Final Piece and Video Breakdown

Above is my final submission for this project.

My Target Audience

My target audience for this piece was for children. I want to promote wildness and conservation using the National Trust 50 things to do before your 11 3/4. It was important to me to really understand how it feels to be a child and to see the world through a child’s eyes. Rather than myself and what I think could look good. When Helen came in for a Storytelling workshop she gave me this advice: ““I want to drag you down to my memory. Explore, interrogate your memory.” Helen was telling me to think about my experiences to think how a child thinks. This is an example of how exploring the story, helped me in animating the character itself.  This advice stuck with me throughout every stage. I was haunted by my younger self and how I acted. I took a to of time to look at old pictures and old footage of myself to help me identify how I move and pose.

Sadly I was not able to complete all the elements I had planned out. The reasons behind this was due to some over ambitious concepts I had wanted to carry out.

textures

After doing a lot of research and designing my own ideas I intended to create an animation that had texture and richness. My Plan was to colour by using watercolour brush. The opacity of this brush meant that I had to colour things twice; doubling my time. As I worked shot by shot this meant I was ultimately not able to finish the piece to the standard I had wanted. However as I began to colour I was pushing myself ways to speed up the process such as using a skin base colour and using the tools in Photoshop. I could have created a piece of animation quicker without this texture. Yet I used this texture to extend the stories grittiness and beauty of the world outside. I wanted there to be a toughness and feeling to it that was just flat colour. I pushed myself and tried to challenge the look of my piece by being experimental. So even though I was not able to finish the animation I am really glad for the valuable experience of being playful and creating an atmosphere using watercolour brushes, digital and traditional mixed.

The amount of characters – lights, worms and snails.

Another reason why I felt as though I was not able to complete my piece to my standard was because of the amount of characters I chose to explore. I wanted to test myself by choosing a Badger to work with. But as well as the Badger I chose to animate worms, snails, owls and a girl. I am happy I got the opportunity play with so many creatures and test myself as a character animator. However because there was so many different elements to consider I ran out of time on the things I would have liked to polish. As the director of my piece I had to make decisions on the animation to make it simpler. Because I chose to do this on certain shots I was able to have more time on some of the more extensive shots.

leaves

  • Time planning, spent to long on the story development stage.

I have invested so much time and worked everyday on this project. I am disappointed I was not able to finish it because it has been something I have grown so passionate about and been a part of my daily routine to work on. Where I think I went wrong was spending too long on the pre – production stages. I had chose to spend time exploring and generating ideas. Yet I spent too long coming up with too many variants instead of making a decision. I have a tendency to try to come up with lots of different ideas. However because of this story development stage I was able to create a story that inspired and motivated me. Story is an important stage to me; and helped me greatly when it came to animating the characters. It gave me the ability to see the character’s drive and why they may react in a specific way. I went into this wanting to bracket the story development side of it. Therefore I spent a great amount of time designing the look and character of the animation. This still worked in my favour; because I did this experimentation I sped up

  • The amount of time for 2D animation  – Frame by Frame animation is tough!

2D animation is tough at times, especially when working to a deadline as it always takes longer than you think. I had originally scheduled 2 months to animate, yet I only had 6 weeks in the end to animate which is another reason as to why the project wasn’t finalised in the way I had planned. I am still only a beginner int his industry. Yet I feel my confidence have grown so much over the 6 months. In Portfolio unit I had identified some of my failings and was able to rectify this and push my poses and expressions. I experimented and learnt  from my mistakes. I was able to play about and design the keyframes in advance to help me get the most out of the shot.  If I had worked with someone else in 2D animating I am sure I would have finalised the piece. When working on such a project it takes a lot of motivation to capture the essence through the drawings. By the end of the production, I understood that I have grown in confidence yet I still have a lot to learn. Sometimes I struggled drawing finding it tough to capture what I wanted to portray. It was really rewarding when shots of the animations were completed.

  • Mac wasn’t happy.
  • I had several technical glitches that halted some of my working time. My MacBook Pro the only place i can work from was suffering from constantly shutting down. 30 times is the most it did in one day. After seeking help and trying to solve why my Mac was doing this I realised when ever my Cintiq was plugged in, it would stay on. I was able to prevent my laptop from shutting down.  What this did teach me however was to be organised and backed up at all times. I made sure my work was saved on my main computer, my hard rive and on google drive. Knowing I had everything into place in a case of emergency made me feel less worried and also allowed me to be better organised.
  • The lessons I have learnt.
  • I could have finished the animation to my standard if I altered some of the above issues. Yet a lot of them if not all of them taught me individual lessons.One of my objects was to Become a better character animator. These lessons in itself is valuable to me as it has shaped me into learning from my failings. My main one is to utilise the power of the keyframes, exploring this in my sketchbook instead of going with my first initial idea allowed me to think more creatively and make the animation more interesting. I have learnt about the drive of the character and how we can present this. I have been able to utilise my story development which I spent too long on to be motivated and passionate, an important trait in all animators alike. I wanted to make a piece of animation that was experimental and charming, which I believe I was able to achieve.
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