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The Animation Academy, hosted by a Disney cartoonist, teaches you how to draw a Disney character; if you have any artistic inclination, you may consider it DCA's best-kept secret and find yourself taking the class repeatedly, as a Salt Lake City reader suggests:
[Animation Academy] turned out to be one of my absolute favorite things. I did it four times in a row and would have gone more if I wasn't starving. I plan to devote quite a bit of time to it on my next trip. I don't think you give it enough credit in your book.
And from a Sammamish, Washington, mom:
I agree with the reader comment that you do not give enough emphasis to the Animation Academy drawing classes. I took three, and they were the highlight of the trip. I have no drawing ability whatsoever, but following along with the instructor I was able to make a pretty decent Donald, a passable Mickey, and a Pooh Bear, although he looked like he was in a car accident. My 4-year-old loved drawing along, my husband loved it, and my 2-year-old loved scribbling on her paper and drawing board. It was fun for the whole family.
The Animation Academy classes normally rotate during the day through a dozen-odd different classic and current Disney characters, but at times it may be devoted to a single theme.
Turtle Talk with Crush is also located here, featuring the 152-year-old sea turtle from the Disney/Pixar film Finding Nemo. Originally developed for the Seas pavilion at Epcot, Turtle Talk with Crush was the first attraction to incorporate the technology of real-time animation. Here, Crush answers questions, jokes, and makes conversation with guests in real time. The animation is brilliant, and guests of all ages list Crush as their favorite Animation-building feature.
Both Sorcerer's Workshop and Animation Academy provide a good foundation on the animation process and will enhance your appreciation of the other exhibits.
Here's roughly how many minutes you'll wait for Animation Academy at each California Adventure Crowd Level.
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