Monday, May 31, 2010

Drawing Studies

Sorry for the poor quality. I'm going to scan these in tomorrow, but in case I forget to put them up on the blog here they are now while I remember.

It's a bit of a drawing project but It's not really experimental as I'm using these to work from for Animal Firm so I can't be too abstract or anything.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Final Video

The top one is a youtube export, the bottom one is a yahoo export.

Apologies for the rubbish quality, but we had to reduce it to this size so it would upload on the learningspace, and here too.

The high quality version is on a DVD that we'll play at the screening.

I think the best bits are the acutal drawings, and some of the animation,
and the weakest bits are probably the sound. That shows because we spent weeks on drawings and animation and 2 days on sound. However its done and this is an animation course not a sound course. It's just something else to learn from I guess.

Also my ambiant town night sounds got edited out! or forgot to be put in. And I think the tune at the end should be at the start too, and I was against putting in credits at the end. It's a bit on an unnecissary 20 seconds in my opinion. But well, that's why its a group project and not my project I guess. I got outvoted.

But at the end of the day. It's done and it looks good and I'm happy enough and I'm releived and Horray!

And we better get an A* for effort here. We're all exhausted.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Comfortably Numb

These are all the clips that I animated for the final film. They have the "What's" but no other sound as that's in the process of being edited in right now this very moment!

The one I'm most proud of is the Club Dance sequence because I accidentally got a good finger snap movement with Cherie Blair and Ronald Reagen's night fever is pretty good.

I didn't model or design any of the characters but I did design and make all of the backgrounds and environments.

My Animation defiantly got better as the days went on. The hug is obviously the worst. However it's partly due to the modeling of the shoulder and arm (which is in one part instead of two) So it looks a bit odd and hasn't really worked.

In terms of the Jobs of animation Ryan mostly did the walk cycles and movements and I focused on gestures and pans/cuts.

There are some bits where things look a bit weird, especially when you're starting at them one frame at a time hour after hour but to be honest I'm far too tired and worn out to go back and fiddle with them especially since they're barely noticeable on the first few watches through.

I'm more proud of the backgrounds I think they worked better. And it's quite nice to see it all come together. And on the plus side it all works and flows well enough, and I can now confidently 'tween' in Flash and make motion clips and all that.

The last job I have now is sound editing. I've downloaded stuff from various copyright free websites and we've recorded the sounds for the characters, and once the pictures are edited I can add in the sound.

It's been incredibly tiring, annoying, frustrating, sometimes pointless, repetitive and slow work. And just down-heartening when your work gets edited out...but it has to be done.

I'm being honest. I haven't enjoyed making it. I've enjoyed watching back the clips at the end of the day and thinking....thank F*** that's over and it worked. I like that feeling of relief.

It's been fun working with everyone too, we've been a relaxed but hard working group and everyone has pulled their weight. So I'm happy. It's also nice seeing what everyone else has done at the end of the day.

So all the Flash crashes...the arm that decides to go over here now, the random crazy eyes that appear in the middle of the clip, the jigs, the foot that just doesn't look right. It's all worth it at this point. It's satisfying knowing you worked your butt off 7 hours a day for 4 weeks for 2 minutes of film.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Dancey Dancey


Two dancers. Ronald Reagen and Michael Jackson

Monday, May 24, 2010

Who I'd Cast

I decided to do a fun mini project and decide who I'd cast as my characters (I started off trying to make them all british actors but I don't know enough to be able to cast them)

Luzon - Terrence Howard (Crash, The Hunting Party)

King - Stephen Graham (This is England - Combo)

Repartee - Joseph Gordon Lewitt (Brick, 500 Days of Summer) - Maybe to pretty? But he reminds me a lot of Heath Ledger and I think he could pull a similar performance, especially after I saw him in G.I. Joe.

Cezanne - David Wenham (Faramir, Lord of the Rings)

The Canadian - Laurence Fishburne (The Matrix, Mystic River)

Father Columbide - Tim Robbins (The Shawshank Redemption, The Hudsucker Proxy)

Fantail Mary - Olga Kurylenko (Max Payne)

Police Captain 5 - Sean Bean (to play a role similar to that in Equilibrium, a badguy questioning his morals)

Talon Commander Vasari - Denzel Washington

Willaim of Orange (Leader of the Bronzewings) - Vinnie Jones (Who else?)

