Saturday, June 18, 2016

Animation stills/digression on detailed vs.general facial depiction

I don't think this will be done by the end of the month as I tentatively wrote as a hopeful goal two posts ago. I am encouraged that I'm making steady progress, even if it's slow. The idea was to create a piece not constrained by deadlines, and to make sure each clip is at the best of my ability, (no matter how limited my technical knowledge is). I think of this as a sort of unofficial animation senior thesis where a student would just work a small, several minute long piece for a significant stretch of time throughout the school year.

I've been rotoscoping (drawing on top of frames) videos of my own face and body for the guide to create the two main  figures' movement (and a little help from Muybridge action photos in one clip), with different features and body than my own ( The male in this actually resembles me much more than the female, whose face is very altered. )Some was less rotoscoping, and more just redrawing/altering the new figures to match the expression I made. It gets a little tedious, as a detailed face with limited movement can look vapid. I've also had to correct too much movement that can end up looking like a tic. Next time I take on the project, I'm going to simplify the facial features and make something more general. Not merely as a time saver, but to depict a more universal symbol of a type of figure that the reader would naturally perceive.  Scott McCloud in Understanding Comics - The Invisible Art (a smart and trippy read for all visual artists, and those who appreciate them)  touches on the range of specific likenesses to a universal generality. (A comprehensive review of the book can be found here: AnnaP's Blog )

some of Scott McCloud's examples:

For the final scene in the animation, I'm happy to say I don't have to rely on myself for the action and subsequent manipulation again. A friend agreed to digitally shoot himself and his girlfriend in an interactive scene, and with the help of a green screen too. I'll be using the silhouette of their forms, and creating an animated universe inside the figures. I won't have to manipulate the features or their shapes.

So here's some more stills:

I have a mini clip pinned to the top of my Twitter for the time being (as of 6/18/16) that I'll keep up for a few more weeks. I give more frequent updates on my work there, along with chiming in on general topics (current events, music, podcasts, comedy, etc).

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