To get a sense of what working in passes looks like, imagine seeing a cathedral from a great distance.
[Pages 119-157 in Workflow]
Working in passes is the controlled process of advancing your work one step (‘pass‘) at a time towards your vision. Every pass must be short, simple, and focus on improving just a few important aspects of the work.
The premake has many names: model, maquette, demo recording, animatic, mock-up, synopsis, proof of concept, or simply ‘sketch’.
At the very heart of the creative process is the premake: a quick and rough capture of your vision. Think of the premake as an apparition in a fortune teller’s crystal ball: a small, blurred, distorted prophecy of what your finished work is going to be.
“…every creative effort is a bit like an A-Team episode. It requires four different mindsets – four distinct personalities with different skills and attitudes.”
This video presents one of the core ideas of Worklfow in under 4 minutes. If you prefer reading, a transcript appears below.
When I was a kid there was a famous series I used to watch, called The A-Team. In case you’re not familiar with it: it’s about a group of 4 guys, each with a unique personality and a specific set of skills. Hannibal was the man with the plan and a master of disguise; BA was a hot-headed muscle man and an excellent driver; ‘Face’ was a con artist with a soft spot for pretty girls; and Murdock was the barking mad pilot who could fly anything. And of course, every mission these guys had, somehow required most of these skills.
I was reminded of this TV series because in fact, every creative effort is a bit like an A-Team episode. It requires four different mindsets – four distinct personalities with different skills and attitudes.
This here is a 45 minutes lecture I gave at Bron Animation Studios in Vancouver. It’s an overview of the main concepts of the workflow. You might want to watch it before reading the book, especially if videos work well for you as a learning medium. It’s also a bit more detailed than the overview given in the beginning of the book. Check it out: