We got told this week how we need to become better observers and focus on seeing rather than just looking at something. As we need to be more immersed in the how and why of the object we are observing, to be able to understand and create a high level and realistic animation.
- Open up quick time player to go to certain frames and understand the reference video in a deeper way.
- Use the sound of a bounce to understand its movement
- Do it for yourself have a play around with a physical object
What I need to do by the 16th of December:
- Check you have bar sheets for each animation you have done
- Make sure you have done these exercises in Maya
- Go through each of your animations and see which ones need redo-ing
- Get a feel for the armature. try and do a simple animation with them
- Put all your work into a clean arrangement make it accessible
The Ping Pong Ball and The Balloon
I found that the ping pong ball was easy to create as its very fast motion the only thing the made it seem fake was the fact it can’t be blurred like a realistic ping pong ball does when on camera as shown in the video below. A ping pong ball is really light so the bounces are very airy but also I found it hard to create the exact motion of a ping pong ball as I feel sound it a big part of its movement and a dead give away of the object. It was interesting to see how Johnny has extracted just the sound from a video to help him explain the bounce of the ball. I noticed that when i watch the videos i do really focus on the sound of the bounce to help me understand what type of movement and weight should be considered when making the animation.
I wish I hadn’t made it roll at the end as it does make it look fake because I didn’t present any type of atmosphere that would make the ping pong ball roll at the end of the video. When re-watching my work i do feel as though it would of been more effective to have a few more bounces at the end to show it really slowing down. But going back to the idea of sound once I saw how the sound was represented on Johnny’s Maya animation and it was clear that sound (even know it was correct) looks very wrong when looking at it from an animators perspective. It doesn’t look how it should in the tangents graph, having too many key frames and being to steep, not holding the motion in air at all. So I learnt that exaggeration is a very important aspect in my animations and animation in general, illustrating that I need to be more confident in my own observations. For example, though I did try to follow the video as best I could, when thinking back to my beach ball animation I see how the one where I made the ball go across the screen is easier and nicer to watch as I did follow the reference video in the way the ball falls but translated into my own work differently. OBSERVE, TRANSLATE, ANIMATE!
The Balloon animation looked simple but was actually very hard as it has to be precise and small movements each time because of how slow the balloon actually moves. I thought it was going well but the bounce of a balloon was really hard to do as it jumps and then slows prominently again. I will have to redo this animation as I had ran out of time by the time I got onto the balloon animation. Also after overhearing Joe go through balloon animations he said it would of looked more impressive if the balloon had been drifting slightly side to side to emphasize the fact its a balloon and relate it to how everyone has seen a balloon in cartoons as the always move in this way slowly to the ground, just be careful not to make it look like a leaf!
The Bowling Ball and The Beach Ball
These animations did become quite difficult as you really do have to think about the difference in weight on each ball movement. I started with the bowling ball exercise, after watching a reference video I thought it would be quite easier to convey the fact it was heavy.
After watching this video I noticed the fast drop at the start to emphasize the weight, and then the 3 small bounces as it quickly looses speed and power. The power of the Bowling ball is strong on the first drop but it does lose momentum fast because of the resistance/friction on the floor that it hits. I tried to make it look as heavy as possible but I just feel something looks wrong within the animation.
On the second try I felt as though it looked better. The bounce could of been slower as it still looked like it had energy, which does make it look lighter than a bowling ball. On the first move it jolt back up to fast but also moves across to far, forcing the animation to look fake.
I tried again to do the bowling ball but I find it so hard to make it seem heavy without it moving to fast.
When doing the beach ball movement it took me just under two hours as I kept making it go too fast. When looking at my reference video it helped me understand the movement but it was very hard to completely show the fact it was a beach ball.
In my animations the movement of of ball was too fast throughout and didn’t begin correctly. I first did it going to the size to emphasize the motion but then thought it was best to follow the video completely. I think after watching these videos the movement is quite smooth but can definitely be improved. I also noticed the fact that the second bounce should be higher as it bounces similar to the bowling ball which is weighted totally different. I think it looks better going across the screen as it presents the bounces better but I want to find a better reference video for this. I think it would be a good idea to try this in Maya as it can then be tinkered with until I feel as though it’s been perfected (as much as it can be).
Two blocks walking together- they are best friends. The walk with a side to side waddle one trying to keep up with the other. A guy strolls past (smooth movement) both girls watch him walk in awe (because he’s ‘super cute’). They turn round to watch him as he walks towards them, they stop dead and chat and giggle (wiggle around) and then as he’s leaving the scene one of the girls rushes after him and they chat. And the other one goes to follow but thinks better of it and leaves the scene slowly and sadly (bless her cotton socks).
So that was my little short of the interaction animation. I had also done a quick storyboard too but it was only a rough outline of what happens on set.
When I went into the Stop-Motion room I felt very confident with what was going to be my outcome at the end of the session. This feeling quickly left me when I realised it’s harder to give blocks feelings than I thought. When I made the blocks walk like girls the movement to me illustrated this but when I showed others they weren’t as convinced. So once I had done my animation I played it back and realised it was far too fast!
On my second try, I was conscious about making the guy block have a smooth movement throughout so as i was getting to the end of my animation and felt as though it was going ok, I tripped over the camera tripod and knocked everything off focus! So you will notice the camera does jolt and again the animation went to fast. I had by this time ran out of time in the stop-motion room spending nearly three and a half hours in it. I also changed the set up in my second try at the interaction as I felt on the first one you cannot see enough of the movement, as each blocks one an other because of the line of sight.
This exercise was the most complicated so far. It used everything we have learnt so far and took some serious thinking a planning. I took Johny’s advice and focused on Maya as my first point of call as it then gave me a better visual example of what I wanted to created within the stop-motion room. It was quite complicated for the first few steps on Maya but all of it was very logical and made sense in the end.
This helped me in visualizing what I wanted to create in the stop-motion room. It was all going well, I had counted how many times the block arced but it didn’t go as planned within the stop-motion room.
I didn’t take into account the size of the wooden black as they are quite big so there wasn’t as much room for the block to move and it naturally wouldn’t keep the same speed up as the small block shows in Maya. So instead of doing 7 arcs I think I did 4. The block does leave the shot at one point which is an obvious mistake but towards the end I had knocked it so it jumps, but this was 2 hours in so I had run out time to redo the animation. Secondly, I incorporated a hold on the block for 4 frames on each arc but it looked too fake so I took some out, but I still think it looks unnatural.
Overall, this will definitely need redoing in the stop-motion room but it was fun to try and create.
This week we wanted to give the block more of a personality in the stop-motion room! I really enjoyed being able to manipulate the block but using the blue-tac but became frustrated when it kept dropping because the blue-tac was getting warm. I showed Johny the animation I had created and I see now that it is quite stiff and does lack the energy I wanted to convey. Hopefully I will get time to redo this animation and present more emotion and exaggeration in my work.
Even the bar sheet became more exciting, so I look forward to progressing through the different motions week by week.