Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Reworking My Website

Hey guys,

I'm going to adjust my portfolio website. I'm going to get rid of the list of updates and just replace is with my demo reel. That way my reel will be the first thing visitors see. I'd also like to make my website more compact and appealing but I don't have time to do all of that at this point. In the spring I'll be taking Animation Portfolio and a website is one of the projects in the class. I'll work on redesigning my website then.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Halfway There!

I can't believe I have rough animation for half of my film already. I really hope this pace continues!
Truly knowing who your character is really allows you to work fast! Lol, it took me the entire winter break to get to know my character and now I'm finally able to animate quickly and (hopefully) with character. =D

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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Another Quick Layout

Rough layout for today's scene. I've decided to go with my new idea for the orange bits in my previous post. I think adding the element of character will be worth the time spent redoing that middle section.



Now that I've used tires and a pipe with wires as framing devices, I'll have to go back and add them to the scene one layout for continuity.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Progression Reel Update

I've added some new scenes to my senior project progression reel to see how everything looks together. I'm really uncertain about the tvp scenes (the orange ones). A couple of weeks ago I rethumbnailed most of my project and the orange scenes were done before that. They dont have any character to them and just look like a cat trying to pull itself out of the door. The bit I thumbnailed to replace this has more character to it. I'm not sure how long it will be though. I do know the new idea condenses those three shots into one, which is good. I'm just not sure if I should try to animate the new idea or if I should just leave what I have for now and move on. It sucks though because I dont like the orange scenes anymore.

Plus, SCAD doesn't have tvp so I'd have to lug my computer back and forth to Monty to work on those scenes, whereas the black scenes were done in my new version of Flipbook. I know they were talking about replacing Flipbook with ToonBoom last quarter but hopefully that hasn't happened yet.


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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Wow

Could it be? Animation that I actually like that I produced with a tablet?!?!?!?!? What's this, an entire scene roughed out in one day?!?!?!?? This is unheard of!!!!!!! Lol, after an entire winter "vacation" of struggle and strife, I've finally got a scene for my senior project that I actually like. I don't know what happened but I hope it continues so I can get the rest of the film done! =D


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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Big Update

Hey guys,

I think Bolt's been out long enough for it to be ok for me to post this. Here's the walk cycle I did while I was at Disney.


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I also have access to my scanner again! Here's part one of all the drawings I've done over the break. There will be much more to come in the near future.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Scene 04 Rough

Here's a really rough version of scene 04 from Cat Flap. I've found that one problem that I keep falling into with doing this digitally is adding more and more drawings before I time everything out. More often than not, this results in soft, squishy animation. I've tried to get rid of that here, but I still don't think the pull has as much force behind it as it could. At the same time, I don't want this to be her hardest pull since, she isn't expending all of her effort yet. That will happen once the garage door starts going up. Then she'll be trying as hard as physically possible to escape from the cat flap.

As usual, all comments and crits are greatly appreciated! I hate working on this alone at home since there's a huge lack of feedback. I miss my professor and mentors. =(


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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

A Struggle...

That is what trying to animate my senior project digitally has been so far. I feel like I don't have nearly as much control drawing wise using a tablet. I've drawn thumbnails of exactly what I want in my sketchbook in a mater of minutes, while I spend hours trying to redraw the same thing in Mirage. It's really aggravating since I know what I want, I just cant seem to draw it unless I'm using the good old paper and pencil. I've asked for a cintiq for Christmas since I figured it would help me significantly, but it doesn't look like that will happen. I would really like to just animate traditionally, but I don't have a way to capture my work to see how things are going.

