Alright, let's take a closer look at some of these pencil tests from Akira! Look at this amazing tracking shot! That tunnel! I bet a lot of folks assume this was 3D CGI but NOPE. It was hand drawn!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation #Sakuga
This is such a complex shot. Everything is in motion and shifting in proper perspective so dynamically. The sense of speed and movement are incredible. This isn't a dry technical exercise either. Every frame is full of VITALITY!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
Look at those exquisitely drawn speed lines in the pencil test that didn't even make it into the final film! They probably would have drawn too much attention to themselves if they were inked, but you can still FEEL them in the finished shot!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
It's hard enough to draw a motorcycle from a photo. Now imagine drawing the coolest bike in the world from your imagination, with someone riding it, all animating, shifting in perfect perspective, moving with weight & personality!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
This shot of Yamagata is so classic! Look at how much is going on in the shadows! The pencil test really lets you appreciate how much thought went into that cloth animation!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
You can just luxuriate in this shot! So much going on! You can feel the wind in his hair. The friction of the road. And according to my good buddy @dasyellerdog (who animates & rides!) the way he leans in to accelerate, as well as steady himself for the attack is very authentic!
Oh man, the sequence with the stuffed animals! THIS IS THE STUFF OF LEGENDS! Imagine the skill, the guts, the endurance it must have taken to pull this out of the ether, through the tip of the artist's pencil!

#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
I NEVER NOTICED THIS BEFORE. Look at this delightful little robot that forms in the midst of this transformation sequence! There's so much love and craft tucked into every frame of this film!

#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
The way the little robot arches its back as it gracefully slides into place is so wonderful. Like it's accepting it's fate. There's an innocence mixed with weariness to it. It just ... it just works so well 😭
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
There's dozens of individually interesting animations happening in here, but they flow together so cohesively. All the motions are actually very gentle, but their combined effect is incredibly unsettling.
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
Piece by piece, this animation is actually ADORABLE. Look at how this elephant curls in its trunk as it settles down for a nice nap.
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest
So many interesting little pieces! Look at that little dinosaur burying its face and curling in its tail!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
#Akira #Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #Kaiju
Gotta love this maned fetal frog monster that emerges from the right arm!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ #PencilTest #2DAnimation
I love how its mouth bursts open to reveal its gnarled fangs! The little arms unfurling at this moment are a great touch too!
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
Upon further consideration this is obviously a horned lizard! 🦎
#Akira #Akira30 #アキラ
If you're enjoying this thread please consider following me 😁! Watching and talking about this beautiful stuff keeps me going! Here's another long meandering gif filled thread on older anime that you might enjoy:
If you've made it this far, thanks for reading! If you wanna see some more awesome animation check out this thread on Street Fighter 3!
I think Street Fighter 3 is to game animation as Akira is to traditional animation. A real high water mark!
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