Thursday, 31 December 2009

11 Second Club Entry

Let me begin by saying:

Animation is friggin' hard!

Ok, now that's out the way... I've been working my ass off for the whole December month on this animation for the 11 second club competition. This month has been quite a roller coaster ride. Some days I would be super motivated and love my animation and the progression. Other days, I would feel incredibly bummed out as I watch this animation for the millionth time and nothing seems to work.

Here's the animation:

Watch in 720p HD!

Read on below for more interesting stuff:

Towards the end of the month, my computer even started to fail on me. It would crash at Windows and it would take me 10 tries for it to successfully reboot again. I was really panicking then, and everyone had gone home for xmas and no one was around to help. After several text messages and investigation, I found the problem. Apparently, it had been my power supply and I got that fixed asap, but in the course of action, I accidentally disconnected my new harddisk drive. Luckily, my XSI scene files are on my main hdd and I could continue animating. I have however lost all my movies, music and games, and my main animation folder where I store all my video references and clips. Basically I lost all my entertainment gear - which in a way made me slightly more productive. As for video references, I just whooped out my camera and filmed more, so no problems there.

Oh yes, and another problem I had was with RSI. Using the mouse for such a long period of time, with the added scrubbing back and forth has really hurt my fingers. I had to use my left hand for a day or two until it healed. Then I realized I had a spare Wacom lying around and used that instead, and it did wonders! It took me a while to get used to, but it's pretty neat for scrubbing.

I'm not sure if any other animator out there has done this before, but I've thought of this brilliant plan where I would save a playblast of my animation every single day till I finish and then compile it together into a "Making Of". Firstly, it's very cool to watch progression, I know I do! Secondly, it helps me visualise and structure my animation performance better; I can now go back and analyse which areas I could improve on or how quickly I could complete certain tasks. This will allow me to plan out my future workflow better! Unfortunately, as I mentioned above, most of my playblast videos are stored on my other hdd, and it will be a while before I can get that working again. I'll post my compilation video up when it's ready so stay tuned!

So yeah, I'm so glad this is finally done. Wish me luck for the competition and I hope you like it!

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Tom and Jerry

I've been watching quite a lot of these CLASSICS lately. Tom and Jerry!

My oh my, you don't see much of these classical 2D stuff much anymore. It's all pushing towards realism nowadays... So why do 2D animations seem to ooze with life and appeal way more than 3D animations? I believe it's because of the flexibility in the drawings that the classical animators have learned to exaggerate and break the principles. It's simply amazing watching Tom and Jerry, the amount of squash and stretch is used just on about everything! Whenever the characters contact with another object, the animators would squeeze as much life as they could into the interacted object. I've not seen a hat or a doll stretch as much as that in 3D before!

Oh and the timing on these cartoons are spot on too, I love how they over-exaggerate everything and delay their response times. It never seems to get old. Exaggeration is used to the extreme in Tom and Jerry. The result is that the staging and clarity is CRYSTAL CLEAR. There is much to learn from these classics :).