Monday, October 29, 2012

Class 1 Week 2

What's that? Week 2? And you have an actual assignment?!!? That's right! Woohoo for poses!
You'll undoubtedly get some great feedback from a lot of fellow students...well here's what I've learned:

Keep it simple. “But Brandon, everyone has already told me this.” Yeah yeah I'm beating a dead platypus...(Don't worry it's not Perry the Platypus...ok I'm not beating anything). Seriously though. When I started doing poses last term, I wanted to be different. I wanted to be special (ha special ed...) anyway... Go for. Be unique, but don't be complicated. I was always complicated with my poses and that hurt me in the long run because it took so much more to polish.

Here's Anders Ancker reminding you to keep it simple:

Check out my reel: 

Progress Reel

Skip ahead to the end and check out my poses. Some of them are pretty cool...But some of them are simply too complicated and don't portray the mood strongly. I learned from this and you can too!

-Silhouettes are king! Long Live Silhouettes! Ok. Here's a nice trick. When you have your character all posed and want to check out it's silhouette, hit 7 on your keyboard. This won't work if you've place lights in your scene, so put lights in afterward. All you will see is your character's silhouette. Ask yourself:

-Does this pose make sense? Ask a friend or family member if they can figure out what is going on. Afterall, ultimately the audience is who will see your finished product when you're the best animator at Pixar (someday, right :) ?)

-Can you tell where the limbs are going and coming from? Sometimes if you check your silhouette, an arm might look like it's growing from the head!!! THE HORROR!

--Is there any twinning? “What's twinning Brandon?” Well...when a mama Spline and a papa Spline love each other very much...I mean uh... never mind. Twinning basically means symmetrical. You want the pose to be interesting. For more on some definitions check this out:

-cliché or not cliché? That is the question. I told you this last week, but I'll say it again. Clichés are not the end of the world. Sure you don't want your pose to look like everything else. But clichés are what DEFINE a mood. So find a way to integrate cliché while still making it your own.

-Oh and Line of did I almost forget? If you can draw a nice smooth curve thru your pose and it makes sense, you're on track. Here's an example:

I'm sure I missed about 100000000 things that you'll need to know...but hey I'm still learning too.

-Have fun! And draw A LOT! Check out the Pratt Twins's blog, they have a great posting about poses.

Message me if you have any questions! I have my own projects, but If I can help I will :)


Class 1 Week 1

Welcome to Animation Mentor! This is going to be one heck of a journey! Class one is full of fun and challenges, and at times things may seem too easy, other times it may seem too hard. But the best hing to keep in mind is that you are here to learn and improve everyday! 

You'll get a lot of advice in class 1, so be sure to take notes. 

Here are some tips from me:

-Keep it simple! Let's say you have to do your devastated pose in a few weeks. And you want to do this crazy complex pose that no one has ever seen before. Well that can work...but for now try and simplify your poses and animations. It will give you less of a headache.

-Stay away from cliches...or don't! This may sound silly, so let me explain. You'll hear in news items, or in lectures to stay away from cliches. For animation, this rule is much easier to follow, but for your poses, I urge you not to completely ignore cliches. Why? Well each pose you do is based on a mood. And that mood is defined by it's cliches. I made the mistake of ignoring cliches for my poses at times, and because of that some of them were hard to understand. So be original, but make sure your poses show that emotion.

-Listen to your Mentor! Your mentor is your director. If your mentor gives to advice on how to fix your project, follow that instruction. Now you may disagree with your mentor. And that's great! Bring it up in your Q&As! Your mentor is a human too and can make mistakes. So discuss what's going thru your mind.

-Take notes! I have a handy composite notebook that I take notes on. I take notes from the lectures, from advice I get from other students, my peer buddy, and obviously my mentor. I also write down questions I have throughout the week which leads me into the next point...

-Ask questions! You will only learn by asking questions. If you never challenge what is taught, or never ask for clarification about something you don't understand, then you will struggle. I would recommend that you have at least three questions each week for your mentor that you can ask during your Q&A's. It helps a lot!

-Get involved! Watch every video on the site you can find. Watch as much student work you can. ALWAYS watch your classmates' work. And...
Give feedback! If you GIVE feedback, you will GET feedback. Not only that, but you will be training your eyes and improving your skills.

-Read! Make sure to check out, “The Illusion of Life” by Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnson. Also “the animator's Survival Kit” by Richard Williams. I also recommend checking this page for other resources:

Academic Support

Especially the book you can buy on Anamie by Wayne Gilbert. It's a great drawing book.

-HAVE FUN! Make sure you have fun when you work. Sure it may be hard at times, but if you have fun, you can work through it. If you aren't having any fun, discuss it with your mentor. Get ideas from them.

-Finally, work hard. Take pride your work, but don't be prideful. There is a difference. Taking pride in your work means that you do your best and don't give up. You work hard and accept criticism. Take that criticism and make your work better.

If you have ANY questions, send me a message! I may not know the answer but I'll do my best :)
Good luck here at AM, and happy Animating!