“Animation can explain whatever the mind can conceive.” ~ Walt Disney

A real animation Study involves theories and hands on practice. Reading animation books is necessary for upcoming animator if they plan to grow in their animation career. The original Disney’s nine old men that came up with all the scientific and methodical approach to animation are all dead, but their knowledge and legacy lives on through films and books. In addition to the nine old men, there are senior members of the animation industry today, that have a lot to share with modern day techniques and approach.

There is a large variety of animation books for different uses such as 3D, 2D, stop motion and much more. However, there are 3 books that need to be on the shelf of any aspiring animator, regardless of the type of animator they are.

  • Animators Survival Kit /Richard Williams
  • Cartoon Animation/Preston Blair
  • The Illusion of life/Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston
  • Timing for Animation


This book frequently known as Animator’s bible because of the fundamentals like spacing, walks, timing, dialogue, anticipation, action etc..,This book will teach everything for an animator who needs training in the field of animation as well as the basic fundamentals.

The author of the book is an academy winning director who directed “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, “The Pink Panther” (Richard Williams). He got his training from animation greats like Milt Kahl and other great Disney animators.


Cartoon animation was originally released in 1994. It is also called as “The Preston Blair Book”. This book will give animators the great platform for creating cartoon-style animation. This book gives an idea to develop a cartoon character, dynamic movement and animate dialogue with action. This book focuses on character development and also covers the topics such as creating compelling lines of action, timing, dialogue etc., This is a great book for animal action also it shows in detail examples of animating different type of cartoon animals.

The author of the book is Preston Blair. he was a predominant animator in his time and worked in many big studios such as Disney and Hanna Barbera etc., He worked on famous scenes in the original Fantasia such as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice and the hippo – alligator dance etc.,


This book serves as a guide for every animator. First, this book has started as an animation guide and later it has been turned in to detailed survey on the progression of animation, with in the Disney studios and also in the world of animation. This book discusses many methods of animation. Each and every method has its own unique style but this book take the readers for an insight to every methods of an animation. Also this book gives the clear concept about animation, what is the animation is all about etc., it also covers the history of animation in depth.

This book has been written by the two pioneers of animation Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston. They worked at Disney since the earlier days and took part in many great animation films like snow white and seven dwarfs, Pinocchio and the jungle book.


It was first published in 1981. This book will give the readers clear idea about all the vital techniques of how animation s should be arranged in relation to each other, how much space should be used and how long each drawing should be shown for maximum dramatic effect. Then the second edition was published in few years later, the book has been updated and includes timing for digital production, digital storyboarding in 2D, digital storyboarding in 3D, the use of after effects etc.,

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