Friday, 4 December 2009

Experimental Finished

Working on this project was very enjoyable to begin with as i had never done anything this experimental before on this course and it was fun to use different mediums than just using pencil and paper. It was also a nice change to animate to music instead of someone talking and it taught me a lot about timing and i liked the freedom we had with this project as we could do anything we wanted . I do feel howver that i wasn't as enthusiastic and into the project as much towards the end because of the other project. Which is a shame but felt i did a good job and the animation fits to the music really well which is what i was impressed at the most.

I have to say my favorite part of the animation is the beginning half till the orange wave that i made in pastel as this part worked best to the music and was really bright with the colours and stood out. I especially like the first section of the animation with the circles as it worked great to the music. The rest of the animation got too fast and i think this was because the music gets quicker at this point and i did want the animation to get quicker but feel it gets too busy though think it still works. The other problem is that the next pieces of animation aren't as bold in colour specially the two people jumping but that was because of the medium as chalk isn't really that bold in the first place. The next part that i feel doesn't stand out is the squares as the line is very thin and should have been thicker to be bolder. To improve the animation i would have changed these aspects and made sure that the whole of the animation works and not just part of it. This would also have been because i did the animation in sections which did work to begin with but felt i spent more time on it where towards the end it was more rushed and i think you can notice this at points. i don't really think the triangle part of the animation works as well because they just appear instead of like everything else in the animation gradually appearing which makes them smoother. I also feel that the second half of the animation was harder to animate as the music did get quicker and more complicated which is why i think the beginning works so well because there are only drums in the music. Apart from that i do feel the animation fits the music really well and i am pleased with the result though i think i could have improved it if i had more time.

From this project i have learnt i need to organise my time better and not leave parts of the animation till the last week as it shows in the final animation. Though i did lose interest in the project towards the end i did find it refreshing to do an experimental animation and use different mediums. I think it would be a good idea to mix different mediums in my future animations as it would make the animation more unique in style and interesting to watch. I think this project has shown me the importance of timing and i have learnt a lot from doing it so will take what i have learnt onto my future projects as i know i have problems with timing.

Sunday, 29 November 2009

11 second club finished

FINISHED!!!! =D this is the rendered animation. I did change the colour of the house cause thought it looked more depressing being grey. I am very happy with my outcome as it turned out better than i expected as i was starting to worry. I feel the character definately shows emotion which makes it come alive. I do feel however that it does still look robotic but i think thats because i made this animation by doing pose to pose instead of as i usually do which is straight through. But by doing pose to pose i feel i created stronger poses for my character which i wouldn't have been able to do the other way. I will definately aim to make my animations more fluid and less robotic and the only way i'll be able to do that is by PRACTISE!! =D which is definately what i have learnt from doing this project. I still feel i want to do character animation even though this project did stress me out a bit but i definately have an interest in it and feel like i've achieved something when i see the final animation.

The things that went well with this animation are:
  • The poses are strong
  • The timing between the poses i feel works well.
  • The camera angle of the animation is interesting to the audience and you can read the poses well from it.
  • The eyes i feel work well as i feel he blinks at the right time and it doesn't look unnatural.
Things that went badly:
  • movement still looks robotic and needs to be more fluid.
  • Lip sync is a bit out of time though i feel the second half of the lip sync works better but is probrably because you can see it clearer.
  • I found it hard to get the pupils of the eyes to move right and i am still not sure whether its right or not =/.
  • One of the things that makes the character look robotic is that some of his movements to different poses are all at the same time so i should have changed that and offset it more.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

11 second club continued

This was the next stage of my animation. After the feedback i tried changing the poses to make him look more trapped. But it ended up becoming to many poses when hes pushing the window and after the next feedback they suggested that he only pushed against the window once. At this stage i was really not happy with how the animation was going as it didn't look right to me at all. As i was unhappy i decided to start from scratch, keeping the poses that i felt worked but adjusting where i didn't think it worked. I started from scratch cause i found it hard to adjust the characters poses in the animation i already had as he would move where i didn't want him to and just ended confusing me more so starting from scratch was easier.

