Thursday, September 29, 2011

Animating a Shot: Part 4 (End)

A still from a my Dialogue Piece

      It's funny how different you can feel in a span of ten minutes. Before your work is done you are begging, "No more, let it be done... take it away.. take IT AWAY" ..but ten minutes later when you realize you are done, you discover a craving for more; Another idea, another project, the sole possibilities of what might be your next art piece, is too much to bare. You'll find yourself nose first in your sketchbook roughing out and brainstorming your next big idea..

     So here is my finished piece of animation. I do like it but I hate it as well. 3 weeks it took me to complete it and I'm pretty proud that I kept myself to a constant pace of work. I always learn more form completing a piece than I have things to boast about it. IT's always possible to FINISH, just set your mind to it. the more you follow through and finish, the easier it becomes.

-I wont fill in the characters unless I have to, it's a personal choice. I like seeing the lines. I personally like rough animation and pencil test more than I do finished "tied down' drawings of animation.

     -A few explanations of my choices in this animation piece. 

     Why a sunset background? The mood wouldn't be the same with a bright sunny day. The audience would be questioning the setting if I staged it at 4 in the morning, 'Why are they out there that early?' I chose sunset because it is the END of a day. It's when you have to call it quits and accept that theres no more daylight. similar to how my character is accepting that, "It's not for me." He too is accepting his fate.
      When making small decisions such as background and setting, The amount of attention you give each choice can only improve and add depth to your art. It was a conscious choice of mine to keep all shots of my Main character clear and just leave sky in the background. He has his mind made up, he is thinking clearly and knows exactly what he wants. So I chose to represent that with a clear background of the sky.    
     On the other hand I chose to crowd my secondary character's composition as much as I could with out making it obvious. I added power lines in the first shot and a expensive car in the background. Not only do they crowd the composition and made it 'busy' but the power lines added a diagonal that I enjoyed. With the secondary characters next shot I crowded him yet again in the composition. A little bit more to show some progression. I am mainly crowding him to contrast the main character's composition. The secondary character's mood is a bit more sour, aggravated and indifferent. I think a crowded composition with a few diagonals represent that just fine in comparison to the main characters shots.

(diagonals, straights and other visual story telling vocabulary are all real elements that animators, directors, and other artist use when making an art piece. If you didn't know, go out and educate yourself on it. It'll change your perspective on film dramatically)

      I added one subtle thing I'd like to point out. I had established in the opening shots that my main character was Screen Left and my secondary character was Screen Right. But in one shot I switched the main characters orientation in relationship to the screen. I put him on screen right. 'Whats the big fukn deal DANNY!!!!!??' you ask. Well this is an example of emphasizing a point within your shot.
      In the beginning I listened to this dialogue and tried to figure out where was the POINT, where was the Umph and climax of the line of dialogue. It had to be "It's not for me." That part of the dialogue seemed to me to carry the most weight. So without doing a cliche' gesture and over the top acting to point out and say,"Hey everybody look at this, its the most important part!" like how most people tend to do, I took step back and asked how else can I emphasize this part. While taking a story telling class with Mark Andrews back in college I remember one thing story boarders tend to do to emphasize a point in the scene, it was to mess up a pattern or a 'Normality' that has been established. So decided to break up my screen direction. It didn't bring attention to itself or disrupt the flow of the animation piece so it was a success to say the least. It's not a big deal BUT, it does add that layer of complexity to the pice and keeps it from looking bland.

     So I will turning this in for this months contest at If you'd like to participate and vote be my guest. We'll see how it goes. I do not believe it will win on the count of how limited my animation is, people tend to like the cartoony stuff and appealing acting. If I could do this again I would not change it, I felt this line of dialogue called for a limited acing role and performance that in some cases might be more powerful than overacting. What will I work on next? I don't know... actually I do know. But I wont finish it till June or July of next year. 

I hope you enjoyed and found these 4 post helpful or at least insightful. Don't stop sending me work, I always love critiquing and giving advise back to you guys through email. I liked it so much I'm doing it professionally now. I just started at Animation Mentor as a mentor. But you could still send me your work for me to critique here for free :) like how I believe all information should be.

-Daniel Gonzales

1 comment:

  1. Always look forward to your blogs Danny. I really like how typically a lot of people who submit work to the 11 second club tend to move their characters around a lot, and you chose to use minimal movement. It actually came off as a lot stronger than more dramatic movements like hand gestures. Keep up the great work. :)