22 Mar 2010

Loction and prop research

Looking at the look and feel off the table and other such props that I plan to draw inspiration from:

There inspiration and the basis of the props and characters. Now I can start putting a story board together and some character design.

On a side note, tomorrow will be the start of a new feature here on this blog o'mine. I'll be the first the say by drawings aren't up to scratch but for tomorrow I'll be practising every night and in any spare time. I'll mainly be blogging them for my own purpose to see any development I may come across. I was going to start tonight but I have been doing Symposium work.

21 Mar 2010

Script draft 1

The first of many I would guess:

Act 1:
A small, innocent teapot sits on a saucer on an ordinary kitchen table. There is plate of toast with jam on them, a cup of tea, a knife and fork and newspaper hanging over the edge of the table.
The teapot slowly wakes from its slumber, and looks around at its surrounding. Teapot walks forward while still hopping around. It steps to far forward and falls of the saucer and rolls along the table till he is up right again.
It reasurtes itself and looks at its surrounding.
Act 2:
There, on the other side of the table, was a beautiful teapot. Little did the teapot know, the other is only an advert in the paper. Never the less, with heart aflutter, it starts it journey to the other side... except it doesn't see the knife.
Tripping and slipping across the surface of the knife, the teapot lands face first in some Jam toast, splattering the screen with jam. It jumps back up and shakes it head vigourously to remove the jam. Undetered, it presses with with only the other teapot it focus. So naturly, it doesn't see the fork that is sat precariously under the cup of tea.
It steps onto it, which flips the cup into the air and it lands on on the tiny teapot. Panicked, it runs around in a circle until it crashes into a large Pepper shaker, shattering the cup. But the poor little teapot has finaly reached its destination
Act 3:
Stepping slowly forward, the teapot has that heart crushing feeling when he realises the other teapot was only on paper. Tears cascade down its china face and walks forward to get one final look at its love. The teapot looks down at the other one while the paper tilts. Then the teapot noticed it. Scrambling to get away, it trips one final time as the paper falls to the the floor.
With a crash, as small puddle of tea seeps from under the paper signaling the end.

Character Influences

Some characters that I want to use as influence in my character. I'll be looking at this in terms of looks and personality.

As you can see, I have decided to go with an old school looking teapot. The reason for this is that it instantly recognisable. The design is forever and nearly everyone in the world can recognise it.

Now for personality:

I went with Mr Bean and Homer Simpson because they are both lovable fools. There clumsy and cause havoc but remain likable. I want my character to be a pain but to when they come to there ultimate demise, the audience feels bad. I think the most effective way to get this across is facial features. The audience must feel sorry for them.
As for the features themselves, I'll use the spout as the nose, making the front its face. The eyes will be small because it seems that most 'cute' characters have smaller eyes for some reason. Or there REALLY big like puppy dog eyes. Some more decision making to do. I might only use the mouth on rare occasions to show real emotion because I believe that if its mouthless it will look much sweeter.

20 Mar 2010

3 bouncing balls + Walk cycle + Morph + Clumsy walk

I've been taking pictures of balls all day:
Ping Pong Ball

Rubber Ball

Bowling Ball

Walk Cycle:

Clumsy Walk:

Name Morph:

Disney Movie Reviews

Steamboat Willie:
Oh boy. I remember this from SOOOO long ago. I can't really remember when I first saw it but I do know it was when I was young. This once again looks like an animation of old, such as McCay, but it has that classic Disney 'feel' to it. The detail is impeccable and if I'm not mistaken the first movie to introduce 'Mickey Mouse'.

The settings are detailed, the characters act comically and the story has a suitable gooyness to it that features a 3 act structure. It also has great use of sound that encapsulates the entire animation. This piece arguably set the standard for animation that Winsor McCay started. This put Disney into the limelight, and they wanted to stay there...

Fantasia and Mickey the Sorcerers Apprentice and Night on a Bald Mountain:
Fantasia is a different being then Disneys other works. Its an amalgamation of different techniques and ways to animate. To be honest, I see this as Disney saying 'Just try and bring us down bitch's'. The parts of the animation are not in anyway related but you get lost in the world and wonder of it.

As you can tell, music is the key to the animation. Listen with no sound. Not the same is it. Each instrument was used to it fullest and added SO much to the film. A mammoth of a piece that reestablished Disney as the powerhouse of animation and introduced the world to what I remember being the second fear of my childhood...

