A Simpsons prodution cel is a clear plastic celluloid sheet containing a hand painted image which has been used to create a scene in the production of the television show The Simpsons. Cels with multiple layers placed over top of each other are referred to as a cel set-up.
Animators begin by drawing an image onto a blank piece of paper with a pencil. This line drawing is then transferred onto the front side of a clear celluloid sheet with the use of a special xerographing machine. The machine scans the drawing and reproduces it with strong dark outlines. Once the transfer is complete, the celluloid sheet is flipped over onto the reverse side and given to a colorist. The colorist uses a paint brush and acrylic paint to dab color onto the image. The painstaking, highly time consuming end result is an unbelievably rich and solid image fully colored without any hint of brush strokes.
When the colorist is finished and the paint has dried, multiple cels are stacked on top of each other and placed over a background image to create a cel set-up. These set-ups are then photographed (filmed) in succession with cels being swapped out after each photograph is taken to represent a degree of motion to the image. When individually captred photographs are projected in rapid succession, the images in the cel set-up appear to move, thus making the characters come to life.
After episodes of The Simspsons were filmed, all storyboards, drawings, cels and backgrounds used in the production process were packed up and archived. Over the years, 20th Century Fox has opened up their archives and released production artwork on a limited basis. This artwork, including orignal cel set-ups, is only available for purchase through animation art galleries who are officially licensed by 20th Century Fox. View links to galleries that sell Simpsons cels.
|Production Cels Available to Own