This is the animation that i ended up for my character before i went on to lip syncing. And i am alot happier with this than the animation before. I made the character lean back before he pushed against the window which i think made the movement more impactful as he leaned forward. It also adds a bit of anticipation before he leans forward and a pause for the audience to see his movements alot clearer.

Then it was onto lip syncing my animation. I haven't done lip syncing before so wasn't sure how well it would turn out but was happy with the results and actually really enjoyed lip syncing (mainly cause i found it amusing changing the characters facial expressions) Adding the lip sync and facial expressions i felt made the animation come to life, and i felt that now the audience would be able to tell that the character is unhappy and maybe slightly insane.

Experimental continued

Heres the next stage of my experimental animation. I think taking out the part with the flower turning improved that section. I'm really impressed with how this is working to the music as i was really worried that it wouldn't but am pleasantly surprised by the results. I do feel however that the line part in the animation where it waves needs improving as i don't feel it looks as good as the rest maybe the line needs to be thicker or with more colour to stand out which i will try. I'm also not sure whether the last part of my animation where the cat, lion cub and lion appear are maybe too quick so i may have to adjust this but feel that i need to add the next section to be able to tell whether it is too quick.

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Conversation project

Here are some more of the drawings i have done for the conversation project. I think i need to do some more experimenting with different mediums in my next drawings as i have gone back into my comfort zone of drawing with pencil.

11 second club rough animation

After showing my idea last monday they suggested that i needed to change the camera view. So i tried to think about the rule of thirds and set up a more effective camera angle.

I think this works alot better and the poses and silhouette of the poses will be more readable.

I then created a blockthrough of my animation. I tried to get the timing as good as possible for my key poses. However i feel the turn of the head at the end needs to end when he says cream and the arms need to be snappier.

I then went on to adding inbetweens in my animation and making the movements snappier. I tried adding sobbing to the character which i don't like at all because i feel it looks wrong and i need to redo it.

When i showed my progress on the monday they said that the pose where he has the hands in the air looks like he is praising something more than him feeling trapped. Which i didn't see and feel i need to go through my poses again to make the character feel more trapped and manic.


The next stage was to make the dope sheet for the music piece

From this dope sheet i then went on to draw some rough thumbnails of what i wanted in my animation and used the dope sheet to write down when i wanted things to happen.

This is what i have so far of my experimental animation. I've decided i wanted a kind of nature theme to it as thats what i thought of when i heard the music. I also want the same colour scheme throughout the animation. At the moment i have used foam, plasticine and pastel. I like the beginning part with the foam and circles as i think it works really well with the music and i was slightly worried about the lighting being inconsistant but i think it works because it emphasises the beat as it gets lighter when the circles appear. However i feel the next part of the animation with the flower doesn't work as well though i like the parts where it opens and closes and when the leaves grow out of the flower and then back in but im not sure about the spinning part. I may have to rethink this and edit that part out of the animation.

11 second club Idea

For the 11 second club animation i have decided to use the cacoon of horror sound clip as i thought it would be more challenging.

I started off by thinking up different scenarios that the character could be in and drew up rough storyboards for them.

I started by thinking of the obvious like the character could be in bed feeling ill. I didn't think this idea would work as its not very interesting.

I then thought i could have the character lying on a rug with the character looking down on him to make him look even more depressed and pathetic to the audience. The poses in this are more interesting but think the scenario is dull.

With this idea the character is drunk at a bar which i thought was fitting for the sound clip as he sounds like he is talking complete nonsense. Again i like the poses however i think this idea will be hard to get reference footage for unless the person is drunk themselves. I think animating a drunk character would be hard to as they are very unpredictable. Also i feel that if he were drunk his movements would have to be very sluggish and sway alot and i don't think i would be able to fit that in in 11 seconds =/. I will see how the reference footage looks and then decide.

