By some miracle I somehow managed to get five animations done this week. Granted, I did end up making some much more simple animations in comparison to the previous weeks’.
The majority of this week’s animations all have something to do with how I’ve been feeling this week in regards to finals and other fun things. As far as ideation goes, I actually ended up improvising quite a few sequences, so I only have sketches for a couple videos.
I also created a video compiling all of the animations I have done for this project. My creative habit was to spend 30 minutes to 1 hour a day creating a short 1-5 second animation for 5-7 days a week.
Unfortunately, due to being swamped with finals week being in full-swing, I’ve only produced one animation this week.
This video was inspired by a conversation I had with my roommate a few days ago. We noticed a sort of pattern happening with everyone living in our room; we’ve all been enduring some bad circumstances this semester, and as a result, we’ve all but burned our grades to the ground. She’s had some family/financial issues, another roommate has been terribly sick for about two weeks, and I’ve been having some mental health/medication issues on my own regardless of stress levels. Our fourth roommate is a graduating senior, so she’s got her own slew of things to deal with as well.
Anyway, my roommate and I were discussing the feeling of burnout, and trying to come up with an accurate allegory to describe it. She likened it to a “burnt out candle”, like one that’s almost out of wax and just barely has a wick still left. I described it as a dying spark on a “sad cigarette butt before being stomped out.” We ended up agreeing on the latter example.
As far as the video itself goes, I wanted the focus to mainly be on the dying flame/spark, so I found it best to color that part with a bright yellow-to-orange gradient. Originally, I was drawing on Toon Boom’s default grey background when I was picking out the gradient color, so when I first exported the video with a white color-card, the gradient looked to dull for my taste, so I went back changed the color-card to dark grey.
This week I was able to pump out 3 animations, each one 2-5 seconds long.
The first video of the three is based on my sleeping habits as of late. While taking a 2-hour nap once or twice a day is not unusual for me, since around one or two weeks ago, I would just fall asleep regardless of what I was doing, whether I was checking my grades or in the middle of writing a paper. I decided to have the character wrapped in and suspended by poppies since poppies represent dreams, sleep, and eternal sleep.
The second video is about tight deadlines and how they’re going to be the death of me, and probably the student body in general this time of year.
The third video is based on this song that I’ve had stuck in my head for a while. There’s a specific line “The ocean breathes salty, won’t you carry it in?” Granted, I originally misheard the lyric as “The ocean breathes salty, won’t you carry me in”. Oh well.
So, I’ve had a rough start. By this time, I was only able to produce 2 animations, both of which are about 1-2 seconds long.
The first video in particular is based on some personal stuff I had going on since last week; I finally decided to take this medication that was prescribed to me months ago. It’s meant to help me focus and keep my energy levels up, but I held off on taking it for so long because I had no idea how I would physically react to it. The only reason I finally started taking it was because I was already close to failing a number of classes, so I figured things couldn’t get much worse at that point.
My original ideation sketch for that video was this:
The first video was also originally a second or two longer, ending with the full character in frame and the pill rain being more obvious, but I really wasn’t satisfied with how it turned out, hence the cut.
Due to how hectic this week has been for me, I’ve been feeling fairly light-headed at times. So I made the second video a sort of pun on that. I ended up staying more true to the original sketch for this one.
For the Creative Habit Project, I want to do something that will sharpen my animation skills, particularly in 2D and digital media. As much as I love working with traditional materials and doing stop-motion, I really need to not only get used to, but improve my digital work. Plus, I already spent all of last semester doing stop-motion for my experimental animation class.
So my main proposal is to do stream-of-conscious animations! My goal is to do 2-5 seconds of animation a day, with each day being its own sequence. Each animation should not take any longer than an hour to make, so hopefully this exercise will help me become quicker at drawing/animating, since I have bad habit of getting hung up on smaller details(i.e. a single drawing) whenever I animate a larger project.
The bulk of my inspirations stems from various 365-Days-of-Animation-types of projects. One of my personal favorites is Mirai Mizue’s Wonder, in which Mizue animated a second per day.
Another inspiration is a project done by The Brothers McLeod, which is further explained in the video below.
My Creative Habit Project will likely follow the McLeod template closer more than Mizue’s, since I want each day of animation to be its own stand-alone sequence, rather than something working towards one large movie.
Since last week, I’ve picked a poster design and fully rendered the poster in Photoshop. I wanted all the characters to take on the appearance of powerful fighters, but I also wanted to emphasize the idea of conflict and struggle, particularly from the heroes’/protagonists’ point of view. To achieve this, I made the villains larger and more imposing, almost looming over all the other components of the poster. In contrast, I made the protagonists smaller and shifted them towards the bottom of the composition, with all three of them standing almost back-to-back in fighting stances, appearing ready to fight but also unsure of what’s to come.
I ended up creating two posters with different backgrounds. I have sent Dean the Photoshop files for both so he can decide which one to print. The color schemes for both posters were based off a color script posted earlier on the group blog, which can be found here. The first poster has more contrast, as suggested in the aforementioned blog post, while I found the second one’s color scheme reminiscent of the vintage posters used for movies such as Enter the Dragon and The Black Dragon’s Revenge.
The pipeline project for my group was the production of a short, humorous martial arts film that parodies the martial arts genre as a whole. I started out in an acting role early on in the project, charged with the creation of my character and performing a scene of choreography before several scenes had to be cut due to time constraints. From there, most of my contributions to the group ended up being off the set, such as creating early storyboards and the promotional posters seen above. I also managed to provide a light kit for filming over the course of spring break.
This week, I’ve drawn out some thumbnails for promotion posters
I’m still in the process of narrowing down which ones to use. The one in the second row on the left is a general movie poster/advertisement. The first row is made up of posters loosely based on boxing/tournament posters. For the latter three designs, I thought it’d be fun to have the villains posing in wanted posters.