Part of what makes animation look animated are the exaggerated poses of the characters or objects. The techniques behind these poses were refined by the legendary Nine Old Men of The Walt Disney Company in the early days of animation and film. In this snazzy visual essay, artist Cento Lodigiani illustrates the main techniques developed by the Nine Old Men. Any animator worth their salt knows this is the foundation from which to start. Here is The Illusion of Life.
It’s fun to watch the original Steamboat Willie cartoon to see how some of these animation techniques have evolved. If you look at the way Mickey moves, you can see how the timing of something like his arms and legs seems slowed or stretched. Compare that to the snappy rhythm of Mickey in his new series. Neither is bad; both show the versatility of the art of animation.