Today’s post is here to compare and contrast an attraction found on both coasts. With that said, we have decided to review the BEST hidden gem attractions at both Disney California Adventure and Disney's Hollywood Studios: the Animation Academy!
After many visits we finally decided to try this out and walked out wondering why it had taken so long for us to do it. Not only is it a genuinely fun attraction but we really appreciated that it was interactive, you learn something and get take home a free souvenir. What’s that? A FREE souvenir, from Disney? Yes! Another underappreciated perk… you get to sit down while you do it in an air conditioned building; it is a great way to be the heat!
ANIMATION ACADEMY OVERVIEW:
|Danny (top) and Jaime's (bottom) Goofy |
drawing. Clearly Danny didn't pay
attention to the darkening instructions.
The class proceeds until the project is complete. Throughout the entire project the artists are told to draw very lightly and messy and then darken their lines at the end of class. Once the project is complete, then the darkening begins! This is the same time that all artists are given the chance to show off their works of art! The beauty of this is that everyone’s art looks similar but different - and this is the beauty of it all! You then finish class by signing your work of art - and leaving with a nice free souvenir! Again, a huge perk - free souvenir, different examples of art and most importantly - a renewed confidence that anyone can be an artist!
Disney California Adventure Details:
The drawing schedule is located outside on a sandwich board, with times from park open to park close, that can help you choose when to attend, if let’s say the Mad Hatter doesn't excite but you have to draw Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. It was really nice to get to see who would be drawn when. This can may be attributed to the fact that Disneyland has more local visitors who would want to know if they should stop in at any given time.
|Light Board for drawing at |
Disney's Hollywood Studios
We find the smaller set-up to be very disappointing given the much larger volume of people that go to WDW on a daily basis. There is a holding area for the next class with a Cast Member keeping track of the exact amount of people in the holding area. If you leave the holding area, you can forfeit your seat, and it cannot be held. This is a little disappointing, considering these classes are only held every 45 minutes with one class per hour. This translates into about 10 Animation Academy class a day at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Class is a lot more intimate, which is very nice and set up to be like you are at an artist’s drawing table which is nice. The room is not nearly as tiered as the DCA version and has built in tables and stools for all the artists. As you enter the room you see all the drawing desks with paper, pencils and a light table like real animators use. The light table became distracting for Danny, however Jaime appreciated it. The downfall to this is if you want to keep your paper stabilized and move around your drawing table you cannot.
Would you re-do this attraction: YES! We love this attraction but as returners to it we prefer the California Adventure version more since the classes happen more frequently and we know who we will be drawing ahead of time.
|The finished product! Hi Tigger!|
Is this attraction a must do in the park: NOT NECESSARILY. Again, depending on your energy level and interest this may not be for everyone but we cannot stress enough how much we enjoyed it after our skeptical start. What it comes down to is time and money. If you have more time to spend (and not so much money) this is a great way to get off your free and leave with a free souvenir. If you are pinched for time and have other must-dos while in the park you may not want to spend the time waiting for and attending the next class. With that said, we wouldn't be surprised if once you have exeperienced it that it does become a must-do!