Talking to a friend recently about how ridiculous learning animation really is, we figured out a few things. It’s an intense proccess where you’re staring at a screen or piece of paper for hours. Often this intense “workout” is very draining, which leads to an inhibition of creative thinking. Herein is the problem that new animators have to hurdle over. To get over, you essentially just have to spend a ludicrous amount of time doing more and more work.
Over time, you gain more and more experience animating. Timing, weighting, and other finnicky real-life laws will become second nature. Eventually this will mean you’re spending less time intensely focused on the screen and more time thinking creatively. This is important because creativity feeds directly into how good your ideas and poses are for a shot, and as a result, how good your animation is.
Another way to get around the draining of creativity is to do much more planning beforehand. That way, your time on the computer can just be about getting the keys in the right place, and the rest of your time spent in your sketchbook working out your poses and such.
In fact, maybe I should actually take my own advice.