Here’s the latest video (well, 2 days old now) for Silver Lining. It’s got the pan figured out and better ‘speed blur’ cuts, plus some finished animation added in. I’ve got the next character nearly done now, they’ll be added to the update for next week. Click the Youtube link to watch it in HD.
Here’s a video from Youtube that shows the progress so far (you can watch it in HD too if you so like):
I’ve just finished tweaking the sequence I posted yesterday, (it didn’t read well enough, so I added anticipation and some short tweens to areas) and added a character to the juggling shot. I’ve drawn out the near naked dancing man too for the following one. Whilst I waiting for the sloooow export of images so I can render out a video, I thought I’d post up something I did whilst working on the ideas for the layout. I printed off what I had and added notes later that evening, which I found pretty good in terms of letting the brain relax a little and musing of the puzzle of staging.
I’m still finding challenges with having the camera locked off quite a way away, without cutting in, but it’s all for the final effect. My acting with the characters is going to have to be accented well so it reads, and eyes/mouth expressions will need to be contrasted nicely with the surrounding colours (as will the poses when using the negative space of the background). It’s kinda cool to have tangible boundaries to your film though, as the less tools gives you some unwritten guidelines on how to make this individual piece work.
So here’s the image I drew over with all my notes and scribbles. It’s not polished in any way, but it’s an insight into how my mind works (and the drastic notes show how quickly the stuff needs to be written down!)
[Click for a biggie]
Aside from the film work, I am doing sketching everyday on the tram and around about town and wherever else I may be. I bought a grey Faber Castell brush pen to add basic shadows and am working in a dinky A6 pad, which again has it’s limitations although it prevents me overworking things at that size (and it fits in my pocket). I bought the bits with a voucher I have, and with nothing else to spend the rest of the voucher on, bought a ton of the other coloured pens today and a few more small pads to draw on. Land of colour, here I come!
From another shot in the film, here’s a juggler and his apparent lack of dental care. I’m animating loosely in flash then blocking the main shapes in with the paintbrush, as the outlines are an afterthought and only to accent certain areas. I find it easier to animate this was in Flash as it makes you less focused on the perfect line and is a bit more of a natural feeling (just as it feels natural to draw in line on paper).
I also added some nifty widget to allow easy social networking access (for all you books of faces and twits out there).
It’s just below each post…
Thanks to those who have helped out with the film funding so far, it means ALOT and I’m cracking on with the animation with extra enthusiasm! There’s now two associate producers on board and they will receive original ink drawings and a full DVD collection of this and past works (including possibly the coolest but most embarrassing making of for this film. It’s comedy gold)
I’m just shy of 10% of my funding, so to those who read and like the way this project is developing, any amount helps (you can donate $2 if you want! Just customise the amount in the drop down menu). I plan to do some making of posts about my process and step by step walkthroughs in a week or so.
Thanks everyone! Just to show my appreciation, here’s a flying dog! Originally sighted in New Zealand…
This is the first look at the combined character and background I’ve settled on. The kid is just ‘ruff’ right now, but the robot is on style. It’s a full colour cartoon people! Originally I was aiming for a simple, stripped-down look with just black and white and maybe one accent colour per character, but I have to go with what I love and colour is an exciting area to work with, so I’ve gone full on.
Click for a larger size in Flickr.
So, after a few set up shots and some introduction, there will be a fast truck into what becomes a pan.
This will introduce the audience to the setting and allow a character to ‘act’ across the full stage (as the idea of using all the floor and space, like a play or gymnast, is an idea I’m running with for this one). The camera will move left to right and settle there for the rest of the film (aiming for the watcher feel, as though you are in the street there, and so the time is a pretty fixed element that isn’t too confusing). I worked around the line quality which I liked and got some good feedback from, then added in the other elements. I’m still not 100% with the final aesthetic, but it’s good enough to start working with and come back to later. (Note to self: add back in the Autumn tree colours!)
I’ve also been drawing out a ton of poses for the characters throughout the film. I’m animating in Flash, but much prefer to draw on paper. I suppose it’s a mental thing, but it’s going to take some breaking down to get to the same level…for me at least! So the next job is to translate all that information into the animatic, so it’s more of a pose test reel.
The image below is a bit of a titch, so to see a much bigger one in all its pixel glory, click on it and you’ll be taken to my related Flickr page.
Here’s the ‘crowd funding’ profile I’ve set up to help fund this flick!
Donate if you feel like it, or just have a laugh at my beautiful prose:
More background work in a slightly different direction.
In order to help solve my problems with composition, I’ve just gone through and highlighted my active and inactive parts of the screen (with regards to the character performance). That is to say, where the action happens and where the eye may rest. In a way, I need to bring the characters closer, but then I loose the full body acting space…and the strength of space, which I currently like. I think I need to work on a test piece of rough animation, just blocked keys with maybe a few breakdowns, seeing if it reads and others can read it. I’d still like to be able to challenge myself with some subtle acting to balance the bolder full-body work, so hopefully I will have chance with this. I did think of cutting in, but the idea was to keep it as one shot, like a stage or play.