Sunday, November 16, 2008

A.S.K. boxset

I'm getting a copy of Richard William's Animator's Survival Kit Animated!!!!
Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a lecture he had in San Francisco. He was incredibly entertaining and SUPER knowledgeable. I was really impressed by how blunt and honest he was, regardless of how sensitive the subject matter was (i.e., The Thief and the Cobbler). I have no doubt that this will be $800 well spent!

Polish, first pass

Here's the first pass at polishing the post jumping test. I'm not very satisfied with it, needs some more tlc. I see three HUGE areas that need to be hit. The head/neck is twitching from 30-65, and is also wobbling around a lot from 150-160. Also now that I look at it, there is no lead/follow in the 148-153. Also, Stewie feels like he hits a wall at 170.
This time around at polishing, I was trying to be more aware of what the splines are looking like, however I found it to be similar to juggling, there were sooooo many things to pay attention to at once!! This was the case for the head twitch at 30-65.
I really want to create a workflow for myself where I don't have to hammer keys on every frame. From what I recall, that can be harmful if motion blur is used (is that correct?), so I figure it would be a bad studio habit.
Right now, my plan is to use my dry erase to draw out what I want on the screen, and try to play with the curves until I get my drawings' effect. If anyone has a more effective or time efficient way of polishing this stuff, I would TOTALLY like to hear about it!! =)
So yeah, a second pass is on the way. Until then, enjoy!

Friday, November 14, 2008

207 new AM test!!!

We are starting the next test this week. I am starting to notice that I'm having more fun shooting reference nowadays. I shot over half a gig worth in the last two days...
Anywho, here's some of my favorites! I really want to do a test that is a little more interesting, story wise than my last one.

I don't know if I mentioned earlier, but my mentor for class2 is Dimos Vrysellas. He has the reputation of being hard to please. I like that about him a lot because he won't hold back when he critiques our work. He was trained as a traditional animator, so he likes to work pose to pose. I find his workflow to be quite organized and everything he has suggested has been really speeding up my own process. He is also the creator of tradigiTOOLS, a maya plugin. It has a lot of really useful features for animation. One that I cannot live without is the ability to change key ticks from red to green. Now I can FINALLY tell the difference between my keys and breakdowns in the timeline!! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Yeah... my bad, I've been on a sugar high for the last few days because of the discount Halloween candy everywhere.
Anyways, I'm in the process of making some changes to my jump test and switching Stewie over to splines. Stay tuned for a polished pass!!!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My Extra Day

That's right! I get a extra day at AM!! Apparently the staff is doing some maintenance to the website that absolutely cannot wait. So all the students have an extra day to submit their work.
As a result, I am I'm trying to really get into my keys and make sure things are arc'ing the way I want them to. This leads me to the dilemma I'm having. =)

I am worried that I may be oversimplifying some of my arcs. Mostly in the head/shoulders. I tracked the arcs of the upper body, and gave them smoother arcs, so it was not so distracting to the eye. But now I feel like I have lost some of the believability. I guess I am unsure when it is okay to ruin a nice arc to keep believable overlap and when it isn't, if that makes sense.

I was talking to another AMer about this issue, and he said it was a matter of how stylized/real I want the test to look. In the end, I guess that means this is a personal choice, but I would really like to know what you think anyways.

head/shoulder arc A and B (between 77-96)
head/shoulder arc C and D (between 96-120)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

AM progress report!

I need to do a better job with my blog I think...

Anywho, at the moment I am working on the blockingPlus for my current test. It is a timid Stewie (no arms yet) jumping across some posts. There is plenty I am still working on, but this is what the last playblast looked like.

Here is the first test from class2.

Here is the work from class1.