Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Douglas Adams competition - complete!

We've reached the end!
Our entry for the Literary Platform Douglas Adams competition is now complete and entered.

Here is our wonderful video. If you'd rather watch it at the Literary Platform instead of course, there's the added benefit of being able to give it an up vote (you know you want to)...
Anyway, enough shameless self advertising, here's the video:

I worked on this video alongside Faye WombwellBecky BurstAdam Poole and Chloe Brown, and I'm very pleased with the outcome.

The brief was to illustrate the words of Douglas Adams using all or part of the provided recording. I think we've illustrated well and in an interesting way. We've also put in a fair few little gags and references to the works of Adams which will hopefully be a bit of fun for those who spot them. To keep with the spirit of Adams's writing we wanted to keep the animation light hearted and humorous, and I think we've done that too.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Good as completed Caveman scene.

This is my cavemen scene, more or less completed. The audio track still needs to be cut together when all the animated segments are stitched together and there are no sound effects until we get the sound studio on Thursday, but other than that I'm saying this scene is as done as it's going to be.
Unless I desperately need to kill some time before the holidays.

Some runs for Surge

Here are some runs I've done for Surge and composited over some stop-mo animation of the tripod done by Daniel James and fire compositing by Chris Benn.
I used the Cutter as a mask in Toonboom to make the runners look like they were passing behind the Tripod and the scenery.
[Ok... Video wont upload right now, not sure why. I'll try again sometime soon.]

Monday, 19 March 2012

Dodo Update

This is the scene I've helped on for Don't do the Dodo so far.
Of the animated dodos I've animated all the dodos except the bicycle dodos, tree launched dodo and constantly flapping at the front dodo. I was told to not worry about the layer order for now and other people are animating the remaining dodo in this scene.

This is all the work I'm doing on this project for now but I will post again if I do do any more and I'll post a link to the final version when it's finished.

edit: no sound on this one, sorry. I might put up another one with sound later, but I'll probably just wait for the final version.

Cavemen Test

This is a test render of the animation I've done for my scene on the Douglas Adams competition so far. There's still a fair bit to do and there's no sound with this test (though it is all synced up) but getting there. Update soon with the (hopefully) completed scene.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Animating Dodos for 'Don't do the Dodo'

I've been given some dodo to animate!
Don't do the Dodo is a project in the hands of S.T.A.G animations for Don't do the Dodo, which supports grassroots projects and spreads awareness of endangered species. The animation is narrated by Bill Oddie and is a very exciting project.

The dodos I've been working on so far are the balloon dodo, the cliff bouncing dodo, head in the sand dodo and the cute little dodo behind the big flappy one (by Matt Garbutt, who also animated the tree-flung dodo). All the cutout dodos were designed and rigged by Emma Cosgrove based on the dodos in this book by Don't do the Dodo.

There's still some work to do on these so I'll be updating here soon with some tweaks and changes and possibly a dodo or more come to life.

Run cycle and rendering tests for Surge

Here are some more run cycles I've done as a test for Zeke Ares's project, Surge.

Since the majority of the film will be set at night my previous dark pencil and charcoal renderings aren't really suitable, they'll blend into the background too much. To counter this Zeke asked if I could try giving them brighter highlights and this is what I've done.

Run cycle rendering test for Surge from Dan Roberts on Vimeo.

Since I only had white paper I used pencil as normal for these and drew the highlights on with a darker pencil, then inverted the colours and tweaked the levels. I'm pretty happy with the result and when I've spent a little more time on the animations come the final version I think it will fit in really well.

Even more on James

I really should have updated this a while ago: James the Elephant rigs.
I built these rigs which may or may not be used, currently I'm making no more changes to them until I know they are needed.


Neatened up rig with IK on the legs, tail and head. I also made several attempts at an IK trunk but I think hand drawn would look better than any of them - I've put some pics at the end.
Part way through a walk:

The trunks:

One thing I am particularly pleased with in this rig is the seamlessness of the outline. To achieve this I separated the outline and fill of various parts (such as each leg or trunk joint) and made sure all the outline parts had a greater depth than all the fill parts of that leg or trunk.
I then parented the fill parts together as normal and parented each outline part to it's own respective fill part.
All this means is that the outline will never have gaps or overlap other parts, and I think it results in a nice smooth look and a slightly squishy feel which suits the comedic elephant.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

More on James

These are some new character designs I've done for James the Elephant, one of the projects I'm working on for my Assistant Animator brief. Currently I'm working on rigging up a test of James in ToonBoom, update soon.

 These are the some quick tree sketches (of African trees) and cut out parts for some 'dancing' trees I came up with. Since this is a musical animation I thought it might be nice to have some background parts bob around to the beat and put forward this idea, we're gonna see how it goes...