Friedhelm to appear in a book
I have been interviewed for a new book on digital animation by author and journalist Steven Withrow. It will be published internationally in 2009 and in it I discuss my animation process and how Friedhelm and his den were created. Here is a small piece of one the full pictures showing the last step in animation.
The Face Machine
Anzovin Studio recently released The Face Machine. If you have ever used The Setup Machine to rig a character you can imagine how amazing this new product is. I was fortunate enough to be a beta tester on The Face Machine and will be reworking scene 4A with the newly added rigging capabilities. The face machine is amazing! It was so exciting to incorporate into my film that I am thrilled to be reworking some shots with it's added features. Also it works in tandem with my current facial rig, so I can manipulate the face with both at the same time. You can read a little about what I had to say about it here.
My thesis film and paper were both approved and turned in and I have received my diploma in the mail. My paper "Using Idiosyncrasies and Eccentricity to Gain Empathy In the Animated Character" accompanied and supported my thesis film "The Truth Teller." I am currently working on expanding my film and will continue updating here from time to time.
Friedhelm Animation - Scene 4A - Part 4
Another painful update along the path of turning scene 4A into a killer shot. I had to spline it very early because it was getting tricky switching from when his head was driving the pot and when the pot was driving his hands. This is still in the early nasty ugly stages but I think I can pull it out. I just need to decide on which way to take it and keep on moving ahead. My original breakdowns and thumbnails were Ending A. Once I really got it rolling it seems like I had too much extraverted large moves. I have been trying to focus on tempo and a rhythm that leads to a crescendo. Ending B has been toned down and I feel it lets the middles when he almost knocks the pot off of his head come through better and shin. I hope to really have some time to spend on this shot and get it really moving along and reaching another level for the next animation update.
Friedhelm Animation - Scene 4A - Part 3 - (Flash Video)
I have been working on some fun freelance animation and had a little break from Friedhelm. I also had to go in and refine the rig. Man, the pot can get tricky sometimes. I made it so he can wear it on his head, put his hands on it and have the pot move the hands around, then take it off and have the pot in his hands. Thanks again for John Doublestein's sweet JTD Rigging Tools! The animation in this one is early stages even for blocking but I wanted to post something and not let it go another week. Each key post still needs some lovin but I think the feel of the shot and what Friedhelm is feeling are starting to peek through.
Friedhelm Animation - Scene 4A - Part 2
Back from the holidays and starting out a fresh new year. Happy 2008! I have spent a good amount of time working on this retake of scene 4A, not allowing myself to go with the initial ideas and trying to steer clear of cliches. I really want to show some introverted and extroverted poses and get a real sense of rhythm, tempo and crescendo with this one. That has been the goal in others too but it is easier said than done. Click here or the above title to see some thumbnail sketches and animation planning for this shot.
---I decided to leave a little from 2007 on the 2008 page since the blog has been a little slow due to lots freelance work---
Friedhelm Animation - Scene 4A - Part 1 ... Again for the first time
My good friend - shot 4A. Shot 4A and I have already been through a lot together.
This shot is the start of act three in my short film and the first time we see Friedhelm with the pot on this head.
He is continuing his dialog about the Masons and due to some reveals in act 2, this is the first time we see him with the pot on his head. This shot is tricky because while he is giving you very important information, it is juxtaposed with him having trouble keeping the pot on his head. I think this scene has a lot of potential and the first go round was just not working for me so I recorded new dialog and am starting it up again. Here (download QuickTime 101 kb) is a short sample.
Prepping for a new year
A little time off? HAHA! No I have not been relaxing in the sun. I still have the fresh "new monitor" scent of a computer animator - what?. I have been crazy busy. You will notice I have an updated reel and demo reel page. I now have more formats to check out my reel. Also I have been doing some freelance animation for Walsh Family Media. They are working on an exciting short I am sure will bring them lots of attention in the future. So December is kind of slow for Friedhelm as I finish up these freelance shots and work on my reel. I am planning on starting shot 4A by the first of the year. This is another case of a shot I started, worked for about ten days, and was about to post my progress when I decided I hated it and was going to start it over. More on that next time.
Friedhelm Scene 4E with Sound (1 meg)
My good friend and amazing sound designer Brian Kucinski took time to add a scratch track to this one. Brian always brings a lot to the table and it is a blast to discuss the different sounds in the shot and how it will effect the scene. I can't wait to have him working on the final film when the sound design will play a larger roll on telling the story and describing the inner thought of Friedhelm.
Friedhelm Animation - Scene 4E - Part 4 (1 meg)
I have pretty much been finished with this shot for a while now but I had a few e-mails out there that I was waiting on. Thanks a million to Benno for his great critiques. He has really helped me out and given me some great information to go over. I made some subtle changes and mainly took out the head drop at the end. We thought it was a little overkill for getting the mood across. I think this ending says it all with just a little less motion. I have also been working on another shot that starts Act III and falls just a few shots before this one. It is the first time we see Friedhelm with the pot on his head and he is acting very serious as he attempts to describe the secret behind the great seal of the United States of America. The catch is, the entire time he is really having trouble balancing the pot on his head. So he is trying to act one way (serious) but is constantly moving working with the pot (funny...I hope...or at least entertaining) so it is a fun juxtaposition. I think it could really be a strong shot if I can pull it off right and my first attempt was getting too wonky. So am I throwing it out and going back to thumb nails. I know what to avoid and have a better vision of how he needs to move around.