Saturday, February 25, 2006

Revision of "Olga" Animation

Well this revision was a long time in the making but I have finally been able to call it over! There comes a point where you just have to move on to focus on your current work at hand. This animation was hard for me to let go of since I really liked some of the poses/mood of it and didn't want to throw it away. This personality walk from a stopped position was our first assignment in Animation Mentor Class 2 - Body Mechanics. I ended up not being able to finish and polish it because we had to move on to other assignments at a pretty fast rate. I decided to revisit it this year and see if I could make any improvements. I want to start getting animations together for a reel, and I found that all of them need a lot of tweaking before I can show them. Next month it's "The Queen of Sheba" animation revisited. We'll see what I can do to fix that mess up with the limited spare time I have between my full time job and also working on other animations in my spare time. I have decided to only work on each revision for a month, after that whatever I have will be FINAL.

It's interesting to know that most of the people at my work don't put much stock into revising old animations and looking back. They think when your animation is done, it's DONE and you should immedietely move on to another animation when you are trying to learn. We had a meeting with John Ripa and he mentioned to never spend too many months on one animation because each of your animation tests should get sucessively better. Trying to continue to improve is always the goal of all this hard work. I am looking forward to getting these revisions behind me so I can look to the future.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Final GPT, moving on to 3D

OK, so here it is, my final grease pencil test before moving onto 3D. I am taking the big leap from the planning phase to actually posing out my 3D character. This is an especially hard step to take since there is somehow a feeling of safety in the planning phase, the feeling of, "I haven't screwed this one up yet" Lots of things can go wrong in the 3D world, I find more stuff goes wrong if I haven't put enough time in the planning and research phases. But it is time to move on.

I am also pretty scared since I am going to use one of the characters at work for this test, the rig setups are pretty complicated, like nothing I've ever worked with before since the only other rigs I worked on were from school. I am familiar enough with the rigs form my day to day work so hopefully it will go alright. Since my last semester at Animation Mentor, we had Bishop as our character, he was pretty simple and straightforward, he was really easy to use. Now all the rigs at work are of the "broken rig" variety, which is similar to ik, meaning you can move the head, torso, hips all independantly of eachother. This sounds great to me since I only use ik arms and have gotten pretty used to that system. I like having that control over every part of the body.

In class 3 at AM, Bishop had limited facial controls, a muppet mouth basically. The characters at work are full facial with a million sliders and manipulators, something which I feel slightly underprepared for. I had tried one lipsync test before about 4 years ago and nothing since then. So all last week at work I had been working on my lipsync skills. I read up on some documentation we had from Mark Austin which goes in depth on how to create believeable lip sync. And then I gave it a whirl for myself. I think it came out reletively alright for my first try with such a complicated character. Now I'm not as scared about going back in and adding more detail. I'll be ok thanks to the great help and feeback I get from my co-workers.

Harold Lloyd Falls

I've been researching pratt falls, notable Harold Lloyd. I needed to gather some reference of falls for my "I Promise" animation that I am planning out right now. I went to getty images and looked up Harold Llyod, I found some great stuff. (Thanks for the tip Dale!)

Monday, February 13, 2006

More GPT revisions

I got a little distracted this weekend with the beautiful weather and going to the beach. I didn't get as much done as I would have liked to. I did edit the audio the audio to add crickets in the beginning and throughout. This made the clip longer than I had wanted but I think it needed time in the beginning to get a general kid like attitude across. I also worked on some of the scared poses and made the praying poses less hidden and closed up so the audience can still see his face. I'm not sure if it is working, I think it still needs a lot of work before I can take it to 3D.

Monday, February 06, 2006

new reference and GPT revisions

"I Promise"

NEW Grease Pencil Test Revision

NEW reference of me acting silly

Thanks to the great advice I got from my former classmates, and at work from Jason, I was able to go back and retackle this shot. Jason had advised that I redo the reference to explore more terrified, praying poses. He aslo suggested the inward posture and rocking back and forth which I think is going to work well. I then reworked my GPT, keeping in mind all the staging problems from last week. I decided to go with a flying bug (thanks Albert!) since that would be easier for the audience to see enter and it wouldn't cause a problem with the placement of the campfire. I also had to edit the audio to add a small beat before the "aargh!!" so he has time to "see" the bug.

I think the poses at the beginning still need more work, my friend and co-worker Rebecca also just gave me some advice to have him look more "kid-like", perhaps having his foot up on the log. I am also not happy with the timing of the scared looks around, I feel like that needs more punch to it, to make him look more nervous. Rebecca suggested having him moving his eyes before he starts to move his head, almost like he is trying to remain very still to hear the noises. The ending scared jump part feels a little off to me still, the pose in the air and the landing poses aren't working for some reason. Hopefully I will get some good crits and be able to go back and revise this again.


This is blast from the past, my first assignment of Class 2, the incredibly hard Body Mechanics Class, this was from our "personality walk from a stopped position" assignment. I really messed up most of this assignment, especially the walk which I decided to cut out entirely. But I thought some of the beginning with the posing in the doorway could be salvaged. I really liked the persoanlity and mood of this piece so I decided to go back and start fixing the million mistakes in it. So far I have been cleaning up balance, the spine and foot placement. The legs are popping all over the place since I haven't gotten to that part yet, and the arms are a wreck, this was back when I was using FK arms, o the horror!! Well let me know what you think, I have more work to do on this for sure, but do you think it's worth saving?