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Timeout: James Curran

Who are you?

I’m based in London and I’m an animator, director and illustrator. I mainly work with brands, often making GIFs for them, but I’ve also worked on a pretty wide range of other projects from music videos to video games over the past 10+ years. I also make a lot of GIFs just for fun, including for my Gifathon projects where I make a GIF every day for 30 days in a different city, so far in New York and Los Angeles.

What are you working on?

I’m working on a couple of smaller branded projects, but I’ve just finished a fairly large project for Disney where I directed a series of 15 short animations for TV, working with a team of great animators. I’m also planning another Gifathon for next year…

Choose a favorite shot of yours. Why is it a favorite?

This was part of my LA Gifathon and I think this one sums up my LA trip the best because driving was a big part of it, as it’s really the only way to get around the city. I also like how efficient the animation ended up being as I think it’s only actually 12 frames long.

Tell us about your setup. What tools did you use to create the shot (e.g. hardware, software, pens, paper, blowtorch)?

James curran workspace

I have a 27-inch 5K iMac and a Cintiq 13HD that use when at home, but for the past few months I’ve been traveling a lot (including for my LA Gifathon) so I just use my 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro with an Intuos Pro, if I have the space to set it up. That isn’t always possible though (such as on a flight) so I’ve got pretty comfortable with using the trackpad to design and animate with too.

Almost all of my work is done in After Effects with a little bit of 3D added from Maya. I design directly in After Effects using shape layers and go straight into animating from there. Particularly with Gifathons where I’m animating a GIF every day, I need to be as quick as possible so I find that doing almost everything in place speeds things up a lot.

Choose a favorite shot from another Player. Why do you dig it?

My process

My process

by Markus Magnusson

Pre-sales are now open for my course in Character Animation

View on Dribbble

I always liked this one from Markus Magnusson, because it’s cool to see another animator’s process.

Find James on Dribbble, on Twitter, and at

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