Beginner Animations

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It’s been awhile since there has been any activity on this blog. Courtney, Brandon, and I have all been working our butts off on other projects. I can’t wait to unveil more details about what we’ve been cooking up, but for now I figured I would just post some of my old projects on here as a blast from my past as an Animation student. I’ve always loved animation thanks to great films from Disney/Pixar, Dreamworks, and LAIKA studios.

But guys, animation is hard. It’s a lot of drawing. A lot of erasing. A lot of wondering, “How would this *insert activity* actually look in 2d motion?” I don’t think I am terrible at animation, but I’ve definitely got looooots of room for improvement. These are my thoughts on my past animation projects.

Here is the classic head turn. Any beginner typically starts with this. Looking back on this animation now I can see where I probably needed to fix some things. I think I was so focused on the hair, and the facial expression he made that I didn’t notice the abnormality of his neck. Look at how the neck moves when he turns his head. It’s not normal. Lol. There’s also a few frames where…for some reason…his head has a dent? Whoops. But hey even though this is only like 2 seconds I think I made about 30-40 drawings here. 40!

Now the next milestone is the dreaded walk cycle. I hated the walk cycle. It was just so repetitive. I remember the critique I got on this in class was that her boobs were too bouncy. And that wasn’t even an effect I was trying to go for, but since I was trying to get that A+ I remember arguing with my teacher saying, “What if she’s not wearing a bra? Those things bounce around!” Lol. Her boot strap things also slide a little bit as well if you look closely. I know one of the aspects in animation that I struggled (and still do) with is making the sizing and shape of the body the same throughout the course of the animation.

The lip sync project….*sighs* This wasn’t a bad animation necessarily, but it just needed more time. What a lot of people don’t realize about hand drawn animation is just how much time it takes to create. If I gave this another pass with inbetweens (frames in between the key animation points) this would be much smoother, and flow better. Also, the other aspect that I should have changed is that the first frame I started with was with his mouth open. Instead of beginning on an action shot(speaking), I should have started from a neutral position because otherwise it is jarring for the viewer.

This was probably my lowest graded project. The purpose was to show a character exhibiting force on an object. The issue here is the way she bends. Her back sort of leans down as if she’s a robot. She doesn’t bend in the knees at all, which if you’ve ever tried to lift a heavy object you know the importance of lifting from the knees. Otherwise you’ll throw your back out. Once again, I think I was more focused on her hair, and expression than the actual mechanics of how a person’s body would move naturally in that situation. It was a learning experience though.

What do you struggle with the most in animation? Comment your own learning experiences down below!

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