I'm really having a hard time with this. I'm hoping it'll get better if I keep trying to push forward. It's really upsetting though. I feel like I would be much farther along by now if I were animating traditionally or in 3d, but neither of those are options now. =(

Friday, November 28, 2008

Outside Layout

Hey guys,

Here's a look at the outside the garage door layout for my senior project. I really like the version with noise since it gets rid of the preistine digital feel of the image. I want everything to be kept rough and loose since that's how I always draw and feel like it represents me as the result. Originally, I wanted to color everything with colored pencils but I think the image with noise maintains the rough look without the time consuming colored pencil process. What do you guys think?
Normal:



With Noise:

The version with noise also reminds me of 101 Dalmations for some reason...

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Challenging

Hey guys,

Here's the rough animation that I did today. I was having a pretty frustrating time with this. I'm still reacquainting myself with drawing/animating via a tablet since I've been working traditionally for over a year now. I still greatly prefer it to digital 2d but right now I don't have a choice since I'm no longer at SCAD. Not having to capture my work before being able to watch it speeds things up significantly though.

Anyway, on to my main issue of the day. I have pages of sketches and thumbnails in my sketchbook but I'm still unsure of whether or not my scene is being done properly. I need the cat to step through the cat flap and take a few steps before being stopped by his fat. The problem is, I have no idea how many steps he can/should take before getting stopped. I also feel like the overshoot for that part can be pushed but each time I redraw it, it ends up being too much. I'll continue trying to work this issue out. In the meantime, any comments, crits, and or ideas on solving this problem are greatly appreciated!


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Monday, November 24, 2008

Quick Update

Here's one of the rough layouts for my new senior project idea, Cat Flap. I think I'll clean it up during senior II (which is clean-up and color) and move forward into thumbnailing my scene, since I don't have much time.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

In A Hurry

Here's a kuzco update. This is due on Monday, so I highly doubt it'll be nearly as finished as piglet. I think I'll try to polish up the Tibo scene the most since I like his acting. Right now Kuzco needs a lot of work. I think he rotates his torso too much when he says "yeah" but I'm not sure if I'll have time to change it.


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Sunday, November 09, 2008

It's Done!

There are still a few tweaks that I would like to make, but I really need to move on. I'm really happy with the scene regardless though. =D


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Saturday, November 08, 2008

98% There

It's almost done! I just have to fix his ears on "toilet", add a blink after "hey" and finish inbetweening "at the" and "store". I'm really happy that I continued to work on this even though it was due weeks ago. I'll be resubmitting Piglet on Monday with a 200% improvement over the original. Once I'm finished, I'll upload a small progression of the scene from start to finish. I looked at a couple of older versions of this and was surprised at how far the scene has come. Piglet will definitely be on my demo reel.



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Yesterday's Life Drawings



Thursday, November 06, 2008

Working Out the Kinks

I'd like to say I'll have this finished by the end of the day tomorrow, but I highly doubt that would be true. I have to go to the open model session as well as run a bunch of errands relating to graduation. I don't know if I'll have very much time to work on this, but I'll do my best to try as I'd like to be finished within the next day or so. It's turning out to be a nice scene and I'd like to put it on my demo reel. To do that I'll have to make sure it's as perfect as possible though.


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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Almost There

Hey guys,

Here's a piglet update. I'm working on his eyebrows now, trying to make the changes in his expression read better. I think the brows can come down faster before he starts to say "where". I also need to animate/fix his ears and decide what I'm going to do about "at the" and "store". It seem like "at the" works when the dialogue is played, but when the sound is off it looks like that section should be toned down. I'm still trying to work out my spacing on the transition from toilet to store. I'm not sure how I feel about it at the moment.


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Here's a quick look at my next assignment. I dont have very much yet, but hopefully its enough to give people an idea of what I want. I'm trying to be really rough this time around. Last week, my prof. said you should be able to get a rough pass of a scene done in an afternoon. I'd like to have a really nice rough version of this scene by Monday. That way I'll be able to spend the rest of the time working on drawing the characters on model.


