikawa: And the time sheets too?

Anno: I didn't know they existed. When I was a student, I helped Mr. Itano with "Macross", and that was the first time I found a time sheet on the set.

Hikawa: What did you do before that (when Anno was making his own animation)?

Anno: I drew and sent everything. At the time, I was shooting frame by frame with an 8mm camera, and I was trying to figure out if this picture was one frame, two frames, or three frames.

Hikawa: You decided the number of frames when you pressed the shutter yourself? What do you do when you do a retake? It can't be reproduced, can it?

Anno: It's impossible to reproduce. There are basically no retakes.

Hikawa: Then what about the middle split (*1)?

*1) It is one of the drawing processes in animation, and is a process to fill in the gaps between the original drawings.

Anno: Not at all. It was all drawn and sent off.


Drawing forward means to draw each frame in sequence. In the case of animation, the middle part of the picture is drawn later by the animator, so it is not a normal procedure to draw the frames in order.


Anno: When I was helping Itano-san, I learned that it's enough to keep the beginning and end of the original drawing in mind.

Hikawa: Do you have a sense of where to draw the original drawings?

Anno: Yes, I do. It's a feeling. Also, from A1 (original drawing) to A2 (original drawing), whether the middle section should be jammed forward, backward, or evenly divided is also a feeling.

Hikawa: What do you mean by jamming?

Anno: On Mr. Itano's original drawings, there are scales written to indicate whether this part should be in the front or the back, and I've never seen anything like that before. I've never seen anything like that before. Itano-san's original drawings have a lot of these.


This is the same as the movement in "Combattler V," and is used to create a sense of movement. Increasing the density of the number of sheets in the middle section creates a sense of urgency in the movement, and decreasing the density creates a sense of speed. If you don't do this, the speed of movement will remain constant, and there will be no sense of crispness. It is not enough for the original drawings to be beautiful, but they must also have an image of the speed and power of movement when they are moved. Do you understand what Anno meant when he described Yasuhiko's original drawings as having "great speed, power, and precision"? Anno is saying that Yasuhiko's original art is not only beautiful, but also expresses a sense of speed and power in movement, and that it is accurate.



From the exhibition "The Birth of Mobile Suit Gundam and Animator Yoshikazu Yasuhiko

Anno: I thought the part where Jim cuts down Dom in Itano-san's "Gundam the Movie III" was too much. But if you don't do that kind of thing, the animators won't get any better. I think it's too difficult for someone who's not very good at it to do Mr. Itano's original art (video). But it's okay.

Hikawa: So you're saying that Itano-san is able to control the timing of the original drawings and the middle division?

Anno: Yes, that's right. No matter how horrible the animators are, Mr. Itano's original drawings are fine. It was the same with "Macross. I learned that timing is the key to animation.

Hikawa: Do the original drawing artists with good timing leave a lasting impression on you?

Anno: Yes, they do. Mr. Itano has a good grasp of space, so he can give good timing instructions for creating depth in the picture. When it comes to creating a sense of distance when moving toward the back of the image, the objects become smaller as they move toward the back, and he is very good at making them smaller. Also, the explosion, the way the explosion ball spreads, is very good. There are only medium 1, medium 3, medium 5, and medium 7, but the way they are used and the timing of the explosions turning into fireballs is excellent.


The number of medium 1 to medium 7 is the number of mediums that the animator draws between the original drawings, and although there are only four patterns, the sense of speed varies greatly depending on how they are used. The speed can also be changed depending on the interval between the starting point and the ending point of the original, so it is likely that Itano gave the animators simple instructions for the four patterns and made fine adjustments to the intervals between the original pictures. That's why the original drawing depends on sensitivity, sense, and experience, and the skill of the original drawing is not determined only by the skill of the artist.

<Original JP site: https://news.mynavi.jp/article/20130801-gft/4>

つづく --> https://www.buymeacoffee.com/rikki/the-success-gundam-based-yoshikazu-yasuhiko-original-drawings-175952