Tuesday, October 19, 2010

A Little Walk

Currently working on a walk for the Boy in the story. He's based very much on my son, down to clutching his favourite Brachiosaurus.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Ok...another post while I'm in the mood. This is the current version of Sam being turned into a bat. The animation is now finished and coloured. The composite is still WIP but getting very close.


Hi all. A new post after another long break. Lots of animation going on and another shot rethought. There was a shot where Sam is a dog. I like dogs, but I thought it was a tad boring, so I went with something more exotic. I also decided to show his transformation into the animal to establish his abilities and so the audience gets that he can be a whale, mouse, bat etc...
Anyway, this is a work in progress with a few inbetween frames unrendered.....

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


OK. So I've redone a shot. I decided to change the action of Sam so that he doesn't turn away from the audience. There's still some timing issues to be addressed, but I'm happy with how it's turning out.

So the above shot is replacing this one....

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Some more rough animation

I've had a busy week getting stuck into some rough animation. My goal is to get all the remaining shots to at least a first rough animation pass by the end of the week. I'm finding that dropping the roughs into the edit really highlight strengths and weaknesses in both the overall story and the individual shots. I am planning to tweak a few shots as a result, whether it's extending a reaction or redoing an expression.

I realised that with Sam's head facing away from us, the connection to him is broken. I'll be redoing the animation so he faces the audience and we can see his expressions and hopefully his thoughts.

The shot of the girl and Sam as a mouse will be refined. I will be adding some more animation to the girls face, maybe include her nose scrunching. Most of the facial animation so far has been the characters smiling. While the script calls for happy expressions, that's all they seem to be doing and it's getting a tad repetitive. I want to put more variety into their expressions and hopefully flesh out their characters a bit more.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Animation Tests and Compositing

The first update is some animation of Sam as a whale. I should point out that all artwork is being produced digitally, so the backgrounds and pencil tests and full animation are being done in Photoshop, Toon Boom and After Effects.

The next video is a composite of the animated whale in an undersea environment created in After Effects. The character of the girl will also be placed in the shot.

Sam also takes the form of a dinosaur. The first 2 videos are digital pencil tests, followed by a version with some colour, then the animation composited into a background. The colour and background are at a WIP stage, with some refining to be done later.

Finally, the sequence that has the girl turning Sam into a bat. The shot is a little more complex, considering it has 3 animated elements and some VFX. The timing was worked out with the animatic. From that the girl's animation was planned to coincide with the temp VFX. The first pencil test of the girl worked terrifically. Sam as a bat was fully animated in an afternoon. It was a simple wing flapping cycle with a couple of blinks. The rough edit of the sequence included an added closeup of the bat to establish the character. Thanks to Sky Crompton for the suggestion.

At Long Last....

Well, after a huuuuge gap I am updating my blog. The last couple of months have been very hectic. There's been a few changes to the story and my animatic. Things are progressing reasonably well. I've been immersing myself in Toon Boom and loving it. After Effects is working really well for a compositing tool as well as tweaking some animation. All in all, things are good. There's still a huge amount of work to be done, but I'm feeling confident and energised at the moment.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Updated character design for "Imaginary Sam"

Well...I have a name for my short film as well as a revised design for the character. I've pushed him more towards a "Chuck Jones" style, which is also the style of animation I'm going for, mixed with a bit of Disney "Robin Hood". Ambitious......
I've also started doing some tests for the opening title in After Effects as well as a really quick walk cycle that has lots of things that need tweaking , but it's a start.
The first draft of the script is also done and I'm feeling reasonably good about it.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Character Idea For Short Film

Here's a design of the main character for the film drawn and coloured in Photoshop using a Wacom Intuos 3. There's a few earlier pencil sketches that I have to scan and will post them soon. I will sculpt a couple of maquettes in the coming week.
I haven't named him as yet, waiting for that bolt of imaginative lightning.....

Sunday, March 7, 2010

An Intro and Background

Hello viewers. The following blog will be a centralised stream of conciousness, art and inspriration as I return to the world of study and produce an animated short film along the way. I finished study in 2004 with a Diploma of Animation from Holmesglen Institute. I since went on to employment on a few feature films in the area of compositing, but my major feat was becoming a Lead Sculptor on Adam Elliot's "Mary & Max".
Since then I have returned to Holmesglen as a sessional lecturer and am now undertaking further study to produce a 2D Animated Short Film........