Wednesday, December 26, 2007

stewardess pouring a drink

I brought my sketch pad with me on my flight to Minnesota for Christmas thinking I would get some drawing done on the plane. This gesture is all I got around to, however.

I haven't posted much 2D here recently because I've been consumed by a 3D project which, for better or for worse, is nearing completion.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

some Goofy angles

John K continues on with his animation course by having people draw different views of a model of TopCat. I don't have a TopCat sculpture but I do have a Goofy phone...

so I used that as my reference.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Bosko Bounce

Slight detour from that dry bouncing ball stuff...

Famous animation director John Kricfalusi is leading an online tutorial in which he is endeavoring to teach classic 2D animation by copying examples from Golden Age animation of the 1930's and 40's. It sounds unlikely, but consider that great composers like Bach and Handel learned their stuff by copying note-for-note the works of older masters.

So maybe he's on to something.

Anyway, the first assignment was to do the bounce cycle in a clip from an old Bosko cartoon

Here's my semi cleaned-up effort; I haven't removed all the overlapping lines. This is all hand drawn (and damn, it took a long time to do), no computer "tweening" involved.

(Music created with Voyetra "Dance eJay 2")

The original clip is so foggy that I had to guess at several details. I get the sense that the feet are turning up to expose the sole of the shoe, so I drew it that way but it's just a theory. The sliding of the heels as he lifts his foot... it's in the original, whether they meant it or not, so I did that too rather than try to "correct" it. The major adjustment I made was to make the hips do more of a slow in/slow out at the top of their motion. I think it gives it a bit more weight to swing faster through the bottom of the arc. He still looks like he's hitting a rock at the top, though. I also exaggerated the lagging of the feet as the lift up and down.

I did this in layers so I could study and tweak the motion of each body part separately without having to erase over something that was already working:

By keeping things on layers I could also experiment with offsetting the timing of the body parts. Here the hips have been advanced one frame. I think it gives the head a more bouncy look:

John K says he's waiting for 20 people to do this lesson before he goes on to post lesson #2. I think I'm only the 10th, so there may be some delay. Back to bouncing balls...

update... Bosko in glorious nuanced shades of gray:

Friday, August 10, 2007

a side of dogs

A few more stabs at developing a proper side view of the dog I sketched previously. I haven't really captured it yet.

But I've been reading John Kricfalusi's musings on teaching character animation and he's suggesting starting with a VERY generic rubber hose character, so I may do that rather than try to go with a unique distinctive one.

Pears and hoses, I can draw those maybe.

Monday, July 30, 2007

designing dogs

Knowing I'll have to eventually draw something more than bouncing balls, I've been practicing headshapes in the style of the Preston Blair book:

And Preston Blair pear-shaped bodies:

I want to come up with a character that follows the generic construction principles but isn't a mouse, a duck or a rabbit. I've been thinking "dinosaur", but haven't got it "cute" yet:

And it's a bit too complex for quick drawing.

Something else I've been thinking of is a dog that's almost all head, kind of like Bandit on "Jonny Quest" but even less body.

Obviously this is all still in the larval stage. Lots of work to do.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Bouncing Ball

My first bouncing ball of the new era. A bouncing ball with no squash and no stretch. This is all on 2's except for the last micro bounces at the very end.

I think the 2's made it harder to get a feeling of impact on the bounces. It's also difficult bringing the ball to a stop. The tiny adjustments you can make in CG are tough to do in hand-drawn.

I'll give myself a "B" on this one. :-)

Friday, July 13, 2007

Why 2D?

I've been doing 3D animation for some years now, but I still admire the freedom of hand drawn character animation. I'm going to start repurposing what I've learned about timing, posing and animation principles while doing CG and see what I can do in 2D.

I will be using some 2D computer tools like Flash, ToonBoom Studio, Plastic Animation Paper and various paint programs to enable the process, but I won't be using any automated inbetweening powers they may have. This will be all about drawing by hand.

I studied at in 2005-2006 and learned quite a bit, but did all my exercises in 3D CG. I saw a few students stick their toe in 2D there, but they retreated to CG pretty fast. It just wasn't possible to get a weekly assignment done well and on time in 2D.

But I don't have any deadlines now, so I'm going to start by redoing my AnimationMentor assignments in hand-drawn animation. This was my first bouncing ball at AnimationMentor:

I think I can do a bouncing ball in 2D. But full blown character animation wasn't far down the line. We'll see how it goes!