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ANIMATO Animation Equipment

During the years, I have collected quite a few pieces of equipment in my one-man animation studio:

This is the German-made 35mm animation camera:

The black box on the side facing you is a later addition: I built an electronic mechanism for 6 to 256 frame fades & dissolves. The camera originally had only three built-in lengths (mechanically controlled). There is an auto-focus mechanism that keeps the lens focused when the camera is moved up or down on its columns. The reflex viewfinder can be seen on the left side, behind the large frame counter.

Here's an internal view of the camera:

This picture shows the film transporting system - it is based on the classic "Mitchell"-type movement. You can see the exchangeable gate (different plates give full aperture, 1:1.35, 1:1,66 and 1:1,85), the pressure plate that moves up and down and presses the film firmly against the gate, the claws that move the film one frame at the time, and the registration pins that engage the perforations during exposure, to hold the film absolutely in the right position. The rotoscope prism enables me to use the camera as a projector, when I need to draw mattes or animation from a film strip loaded in the camera. A light is attached to the camera and illuminates the film through this prism.

This is the complete camera stand - I had to shorten the columns a bit to fit it into the room - my ceiling height is only 2.55 meters (8 ft. 6"):

This is the aerial image projector that is electrically linked to the camera:

I have built a bi-pack take-up, so that I can use two films for superimposed mattes or titles. I can use either a duplicate intermediate positive (made on 5244), or an ordinary print in the projector, thanks to the exchangeable registration pins. Dupes and prints have different size perforations...

Here's a panoramic view of my darkroom, with repro camera (far back, right of center), color enlarger (left front, rarely used anymore), xerox cel copying system (using the repro camera), developing trays, etc.