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Right now I'm really leaning towards animating my senior project really rough digitally and then printing out the frames and drawing them on model traditionally. This should allow me to actually animate my film at home without having to worry about how I'm going to capture my scene every so often. My goal is to return to SCAD in the winter with at least some of my film on model. I've decided to go for a rough colored pencil look for the final film, so I wont need a bunch of clean lines. Once everything's on model, I'll go over each frame with colored pencil to finish it off. At least, that's the plan. Time constraints my force me to just paint bucket everything in Photoshop. Then again, that would require clean, smooth linework...

I guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Revamped Rough Animatic

Hey guys,

I've been thinking about my senior project and I've decided that I'm not sold on my Morning Stretch idea. I like the concept of a cat getting stuck on a garage door, but I don't think Morning Stretch was the best execution. In anthropology class I thought, what if a cat gets stuck going through the garage door? That way we can see his face rather than his back the entire time. I threw together a rough animatic and I like the new version 100% more than Morning Stretch.

My only problem is, I wanted the cat to respond to the fact that the garage door is about to open before it actually does. That way he'll already be struggling to escape as it starts to life him. My other problem is the fact that the garage door sound starts a bit before the cat actually starts to go up. Once I figure out what tips the cat off on what's about to happen, I imagine I'll be able to just move the garage door sound back to when he starts to lift from the ground.

Does anyone have any ideas of what the cat can respond to that will cause him to struggle desperately in preparation for the door to open?


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Friday, October 31, 2008

On Monday I Have an Interview With:



Last week, I submitted my demo reel for Blizzards visit to SCAD. I'm applying for their internship since I'm still in school. I'm not sure if I'm actually eligible for it anymore since I wont be returning to SCAD next year. We'll see what happens.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

This Little Pig...

It's getting there!


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Monday, October 27, 2008

The Next Level

Hey guys,

Sorry for the lack of Piglet updates. I'm reworking the entire scene to incorporate what I've learned last Wed. It's taken me all weekend but I finally think I've got a solid handle on how to (hopefully) use squash and stretch on the face successfully. I understand the principle and the concept behind it and I can see how it's used . I'm just having trouble applying it to my scene. I think it's because I'm not used to doing so much at one time. In 3d, squash and stretch is something that I add towards the very end, but now I have to think of how I can use it (along with everything else that's going on) as I draw each frame.

Another thing I'm working on improving is drawing really rough. My prof. told me when he was pressed for time, Glen Keane had a scene of the Beast approved which was little more than dotted eyes and a squiggly line for the mouth. I've also seen how rough some of the animators at Disney work from looking at their scenes from Princess and the Frog. The thing I'm struggling with is drawing that rough while still maintaining volume. I imagine that's something that will improve with time and practice.

I wanted to have my Piglet scene finished enough to put on my demo reel for Blizzard, but the deadline for those is Friday and I know I wont be able to have Piglet 100% finished, completely on model, and somewhat cleaned up by then. I'm wary of putting a rough scene on my reel since all of the 2d reels that I've seen have had the characters fully on model and cleaned up. I wish I could put my Bolt work on my reel, but I have to wait until the film comes out first.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Today I learned...

Man, animating a character doing nothing is very hard! Everything I did today messed up my piglet scene. I was so afraid of my scene looking "posey" that I kept trying to over complicate/add small things that weren't in my original performance. I told my prof. I felt like I had to add small recoils and more opposite action in an effort to keep him alive. I told him I didn't have this problem with my Moley soup scene since the character was always doing something, whereas in my current scene Piglet is just relaxing on some bleachers.

My prof. laughed and said "animating a character doing nothing is hard isn't it?". He told me I was on the right track and that it should just be a series of simple arcs rather than a bunch of elaborite action. After class I had a long chat with my prof. and after an awesome demonstration, I feel like I should be back on track. My prof. liked my version from the other day, so I'm going to return to it and continue from there.

I'm going to try to loosen up Piglet's face throughout the scene as I go along. During my prof.'s demo I realised he goes about animating a bit more straight ahead than I do. I think this is why I was having so much difficulty creating a nice organic feel to the face. I'm going to try out his working method tomorow and see how things go.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Update

Here's an update on my piglet scene. I still have quite a bit of work to do before I turn it in on Wed...


