Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Animation Tips - how to learn the basics of animation

So this lesson is going to involve some videos of a new animator who's improving like crazy. First, he picked up a copy of Animation Studio (I also recommend Toon Boom and Flash for 2D work). If you're learning 3D, use Blender (cuz it's free), and all these lessons still apply.

So this is all work from HitAnimation, so check him out here:

First, he started with a test on mouth and eye movement in Toon Boom (you could even do this with Paint and Movie Maker):

Then he continued to experiment with the mouth, but he also added in walk and some arm movement for this Terminator spoof (he switched to Anime Studio for this):

Donkey walk test and some arm movement (you see that he has more to learn). One thing to point out is the character designs are far along (his farthest yet). The character designs look like those on a cartoon you might see on TV:

Then he jumped to multiple characters. All the characters and moving arms and legs is great practice. Animating to a funny song is always entertaining:

This next piece was an experiment in lip syncing. It also served a personal use... a gift. He got lip syncing advice from another animator who was further along (ngstalagmite), and learned a lot from it. This was 2 months ago:

And for this ninja test... more walking and arm movement, and he's playing with the camera (some of the camera movement is getting quite good):

Then a fun little walk test:

Then an Arny walk and arm test on January 19 (I'm listing the dates because he's moving very fast now):

And a lip sync test on January 21:

And a rapper test (mouth and arms) on January 24:

And then on February 8, he finished the full Arnold 2:43 animation spoof (Warning - language):

That's when I came in with more advice he's already heard. My advice...

Praise: This starts to get funny at the end. The potential is huge.

Advice... a lot of floaty arm movements (and slow walking). All movement is much faster and deliberate.

So I only gave a little advice, but he took it. He said, "I took everything on board what you said last time and I scrutnised every apect of the animation."

Next up he took a scene from Pulp Fiction (Warning - language) on 2/17/10:

And here is my advice (lesson) for him and you...

Hahahahaha! Wow, this is awesome! Praise... I love where you're going with the character designs with this. The eyes are really done well (this increases with each vid you make). Keep that up. You also animated the eyelids very well. You even made Samuel Jackson's farther eye smaller... nice.

You also increased the speed of your movements... this is a HUGE improvement. Plus the timing is great (using movie audio makes it easier to have good timing). I also see a little bit of a bounce on his hands as he puts them down. That's awesome! Keep thinking about that.

Advice... so people aren't constantly moving. The next thing I recommend that you work on is trying to make your movements more "deliberate." What that means is that hand movements are great, but the hand jets out there, bounces a bit, sits out there with almost no movement and then later jets back (that's what I mean by "deliberate"-- the movement is motivated).

More advice... I think the guy in the chair looked skittish but not quite as freaked out as he could have. Maybe a little shaking (rather than the rocking motion you used) and eyes that go from small to super wide while he's shaking, kind of like that kid on South Park who drinks coffee. =^)

Also, the ending was a bit too abrupt. The white guy should have still been shaking a little after the dialogue, while Sam leans forward and closes in on a solid stare. =^)

So although I got a ton of advice for you, this is your best effort, it's hilarious, and I hope it does well. You're improving at an incredibly fast rate (crazy fast), so keep it up!

Also, what makes this work well is that you have high quality voice acting (you cut corners by using voice from actors in a great movie), so keep that in mind. Find real voice actors.

Make the audio as good as the video. Music and sound effects help, but the voice acting makes it or breaks it.

Thanks for reading!


No comments:

Post a Comment

What do you think?

Popular Posts (of all time)