Monday, 30 November 2009

week quatro

above is my final animation with the lip sync, i managed to get most of the basic mouth shapes down easy enough it was putting the inbetween mouth shapes and for the key letters in, that was the tricky bit which took me a few days to nail. i had to step back quite a lot as i was going gaga looking at the screen, but i got the lip sync looking good and finalised a few body movements. the eyes and eyebrow which i actually did before the lip sync i really enjoyed as this was when i felt my character first felt he came alive, lucklyy as my character was a madman on whipcream who was incecently staring around. All in all i was happy with my animation and i got it done in good time, i just need to remember to continue to be methodical in my aproach to each pass and the parts of the body im animating. one small problem as i wanted to improve my animation more and more i ended up leaving it till the last day to render, the improvements which took to much time, i should have handed in the earlier version. in future i will make sure once im certain its all in good order i render in advance to make sure there are no delays. other than screwing up majorly on this account im actually really happy with my animation and would like to think it looked good.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

experimental testing.

here is my test for the first 5 seconds of animation with the sound to give an idea of the timing im aiming for with the movement to the music. bearing in mind this is my first time doing cutout and its very different from the 3d work im used to, and a lot harder in my opinion as you really have to take each movement very slow and doubling up photos was a pain to start as i didnt do it so i had to rename the copys on the computer.

Monday, 23 November 2009

11secondclub week tres

This is where i am up to currently, ive put in all the inbetweens and animated all the parts that needed to be animated. I took some time to get the folding of the arms looking right and the hands going down the back of the head, but i found the easiest way was to put in extra keyframes so the program knows what path you want it to follow when animating and then i just deleted the unnecessary inbetweens in the graph editor later. The timing of the rocking back and forth i edited in the timeline for the feet and waist and the timing for the back and arms i edited in the dope sheet for the part where he's rocking back and forth with his hands in front of his face at end because i had more keyframes towards the end so needed to be able to select and move more keyframes at once so it looked right. i still want to speed up and make snappier, the aniamtion of the arms folding at the start and make the finger wrap round arm better. I also want to have the character hold the pose where the hand are on the head and then quickly come down around the neck and then hold and then go into the nine cans pose with hands and fingers out, i will probably do this in the dope sheet as i will be able to move many points at once and see the effect easily, but this i think will be the hardest thing to do for me as im not great at moving many points in the dope sheet at once.

11secondclub week dos

in the second week i blocked out the keyposes of the aniamtion using the aniamtic and live action footage i took and also dope sheeting the sound file for lip syncing later in the animation but also to be able to write down at what frame roughly the key poses occure which was very helpful. Th ough as i had to do this using premier the frame rate wasnt exact but i was able to tweek it to how i thought it looked right quite well. and i also took into concideration that the live action footage wasnt gospel it was there as a guide for the timing of the animation of the keyposes which it work as quite well. below is the first pass (blocking of key poses) that i did with a few inbetweens technically as it would have looked very wierd without so technically the second pass.

more week uno

from this acting video i then drew out the keyposes into a animatic taking most of the poses i would need to concider for the block through in the following week.

I also used this to put the character into a few key poses i would be using. I found in doing these key poses and making a n animating it gave me a better understanding of the timing that would be required for each keypose. I then went on to pull the character into a few key poses which was a bit wierd as he wasrigged different from what i could see to the dee rig i had been previously using and i had forgotten about fk rigs and ik rigs which we had done in class but i missioned on with the new setup and got him into a few poses.

After this i then went on to add the scene layout which isnt much at the moment but then i dont need much more than a bed and a pillow and a tight room with some cans but thats not the focus at the moment the animation is what im being judged on, i will update and change this later if i get time and make a better looking bed and scene but for now this is what my scene layout looks like.


Ive been really busy working hard on my aniamtion and have had many ups and downs with stuff going wrong left right and centre but have finally got on top of the issuses i need to address and have now found the time to blog my progress on the project so far. ive been so busy i havent even had time to go surf this week bar one hr on sunday morning before animating again which george knows i find very hard, but so far despite the many hick ups its been fun animating this character, and hopefully when i get less hrs at work in the future i wont have my evening broken up with dominos work so will be able to do some character aniamtion on the side as it is fun. Anyways enough jabber, for the first week i we had to do a scene layout, acting the scene out in live action and character poses. I started by acting out many many different variations of what actions i could possibly act out while letting the sound file play on repeat this helped me get into the mood and get a feel for the character i was going to act and animate out. The main difficulty was overdramatising the actions which was kinda funny but felt a little wierd as i would never do that in real life, but in the end as you see i thought this concept up which was a crazed whipcream addicted house pototo rocking back and forth on his bed telling of his drama and i decided that would be ideal.