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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Piglet Scene

I just realized I posted my golden poses pass on my Piglet scene on the wrong blog. As the result the golden pose pass and yesterday's pass will be uploaded at the same time.


Golden Poses

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Yesteday's Pass


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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"Final" Moley Scene

Alrighty, here's what I turned in to class last week. I finally finished redrawing everything with the (hopefully) correct volumes. I'm going to make sure the first frame of my piglet scene will be 100% on model so I wont have the same problem. I could have inbetweened a lot of this if I hadn't spent the final week redrawing everything to match the first frame. There a lot of things that need to be broken down more and I have pages of things to tweak/fix.


I'd like to finish this and resubmit it, but I dont know if that'll happen. I still need to work on my senior project in addition to this new piglet scene.


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Monday, October 13, 2008

Starting A New Scene

Hey guys,

I've started preparing for our new assignment in 2d character II class. We'll be animating a dialogue scene with Piglet. Thankfully the clip is short and is about 125 frames long, which is much better than my 400+ frame soup scene. Anyway, here are the thumbnails that I've done for the piglet scene and a few drawings from the model sheet that my prof. gave out.



I'll save the most recent version of my Moley soup scene after class and will upload it once I get back.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Really Old Work From Last Year

Hey guys,

I was preparing to burn my work from each year at SCAD onto separate DVDs when I came across my folder of work from my 2d character class. I don't remember posting it before and I think it was because it's really unfinished and doesn't flow together very well. In my usual fashion, I over complicated all of my assignments from that class to the point of not being able to finish. I would say I've gotte better at that, but my Mole assignment is 28 feet long when the assignment said it should be at least 7 feet, lol.

Anyway, I've decided to post my old 2d character work anyway, since there are tiny bits of the piece that I like.


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Saturday, October 04, 2008

Break it Down

I've added a few more breakdowns to the scene to see how everything is working. I have a long list of things to adjust and I'm going to rework the timing on some of the arm movements to offset them from the main action a bit more. I wanted to make the swallow more subtle but I was having trouble drawing a convincing squash pose without reversing the spine. I'll talk to my prof. about that on Monday.


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Thursday, October 02, 2008

Much Better

Hey guys,

Here's an update on my soup test. It's over 100 frames longer than the previous version but the acting is much better. My prof. and I really like it and I was told to just get as far as I can by Wed. I wish I had known how rough I could have drawn everything though. On Monday my prof. showed us some Andreas Deja examples from Hercules and told us to draw loose like that. I knew the varying degrees of rough that the guys at Disney work, but my mentor wanted me to work on keeping the main volumes in my roughs. Since I was used to working that way that's what I had been doing throughout this project. Now that I know how rough my prof. wants us to work, things will go much faster.

I'm just worried about when it's time to start tyingdown my drawings. I know I have volume issues gallore and am expecting to have to spend quite a bit of time fixing them. My prof. wants me to tiedown my main keys and some breakdowns to make sure the acting is clear. He said the inbetweens can get rough as long as they maintain the proper volume.

I'm really enjoying this assignment and I'm learning a lot. Now I know a better workflow for me may be to blast through the scene working super rough and getting all of the action in there working and reading. Then I ca spend the rest of the time working on volume issues and tyingdown the character.


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Monday, September 29, 2008

In Need of Feedback

Hey guys,

My soup scene is getting way too long. The full version is well over 400 frames now, so if I'm going to be able to finish this scene I'm going to have to start cutting. I've already cut out the part where the Mole looks around. My next question is does the scene still work/read if I cut out the shudder at the end? I've uploaded a version with and without the shudder for everyone to see. Which one do you guys thinks works better?

The point of the scene is for the Mole to not like the soup he's just tasted but not want to let the nearby chef know he doesn't like it.


