Sorry, time has been a blur, and I’ve progressed quite a bit with the shot since last time, so I will try to recap a bit. I had hoped to get a bit of feedback from the one and only Dimos Varysellas, but Dimos is going through some medical troubles, so I want to wish him the best of health. He did actually give me a few notes between Part 2 and this. What some would probably call Blocking Plus, he gave me some input and I was happy to get it and so I treked on. Thankfully, I still managed to get some feedback from peers on the Animation Mentor Alumni Website. So I took my blocking and kept working at it.
I for the most part was good about doing a new video file each time I started new animation session. I say for the most part because apparently I do not seem to have an intermediate file between blocking and first going to spline. So I’m sorry for that, but it’s ok, because it all changes anyway.
So, if I remember correctly, this is me taking it out of blocking and converting to Spline. I’ve progressed much further in this shot and I look back on this and shudder a bit haha. So I believe I uploaded this on the AM website for some feedback when Jeffrey Star, a former classmate of mine gave me some good notes, including wanting to see the brows and eyes give the “Wait, what?!” a bit more pop. So I began refining things a bit. This would sort of be like when you get the green light, I guess. The story is being told through the poses, now it’s time to finesse it and make it look good.
So this video shows me bringing in some of the facial expressions while still refining the body mechanics of the shot. Some of the notes received from this shot were that people werent really feeling the emphasis of the “W” sound in both Wait, and What? as well as some of the leaning back looking/feeling stiff. So onward I kept pressing.
This next iteration was again, just more and more refinement. As I said, whenever I would start working on it I would change the render number and go at it. And the amount of time being worked varied so sometimes a lot of visual progress would be made, but other times you might not notice anything. However, you’ll notice the character is textured. I was just playing around with Bodypaint and got all of that in there. Maybe I am the only one, but I really think a well lit, textured scene helps your animation. I know, I know, I’ve heard the “You can’t polish a turd” speech, and I fully agree with it, I’m not saying They will hire you as an animator for your texturing abilities, but some places do appreciate the effort. And while, you cannot polish a turd, if you texture a turd to look more like corn on the cob, well, I bet you it would be a lot more pleasing on the eye than the other. Still a turd of course, but a step above a normal untexturered/unrendered turd, no? I think the jeans look great if I do say so myself, and one of my favorite movies/characters is on his chest. The one and only Walter Sobchek from The Big Lebowski with the phrase “You are entering a WORLD OF PAIN” on it. I relish the ability to do that right now because I know that if I’m at a studio I won’t have that freedom anymore, so enjoy it while you can!
Ok, so flash forward(really, it’s backwards now) to Saturday Morning the weekend before SIGGRAPH. It’s time to get my Demo Reel ready for Burning(an infuriating process to be discussed in the next post). So I decided to light the scene(as well as refine some other little bits) and texture the walls. I rendered the bad boy out and added it as the first shot in my reel. A risky move, but I liked it, I thought it was good, and I think it was the right decision(more on that in the next post). I figure I’m all said and done, but then I get some very good, detailed notes from another AM Alum and current Walt Disney Animator, Malcon Pierce. Just as I finished my DVD Burning I saw them. I thought I was done, but you know what? I think I agreed with everything he said, and am now still working on refining the shot, even with the damn thing on my reel now.
This profession is a learning process, and I am enjoying learning. So that will do it for part 3. At some point, there will be a part 4, and God willing, it will be the last part. And next time I do this on a new shot(and believe me I intend to) I will be a bit more dilligent about it.