Originally posted on the MA Character animation course blog, published June 25th 2015.
During this project I realised how mush easier animation was for me than anything else.
Since it took me so long to get the story right it took all my focus and I didn’t start fully animating until after the rough crit in early June. It didn’t take me long, just over a week to have all the rough animation ready, but I still look back and is a bit annoyed with myself for not starting earlier. My story wasn’t complete, but the first 30 seconds was never changed after the very first crit. So I could have half of the movie done sooner. I think I stuck a bit too close to the working tactic of finishing the story first, then keyframe, then inbetween and then color and finish. I see now that at some point I can step away from that even if it’s for some scenes just to get some progression.
All over I didn’t have many problems with doing the animation or finding reference, I was a bit too late to get hold of the actors, but I had friends from class to help me out and I also recorded myself. My biggest problem was the “drunk nurses leaving the hospital”-scene as there where no less than ten characters in the picture at the same time! But I eventually found a solution as the freshers in my student residence were finishing their courses and wanted to celebrate that, and after one Saturday evening in the common room I had the reference I needed.
I decided to keep the new nurses’ movement to a minimum as the old ones in front was going to be most prominent anyway. This worked out fine. I’m still very satisfied with it even though it was some of the most complicated pieces I’ve ever animated and cleaned up. And I know for sure that I will NEVER animated a scene with this many characters again.
I can feel my heart rate rising just looking back at this…
I was considering doing my project in CelAction at first, but as time was running out and I still hadn’t started I knew that I needed to speed up my work flow. Through the year and from when I’ve been working with the second years I’ve got very good feedback on my quick and good work on animation. And after good experiences with TvPaint I decided in last minute to animate fully in TvPaint. I’m glad I did now. I’ve come to love TvPaint and it’s facilities and I prefer it much over Adobe Flash which I’ve used the most in my work up until now, on my green screen for instance. And Photoshop in which I did the cleanup for my Madam Butterfly, which was a horrible animation tool in my mind.
So in conclution, it worked out more or less, but I will plan better next term and take this experience with me. I will also by TvPaint and plan to make that my preferable tool for my next projects unless I manage to learn CelAction through the summer. Then I’ll have to think about it cause I would love to not have to spend time on clean up and coloring.