Whole Version
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Cut Version



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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Update

I had to redraw a lot of my previous poses because of volume issues. Unfortunately, the new version of the poses don't feel as good as the originals. I've still got a lot of work to do...


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Friday, September 26, 2008

Double Time

Hey guys,

Here's an update on the two projects I'm working on right now. The cat scene is for my senior project and the soup scene is for 2d character animation II. I must say that I'm enjoying the soup scene much more than my senior project. Both are very long and will require a ton of work to finish but the soup scene seems way more fun to do. I'm concerned about my senior project, so that might be why I'm not enjoying it as much. So far, what I have is 28 seconds long and it's just the first third of the film. The entire project was supposed to be 30 seconds total. I see I'm going to have to stop breaking things down and finish roughing in the rest of the film so I can get an idea of how long it will actually be.


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Saturday, September 20, 2008

First Third Blocking

Hey guys,

Here's what I have so far for the first third of my senior project. This was supposed to be the first 10 seconds but it's already grown to over 17 seconds (not including the sleep cycle). I'm not entirely sure what to do since there's supposed to be another bit to the scratching after the cat pulls down on the door. I was going to have him claw at it for a moment before he finally turns to leave. I feel like I should add that part since it's what cats actually do, even though it'll make this segment even longer. I'm not entirely sure though. I really need to keep this as simple as possible, but I still want to maintain proper feline behavior. What do you guys think?

Sorry about the weird jump after the sleep cycle. I captured the part separately from the rest and just realized the camera fielding is different. I'll correct this when I recapture the scene.


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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Thumbnails

Alrighty, here are the thumbnails I have so far. The ones in blue are for 2d character animation II and the ones in gray scale are for my senior project.


Senior Project Adjustment

Hey guys,

My senior project II professor likes my cat idea. He suggested having him scratch on something other than a chair to add more humor to the film. After much thought, I've decided to have the poor cat get stuck on a garage door. My professor started laughing as soon as I said that, so I guess that's a good idea. I have some thumbnails and will upload them when I get home after class. I also have some thumbnails for my first 2d character animation II project that I will upload as well. =D

Monday, September 15, 2008

New Rough Animatic

Hey guys,

I've changed my idea completely for my senior project after talking to some of the amazing guys at Disney. My new film will be about a kitten who gets his claw stuck in the chair that he's scratching on. It's about 30 seconds and is one shot, with one character. I'm not sure how much 2d animation I can do a week, but I know I can finish a 10 second 3d shot in two to three weeks so I'm pretty confidant that I can finish my new film, animation-wise. The thing I'm worried about is clean-up. It seems like the most efficient thing would be to hand over each bit of animation to clean-up as soon as it's finished, just like they do at Disney. I'm just not sure how much time my friend will have to dedicate to my project each week.

I'll work all of that out within the next few days. Anyway, here's my really rough animatic for my film.


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Friday, September 12, 2008

Bernini Sketches

Hey guys,

Here are the sketches that I did at the Bernini exhibit in Burbank...

Monday, August 25, 2008

Update

Hey guys,

Here's an update on my Jake pose test. I am learning a ton from doing this scene! This is my first time doing dialogue in 2d, so that alone is a huge lesson in itself. I just went through my Rescuers Down Under clips and drew a bunch of Jakes mouth shapes to use as reference. Right away I saw that I'm not pushing my shapes nearly enough. His fat cheeks hardly have any squash and stretch on them at all, which needs to change. I also noticed that both corners of Jakes mouth are usually indicated to some degree in the film.


Overall I think my scene feels really stiff. I need to go through and loosen him up. I'll make a few areas broader and I'll add more anticipations. I also need to do another arc pass on everything. His hips need work as well. They loose volume in a few places and they could use some more bounce. Jake's ears and hat need much more drag and overlap.


I tried to keep things subtle but all I've ended up doing is making Jake feel very rigid. The Jake in the film has quite a few flamboyant, showman moments and I don't feel like that's being captured in my scene. Needless to say, this wont be finished by our Thursday review but I'm going to keep working on it regardless. I'll continue to work on it once I get home up until it's finished. I'd like to make this a nice scene with an on model character. I've got quite a ways to go.