The Great Hijra (Leader of the Rollers) - Djimon Honsou (Blood Diamond)

Tondo (A roller gangmember) - Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire)

Cromwell the Rat (the Dictator) - Paul Giamatti (Shoot 'em Up, Sideways)

Hackney 147 (Commander of the Anglo Peak Guard) - Tim Roth

Sangallo the Younger (A government mole for the Talon) - Jesse Eisenburg (Adventureland)

Young King - Jack O'Connell (Cook - Skins)

Young Luzon - Elliot Ruiz (The Battle for Haditha)

Young Repartee - Joseph Gorden Lewitt (He's sort of young and old at the same time so I figured he could do both)

Young Cezanne - Not sure, need someone who emmits intellegence and toughness at the same time, and is also 20 or younger. Was thinking Jake Gylenhaal but he's a little too old compared to Jack O'Connell and Elliot Ruiz

Saturday, May 22, 2010

qucik drawings

There's there's 3 panels between this one and the next one that I haven't finished yet. This is just a bank heist scene with the 4 pigeons (Whilst Cezanne is alive, so it's in the past) when they used to rob banks. I'm just using that as the explanation for why King ended up going to prison and Luzon ended up racked with guilt and those two leaving ment no-one kept an eye on Repartee so he went more and more mad and Cezanne was forgotton about.

Cezanne = the Mastermind/Brains
King = the muscle.
Repartee = the safe/vault breaker/ explosives
Luzon = Weapons and Getaway Driver.

I'll have to scan this in, it didn't photograph well. This is actually with the lights and flash turned off.

Terminator Exoskelleton Rat. I'm going to do this again and actually look at a Rat's skelleton I think, the Terminator is obviously for humans.

Mech Rat.

A Police Mouse with gas canister. Not finished yet really. I might work on all these again in photoshop later.

The Canadian (A bear) obviously much much bigger than any other character. Also much older.


What? - Did voice and sound recording today. I'm finishing a few shots of animation and then I'm moving on to post-production. Which shall be odd because we haven't finished production yet. But that's because of the short time scale and Andy said that might happen. We're just about on scheduale. It's hard to tell because nothing takes the amount of time you think it will, some take longer and some are done quicker. And there are a lot of problems that come up. For example today I was trying to animate almost a whole conversation through eye movement, but on our 2D models the eyes didn't animate properly and other parts of the faces looked odd when moved so I spent nearly a whole hour re-drawing Katie's face in Flash so I could work with it, which was an unforseen but still a bit annoying error. However it's overcome and that's the main thing and I'm not one to go pointing fingers or complain. Well...I'll moan a bit and then get on with it.

Stress is starting to kick in. I came in on thursday thinking it was wednesday and worked on the What project all day a bit annoyed that no one else turned up. But obviously it was because it was the drawing seminar. And it was only when I started to leave I noticed the date on the computer. So on the one hand its bad I missed the seminar on the other hand I accidently got ahead on my personal tasks for the What project. Everyone else seems to be getting motivated more now too. I stopped setting deadlines about a week ago because things would change and take longer than expected and so on so there just seemed no point in getting on peoples cases for things out of our control. But there's nothing like an Ultimate Deadline to get people moving :P

I've also finalised the general plot for my Animal Firm thing. I know we're not required to come up with a story but I got so into it that I have. It's also made it clearer for me knowing in terms of designing ther characters because I know what they'll be thinking and all that. I was talking to other people about it too and we all agree its actually a shame we haven't got the oppertunity just yet to actually make these into films. I'd really like to see my idea evolve and be critized (constructivly obviously) and realised.

Bassically it's about the last 4 pigeons in existance. The place setting is a post-apoloclpyic London divded into two halves. The Never and the Anglo Peak. (inspired by the 2002 film Equilibrium) In Anglo Peak resides a Facist and Totalitarian society of rodents and "prey" with a paramilitary police that frequently acts outside of morals and law and in their own interests. They resist the Squabs. Squab is a derogatory term for the Birds (it's actually a baby Pigeon or Dove) that inhabbit the Never.

