Saturday, January 26, 2008

Banjo Animation

Hey guys,

Here's the animation I mentioned a few days ago. I've cleaned it up and put it all together. Please know that I am not completely responsible for the animation we were given the keys and breakdowns and had to inbetween the shot. I learned a whole lot and am pretty pleased with how it turned out.


video

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Storyboards

Hey guys,

Here's a look at the rough storyboards for the first third of my senior project at SCAD. The story's about a recent germaphobic squirrel named Larry. Larry's wife died of pneumonia and he's been terrified of germs ever since. One night a thief breaks into his house and steals all of his wife's things. Larry chases the thief outside but gets there in time to see his wife's wedding ring fall from the thief's sack and into the surrounding bog. Larry goes through an intense period of inner conflict before finally going after the ring. Once he retrieves it he realizes his absurd fear almost cost him one of the most precious things in his life and resolves to never let his fear inhibit him again.

Wondering

Does anyone know what's going on at Disney? A couple of fellow AM alumni and I were told we would hear back from them about the talent development program after the holidays, and we haven't heard anything since then. We were told the program was supposed to start in January. I'm getting worried since January's almost over and there hasn't been any word from the studio, not even a rejection letter.

I heard back from Sony though. Everything sounds good and I might have a chance to get some awesome industry exp in the not too distant future. That's another reason why I'm concerned about Disney. I need to know whether or not I was accepted into their program so I'll know what to do in a few months.

Monday, January 21, 2008

On The Way

Hey guys,


I just wanted to let you know some new animation is on the way. I'm inbetweening a run cycle from Banjo The Woodpile Cat and will be posting it here when it's finished. I've gotten everything done but Gary told us not to clean it up until he approves it. Once I get his approval and finalize it you can be sure it'll be posted here. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Limitations

Hey guys,

I realized something unfortunate yesterday. I had a really clear and funny idea for my senior project at SCAD. It essentially was about a vain handler and her champion show dog. The dog dies during the final best in show judging and the handler is forced to try to convince the judge it's still alive as he makes his final rounds. Everyone I told the story to has enjoyed it and I really want to do it for my project. Unfortunately I realized I can't draw old characters and I can't draw adults. It's very aggravating since I know what I want the characters to look like but for some reason I can't put them down on paper.

My friend (who finished her senior project last term) advised that I do something else. She stressed the importance of really liking your character(s) since you'll be working with them for a long time. Senior project is not the place to learn how to draw people and an old dog. She said I'd struggle with the drawings and end up hating my film. As much as I like my concept I have to agree with her completely. I know I'd have more fun animating something with strictly animal or creature characters in it since that's what I enjoy to draw. I think that enjoyment will be reflected in my work.

Now the problem is coming up with a new non cliche idea. I want to keep it as simple as possible, with one character and an object. The trouble is, all the concepts I've come up with that fit that description have been boring. Fortunately, my concept development teacher said something that sparked an idea. She was talking about phobias and mentioned the fear of germs. That got me thinking, "what if there was a character who was terrified of germs/getting dirty and was forced to get really messy to reach his goal?". I'm brainstorming possibilities for this concept now and I like where things are going. The idea is simple and will allow me to do some pretty nice cartoony animation for when the character freaks out about getting dirty.

I'll see my friend in Gary's class in an hour and will talk to her about my new concept. Hopefully we'll be able to come up with an entertaining story between the two of us.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Joined

Hey guys,

I finally joined one of those online communities. A recruiter from Sony invited me to join LinkedIn a few weeks ago. If any of you have a LinkedIn page, please feel free to contact me so I can add you to my network!

View Jocelyn Cofer's profile on LinkedIn

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Banjo

Hey guys,

Here are the drawings I did of Banjo the Woodpile Cat in class yesterday. Gary Goldman gave us plenty of copies of Banjo model sheets to use as reference. I think I'm getting better at drawing the character. The main thing I have trouble with is getting the space between his eyes right. My characters don't have that much space there so I'm unused to drawing the eyes so far apart. His body is easy though, thanks to the fact that I've studied and practiced drawing feline anatomy. I think the most accurate one is the bottom right drawing on the last page.


  

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Gary Goldman

Hey guys,

I'm about to go to my Gary Goldman classes for the second time this week and I am really excited. Monday's class was amazing and we didn't even do anything, lol. In the advanced 2d animation class we'll be animating different shots from Banjo the Woodpile Cat! I think we'll be given our shot assignment(s) today along with the original model sheets to use as reference. From looking at the syllabus it seems like we'll be working on our one shot for the entire 10 week period. That's really awesome since I've always wanted a chance to animate a shot in 2d from thumbnails to a completely finished/cleaned up shot.

I also feel a little better about my speed since Goldman said is usually takes 30-45 min to draw a character on model at Disney. My other Goldman class is 2d Animation Production, which focuses on teaching us all about how studios work and everything that goes into making a feature film. He gave us a list of 57 steps that studios go through for creating a film. I had a general idea of how the production pipeline works thanks to the guys at AnimationMentor, but I had no idea there were that many steps involved in the process. Plus I've never had anyone to talk to about how a 2d studio works until now.

I am extremely excited about both of the Goldman classes and can't wait to get started on his assignments. I've read blogs from CalArts students talking about how amazing it is to have masters like Glen Keane and James Baxter looking over their work and drawing over their keys, and now I can finally experience that for myself. I seriously can't wait! Goldman told us teaching animation is really an over the shoulder process and I completely agree with him. There's nothing like having a master animator go over your work in real time. I've imagined that's how it was back in the early days at Disney and based on what Goldman said it sounds like I was right.

He talked about how he had worked under Eric Larson and Ollie Johnston. He spoke about Milt Khal's confidence and extreme level of draftsmanship and skill as an animator. Man, I can only dream of working under animators as great as they were and having them actually sit down with me and help me with a shot. Simply looking over their shoulder as they animate would provide a goldmine of knowledge.

I hate to end this chat abruptly but it's time for me to head over to room 321 so I can bask in the glory that is Gary Goldman. =D

Monday, January 07, 2008

Here Comes Another Short Film

Hey guys,

Today is the first day of class for the winter 08 quarter here at SCAD. So far it looks like I'll be having a busy but fun time. I'm in concept development class right now for my senior film and I already have a solid idea for what i want to do. The only thing is I'm having a hard time deciding what medium I'm going to animate with. I've already decided to do a 2d piece because the story is set at a dog show. I really don't want to have to build a stadium, props, a crowd, dogs, and their handlers in 3d since I suck at modeling and I'm even worse at rigging. I also have a specific look in mind for my characters which I know I personally can't pull off in 3d.

Anyway, I can't decide whether or not I should animate the good old fashioned paper and pencil way or if I should spend $300 on a copy of windows xp to put onto my mac so I can use Mirage. Both have their pro's and cons. Animating in Mirage is much faster than the traditional way because I don't have to waste time capturing drawings. Back in animation 1 I spent over an hour capturing drawings while working on my final project. Having an undo function and instant playback are also wonderful benefits of using the computer.

On the other hand, I still feel like I can draw better on paper than with the tablet. I know I have a harder time staying on model/maintaining my volumes when I animate on the computer. I also wanted to have the Sword In The Stone/Jungle Book/101 Dalmatians "scruffy lines" look and I'm not really sure how well that would work if I animated in Mirage. I plan on working on my senior project over the summer but I don't have access to a capture station at home. I'd have to scan each drawing in which will slow down my workflow significantly. Plus my scanner isn't large enough to get and entire sheet of animation bond onto it's bed.

As much as I enjoy working the traditional pencil and paper way, it looks like working directly in the computer is the most efficient method to use.