What was my first? The pink elephant scene in Dumbo. I loved that film. Elephant with HUGE ears? Win!! Then there was that scene. I have never seen the end of Dumbo.

Anyway, Yes, this part did creep the hell out of me. Looking back at it now, I can tell it was the use of light and sound but I think it was that normal things could come alive and run amok. I knocked over the mop in the kitchen everyday for a week. I first saw these animations when I was a kid on a Disney VHS so they really are part of my childhood and have a real feeling of nostalgia to them.

The final animation in Fantasia is titled Night on Bald Mountain. I first heard of this part of the animation on an Internet show called 'The Nostalgia Critic' where he ranked 'The Devil' as one of Disney's greatest villains.

The Devil has such a presence and magnitude that you can't help but in awe of the craftsmanship that Disney has created. Once again, the music is so well suited to the animation. Creepy as hell and hits every bar it sets out to hit. This is one haunting piece of animation. The whole 'theme' of the animation is clearly death and the after life which is rather heavy for a 'cartoon'. But animation back in the day was for children and adults. Adults seeing this could admire the beauty of the animation while the children are scared. I have always said Children enjoy being scared. They enjoy it. Such a creepy and stylised piece of work that closes Fantasia on a high that not many can reach.

McCay Movie Reviews

Gertie the Dinosaur:
One of the first bit of animation that we watched. To start it was nothing special. The live action part of the animation wasn't that great. I understand that its used to explain to the audience of yesteryear how animation came along. It seemed like really cheesy, bad comedy that went on for a bit but it was the animation that we were waiting for.

The Animation, as you can see is very well done and detailed but I did feel that the looping went on for to long. For example, just try and count how many times Gertie does that dance thing. Its a lot and I get the feeling that it was used to extend the time. Mind you, back in the day, wouldn't he have had to draw the animation frames separately?

The Sinking of the Lusitania:
This one was very different then the ones we saw before as it followed a much more sombre story that doesn't in anyway give it self to a comedic approach.

The animation is a lot more striking in this piece that the others by Winsor McCay. The smoke effect in the piece is fantastic. I still watch it back thinking 'did he really draw that smoke?'. Its a tragic piece of cinema about a tragic event in history. The sad thing is, I had never heard of this event till now.

Little Nemo:
And we end Winsor McCay with his very first piece: Little Nemo (No, not the fish) I can't really gather a story around this piece or who the hell Nemo is but its great to watch none the less:

96. 96 years ago this was made. The fact that this animation was produced so long, cements Winsor McCay as a great animator. As I said before, I can't get a story out of it but the movement and the transformation of the characters is brilliant. It really catches the essence of animation.

17 Mar 2010

Essay Topic

The Animator that not many people know. ohhhh whats his name?

Ray Harryhausen.

The man that changed the face of cinema back in 1981. Its the kind of technical improvements that Harryhausen made that people like James Cameron are trying to emulate.
The main reasoning for me picking Ray Harryhausen (That name will get annoying to wright) is the fact that his biggest film (arguably) is 'Clash of the Titans' which is getting a big Hollywood remake. I would love to compare the special effects and animations in both and see the similarities and differences.

'Critically analysing the work of Ray Harryhausen and comparing his animation to there modern counterparts.'

An old classic that changed the face of cinema, special effects and animation...

A big ol' silly action romp. Should prove entertaining but don't expect an Oscar.

15 Mar 2010

Story Concept

What I could do here is create an elaborate story and an arc that spans the generations and reaches the very edge of the universe itself...

Space Pot!!!!

Then I realised that a simple story is what would endear the audience to the character and the situation it would inevitably find it self in.
This animation will be called...
Carly the Clumsy Teapot

Act 1:
A normal teapot sits unassumingly on a table. In the distance, up in the sky, a shooting star flies past. Some fairy dust sprinkles onto the teapot and it miraculously comes alive. But how does an inanimate object first find its legs? It doesn't.

Act 2:
Carly (called Carly because of a name scratched into the table) stumbles around trying to understand what has happened and how she can move. She stumbles across kitchen utensils (knife and forks) whist trying to keep balanced. She trips over the edge of a place mat which leaves her hopping towards the end...

Act 3:
Now this is where I need to decide. Being the morbid, death desensitised gamer that I am, I want the poor teapot to fall and smash. Or maybe I should keep with the tone I have created and simply have the teapot fall back to sleep. Either way...

