Friday, 8 July 2016

Evaluation / Feedback


After I created this short, I decided to name it (Awesome Time) after the quote that I used from the film Mean Girls because the story to my short is quite simply a women unhappy with her man. I decided to animate a character speaking the lines from the film similar to something seen on 11 Second Club. 

I think the overall animation came out quite well as this was the first time I have done a lip sync.When working on this animation I ran into a number of problems that I ended up overcoming.  For example the reference recordings, that I had filmed, were lost.  I was unable to open it in a suitable media player that would enable me to view each frame of the video, helping me get a better understanding of timing. This was due to the online cloud storage I was using going down, luckily I had previously uploaded two of my recordings to blogger which helped me create a more nature moving character. Next time I will save multiple backups.

The project took much longer to finish due to the issues with my Macbook pro as it would not allow me to work long hours in Maya. My laptop moved so slow that it became unworkable and the train that I would normally take into college is out of service, which resulted in my journey taking up to 4 hours. This makes my journey not worth while and more expensive. For next year, I will need to buy a new Mac or PC.

Rendering my project took the most amount of time as I  had to leave my macbook running for a number of weeks. This was because of the amount of models and textures I used in my scene but due to me keeping up with my production schedule it finished on time.

When rendering I expected there to be a physical sun and sky but mid way though my render I noticed there was no sky this was because I rendered the Maya project in the format of a Tif image not a JPG. Next time if I want a physical sun and sky I will need to render the file in a JPG format.

      During the date the screening took place I was in hospital but when I had retuned to college I presented my short to a number of students, who also study on my course. I received a lot of positive feedback for example, they liked how fluent and nature my animation looked. They also liked the way I animate using the Perspective/Graph Editor/Camera at the same time and told me that I animate in a professional manner and that I am talented. I had received no negative feedback.

     When creating this animation I used a number of techniques. For example I used video references, Image reference and self acting in front of a mirror to understand the process of actions it takes to achieve a particular end. I also used advance techniques such as the Graph Editor to create a smoother animation. I also learnt to save back ups of my files.


Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Re-Imagining Project / Learning Process

Re-Imagining Project

Pre-Production For Re-Imagining Project

Production schedule 

Genre – Animation, Comedy, Action

Duration – 30 seconds / 2 minute

I am going to re-imagine a scene from mean girls of two girls arguing between each other where the character Janis says “Did you have an awesome time? Did you drink awesome shooters, and listen to awesome music, and just soak up each other’s awesomeness?"

Re-imagining a scene from watchman where an exterminator is called in to exterminate a rodent and the rodent brakes the glass and says “you don’t seem to understand i'm not locked in here with you you’re locked in here with me”

I am planning to go with the first idea as I like it the most and looks achievable.

The theme I am going for is similar to a teen movie for example Clueless, 10 Things I Hate About You, She's All That and The Breakfast Club 

Technical equipment
Video Cam
Visual Elements
Camera Movement
Tom, Mary, Eleven or Bonnie
Squirrel or moues

Audio Elements
Glass smash

Sound clip
Mean Girls: “Did you have an awesome time”?

Watchmen; “you’re locked in here with me”

Secondary research

Videos I looked at that showed the process of reference/ blocking/ refining

Tutorials I looked at to learn and achieve my goal 

Lip Sync

Camera Tips and Tricks

How to speed up videos using After Effects


I looked at other peoples work on the 11 second club to see what rigs I can use and the type of audio they used to entertain their audience.
I also looked into other animation that are like mine such as Yukiko Minazuki Lipsync




Animation Reference - Female walk angry - Slow Motion from Endlessreference

I will be using my own references that I had created along side some drama students

Idea slightly changed instead of take in place at Toms house it will take place in a bar i can still uses the videos as reference to help me with the timing and action of Bonnie. location was changed back to Toms house.