The birds are divded into two gangs called The Birmingham Street Rollers and the Bronzewings. The Rollers are African and Carabian immigrant birds who are into drugs and general gang-ness. They operate like gangs of today using runners to carry weapons and fight over terriorty. The Bronzewings who will be small British birds like sparrows and bluetits etc. They claim that they fight for an equal Britain and safer future and democracy etc, but really just like a good fight, especially against the Rollers who they say are corrupt.

Then there's the Talon Company who are Birds of Prey. They're veterns of the 'war' and are few in number, hunted by the Anglo Peaks. They actually fight for what the Bronzewings say they're fighting for. The difference is the Talon Company arn't corrupted by the violence and all that.

The last 'gang' are Father Columbide (the family name for pigeons and doves) and the Hitmen. He's the last known dove and leads a pack of dogs who are contract killers. They used to be slaves of The Canadian.

The Canadian is a bear and ex mob boss from the old days. His age is unkown except that it's very old. It's rumored he has magical powers. He's become a sort of legend and it's not known if he's actually still alive.

Then there's the 4 pigeons.
Cezanne. The story starts with his murder/death/sucide (you're not supposed to know. I don't know so how can you?)
"Bleeding Heart" Luzon. is the oldest, ex-army/bodyguard/hired killer who's turned to religion.
King - almost as old as Luzon, ex-con, hot blooded, based on Marv from Sin City.
Repartee - ex-mental patient. calls himself the orginized chaos. based on the Joker from Dark Knight. (If you don't know repartee is a synonym of joke)

All of them have spent time serving or locked away in Anglo Peak and have an intricat knowldege of it's design which is why they're able to elude capture.

The basic plot is, the 4 pigeons used to rob banks but after an "incident" quit and went their serperate ways. Some years later Cezanne is killed and the 3 are brought together to find out what happened.

I've thought of a few twists and stuff too.
A red herring - The Canadian killed Cezanne in order to use the knowledge of the pigeons to bring down Anglo Peak.

What will come to light - The Canadian is the leader of the Talon Company who arn't as good as myth tells but have far greater numbers than first thought. And it's true that he has mastered magic.

However what the whole thing is really about is the 3 pigeons and how they cope with being the last 3 left. after the London Pigeon Wars. (yeah I might knick that)

I want it to be kind of dark so I'd like to show that over time Luzon becomes overcome with guilt and finding redemption for his killings and begins to despise himself.
King slowls sees more and more red and loses control.
Repartee becomes consumed with madness and turns into a golem-like creature.

There's also another character i'm still thinking about which is a Police Captain/Commander who turns out to have a soft side despite heavy scars and one eye.

The police rodents are based on Combines from Half Life 2.
And the police "S.W.A.T / Armed response units" are Rats with terminator like exo-skelletons and mini-mechs a la Mech Warrior and the Matrix Revolutions.

As previously mentioned the whole style is based on Sin City, it's always raining. I've also taken a few things from films like Blade Runner and Children of Men and Watchmen (More the style of storytelling and drawing than the plot). Oh and Schindler's List too because the only colour I'm using is red.

So i'll be uploading some drawings I've been doing for that. I haven't gotten too far with actual drawings because most of my time is devoted to the What project. But after the 28th it's all go for Animal Firm.

Monday, May 17, 2010


An update on the what project.

We're on schedulale I think. Although jobs have chopped and changed quite a lot. Charlie and I have been the ones in the studio every day. What I don't get is what all the other groups are doing? If anything. We only see 2 or 3 other 1st years in the studio. I don't get it, are they all working at home? It doesn't matter it's just a curious wondering. Because I've been in the studio every day and comming back to the flat physically exhausted I shall be incredibly annoyed if everyone elses's films are better than ours. But as long as the bits I did are good then I guess that's something.

Although I'd rather have a fantastic film.

So I've had to take over sound duties because Ryan has taken on the bulk of the animation. Because, Charlie has spent a lot of time modelling the main character, Dave, and thus unable to model the other characters so I had to do that, which was the Bouncer, 4 Dancers and 2 gay men.

We're modelling it in Illustrator and then animating in Flash. Don't ask, Charlies idea. He's also made us use the pen tool. Which I hate. But hey he's the director so that was his call. I just got on with it.