Carly continues to teeter towards the edge on one 'leg'. She reaches the edge of the table, barley holding on with her little teapot parts. It looks likes she will fall, but then at the last moment she falls the other way back onto the table. She then falls back to sleep and all is right with the world...

Carly continues to teeter towards the edge on one 'leg'. She reaches the edge of the table, barley holding on with her little teapot parts. It looks likes she will fall, and she does. As she flies through the air her short little teapot life flash's before her 'eyes'. The floor greets her with a thud, as her tea inside spill across the floor.

Speaking of teapots, Whats the first thing that springs to mind when you think of moving teapots. Keeping with the Disney theme, its the teapot and saucer from 'Beauty and the Beast' (which is weird because I have only seen it once and never really liked it). I plan to get inspiration from this:

Holy Jesus Cats. I've just looked over the Internet and Disney is REALLY up on their 'That's my Stuff' copyright game. All I could find was stage productions (there not teapots...) or fan dubs over still images. So here's some pics instead. I'm sure we have all seen it anyway.

Hmmm... maybe I'll do that ol' Disney fellow for my essay.

13 Mar 2010

The Clumsy Teapot

Awwwww... a teapot thats clumsy. Could a flimsy piece of crockery thats clumsy die at the end?
It could happen I guess...

A teapot is a vessel used for steeping tea leaves or a herbal mix in near-boiling water. Tea may be either in a tea bag or loose, in which case a tea strainer will be needed, either to hold the leaves as they steep or to catch the leaves inside the teapot when the tea is poured. Teapots usually have an opening with a lid at their top, where the tea and water are added, a handle for holding by hand and a spout through which the tea is served. Some teapots have a strainer built-in on the inner edge of spout. A small hole in the lid is necessary for air access inside to stop the spout from dripping and splashing when tea is poured. In modern times, a tea cosy may be used to enhance the steeping or to prevent the contents of the teapot from cooling too rapidly. A tea connoisseur will usually warm the teapot by rinsing it with boiling water and then draining it completely before making tea.

Accident-proneness, also known as clumsiness, is the conception that some people might have predisposition, or that they might be more likely to suffer accidents, such as car crashes and industrial injuries, than other people. It may be used as a reason to deny any insurance on such individuals.
Words that mean Clumsy (HEEEELLLLOOOOO
all thumbs, blundering, blunderous, bulky, bumbling, bungling, butterfingered, clownish, crude, elephantine, gauche, gawkish, gawky, graceless, ham-handed, heavy, heavy-handed, helpless, hulking, ill-shaped, incompetent, inelegant, inept, inexperienced, inexpert, lubberly, lumbering, lumpish, maladroit, oafish, ponderous, splay, stumbling, unable, unadept, uncoordinated, uncouth, undexterous, uneasy, ungainly, unhandy, unskillful, untactful, untalented, untoward, unwieldy, weedy
(thats alot of 'other' words)

You know... if you don't know what a teapot is... or senile.

7 Mar 2010

Maya Tutorials 2: The Reckoning

Bouncing Ball 2:

Bouncing Ball 3:



PaperClip PB and Render:


I'm positive thats all off them. If its not then just give a shout and I'll upload it straight away.

4 Mar 2010

A Final word...

A note about my work and its music/soundtrack. As you may notice in my research vids, the most prominant sound is the music. I tried my best to set up my scenes like that. Only using certain special sound effects but with a soundtrack that fits perfectly with the action.
I want it to be a homage to the silent movies of old.
I haven't mentioned this yet so I wrote it here :)
Also you may notice alot of youtube and photobucket work going on. Blogger is being a douchebag.

The Animatic

The final part of the unit. Wow, its been a long trek in a great place of learning (cheesey? oh well)


The pre-viz created in Maya:

Final Storyboard

Here is the final 6 part storyboard:


Concept art and Character Design

My concept for the Alleyway outside the side and the interior of the joke shop will following shortly...


Also the devolopment of the character (character design and face moods) :

Vids that I used

I used these vids from Youtube as inspiration for my story. I tried to go the 'quiet silent film with music and odd sound effect' route. Hopefully I succeded.

This is the score for my work and I also used it to plan out the pace of story. You can't go wrong trieng to learn from Tom and Jerry

Some Charlie Chaplin Silentness:

For the sheer physical comedy... and the lolz

Alans Maya work Part 1

Heres some quick shots I haven't put up yet. More to come in:

Alans Maya Work 2: The Reckoning

Three way conversation:

Pitch (Playblast + render):

Pan (Playblast):

Pendulum (playblast + Render)