Monday, October 31, 2011

Animatic Rewrite

Just a wee catch up after my last post on Friday.  Finished tweaking the new revise of the animatic today so storyboarding can continue tomorrow.  Hopefully I'll get them done for our production meeting at 3pm, but that may be a bit of a push, especially at it's our Background Artist's 21st birthday today coupled with Hallowe'en.  We'll be lucky if we're up tomorrow by 3pm...  But anyhow, here's how it's looking so far:

Please let me know what you think, all feedback would very much be appreciated!

x L

Friday, October 28, 2011

Layouts and Boards 01

So this week Suba and I were going to try and sit down and work out our layouts for the animation.  We got ourselves a copy of Mark T. Byrne's "The Art of Layout and Storyboarding" and had a sit down with our resident storyboard professional Wayne Thomas who taught us the basics of layouts, using examples from his time as a boarder on SuperTed.  With all our notes we got to work, Suba went ahead and started working out how exactly she wants to create the environment fly-through at the beginning of the animation, whilst I found myself taking about five steps backwards in order to make one step forward.  

In order for me to start layouts, I need to work out a production chart, and in order to do that I need to work out exactly how many scenes and shots we have, and in order to that I need to finalise the boards, and in doing the boards I've reworked a section of the story to make it read better.  So I am currently in the middle of boarding, production charting, re-animaticing and I'm still mid-dog run cycle.  So many projects!

Anyhow, this is how we're looking on the new story rewrite:


We've flipped the girl so that she's the one to be hit by the ball.  In doing this it saves me a lot of animation but we still get the same idea across.  Now she no longer has to storm off the full length of the scene, I no longer need to flip a bear through the air into her face and she no longer carries her teddy with her to the bush where the boy's hiding.  The bear falling off the see-saw makes more sense realistically and feels just as sad; we still feel the girls loneliness at not having a real see-saw companion and it creates empathy for the girl a lot quicker than how we previously had it written.  Best of all, the whole scene is shorter, shaving about eight and a half seconds off of our animation in total.  

Because of this change though, I need to go back and tweak a whole bunch of other things on the animatic, which's going to set me back another day or so.  I'll get it all blogged up when it's completed next week, and I'll upload the boards too when they're all reworked and done.

Till then!

 x L

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Life Drawing 27/10/11

Another good week at life drawing! This week we had Dougie for lying down poses, which are normally an absolute nightmare, but I had such a fun week once I finally got into it!  Was really chuffed with the majority of the head angles, which I was expecting to really struggle with.  Going to need to start considering which pictures I'm going to use for the degree show/portfolio and maybe start mounting some.  Want to start spreading out the cost of paper and boards so I don't get hit with cash flow problems next April.  Some of these I quite like so they very well make it in.

Just used bog standard graphite pencils again this week and all poses were 15 minutes long.

x L

Monday, October 24, 2011

Dog Run Cycles - The Beginning

Animal run cycles - YEY!  Oh my, all the fun we can have when we give something four legs.  Working out a dog run cycle has been a challenge and a half, but I have learned so much today it has definitely been worth all the brain strain.

Started off by researching roughly how a dog's leg works, and what sort of basic shapes and movements I would need to tackle my own run cycle.  I've been using a wee supplement from ImagineFX on Anatomy, which I highly recommend everyone and anyone getting if you are interested in exactly how and why humans and animals move and look the way they do.  It's so in depth and explained everything to me perfectly.  I stole some of their drawings as notes and pinned them up behind my lightbox for reference, then got under way.

I've also enlisted the help of an old college buddy of mine, and second year animator Tara, who is a genius when it comes to animal cycles and, to be fair, animal art in general.  I went to her for advice on this dog cycle and twenty minutes later she's roughed out and line tested a seven frame cycle for me as a guide!


So with my guide and anatomy notes I got to work and created this:


Which you can see has only two of it's four legs in place.  Then I added the final two legs, cleaned-up a wee bit and got this:


Not bad for a first attempt, don't you think?  Well, at the very least I have impressed myself.  I can see what needs changed and obviously there's still a lot to be added, but for a generic attempt at a four-legged run cycle I am very happy with today's work.  

This run cycle is also going to be used for clean-up tests when it's finished.  I'm hoping to try and work out exactly how I want it done, and ensure I get the look that I want with my final frames.  All in good time though, I still need to add ears to this wee furball yet.  That's going to be all the fun.

x L

Monday, October 10, 2011

Character & Environment Test

Suba's been working her ass off on getting the background designs all worked out for the animation and she's hit on this FANTASTIC tree design for the cherry blossom in the park.  She's hit the nail on the head and it looks like we've pretty much got our final style all worked out!  I stole her tree off her earlier today and added my characters into the image to see how they're all working together, and I personally think it's looking lovely!  I turned it into a nice wee banner for our film blog, as the old one had become fairly irrelevant of late.

It's all slowly coming together! Yey! 

x L

Friday, October 7, 2011

Animatic with Dog & Colour

Had our peer review this past Monday (which I will update more on in another blog post soon) which we had been working our asses off to get some form of animatic ready for.  This is the animatic that we showed on the day.  Apologies in advance for the roughness of some of the boards.  The scribbles make sense to us, but not so much other people it seems.  This will rectified in due course.

Post peer review I added in some of the colour bleeding and fixed and finished the dog scenes:

More news to come soon so stay tuned! 

x L

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Life Drawing 06/10/11

A better day in life drawing!  Today's class was 'Pushing and Pulling from Different Angles' and we had the ever lovely Eddie, but he's put his back out apparently, so I think he really struggled with some of the sittings, poor man!  He was so good to still get up and give 100% for every pose, only faltering once (he had all his balance on the ball of his foot and his back arched backwards, which mustn't have been comfortable for him).  

Staying as far away from colour as I could I settled with a boring old graphite pencil, but I am very happy with my drawings this week.  So much more than last time!  Reinhard was on top form today too, he had a giggle at my first drawing as I only managed to complete two of the four fingers on Eddie's hand, making it look like he was rocking out.  Trust me, he wasn't, but I don't want to change it, it makes me smile now to look at.

Anyway, first three drawings were 10 minutes, the fourth 20 minutes, the next page of three were all 10 again, and the final drawing was 15.

x L

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

I've posted on a couple of occasions as to how much Steve Jobs has inspired and motivated me in my life to get to where I am today.  Sadly he passed away yesterday from an long-term battle with pancratic cancer.  The Apple website have up a touching tribute to their late CEO on the front page of their website, which I've put up here.  Another personal hero I will never get to meet or thank for their incredible influence on my life!  It's a sad day.

x L