Filoscopes, or flick books are an early form of moving image. By flicking quickly through the pictures, the images appear to move like the one below.

The first Filoscope was made by Henry W Short in 1897 and it shows a train moving down a track. At the museum we have many Filoscopes including one called ‘London Street Scene’ and ‘The Soldier’s Embrace’.

The first animated film is considered to be Fantasmagorie by Émile Cohl made in 1908. The film is under two minutes long and was drawn by Cohl himself. He drew 700 different frames for this film.

You can watch Fanstasmagorie here -

See what you notice about how far animation has come.

Perhaps the most famous animations come from the Disney Company, which was founded in 1923. The first Disney animated feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was released in 1937. In between these dates characters such as Minnie and Mickey Mouse were created.

The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum has a large collection of Disney memorabilia dating back to the 1930s.

Here are some examples of cels from the museum. Cels are paintings on acetone which are used for animation. A film can use up to 100,000 cels to make the various facial expressions and movements that the characters need. These cels show Disney characters in an early form. Can you see how these cels of Pluto, The Fairy Godmother and John Darling from Peter Pan evolved into their final animated characters?

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