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Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Most Beautiful Place I've Ever Been To

Today my friends and fellow interns went to the Getty Museum to see the Bernini exhibit. I've been to every museum in Washington DC and none of them come anywhere close to the sheer beauty of the Getty Museum. For those who dont know, it's a white marble open air building with contemporary architecture that sits on top of a mountain in LA. You can see the city, the ocean and obviously the surrounding mountains from the balconies. I was in awe by how beautiful the place was. Everything was spotless and the greenery was trimmed immaculately. I felt like I was in a palace. When you visit LA, the Getty should definitely be on your list of places to see, it's amazing!

The Bernini exhibit was pretty cool. We all wished there had been more full figure sculptures, but we had fun anyway. I filled quite a few pages in my sketchbook with gesture drawings and drawings of some of the sculptures. I don't have my scanner here, so I'll have to post them when I get home. I can show you the pictures that I took of the area though.




Friday, August 22, 2008

At Disney I have learned...

that I know next to nothing about animation. My education from AM has been marvelous and I wouldn't be here without it, but yesterday I saw how little I know about real feature animation. Yesterday evening I was privileged enough to have Ruben Aquino (the supervising animator for Jake from Rescuers Down Under) look at my scene. He liked it and said the acting feels like Jake, which was great news for me since I was convinced that it was all wrong.

I asked him to take a look at my timing charts and thats when he pulled out his awesome knowledge. Ruben spoke about the extreme importance of breakdowns and spoke about how he treats them like keys. Originally, I thought breakdowns were the drawings that indicate how something will arc. Sure I knew about using them to create overlap and drag, but Ruben just took the breakdown to a whole new level. They really are just as important as your key drawings. He also pointed out how useful they are when determining the timing of an action. Ruben warned me not to get too set on the numbers I had given my drawings because they might change based on how much ease in/out each pose will need.

I figured that much, but I didn't know how important the breakdown was to determining this. I thought I had added a good amount of breakdowns but apparently not. Now I am able to go through the amazing Princess and the Frog pencil tests and pick out which drawings are keys and which are breakdowns, to try to get a feeling for just how many breakdown drawings an animator might use in a certain circumstance. Ruben also told me the faster the action, the more fluid the breakdown needs to be. He warned that a breakdown thats too fluid in a slower action will make the action feel "noodley".

Ruben also revolutionized the way I view timing charts. He likes to put his breakdowns in their own charts rather than having one chart from key A to key B. Instead he'll chart from key A to the breakdown and then from the breakdown to key B. This was great because I had been confused by the fact that some animators would chart from key A to key B and place the breakdown in the middle, even though the breakdown drawing isn't the middle drawing.

More on that later, class is starting up again.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Update

Hey guys,

Here's an update on my pose test. I'm going to start putting timing charts on the drawings and will begin inbetweening soon. I've adjusted the timing using the dialogue reading I received, so now I can also start adding the proper mouth shapes on each drawing. I also need to check the volume of Jakes legs and to track my arcs.



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Jake Dialogue Test

Right now I'm very pleased to be working on a 2d scene at Disney, and this time I can show my work to people. Here's my wip scene of Jake from the Rescuers Down Under. I need to finish the pose test today since this is my second to last week at Disney. As the result, I'm going to start drawing looser than what I have been. My mentor asked me to draw Jake the way I have, but for the sake of time I'm going to make it rougher. Once things are working I'll add more volumes like what I have now and then I'll show it for feedback.

I really want this to feel sincere and I'm not sure if that's happening yet. I want Jake to feel cool and confidant. I know cool characters are in control, so I wanted to keep Jakes movements minimal. They should be reduced mainly to head and small hand gestures. I'm not sure if his performance is sincere though, so any and all comments are greatly appreciated!


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