Friday, 20 November 2009

experimental animation

For my experimental, i started off by choosing my sound which was the ruta d sound clip as i like native music and in particular american tribes of all varieties they are very nice to stylize and easily recognisable. I decided to theme my animation around a totum pole and fireplace with a few characters. I collected a few research images to do drawings of to give me ideas for my character which are below. I then did a rough storyboard to plan out the timing of the animation with a roughly formed dope sheet. i made my characters so only the key body parts that needed to be animated where. they didnt have any colour as i decided i wanted to have a basic look to them with shadow using the light i had and drawing a slight shadow on them.

for the above character the drummer his legs are attached to the drums and cant move his top half of his body can move slightly and the head has full rotation and the arms can move up and down in the motion of tapping allowing the character to play the drums with out his arms wandering while im animating him.
for the above character the piper, his top half of his body ive allowed for rocking back and forth movement to the music, the lower half of his body is all one connected to the log he is sitting on as i felt it wasnt necessary to have any of the bottom half of him animated. his arms are in 2 parts allowing for retraction and extention of the arms holding the flute out to the totum pole and bring back to his lips to play and the head moves with the top part of the body as he has long hair which i didnt want to seperate from the body.
For the hand parts i literally drew round mine and placed them in a position so that i could pull the leaves back like it was my hands doing it with the thumb between the leave as they go back maybe.These are some of the parts for the totum pole pre cutting out and rigging.

To rig my characters i took dereks advice and used cotton string and masking tape to hold the moveable parts to each other and the non moveable parts. I did this for all 3 of my characters the 2 indian men and the totum pole but the hands and the leaves i moved independantly. Below is a few images of the way i made the rig for the totum pole which is the same way as for the other two characters.

Monday, 2 November 2009

additional thoughts on reading

From the 2 videos below you can see from the acting to the animation there is quite a bit of difference and exageration in the animating. I now realise that i probably needed more exageration in my acting to make things easier in animation. And from the seminar today im able to see this and take note for future reference

more videos



When I got a brief for task 3, I decided I was going to take a much more planned route in animating the dee rig character. Firstly I spent the entire evening acting out different emotional scenes of different changes in emotion and mood. The first one I went for was a guy lifting a liquid container and getting frustrated over not being able to lift it and then getting angry.I did not like this so I tried a guy screaming for joy after standing round in anticipation, I did not like this either so I tried someone waiting around and then going insane and I still didn't feel like i had captured two emotions. Then sitting on the side I saw my payslip from work, which when I had received I was majorly disappointed with an angry and so I thought this could make a good scene. So acted out me opening a letter and shaking it and screaming for joy and then realising that it's bad news and then suddenly freaking out. The second thing I did was to draw all the major keyframes by hand so I could get an understanding of the line of action I would need to use. And on some of these drawings i drew the main line of action and made sure that they were balanced poses. Thirdly when I first went to maya I took the key poses and every 10 frames put the character into these key poses and move them around accordingly to get the timing roughly right and also to make sure I had strong key poses, which I think I achieved quite well. I then went on to fill out the inbetweens and correct any translations and rotations that were odd. All this took quite a lot of time and I got quite frustrated with yet again making too many key frames, so i went back and sift out the unnecessary key frames. I had a bit of trouble getting their arms to independently yet in the right place at the right time when he first holds the paper up but I got a hang of it in the end. Even so the arms did look like they were glued together on the piece of paper, so i varied the timing of each arm slightly but i dont think it was enough. The anticipated pause of him reading the note in shock i believe was the right amount of time, but i had to fiddle around with the timing quite a bit first. Overall the stamping I felt very robotic matter how much I try to tweak the movements of each leg individually and the arms also a bit of a challenge to not have them looking robotic.Despite this i think the timing was okay the balance in the leg moving back and the stamping and as a result I think I achieved by most fluid animation so far with good lines of action and a good silhouette and I think it is believable as most people are able to tell what he's thinking and I think I've learned from this. I now just need to practice applying these principles some more. Lastly the shrug of the shoulders at the end I only put in to try and finish the piece nicely but I can see now that with this there is a little too much going on and for it to work there would need to be a greater pause on the shrugging and staring at the audience and acknowledging that they've been watching and that he thinks "so what" to the judgement of the audience, but as this would be a key moment in itself it would require anticipation also which i have not put in.



I quite enjoyed getting Dee to lift my big atlas ball, i was going for the whole sumo man pose when preparing to lift the weight, but didnt put enough enthasis on this. I did think the initial anticipation and the initial lifting of the weight were good of the character feeling the weight, but i think my lift tended to go down hill from there i started over keyframing parts again so i couldnt fix them very easily and i think this shows in the animation, which is something i will address when i get the character set working next time. I do however think the initial lift was quite good and the characters reactions were good in the back and the head and the eyes showing his strain lifting the atlas ball. Though from this point his waist and balance are not in alignment and you can clearly see that he is off balance for the size of the Atlas ball. I tried to correct this but due to over key framing of the arms and hands and also fingers so that they did not go into the ball I ended up having to fidget his hands in relation to the ball as it was. I realise now that a lot of my errors in this are due to not planning out the main keyframes for each body part at the particular keyframe. The second lift I couldn't get right due to the same problem as above with too many body rotations in the back and legs and arms. Also to note for future referene, I need to keep an eye all individual body parts us not moving key joints can make body appear as though it is nailed to the wall. E.g. The legs, the waist, head and back. When the character comes to dropping the ball, I think the speed of the ball was right but the character feels lifeless from this point on as he slowly lifts his arms in celebration. I think the timing of the arms lifting in celebration was right but they are too close together and give him a robotic feel and therefore could do with being a few frames apart to give that individual feel for each arm. These are things I'll try and take note of the future reference when animating with the rig or any other rig that matter.