When Hayk Manukyan tagged #Wacom in a recent Tik Tik video of an adorable grandpa (aka international superstar, Harut) dancing his deadpan-faced little heart out to Getcho Mans, by Indonesian rappers Rich Brian and Warren Hue, Wacom’s social media team was all ears and reached out to me immediately.
#fyp #dance #dancing #animation
“Pam! Is he one of your guys? He looks like he’s one of yours! His animation is so cuuuuuuutte!” (Note: I am Wacom America’s influencer programs manager and email marketing manager). Luckily Hayk was easy to track down on social so I contacted him about profiling him on the Wacom blog. He responded immediately and enthusiastically with a yes, and agreed to partner with us.
Using a Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 and Toon Boom Harmony for the color, cleanup, and final animation, Hayk created this smooth little animation on a whim and never expected it to go viral – currently topping over 1.2 million views on Tik Tok alone.
The little grandpa (I mean international superstar, Harut) got to bust a move to several different tunes, as Hayk experimented with different soundtracks to best match the animation. In Harut’s latest debut, he boogies like Fred Astaire to Puttin on the Ritz 2017 by Taco, which is itself a tribute to the greatest dancer in film history. To add some period flair to the animation, Hayk added an old vintage black and white filter to his Instagram story.
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The tools Hayk loves and uses
Hayk started off his career doing traditional animation on an actual animation desk, but as things started moving more towards the digital world he realized he had no choice but to switch to digital. “I first started using those early Wacom tablets that you would hold off to the side and draw on [Wacom Intuos Pro]. I thought that worked fine, but still missed working on an actual animation desk, until one day I purchased a Wacom Cintiq and suddenly I felt like I was back to working how I used to. I’ve done all kinds of animation on my Wacom Cintiq Pro 24, from 2D to 3D to my personal projects. I absolutely love it.
Hayk is also a fan of Toon Boom Harmony. “I used to love the old Flash (now called Abode Animate) vector brush for drawing/animating, but now the drawing tools in Harmony put it to shame. While Animate is still great for cutout symbol style animation, for hand-drawn animation I prefer Harmony. You can also choose to draw in bitmap or vector in Harmony which is huge.”
Where have we seen this before?
Several eagle-eyed fans noticed the similarity of Harut’s dance moves to those from Teen Titans Go!, which is no surprise, as Hayk is a character animator on the series and the creator of the animated dance sequence.
Hayk also shared the ‘secret’ to his animation in a recent video on his YouTube channel. “I get emails from people asking me to animate a half-hour episode idea they have or to animate a music video in my free time. People who don’t work in animation seem to not realize how much work/time/money goes into animating even a couple of seconds,” said Hayk.
About Hayk Manukyan
My career in animation began in 2000 at the age of 18. I have worked as a 2D & 3D animator for such studios as Walt Disney, Warner Bros., FOX, HBO, Comedy Central, CN, Nickelodeon, and MTV. My work can be seen in such films as The Incredible Hulk and Alvin and The Chipmunks The Movie, and in TV shows such as The Ricky Gervais Show and Teen Titans Go!