Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Animation Character


I did not get time to finish the animation completely, but I had planned on animating my character to sing a song. I hadn't chosen a song yet but I was leaning toward Never Gonna Give You Up by Rick Astley because it's a song that everybody knows, and the lyrics are well defined and easy to understand.

I designed my character in illustrator to make the outline smoother and cleaner, and then exported the pieces into Photoshop in separate layers. I made the mouths in Photoshop over top of each other in different layers and separated them out to display them here.

Monday, December 12, 2016


I decided to do a cinemagraph of a water fountain, because I found the motion of flowing water to be interesting. I has several ideas about using a spoon or other object in a stream of water in a sink, but decided that a water fountain would look more interesting.

The main problem I had was trying to hide the person walking in the background. I wanted them in the background of the photo, but not visible in the video. As they walked behind me, there's a small gap between my arm and the wall where you can see their legs as they walk past, but I need this section to show the video because the path of the water goes directly through it. I ended up just having to cut the video shorter so they didn't walk through that section.

For my second cinemagraph, I wanted to include some of my friends from lunch because  thought it would be a good opportunity to make something interesting. I started thinking about the process I used to make the first cinemagraph and realized that it allowed the potential to make more complex and interesting pieces that had multiple sections. I don't know if this is technically a cinemagraph anymore, but it taught me a lot about the capabilities of this process in photoshop.

The problems I had were because my camera was on the same table that I was filming. This meant that as people shifted and put weight on the table, it would flex and the camera shifted slightly. I tried to correct this by duplicating the video and shifting it up one pixel as the angle shifts slightly, which worked ok, but would work better if I put more time into it. It's most noticeable on the wall in the background, but it's kind of small and difficult to see unless you know what to look for, so I decided it wasn't worth fixing.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Stop Motion

What was the hardest rule to come up with an animation for? Why?

The hardest rule to come up with an animation for was Straight Ahead and Pose to Pose. These are more behind the scenes methods of production, and if you make your video well, hopefully the viewer can't tell how it was made. We had to do the opposite, and try to explain how we used a production method while making a short video.

What was the easiest? Why?

The easiest rule was Squash and Stretch. Almost any action can involve some squashing and stretching of objects, so we could make an animation of almost anything we wanted and we could demonstrate this rule.

What do you think of stop motion? (2 sentences or more)

Stop motion allows for the creation of some really neat videos that could not be created in any other way, but making a high quality video that is a reasonable length takes a huge amount of time. If you put the commitment and time into making a stop motion video, they can look really interesting and unique.

I didn't get a chance to finish Solid Drawing, but if I had, I would have used a whiteboard, and shown the process of sketching a very simple, 2D character. Then I would have added perspective details to make the character more 3D

Monday, November 7, 2016

Character Design

Explain who your character is and how they play into the story.

My character's name is Hakko, and he is Kubo's older brother. Hakko is about 25 years old, and he has been living on his own since Kubo was born. Because of this, he has become very hard, aggressive, and serious. He has also had learned to fight to survive. He is a skilled swordsman, and you can tell that he has been in a few fights by the scar across his face. He is usually very reserved, but wears a golden belt to show people that he is the real deal. Hakko is a very powerful character and strangers usually leave him alone.

Explain your process to make this character.

The first thing I did was create a notepad document to brainstorm characteristics and attributes of my character. Then I opened a new Photoshop document and began sketching head ideas. I combined the elements I liked into a final rough sketch and moved on to the clothing. I didn't spend much time on this because I already knew what type of clothing I wanted, so I made a couple of rough sketches and moved on to the final.

To draw my final picture I started with a stick figure to figure out proportions. Then I filled out the arms, legs, and body to the correct width. Then I made a new layer which included the major outlines of the character. This part took the longest, but when I was finished, I added a layer of shading, which was black and white on very low opacity, and finally, a layer of color. The color layer was fairly simple because I didn't have to worry about value, the shading layer added that all for me.

What things do you find successful and what might you change for next time?

I thought that the process for shading the piece was successful as it allowed me to overlay the shading layer and edit it separately all the way through the piece as I felt necessary, and I also was able to turn the layer off to help with coloring the piece. Something I didn't like was the lines of this piece. I felt that they looked a little jagged and pixelated. If I did this again I would start with a higher resolution canvas.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016



Flat Design

What did you find most difficult about the 3D process?

The most difficult part of this process was cleaning up the edges of the piece. I didn't want to print the piece and have roughly drawn, edges. I tried cleaning it up in photoshop but that turned out to be too difficult, so I opened the piece in illustrator and traced it with paths to get smooth edges. This part took nearly a full day, but the results were worth it.

What did you find successful about your piece?

What I found the most successful is how smooth the edges turned out after I traced them in illustrator. I like that it maintained some of its hand-drawn imperfections, and style, but it looks smooth and clean.

Explain your piece?  What was you inspiration and how

The inspiration for this piece came from my friends at lunch. I mentioned that I wasn't sure what to make for this project, and we decided that it should be something to do with everybody's name. I decided to make a piece which incorporated the first letter of each person's name into a design. I went through a few combinations but settled on this one in the end because it used the straight sides of the letters to contain the whole piece in a square.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Kubo and the Two Strings

Kubo and the Two Strings

The stop motion in this movie was made through multiple methods, but mainly 3D printing and wire models. One of the animators who worked on this movie was Rachelle Lambden. She lives in Canada and graduated from York University with a BFA in theater directing. She worked on other stop motion movies by LAIKA including Boxtrolls and ParaNorman. This movie is special because it uses the largest puppet ever used in a stop motion movie.

I'm drawn to this movie because I find the animation style of this movie to be very interesting. The stop motion aspect of it and the fact that the characters exist in real life gives extra details to the characters that would not exist if the movie was entirely computer generated.