WEEK 2 Extended Project

What skills have I learnt?

This week I created a timeline in Tiki-toki of what I have done through this course to see what skills and knowledge I have required over the time, this is so I can apply this knowledge to my project proposal and research plan, allowing me to know what I need to research and be able to identify skills I can use in this project.

First year

Term one:

The first skills I learnt at the start of the year was self-reflection and doing research into myself, I now use this skill through most of the course and will defiantly use it at the end of my project to self-reflect on how I have done and whether I could do better.

The next set of skills was learning how to use 3Ds max, and the techniques and methods used in it. Because the animation I am planning to do is mostly 2D work, however after conducting some research into different vector based animated shows, I discovered a technique on using 3Ds max to create 2D backgrounds that have very good perspective.  

WEEK 1 Extended Project

Conducting Observations

For my FMP, I have decide to do some observation on movement, this can be people moving and walking, vehicles moving, fabric, and how the perspective changes when the camera moves, whether its tracking or just panning. This would allow me to learn the way things move and how the perspective changes which I can apply to animation to match life.

I conducted my observations around Canterbury, recording everything I said above whilst using different angles, such as low angles and high angles. I believe I have recorded a sufficient amount of observations and will be analysing it on this blog by using rotoscoping to show examples and get a better idea on movement.

When looking at the video of the when I was tracking my classmate with a panning shot, you can clearly see how perspective of my classmate changes; you first see the front and side of my classmate as he approaches, this changes to a full-on side and then you can only see the side and back of him. What interests me is the timing of the what you can see, you see my classmate’s side-front and side-back the longest, however the shortest part you see is when you can only see his side, this makes sense as he is walking past me, I am not following him from the side but merely tracking him whilst staying in the same position. Another thing I found interesting from this observation is that my classmate stays roughly in the same place in shot-wise whilst the background moves across the shot, this makes sense as the camera is fixed on him as he walks past, meaning he will occupy that space in the frame until the camera decides to stop panning. I can use this if I decide on creating a shot in my animation that tracks the character, I can replicate it knowing the timing and the perspective of the character for each frame.

When looking at the way my classmate walks, he sways side to side as he takes each step, he also swings his arm back and forth which explains why he sways side to side as the weight and momentum being generated from his arms causes his shoulder blades to be pulled towards that direction as the arm hits the end of the its swing. From what I have read from the book, “The Animator’s Survival Kit”, I recognized the arch the wrist of my classmate’s arm always follows and this is common with all people who swing their arms as they walk, the wrist will always follow an arch. I can use this replicate a walk cycle in my animation that matches real life standards.

rotoscope hand arch

I did an observation on the movement of a flag to see how I would replicate it in animation. I found that as the wind hits the flag, it follows a wave pattern which effects the whole flag except the part which is attached to the pole and on closer inspection you can see that the wave of the flag begins at the bottom left of the flag and travels up towards the top right of the flag. The wave will always start at the pole however the way the wave travels across the flag depends on how the pole is positioned and the way the wind is blowing, such as if it was placed horizontally and the wind was coming at it straight on, the wave would start the size of the flag and travel all the way down. How strong the wind is also effects the way the flag flaps, as a calm day would make the flag not stretch out all the way and would flap only a little, a breezy day would make the flag stretch out but would flap slowly and gently, a very windy day would have the stretch out but would be all over the place.

I did more observation of having the camera move, except this time the camera would be at a fixed angle and will be following the main target through space, I did this by recording behind my main target whilst on an escalator. Looking at the footage, it looks as if the camera and the target aren’t moving but the whole environment is moving instead, this makes sense as the target and the camera aren’t really giving any sense of movement, like walking or running. If I were to animate this, I would animate character at a fixed point on the screen, then animate the background moving towards the camera and target.