The character in this scenario is shouting out of a window and then looking up into the sky when he says about eating the whip cream as if he's asking for forgiveness. I want the camera angle in this to be looking down on the character from above to make the audience sympathise with him as well as emphasising the fact that he's sad. I think having the character shouting out of a window is good as it emphasises the feeling of the character being trapped. I think the poses in this will work too as they are exagerated but i don't feel they are too exagerated.

I then went on to film reference footage for the bar and window idea.

This is the footage for the bar idea. And from this i decided i can't get good enough reference footage and theres not enough time to make the character look drunk.

This is the reference footage for the window idea. One is of me getting the acting right then i took some footage of my housemate acting it to get an idea of the angle.

I set up what the animation would look like in maya as well and used the dee rig for now as i didn't understand how to use the other rig =S. I feel that the majority of the poses are readable apart for the crying poses which may be a problem =/.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Experimental animation test

for my experimental animation i have decided after watching the youtube videos i want to just experiment with using different art materials and making it into a stop motion animation.

With this test which i hope works as rendering it was a nightmare!!! i tried using plasticine, pastels and water colours. i wanted to try and get them to flow into each other so i made the pastel wipe away the plasticine so i would have a clean piece of paper to go onto the watercolour. However i did fail as the lighting went wrong cause i did the watercolour at a different time so it became darker. Which i need to watch out for when im making my actual animation. With this test i was just seeing how they would work not worrying about the music for now though i can see how it would work with the music. I would like to experiment with more art materials before i get started with the actual thing and do more tests. And also check the size of the images im taking as the first load i did were extremely smaller in file size compared to the next load which is most likely why it took ages rendering and uploading. And why the quality is so bad cause i kept trying to make it smaller =S .

I really like the effect of the watercolour and how it spreads and i think where i made the plasticine create a wave looks effective and would work well with music. I think the pastel worked well to switch between different mediums as well. I could also in another test try drawing with pen ontop of the watercolour to see how that works and the pen should bleed with the water too.

Mood Change

For my mood change i decided i wanted to have my character laughing with someone and then having to wave goodbye then when they go he's all depressed. I started of by filming each of the actions for reference.

I tried to make my actions exaggerated but i think i can cross out acting as a career path. I found it very hard to try and laugh really exaggeratedly when there was nothing funny in the first place to react to. But hope it came across better in the animation i produced.

I enjoyed making this animation the most and i am really starting to like character animation though i feel i need lots of improvement. With this animation as i used video footage as reference and used it for timing my characters movement i found that they became too slow in the final play blast. Which i need to watch out for in the future and only use the video footage as reference and not take the timing straight from it and adjust it so that it looks better in the animation. I found that the actions needed to be snappier. I do feel the actions flow but that flow to much into each other as i found it hard to get the character to pause without him looking dead =S. I think i should have added more to the end of the animation to make him look depressed and not just have him sigh as it would make people feel more sympathy for him. I think i need to improve the key poses in my animation as well and i did try to get the character into the main poses first of all and then add the inbetweens but couldn't really get the hang of animating that way because i added actions on the way. But will definitely make a block through animation of all the key poses for the 11 second club animation as i think it would really help and make my animation look more effective.

Like i said before im really starting to enjoy and get interested in character animation and think i could see myself working in this area (though still very undecided!?) The reason why i like it is because you give the character life and its always different your never doing the same actions because every character is different in some aspect. I would really like to improve in this area and have decided that im going to do some short character animations in my own personal time to improve (when i get myself organized with the work i already have.) I think as well that if i make a character and animate him i will be more motivated to play around but im going to make that my aim in the christmas holidays (though will start now when i have time) as rigging, modeling and getting a good character idea in the first place takes some time (especially the idea part for me =S) in the mean time i will continue to animate the characters that we are using now.