Risks Assessment

Research the risks of carrying out this project

  •       Files can get corrupted or deleted
  •   Hard drive can brake
  • Files not opening on an out-dated version of Maya
  • Having problem’s with animating a character
  •  How I’m going approach my 3D project
  •  Finding a rig/creating my own rigs
  •    Rendering time

 Original location, Bar

Maya files corrupted a day before deadline 

For my animation I change location making the story based around a house instead of a bar and creating a physical sun and sky using the render settings


Models I downloaded from a site named TurboSquid to create my scene originally I was going to have just the house and fence, but looked a bit board so I decided to add cars and some greenery to create more of an appealing scene for my audience.


Render Setting to create a physical sun and sky

The physical sun controls come in the form of some arrows that you can move around  directing the sun light for your scene pressing the 7 key allows u to see the lighting effect it has on your scene. To see the effect it has in both perspective and camera panels I had to turn on the playback update view from active to all in the preferences.

Playback update view ports with lighting and shadows on

Test rendered image

  To make the rig hold the phone I clicked both the phone and hand and parented the phone to the hand this way the phone will go where ever the hand goes.



  Face Controls 

I had to watch this video on Mary rig facial controls to get a better understanding of what controls does what.

I layered every thing this is so I am able to hide layers I am not using, this 
way I am abel to animate with out the mac slowing down or crashing.

The first walk cycle I created using a references video from youtube using the controls to move the rig and the graph editor creating arcs to smooth out the animation.  

Before using the YouTube video I had to speed up the clip making it as close to real time as possible to do this I imported it into After Effects where I was able to speed up the clip.

Layer/Time/Time Remapping

the clip was originally 08:08 seconds long. I then placed a key frame at the beginning and placed another at 07:00 seconds, speeding up the clip.

Female walk angry - Slow Motion

Speeded up - Female walk angry

The second walk cycle as the character walks away I created using an image of a walk cycle as reference because I forgot about the video I used as references before.

Walk Cycle References

When creating a turn I could not find tutorials or references on the internet. I also never hand anyone to record myself so I kept on acting out the scene and going back to the mac to recreate what I acted out.  

Audio/Lip Sync

  I imported the audio into Maya and open the Trax Editor that allowed me move the audio along the timeline.

   When animating a lip sync I placed the face controls with in the front view port and animated in the perspective view.

  Lip Sync Guide
When animating a Lip sync I scrubbed up and down the timeline picking up nouns and placing the mouth shape to that sound.  

After animating the lip Sync I started to animate the movement using the videos I recored as references placing both clips at the side of Maya allowing me to see the actor preform from both angels. 

When using this video as references I had to play it from my blogger as the video files i saved to a cloud storage had gone down and are no long available. Normally I would play the video in QuickTime pro where I would of been able to view every frame of the video enabling me to bring the best out of my animation.


   when creating camera angels for my animation I created a two panel view that allows me to look at my camera and see what I am doing, using the perspective view to position my rig.

i  I also teared off the outliner for a quicker way to select stuff such as the camera.

  I then used the graph editor that allows me to see the cameras movement to animate the camera for example if I wanted the camera to pan in or out I would leave it in spline but if I want the camera to cut from a scene to another I would put it in stepped.



Perspective/Graph Editor/Camera 

Every now and again Maya will crash,freeze or on upload it would get a error message saying I may have loss date, some times it would freeze on saving. This could set me back from 10m to a hour. 

I created a number of back ups incase this happens I wont have much to do to get back were I left off. I also enabled auto save.

I used playblast to test how each shot looked before rendering 


   Before rendering I had to set up the type of render, image format, image size, frame range, renderable cameras and quality that I would like Maya to render in. To do this I went into render settings where I choose to render the animation as a image instead of a video this is because if i was unable to finish the render or Maya crashes or freeze I will be able to pick up where it had left off using frame range to select the start and end frame of the render. 

  After selecting my render settings I then clicked on batch render which then begins to render each scene as a image this took a number of days as I had a lot going on in the background. I had noticed that the physical sun and sky I created was not appealing in the images but have gotten to far in the render to star again.

I then imported the image files into after effects where I made the image size the same size as the comp, 720p, added the audio dialog and made sure that it was running in real time. I then rendered the file to a Mov format.

I then decided to import sound effects for example the door opening,closing, sighing and footsteps as she walks. I also adjusting the sound levels of the audio to my liking.