Alright, here's a slightly updated resource blog with links and so on for various things
if you storyboard your animation well, that is half the battle, here are the basic templates for thumbnails and full size allowing you to map out your film before you hit the desk
dope sheets are used to keep track of your frames and coordinate actions and sync with sound, these are basic templates you can use to help keep your work in order
not completely necessary but useful, if you want to go the classic route an animation desk can bought for various prices, thankfully even the cheap end of the spectrum are quite good, and if you are obsessive and out of range or money like myself you CAN make your own.
if however you feel the need to make your own here are some references from other bloggers who did the same
there's another one that i just cant think of, i'll add when i do
here is another basic diagram from Preston Blairs' Cartoon animation
With regards to supplies Chromacolour is the most useful. but animations can still be made with normal paper, and a hole punch.
For shooting the animation after the pain of drawing it up is done there are different options,
the first and most painful choice is to simply scan all of your artwork and import into your stopmotion or animation program but it takes forever.
one can use webcam with any basic program (examples below) and construct any sort of stand, or tripod with enough distance from your work to shoot, or simply mount your work on the wall
finally if your very into it you could get your hands on a copystand, and mount a dv camera onto it, leave pegbars at the bottom and edit directly into your stopmotion program, i use this as its clear and easy and as i am a mac user the dv camera works through firewire and was just simpler for me. it also means you have a permanent set up
here is a diagram of my copystand, they cost around 100 euro and specific lights can be bought with them, i just use different desk lamps, so you can judge the quality by my shorts
Okey dokey, There are lots of options for animation software out there. It all depends on what you want to do and how much money you have.
(a tablet will be useful here - i use a wacom bamboo fun) Adobe Flash and ToonBoom are pretty standard for the home user, they're vector based animation tools.
The other side of that you've got adobe Photoshop (cs4 onwards) and TvPaint for raster based animation software.
Ok, so here we have software that can be used for stopmotion and traditional animation.
If you have a fancy dslr Dragonframe is the way to go. I would go with dragon myself.
For Linux, Mac and Windows there's Pencil, its simple to use and free
all of the above have multiplatform support
below are 2 options for Pc and Mac respectively
For the PC user there is a great pencil test software called monkey jam best part about it is its free
For mac users the most useful software, i have found is Istopmotion which starts from €50 or so. Its better than nothing and can be used with dv cameras and webcams, useful for pencil tests and multi camera stop motion.
basically all you need for these programs is a webcam.
For scriptwriting with a storyboard component try Celtx also free
these are just some useful books for reference and inspiration.
The Animators Survival Kit - Richard Williams
possibly the most useful reference book on principals you will ever read
Cartoon Animation - Preston Blair
this is an equally useful reference to any animator
The art of Layout and Storyboarding - Mark T. Byrne
If you are lucky enough to live in ireland you can find a copy of this somewhere. It is one of the most comprehensive books on the subject of layout and storyboarding that you will keep going back to
Dreamworlds - Hans Bacher
another excellent book on staging, storyboarding and art direction
Force Dynamic Life Drawing For Animators - Mike Matessi
click one and 2 for links to each
Other inspirational books i would advise reading:
The Art of Walt Disney - Christopher Finch
That's All Folks The Art of Warner Bros. Animation - Steve Schneider
The Illusion of Life Disney Animation - Frank Thomas, Ollie Johnson
Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies: A Complete Illustrated Guide to the Warner Bros. Cartoons - Jerry Beck, Will Friedwald
in the sidebar to the right there there're links to useful sites that have helped me out endlessly, i hope some of this is useful
Aaand here are some simple tutorials for anyone who's curious and just wants to give it a go
also, this is a bit shameless but feel free to check out the rest of my blog, enjoy!