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A supplementary 2D animation for the MacIntroPsych course at McMaster University


Nicholas Woolridge

About the Animation

This project was a collaboration between the Masters of Biomedical Communications (MScBMC) program at the University of Toronto Mississauga and  the introductory psychology course at McMaster University, completed as part of MScBMC's Special Topics course in 2D animation. This animation is meant to be supplementary to an online module and textbook readings for the section of the MacIntroPsych course regarding the psychology of obedience; it aims to clarify the experimental set up of experiments discussed and summarize their findings in a fun and engaging way for students.

Content Advisors (McMaster University)

Dr. Joe Kim

Dr. Michelle Cadieux

Meet The Team

Carmen was responsible for designing the overall look of assets in this project as well as character animation.

Contessa focussed on non-character animation and motion graphics.

Nitai focused on non-character animation and motion graphics. He also compiled the compositions and added audio.

I was responsible for creating character assets and character animation alongside Carmen, as well as acted as the liaison with our content advisors.



Character Animator || Look Development



Motion Graphics



Motion Graphics || Compiler

Colleen (Me!)

Character Animator || Project Manager


1. Contacting Project Stakeholders

I took the lead of contacting the MacIntroPsych team to find out for which sections of the course they would like to have a short animation. Our team then reviewed their shortlist of psychology topics, and chose a topic for which the media of animation  would be both helpful in making the concept clearer as well as feasible within the time frame. Once we onboarded the MacIntroPsych team, we had a team meeting where I lead the creation of a detailed production schedule via Trello.


2. Creating an Outline/Treatment

Within the social psychology topic of obedience taught within the course the animation was for, we further narrowed our scope by picking out 1-2 ideas that seemed of most importance and useful to have visualized.  We wrote a brief treatment and sent it to the content advisors for approval before moving on.

3. Writing a Script

Due to time constraints, we each wrote 1/4 of the script and then met as a team to review and edit the script so it was cohesive. This script included descriptions of the visuals that would potentially accompany this narration. This edited script was then sent to the content advisors again for any suggestions or feedback.


4. Storyboarding

We each created storyboards for the section  of the script we wrote (e.g. I wrote the script discussing the Nurse case study, so I produced those storyboards). We presented these to each other for feedback and revisions and then sent these storyboards to our content advisors for final feedback before we moved into production.


5. Creating Assets and Divvying up the Labour

After Carmen finalized look development for our project, based on the finalized storyboards, our team created a list of assets--character and non-character--required for our animation. We determined which assets were used in key scenes or multiple scenes and denoted them as top priority by highlighting them. I created a google excel sheet with this information and separated it into non-character and character assets. I also created a naming convention for us to follow to keep all the assets easily found and organized. Carmen and I split the labour of creating character assets and updated the google sheet as we went.


6. 2D Animation Production

We recorded the final narration for our script in addition to several sfx sounds. We then animated the to the final narration in  Adobe After Effects. Carmen and I took the lead on all the character animation, while Contessa and Nitai focused on any other animated elements. Due to the lack of access to the team/collaborative version of Adobe After Effects, I created a google drive system for us to share our compositions such that we could compile the character and motion-graphic/non-character animation we created.  Once each scene was fully complete, the final scenes were sent to Nitai to compile with sound in Adobe Premiere. We received feedback from our faculty supervisor on our animation intermittently during this time.

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