Friday, 30 October 2009

Life drawing

In this session we did some drawings where we only looked at the model and not the paper which came out with some....interesting? results! and then some 30 second sketches!!! and this is where i take back my comment from last lesson about liking quick sketches me no like them no more haha!! think i need to practise quick sketches more cause i found it very hard to get the most important information like the line of action and the positioning of the legs and arms and overall just turned out very badly =S however i feel i am improving slightly with my longer sketches. Again hands + feet = PROBLEM!! but i feel i have improved with drawing the faces. The proportions i feel still need to be improved but are getting better. I feel my drawings are getting looser gradually as well. So hopefully i am improving even if only a little!? =S

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Experimental Animation

For the experimental project i decided i wanted to do something with paint or ink and drop it onto paper/card. I thought this would be a good idea as i could create smooth lines for calm music and splats for beats, so i thought this medium would give a wide range to what i could do. I also feel it would be fun and messy! =D I then went on to search for videos on youtube for examples of the style i want to try.

This was the first video i found and loved the technique of dropping ink into water mainly cause it looks pretty!!! and theres pretty shapes!! haha =) it also works really well to music. But someone did point out that its more film than animation (which i didn't really think of because i was too busy thinking PRETTY!) so not sure i could do it but maybe could blend it with a different idea. I do like the start of the film though where it just starts with splats which is more animation and the idea that i wanted to do.

Heres another video using the same technique. Still wanna try this even if i can't for the experimental animation cause it just looks so cool haha.

Then someone suggested to me to look at this music video, which im pretty sure was made on computer partly but i do like the idea of mirroring the animation and would like to include that in my piece.

This is an example of someone using paint on film. I like the use of colour and the start of the animation with just the lines moving across but i think it gets too busy from there on. But i like the idea of the coloured lines moving along and blending into each other and changing colour.

This video isn't very clear but its similar to what i want to do with the paint splats. I like the idea of reversing the effect as well so you could do it backwards so you start with the splats and end up with a blank page. I like how you see the progression as well.

This was created by adding coloured ink to oil. I think its stop motion because you don't see the person blowing into it, though think it could be created this way even if it wasn't. I think this would work well to music as well. I like how the colours expand gradually.

This is is someone using ink on wet paper and shows how you can use ink to show lines as well as just splats. I like how the lines gradually grow across the page.

I thought this stop motion was amusing but i mainly liked the painting part because you saw the paint brush doing the work (without a hand) which i thought was a clever idea and thought i could add that to my animation as well.

This is paint on glass and i think its a really effective technique. I like the parts where they wash the paint away as i feel that looks the most effective.

Advanced Maya

These are the images i produced after the lesson last week about "image based lighting" HDRI images. I played around with using different images from Paul Debevec's site. I prefer the lighter image because it is clearer. I found it really interesting doing this task because i like how the image and the light reflects in the spheres. I also think this is very useful to know how to do because i think i could make my final render images of my future animations look alot more interesting and better quality. And as you can see i was in a christmassy mood when i did this =D

Week 3

The week of the lift woooo!!!

Before i started producing my animation me and jenny recorded our actions so that we could get the timing better, which was very amusing as we had to make the sound effects of lifting a box to be able to act it out right.

I do have a slight problem with using the way i lift a box as a reference as i don't feel i lift a heavy box properly in the first place =S.

I was still undecided on whether i wanted to do 2d or 3d but when i started making the lift in 2d my decision was very easy because it was terrible!! I wanted to draw it on the computer instead of on paper however i haven't really got the hang of drawing on flash because its not the same as drawing with a pencil. So i tried drawing the frames on corel painter with my pen tablet. I wanted to get a rough idea whether this would work in the first place so i decided to just draw the first part of my animation where he rubs his hands together. This is how it turned out.

As you can see the size of the box shrinks as you watch the animation also the person changes size. I think this is because i was worried about the time i had to produce it and i rushed so it looked really bad, and also because i found drawing on the computer harder than it was on paper. So i decided to make my lift animation in 3d as i thought i would produce a better quality animation.

