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Im studdying animation at Uni and i have just finshed my first year. I have some animations to show you. Please let me know what you think and leave crits.
L'Illusioniste - This is my first ever stop motion film. I made this with two other people in a group.
Pratice 2D animations
Pretty good for one year's study.
The dogs movements are pretty solid, volumes are consistent.
Think about exaggerating the squash and stretch.
The second dog animation would be a lot stronger just with some variation on timing. Making him stop and think adds more believability, rather than have him go through the actions evenly as if he's rehearsed it 50 times.
Awesome secondary animation on the dog's ears.
Especially when he skids to a halt, wonderful sense of momentum there.
I'll be honest, I'm having trouble reading some of the motions in L'Illusioniste.
For example: I don't really understand the close-up shot as he's summoning papers from under his coat. I see the eyes shift, I see the head tilt, I see the fist ball and wrist curl, but ultimately I'm not sure what emotion all that work was meant to convey.
Part of the trouble being, of course, the mask - removing your ability to convey emotions with facial features is quite the challenge. It might have been better met with a bit more research into communication via Body Language (aka: Non Verbal Communication or Kinesic Communication).
Thanks for the comment and crit it’s been helpful and good to hear what you think of it.
Hunterkiller_ I can see what you mean about how the second dog animation could have done with him thinking about his actions first. I think this could be a good thing for me to work on, so I’m going to do another rough animation to practice this. Thanks.
ZilantThanks for the crit I didn’t notice this before. The close-up shot as he's summoning papers from under his coat was meant to be a joyful emotion. Were going to keep this in mind and make sure we practice and think more about emotions with facial features.
For the stop motion:
Lock down your camera better! Stop motion is hard enough to pose and time out, to get it all to read. Your camera is moving around, I guess the table is flimsy, or you're touching it for the close ups, etc.? You really need to get it locked and stable so the only thing moving is the dude.
The stop motion guy needs to be 'cleaner'. I'm only a 3D animator so i don't know how to crit specifically for stop motion, but it feels like he was roughed in, or loosely posed. Sometimes he pops to and fro and we lose a bit of continuity. I think this just comes from experience with the art, his motion needs to be cleaned up a bit. I'd personally take a lesson from Disney and animate with a busy side, and a dormant side. If he's doing something with his hand, try to keep everything else as relatively still as you can so we keep our focus where you want it.
For the speed he seems to be walking sometimes his stepping distance is a little large. Watch your arcs on the ears, there are parts where it pops back and forth. Things like that are simple to see and fix so make sure they're corrected before showing it off on a demo-reel or something. You're in your first year so you probably won't use any of this.
Overall I'd just say to make sure that the animations are more clear. Rough spots in animation and errant lines sometimes distract my eye and clarity is lost which is a big no no.
Really nice stuff, I'd like to see where you're at when you're all done with the program.
Apathy, the new political party. "Just because it's bad doesn't mean it couldn't be worse.. so in reality we're doing great!"
Thanks Bendragon. I don’t study in Manchester I went to the uni to have a lot around but they don’t do the type of animation I wanted. I’m studying in Wales at the moment
Thank you for the crit Books, im goanna work on it
I like the design of the character for the stop motion piece. I like that you choose to do a cape, it is a hard thing to animate and you do it pretty well.
A pro animator told me not too long ago that you should always have at least 3 moves for each movement. Meaning, if he has his head down, it should never come up in one or two incremental moves, at least three. This idea was extremely helpful in my animations.
Also, think about the idea of easing in and out. Every movement has a period of speeding up and slowing down. Things rarely ever just start and stop without incremental movements at the beginning and end.
I strongly agree with the earlier post. Lock the camera down. Sandbags on the tripod and hot glue the feet to the floor if you can. Seriously. One of the worst suckages in the world is to be nearly finished an animation and the camera moves.
What kind of equipment were you shooting with?
So far I agree with most crits given so far. You show promise, but need more practice (but that will be true for the rest of your time as an animator).
The only piece of advise to give in addition to what is already said is anticipation. This is especially important for when you have the dog jump. The way it reads right now is that the dog looks up and leaps from a standing position. To make it read better put one or two tweens in of the dog's hind legs compressing in anticipation of the jump. You don't have to slow it down for that, just place it in and let the audience's brain do the rest. It's just that little extra that will make your animation pop.
Again over all this is good for a first year student. Keep at it and you will be rewarded. Don't let frustration stop you either as it is part of the process.
If you haven't acquired the following books, I suggest you do so as soon as you are able: The Illusion of Life by Ollie Johnson and Frank Thomas, The Animator's Survival Kit by Richard Williams, and Character Animation Crash Course! by Eric Goldberg. These books are basically what every animator (computer and traditional) needs in their library.