Temple of the Seven Golden Camels is arguably the best free resource for all visual storytellers.
The blog, by animator and storyboard artist Mark Kennedy spanned 10 years from 2006 to 2016 and has in excess of 400 posts. It was driven by Kennedy’s desire to learn and share what it takes to tell compelling and memorable stories. Throughout its run, the Temple covered a variety of subjects ranging from shape language and layout to blocking and match cuts.
Mark Kennedy started working at Walt Disney Animation Studios in the early 90’s. In that time he’s had many roles on a range of incredible projects including Animating Assistant on Beauty and the Beast (1991) and Aladdin (1992); Story Artist on Disney Features Hercules (1997) and Tarzan (1999); Head of Story on Disney Features on Tangled (2010); and Creative Advisor on Big Hero 6 (2014).
The time Kennedy put into the blog, making it a rich and unique resource, has helped and continues to help so many artists. And even though he has moved on to other personal projects, I still keep my fingers crossed that one day there might be a compilation of the best articles in a Temple of the Seven Golden Camels book.
For now, here are some of our reading recommendations:
- Tricks For Creating Layouts (Part One, two, three, four and five)
- Squash and Stretch (Part One, two and three)
- Blocking and Storytelling (“It’s a Wondeful Life”, “Paths of Glory”)
- Directing the Viewer’s Eye
- Match Cuts
- Drawing Crowds
- The Benefits of Visual Variety
- Foreground, Middle ground, Background
- Costume Design, Character and Story
- What Makes A Good Story Portfolio/Story Artist?
- Create The Thing You Want To Exist In The World