This is the 3d animation that i produced

I enjoyed making this animation in 3d more than the walk cycle as i could put more character into the animation. However i did find some problems with animating the character itself near the end of the animation. When i moved part of his spine other parts of his body would move that i didn't want it to even though i keyed those parts beforehand. So i ended up just moving the hips neck and shoulders. Because of this i couldn't get as good of a bend in my character when he picked up the crate. I felt that the preparation and anticipation of the lift was good and felt that it gave him character. But when it got to the actual lift itself it went wrong, as if someone actually lifted an object like that they would fall straight forward because his center of gravity is wrong. I did try improving this as in my animation i moved his feet forward and back to improve his center of gravity but didn't move them enough.

The feedback i got from kathy this week was that she wanted to see more drawings that show how people lean and how that effects their body language. These are the images that i produced this week. I took the idea that kathy gave about drawing from films which i quite enjoyed though found it hard to find scenes in films where there are two people interacting with each other instead of over the shoulder shots! which are mainly used. I mainly drew with using pen and pencil this week which i thought looked quite effective. I tried more simple drawings without facial expressions to see if i could get the persons character across without.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Week 2

Week two and its the return of the walk cycle!!

i want to try and make my character animation in 2d for a change but im gunna make the walk in 3d also just so i get back into animating and also if 2d fails i can use 3d =)

I started off doing my 2d walk cycle as i thought it would take the longest and i was reminded of a very important lesson that apparently i forgot on my first attempt which is.......NUMBER DRAWINGS!!! and the result was i got very confused and decided to start over lesson well learned!! (hopefully) so onto the second attempt.

the arms in this walk are way to flicky and need to be more fluid in movement also the arms and legs are moving slightly too quick so i will go back to my drawings and add some more inbetween drawings for my third attempt

The movement in this walk is a lot more fluid though now i feel i have gone to the other extreme and have made the walk too slow.

I then tried increasing the frame rate to make it faster but it made the movement jerky and ended up handing in my third attempt as i ran out of time. another lesson i learned make sure you make enough time to make your 2d animation especially if it goes wrong. I should have taken out some drawings to make the movement faster but i liked how fluid it was and didn't want it to turn out jerky =/ On my next task i will deffinately film and time my movements to make sure i get it right.

On to 3d and as i took more time on the 2d than i expected it did become a little rushed and have decided for my next task to just focus on one to get a better result.

The feet are very bad in this animation i feel as they became very slappy which i should have changed. I also don't feel i got as fluid a motion as i did with the 2d and he looks very robotic =/ The arms movement is wrong as well as they look like they hit a wall. I do like the shoulder movements in this animation though and i like how the head sways as he walks. I think i got the timing better in the 3d than in the 2d however i still feel that it isn't right but think that is because the animation looks so robotic.

After doing this task i am torn between 2d and 3d as with 2d i find drawing the animation can become tedious at times especially when you get things wrong and have to start over. However I feel a lot happier when i see the final result because i feel i put more work into it and its more exciting to watch cause you don't see it move till the end when you put the images together unlike with 3d. But i prefer the making part of 3d animation which is probrably because it is faster and easier to adjust, but don't feel as excited when i see the end thing.

Went to life drawing this week which was good to get back into and we started off with some quick sketches which i actually enjoy more now than the longer sketches.

The proportions of these drawings i feel are very bad like the arms being too long or the legs too short though i think i drew the basic actions well. The weighting isn't too bad either.

We then draw a longer sketch

The proportions again i feel could be better like his arms are too thin (bad drawing day). Though i do quite like the face in this drawing though it looks nothing like the model as he looks slightly italian haha. As usual need to improve hands and feet.

We then went on to do something different where we drew on each others drawings and the result of mine was this

I thought it turned out quite good which i think is because you can see all the lines where people adjusted it which looks quite effective. I also liked kat's way of drawing with charcoal and pencil and will have to try that out with my own drawings.

From my session with kathy this week i was told to be more experimental so i used white pencil on black paper, chalk and charcoals for a change and these are the drawings for this week.

I found using the charcoal and chalks a lot more enjoyable and liked having more colour in my drawings so think im going to draw more in colour.