Thursday, June 14, 2012

Animation Mentor Class 6?!

Goodness, it has been a long time since I last posted!  I have been neglecting my blog terribly... :(  The past few month have been crazy, trying to keep up with AM while travelling and being sickly and just regular life stuff as well!  Seeing as how tomorrow is officially my last day as a character animation student at AM (which is super sad and exciting at the same time) I've got a whole lot of updating to do in a very short amount of time....Are you ready for it?  OK HERE WE GO.

Class 6 Week 1

My mentor for this term is the lovely Greg Whittaker!  He has worked as an animator at Dreamworks for quite some time and has worked on a lot of their great films!  He also worked with Chuck Jones prior to working at Dreamworks which is pretty freaking cool.  Greg warned us at the beginning of the term that the 12 weeks would fly by and that we should try to get as much done as possible.

Our assignment for the week was to submit all of our work so far so that Greg could help us narrow down what we might want to put in our demo reels.  He also gave us some feedback on where we should go with some of our shots.

Greg wanted me to quiet down the animation in my two person dialogue so that there wasn't an gesture on every accent in the dialogue and so that the audience would be able to focus on the characters face a bit more.  Also to help boost the intensity of the shot.  He also gave me some notes on animating the line of action in my anim-jam shots.

Week 2

This week I worked on addressing Greg's notes on the first shot my two person dialogue.  I really worked on keeping the character in just a few main poses.  

Week 3

I continued to work on refining and polishing the first shot in my 2 person dialogue.  I also started working on the second shot!

Week 4

More polishing on the 2 person shot this week.  I started working on refining the faces a lot as well.

Week 5

I worked a lot on trying to get the last shot working better this week as well as loosening up the animation of the female character in the 3rd shot.

Week 6

After working on the 2 person shot for what felt like a bajillion years I felt like I needed a bit of a break from it and decided to work on my pantomime shot this week.  I added a bit more to the background to help provide a bit more context for the scene and substituted in a modified bishop character for stewie.  I also tried to make the change in attitude from bored employee to interested in the customer employee read a little better.

Week 7

I replaced the girl stewie and the naked boss with new modified bishop characters this week and fixed the camera framing so that everything fit in it better.  I also worked on strengthening the change in attitude and on making the snap into position once he notices his boss behind him a little smoother.

Week 8

This week was kind of tough because I was out of town the weekend it was due and so I didn't get to work on it as much a I would have liked.  I also forgot to copy his visor file over to my laptop so he was without his hat this week.  Greg wasn't a fan of my very over the top, head whipping take so he suggested that I try to make the change in attitude even clearer and get a good straight in the pose where he really notices her.  I also worked on his face a bit and some very basic blocking of some movement for her.

Week 9

I wanted to get some feedback on my single character dialogue before the end of the term so that I would have some time to implement some of Greg's notes before the class was finished.  I worked on pushing the facial expressions a bit more and some overall polishing.  I also dressed bishop up and gave him a brick wall to talk in front of!  Hurray!

Week 10

Week 10 was a rough week for me.  I was out of town from the saturday night of week 9 until the monday night of week 11 so the only real time I had to work on my animation was a few hours sitting in various airports and a little bit of time at night in my hotel room.  I was able to get a little bit done, but not nearly as much as I would have liked to.  This week we were supposed to get our polishing done on our shots and compile them together with a title and end card for our demo reel.

We also had to do our dvd covers with a shot breakdown to put our demo reels in.  I really picked a great week to go out of town, huh?  Hahaha.

DVD cover

Disc cover and shot breakdown insert.

Week 11

I was actually home this week! Yay!  And boy did I have a lot of work ahead of me... I worked on polishing up all 3 of my shots and trying to cover all of the notes that I wasn't able to the week before.  
On the single character dialogue I worked on smoothing out the weight shift and his hand movement, as well as getting the upper and lower portions of the face to feel more connected.  
With the pantomime I worked on really differentiating the first bored pose with the suave pose when he's trying to impress her as Greg found them too similar.  I also worked on smoothing out his hands and added a bit more to the female character.
In the 2 person shot I focused a lot on making the upper and lower portions of the face work together better and getting some more squash and stretch in the expressions.  I also worked on pushing the anticipation for and the actual point at the bookshelf for the female character and the animation in the last shot overall.

Last week Greg said that he really like my dvd cover and that it looked very professional.  He just had a couple of notes regarding the spacing of the back cover and the design of the insert which I worked on fixing this week.