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Multiplaining is having flat backgrounds and layering them in 3D space- you get that parallax effect without having to move any of the BG's
Toonshaders are shading tools in maya to make 3D images look flat- like the spaceship in Futurama.
That POV shot was killer- even more impressive knowing you did it from scratch >.<
Examples below ^_^
Ahh great! I must say very early on I was considering entirely 3D backgrounds made to look less 3D but I didn't really know anything about creating shaders to help me so I went for what, at the time, seemed an easier work around.
At the time when I was making the POV shot I started to think "what the hell are you doing?". As I was animating the camera flying through the environment I would notice little gaps visible between certain plains and would have to tweak the positions of trees and rocks to patch them one. All in all it was one horribly botched together scene but I think the result was worth it.
Great concept and solid story. The character animation could use a bit of polishing. I know how school deadlines can get. If you are interested and think that you'll go back into the piece I could give a more detailed crit on that aspect.
I like that you used painted backgrounds a lot. I think it could have been even more successful if you would have tried to match the character's texture to the background. I'd have suggested contour rendering or toon outlines. That, in combination to hand painted textures using a constant shader... or I think Maya calls it the surface shader... would have been quite nice. To get shadows you could composite AO or toon shading over top of the painted textures.
Thanks NateShaw, I must say I'm not planning to go back into that project. I have to admit that hitting deadline with this project was a double edged sword in that I wanted to keep working on it but at the same time wanted to be rid of it. You're absolutely right about the textures and rendering. It's to some extent painfully stark how the 3D clashes on the backgrounds but that's where I got to so is what I had to go with. In a way it gives it a kind of cheap and cheerful feel which goes well with the cliche story and humor. I think if I had tried for a more meaningful or down-to-earth concept the need for those improvements would have been even stronger.
Annoyingly there was a point where all the 3D elements were going to have a shadow in an attempt to tie them in with the background but this was after my assessment showing and I never quite got round to mustering the enthusiasm to re-render and compose the whole thing.
dude , your short animation 2d are great
hope you'll make a big 2d movie like that.
the animation reminds me a bit , the old batman animated series (bruce tim)
i sub to you on youtube
Thanks airman and iven! Ouch it's been such a long time since I've done an update on here!. There's a few things I've been working on but nothing as of yet that's ready to show. Most of my energy at the moment is spent looking for a job, got a few leads going but bridging the gap between "student artist" and "working professional" is proving a challenging task indeed!
Here's a quick render of a new character I'm working on. Admittedly I have been a bit cheeky and re-used the face from the previous character I was making. Her name is currently Duck (the original concept was that the cap under her hood would extend a great deal further and there would be a set of eyes on the hood, might still happen but I'm not sure.). Hopefully in the next couple of weeks I'll have her textured, rigged and moving! yay
Trying a few blendshapes here although this is the first time I've really worked with them to any level of success. I think I've still got a long way to go to push these into working for decent expressions. Struggling a bit with deciding what to have worked by bones and what to have controlled with the blendshapes. I think I'll go for eyes and jaw on bones and surface face movement in the blendshapes.
This probably wasn't worth uploading but I'm tired. I started from scratch with the shapes and made a few that seem to work a lot better. I figured out a much better way of breaking shapes into left and right components too which will help.
Once I've finished all the set and made some controls for them so I can actually demonstrate them in a way that doesn't look totally ass I'll upload another video.
I think most of your blend shapes are working pretty well -the poof cheeks / exhale part is really smooth.
The only one that stood out to me was the grin or ee sound. I didn't spend a huge amount of time on blend shapes but it's better to have a bit more exaggeration then you need and this particular one is pretty toned down.
A grin needs to engage the cheeks a bunch- when you smile your mouth pushes your cheek up into your eyes. You've done it a bit but don't be shy to push stuff really far- this is cartooning after all ^_^
Cheers Rhubix, I think you're absolutely right. I haven't even got shapes to control the whole face, so far I have only done a few mouth shapes and a very basic eye squint. I've not yet made any which properly affect the cheeks.
I'm not going for completed shapes such as "happy smile", "sad frown", "angry frown", "sarcastic smile" etc. I think that would be far too much work. Instead I'm going for a fairly robust set of shapes for each part of the face which are then connected up with an interface to be combined during animation to get a wider range of more varied expressions.
I really appreciate the sketches by the way! Makes me realize that I really need to push my shapes a lot further. After all, there is no harm in giving them strong extremes because I'll be controlling their influence during animation and it's really frustrating having an expression that just doesn't quite have enough "expression" in it.
In the mean time, my 3D teacher (who was some kind of cyborg full of technical incite) recommended this book : Stop Starting
Thanks for the kind words D.M..
And cheers for the advice Rhubix, I've been using "Stop Staring" as my guide for my blendshape misadventures, it's a great book and I think there is actually quite a lot of in-depth info on creating interfaces with which to control the blendshapes in a more manageable manner than countless sliders. I suppose once you've made a set of controls you could effectively just key out the more common, useful expressions at a control level and then just call on them when needed during an animation.
Anyway, I hope everyone's had a good Christmas and new year, I haven't really got round to diving back into my blendshape shenanigans as I've only been back in London for a few days but I have managed to throw together a little test animation for a potential job (fingers crossed!!). Anyone who had a half decent childhood and is around my generation should recognize the following illustrations that I've used to create these tests:
Here's another test of the same process. I pushed the animation quite a bit further to test the versatility of my puppet rig. I'm not using the Puppet Pin tool to avoid texture distortion so it's all done with parts in hierarchy.
Last edited by Koticheck; January 22nd, 2012 at 06:53 PM.
After looking at some of your work in this thread, I must say you've got a pretty good eye for natural movement.
I still have a long way to go with a lot of practice needed but thanks for the kind words!
Firstly, best of luck for the job position!
Second, your environment breakdown is pretty cool. The only thing is the camera movement (and maybe even the elements themselves) need a tiny ease-out/ease-in. It feel a bit abrupt right now, like if your in a cart that stops dead.
Nice cutout animation, although I'm more of a frame-by-frame guy.
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