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“I know where the weight is in every drawing; I know where the weight is going to and where it is coming from. On a four-legged animal, or a two-legged animal, or if it’s a hand moving, I know where the weight is.” – Milt Kahl 

Pongo Animation Test

Original Drawings by Milt Kahl

In Memory of Rod Taylor 11 January 1930 – 7 January 2015. 

Tigger Pencil Animation Test

Original Drawings by Milt Kahl

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Bambi has trouble keeping his long, spindly legs pointed in the right direction

-Ollie Johnston

Thumper is convulsed with the riotous laughter of a child

-Frank Thomas

Friend Owl demonstrates what it means to be twitterpated

-Eric Larson

Bambi shows great anxiety in his tense attitude and quick, darting moves

-Milt Kahl

Animation from the flipbook that comes with Frank and Ollie’s Bambi book. Sorry about the bad registration, it’s because I scanned it right out of the book.

It’s funny how you can still tell the quality of the drawings despite that they’re from the early 40’s, printed in a book in 1990, and scanned and .gif’d 22 years later by me.

Milt Kahl’s pencil test of Pongo from Disney’s 101 Dalmatians (1961)

Decades after this pencil test was completed, Disney animation legend Andreas Deja would re-discover it and rave:

“Here are a couple exploratory drawings from one of my all time favorite scenes. Milt goes very, very far here as far as graphic representation of this scene. Razor-sharp points and an intense balance of straight against curved lines make Pongo look like a Picasso creation. Yet anatomical correctness is never compromised.

“Even if some people don’t appreciate such a stylized approach to Disney drawing, they buy into it because of the scene’s weight and fluidity of motion. Not to mention the overall convincing emotions a dog goes through when scratching, yawning and collapsing on to a pillow.

“Just a few years earlier, Milt had animated a similar scene with Tramp, as he wakes up inside a barrel near the train tracks. It was in Milt’s nature to constantly challenge himself and try different ways to handle a situation that was somewhat familiar to him. Animated sometime in 1960, even after so many decades this remains a MODERN animated masterpiece.”