Monday, November 24, 2014

"The Wheels on the Bus"

   Back in June, I was approached to do a short for "The Wheels on the Bus" by Sockeye. The only provision that I was asked to follow was to make the Bus a character along the lines of Thomas the Tank Engine. They already have a short in their playlist for this song, so I thought about what would make my version different than is already there? Going further I asked myself what would make my version different than the hundreds of other versions of "Wheels on the Bus" on Youtube?

   I decided I needed a little bit of a story to go along with the track, and more importantly I felt that we needed to feel like we were actually going someplace with this Bus. So I concocted the characters that we meet and a small journey that builds as the short moves along. I posted a small preview here a few weeks ago. At last its finally posted and ready to share.

   For this, I wanted to get back to my roots a bit more. I wanted to put as much traditional animation as I could fit into the schedule. The other mission was to make it visually interesting other than just ink and paint so I pushed for a water color effect. Custom brushes were built in Harmony for the character animation, and the backgrounds were painted in Photoshop. I had previous experience building the look for the Secret Seven spot I worked on last winter, but for this short i was more inspired by Miyazaki's water color sketches for My Neighbor Totoro. I liked that rough pencil line on a more saturated palette.

   The only thing I didn't handle was the sound effects that were added in after final delivery. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

11 Second Club November 2014

So I've been looking for something with dialog to animate traditionally for a little while now, and I came across this month's selection at the 11 Second Club. I love this scene from Clear and Present Danger so I had to give it a shot. This is just my first pass doing some rough animation and blocking in some acting choices. His design is all over the place, but some of the core shapes are in there. I don't think I'll have time to get this wrapped up for the 11 Second Club's contest, but I'll work on it when I can nonetheless.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014


Frank Thomas' Merryweather Line Test

Andreas Deja posts tons of great artwork from the Nine Old Men, namely rough key animation drawings, on his blog, Deja View. The best part is that he scans the images in with the peg holes intact so it's easy to register them and see how they work. He has a passion for the Nine Old Men, and his career at Disney has afforded him great access to a staggering library to learn from.

I came across this recent post with a series of rough pose tests for Merryweather from Sleeping Beauty, and I decided to work with them to try to learn whatever I could from them. I brought in Thomas' original six pose drawings into Harmony, and worked over them to try and study the shapes and forms. Then, I wanted to actually inbetween it as if I was an assistant to Thomas. I don't believe this particular action ever made it into the film so I had no reference in terms of timing, and I made that part of it my own. There are certainly some inconsistencies in the rough animation, even among the original six poses themselves, but I think a tie-down pass would smooth that all out.

So again, this isn't really "my" rough animation per se. I'm just trying to learn what I can.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Fall chick with a wash

Threw in a wash of color...that I don't know if I like all that much. Might go back and change it up. Here it is for now.