Picking the right animator


One of the main objectives of this project is to create your character in the style of a golden aged animator. If you’ve been following my blog, you’ve probably seen some of the animators that I’ve looked at, but the ones that have stood out for me the most for me would be Tex Avery and Chuck Jones, mostly because of their work on Looney Tunes. I really like their work as well as their style (even though it’ll take a while for me to adapt) and I really think that it would be the best style to fit my character.

I’ve been looking at the character Chuck Jones created called ‘Goosmar’, the reason for this is because of the character’s height and build as well as his movements are somewhat similar to what I want from my character. So I plan to use the character as a reference for when I make the turn around and poses.

As for the rest of the project I will begin the backstory of my character, as well as drawing up the poses this weekend.

Gossamer 2

Drawing with programming? WHAAAAAAAA!

Animating Code

Over this past week we have been learning about using code within Maya. We had been using Python which was pretty easy to grasp, it’s very different in terms writing it than other programs I used at college like C++ and Flash, because most of the time you’ll have to use ‘{‘ or ‘(‘ before entering any codes, but with Python it’s simply just making an indent.

One of the tasks we had to do was to create a simple character using Python… easier said than done. Yes Python is easy to use, but because coding is heavily integrated with using Maths to solve problems, it was a little tricky to figure out where on the axis the shapes will be and how big they were.

Animating Code Mouse

Alter Ego Evaluation

After finishing this project I can confidently say that I have created a fly-through of 4 rooms that I’ve based of my character Ray Sunshine, and that I have stuck to the brief accordingly by producing a 1 minute animation at 24FPS in the correct format, as well as upload sketches that lead up to the final product and a storyboard that clearly outlines my plan for the animation.

I believe that my strengths within this project were definitely the modelling and animating of the animation. I managed to quickly get to grips with the software, mostly because of my 3D background at college, as well as get to grips with animating the camera and utilising the keyframes to my advantage if I made a mistake. Although I wish that I used the smooth tool a lot more in environment, to make it look a lot neater and smooth, than just boxy and flat. And also I wish I could of added a lot more objects to environment especially in the second room, like a ventilation shaft or a poster or two, but because of time constraints had to cut back on some objects that I originally planned on adding in the 4 rooms.

As for my weaknesses within this project, I think that the lighting of the environment as well as the Time Management were the weakest. With the lighting I had mostly been using Maya’s Software Render to see what my scene looked like with the lights, eventually I switched to Mental Ray because it gave the render a lot more detail than Maya did, and when I did it made my lights look a lot darker than I originally set them as well as making the spotlight I put in the shrine look foggy and dirty than I had intended, so that meant I had to brighten and change most of the lights within my scene before I could render, although as you can see in the final animation I didn’t do to good of a job. As for my Time management for the animation I had a knack for putting off production on the modelling because I wanted to make sure that I had everything thought out before I went diving into creating, which eventually resulted in me running out of time and had to cut short on what to model and what not to model.

If I was to re-do this project or continue with the project in my spare time, I would definitely make sure to experiment and constantly check with the lighting to remain on it being too dark for the render as well as seeing what Maya can do with its many lighting settings. I would also make sure I don’t spend too much time with the planning stages of the environment as it will cut down the time I have left to even make it in Maya.

Overall a good attempt at the project.

I can’t believe I got it done?!


So out sheer determination I managed to get all the lighting, Animating and remaining texturing finished today, despite how ill I feel I’m very impressed with myself.

The animating side of Maya did prove it’s difficulties, mainly because I was an idiot the majority of the time and moved the camera accidentally because I thought that I was in a perspective view. I found it most easy when I only used the camera to look and move around because it’s simply click and drag. The keyframe system was pretty straightforward to use, despite how sometimes I would keyframe the wrong object and mess up the timeline, but they were easily fixable.

All that’s left to do now is render, but at the moment I’m having to adjust all the lighting and shadow effects that I have because, the whole time I was using the Maya Software Render, instead of the Mental Ray which looked at lot cooler than Maya did. The Light that was most effected by this was the shrine light, because it looked very foggy and very dirty, something that I definitely need to fix before rendering.



Some thoughts and Doubts about the project


The more I progress with this project, the more I begin to doubt myself whether or not I’m going to reach the deadline or even be pleased with my work. I’m pleased with some of the work I’ve produced in this environment like the barrels and the till on the counter, but what’s upsetting to me the colourization of the environment, mostly the top floor than the bottom, and the bottom floor only has flat colours in it. I guess the reason for this is because I wanted to make this project as a simple as possible but I still kept clinging onto the idea of using actual textures. I may change my mind about the textures and use simple colours, but I’ll wait till I’ve finished the lighting.

Which is another thing that worries me because I’ve just got onto to the lighting, sure I may be nearly done with it, but they’re just simple bright lights that I haven’t adjusted yet, which to me makes the render look ugly and yellow. I hope that I can get the  lighting done quickly tomorrow so I can start animating the same day, because I’m running out of time, and it’s driving me insane.

I think what I need to do is relax, take a step back and think

That way I can find a way to finish this bullshit



Texturing The environment

Texture 1

Texture 2

Now that the modelling was complete, I’m now moving onto texturing. So far it’s a very easy process, you just simply select the model you want to texture, assign a new material, apply the material you want (in my case Lambert) and then apply the texture you want whether it’s a simple colour or a texture you have saved to your folders. I’ve found that this process is a lot easier to use than Lightwave, as it has a lot more steps involved because Lightwave is split into two programs (Layout and Lightwave).

So far I’ve near enough textured the top floor of the environment and I’m now gradually moving to the second, and once this is done I can move onto the lighting and animating of the scene.

Texture 3

Texture 4

Almost done modeling

3D 1

I’m making good progress with the 4 rooms, I’ve finished the 2 main rooms (the store and bedroom) all I need to is to add a few items to the restroom and bedroom as well as sort place the milk in the glass vase and make it transparent. After this I can get onto texturing, which I plan to use texture from the internet for the majority of the environment, but with a few of the objects I want to maybe apply some of my own textures, like with some of the sale signs as well adding posters to the walls.
3D 2

3D 3

3D 4

3D 5

I’m hoping to get the modelling and texturing done by this week so I can get the animating done next Monday/Tuesday so I’ll have a day to render it. The reason I say Monday or Tuesday is that I also want to record some audio and sound effects for animation so it doesn’t sound dull and that I can animate over it.

More 3D

Environment 1

So far so good I’ve started to add some of the features that will be in my environment, but I still have a ways to go like some of the objects on the shelf as well as making the walls for the shrine room.

I’ve also device a little step-by-step walkthrough of how the animation will be played out. My idea is to have a character that works for my Origins idea (Ray Sunshine) that will walk through the shop attending their duties, to then tumble onto Ray’s bedroom and milk shrine. I will most likely have to record some audio for the characters reaction to some of the things that they’ll see, but first I need to finish the modelling before anything else, once that’s done I’ll a booth and do some Voice Acting, as well as start texturing and animating. CAN’T WAIT!!!

Environment 4

A Bed 😀

Environment 3

A Wardrobe 😀

Environment 2

Some Cans on a Table 😀

Exciting shit right here…

Getting into the swings of things

3D Stuff 2

So far, so good. I’ve managed to add most of the objects that I planned to add to the top floor plan as well as starting on creating the walls for the lower floor. I’m love what has been made so far and I think I’m making good progress, but as I step back and look at, I think that the room itself is too small or that some of the objects in the environment are too big. To fix this I’ll either increase or shrink the size of the room/objects, but overall good so far, and I hope by Friday I’ll have most of the environment complete, or nearly finished.

3D stuff