The trick with it is just making sure it's all on layers so all the parts can move properly. It took me a few goes to get that right.

All of the environments/backgrounds are done. I've only got the exterior of the hospital to finish.

I haven't seen the animation that Ryan has done but apparently we're half way through it.

I just hope it's really good because I want this film to look great. I'm not a fan of how the characters look and if I'd had my way I would've done them differently, but that's all part of working together, so I left it up to the others and sort of took the backgrounds for myself. They won't be paid attention to as much but I enjoyed doing them.

Also I remember hearing stories of how Disney artists put things like penis's into their films because the artists get bored, and I see what they mean. Keep a look out for all the little things I've put in. Nobody has noticed any yet though and what's funny is that they're glaringly obvious to me.

I'll put up more of the finished backgrounds tomorrow. And some character stills that I did.
I'll see if anyone can guess who I've based the dancers on, it'll be a test of my characture skills.

NFL Alphabet Drawings

The NFL Alphabet

All colour was added in afterwards. But I did all the lines without looking at what I was drawing.

A is for Adrian "All Day" PetersonB is for Broadway Joe.

C is for Catch
D is for Dancing

E is for Emmitt Smith

F is for the Fridge

G is for Gatorade

H is for Hat
I is for Icebowl

J is for (Jerry) Rice

K is for (Quarterback) Killa

L is for LT, mark.1 and mark.2.

M is for Mean Joe Green

N is for Night Train Lane

O is for OJ Simpson

P is for Deon "Primetime" Sanders

Q is for Qwest Field (Seattle Seahawks)

R is for Rod Woodson

S is for Walter "Sweetness" Payton

T is for T.O. (Terrell Owens)

U is for Ur Deadsies.

V is for Victory

W is for Weight (132 stone or 1861 lbs)

X if for....? (The only player that has a name begining with X is Xavier Adibi of the Houston Texans and doesn't have any photos or anything so I dunno...Xylaphone?)

Y is for Yoink

X is for....?

Z is for Zelenka.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


So these are all the club scene backgrounds. Where theres empty voids of space is where the characters are going usually. It has been exhausting. Beyond belief. There's 10 interiors here. Each one takes about 20-25 minutes for me to draw and colour by hand. Then another half an hour to fiddle about with and edit on photoshop. So that's roughly 50 minutes- 1 hour per background jpeg. So that's 10 hours.

These didn't take me 10 hours though. Only 5-6. I didn't want to, but I had to settle with a formula. There also isn't time to sort of put the love and care into each one as I'd like. Because it'd take all week to do them, and on this short a scheduale there's just not time.

My short cuts are to not colour in by hand the whole thing. (i'll post some originals later so you can see) Bassically on here, whereever there are big blocks of colour, in real life that's just been left blank. I've also got a set sort of preferences that I do in photoshop on everyone (adds a bit of continuity too) so for example I decrease the brightness by 10 or whatever.

To save more time I've also used the filters on photoshop. Which yes is cheating but it's just easier and quicker and it's really not worth the time and effort to spend 5 hours making amazing textures by hand on a background that's really going to be on-screen for 2-3 seconds.

I mean yeah if someone was paying me and I had 2-3 weeks to do these I would. But I'm not so I haven't.

I think they're alright though. I think I've made quite a funky club. It looks better with the people added on top.

And no it's not fun doing these. I hate bar stools. I hate beer lever things, I hate bottles and I hate those stupid round tables. This is all essential stuff to the film but it's really not interesting to draw. Which is why I've begged Charlie (the director) to leave the shot of the exterior of the hospital in, because that's the only real fun bit I get to draw. Because there is actually something TO draw.

Having said that I quite enjoyed doing the houses and the street. But my gosh do I never want to have to draw a bottle again.

I was thinking then what It must be like working on a really big film. I bet people come up to the animators and background artists etc and say wow it must have been the best fun working on that amazing production! And I bet they all say, NO! It was a F***ing Nightmare!

Because that's what people have been saying to me when looking at these, oh they look good fun and expressive you must have really enjoyed doing those. No...I just want to lie down....go to a happy place...go to a happy place....