Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Rhinestone Films

I recently stumbled upon Rhinestone films work on tumblr and fell in love with the use of textures with in the animated gifs. It really inspired me with the style flow and constant change with in the character, whether the pattern or structure of the character changed. In one of the animation it shows a character in a medium shot walking across the frame and in one change of the structure the body turns into wisp like shapes which helped me to think about the structure of how the characters with in my animation would disappear into shapes of sand. I really like the tactile printed grain that the animation has, it reminds me of the design you would obtain through monoprint and etching techniques through the appearance of the solid colours with in the gifs.
The animations are created using the timeline animation on Photoshop, the animator commented that having been used to be an illustrator, he couldn't find an animation software that held those tactile and textured properties that he could entwine with his pieces other than Photoshop.


Sunday, 20 April 2014

Photoshop development

After rotoscoping and changing the design of the character, I started to add detail to the composition. I did not want too much detail as the detailed character is later shown in the video, even though they are the same character I wanted slight facial features in the beginning of the animation to full detail later on, as if finally recalling what the character looks like to go with the dream like illusionary theme of the animation.

I first created a new layer and used the bucket tool to fill with black which I then lowered the opacity over the lineart. I then used the lasso and brush tool to fill the face and collar in white as these white spaces will show the landscape in the final cut of the animation.

I then used the lasso tool and selected the line art, I needed the lineart to be white so that the outline would be seen clearly in the final composition, I used the Hue/Saturation adjustment with the lightness value being +100. Originally I used the wand tool to select the outline and the bucket tool to fill with white however the line became hideously pixelated and found it easier to solve this by using the lasso and changing the colour via hue/saturation.

When I started to animate on Photoshop through the Frame by Frame process, every layer would appear on the same frame, and after I had hidden the layer on each frame, I would go back to the first frame to edit the design and it would then change all of the frames again. I couldn't work out why at first but after looking through the panel options I realised that the "show new layers in every frame" was selected and this was the cause of the problem.

Zoom by Istvan Banyai

I was inspired by this picture book which Istvan Banyai had created, which consists of perceiving one image that connects with another through a stamp or poster on the side of a bus. I especially love the beginning of the picture book with how the characters looking out of the window to see the cockerel are actually toys with in this huge set that a girl is playing with, only to then find out that this is a photograph on the front of a magazine that a boy is reading on a cruise liner. I really love this concept and it has heavily influenced my thought process with my animatic, thinking of ways to connect all of these characters together within a short amount of time. For instance the part of the animatic which shows the girl turning to look at a shooting star only to see that it is in fact a jewel, with an image of a mask on it, to further view that the jewel is around Morpheus's neck.

Beginning to animate

I started my animation by first drawing over the footage I had recorded, which I had imported into photoshop in a frame by frame format. This made it easier to draw a rough skeleton over the top of the figure to gain an understanding of the movement for the animation character. Having only the hand move made it easier to animate as I didn't have to worry about the rest of the body moving, this allowed me to draw the hand in slight detail as it moved within each frame.

To import the video as layers.

Looking at the movement stacked on top of each other allowed me to see the arc of the action,
not only did the wrist and elbow move but also the shoulder as it raises,
moves across and falls back down to her side.

After drawing all of the action I needed to add the detail of the character, as the character was male I needed to make his shoulders boarder than the figures. To solve this problem I used references from the comic of the character that I was drawing, Corinthian, which helped me to create broad shoulders in relation to his body.
I also needed to set the animation in a monotone approach as I would be adding colour through the use of the landscapes that would be moving through the whiteout of the lineart.

To make this sequence of images black and white, I used the wand and lasso tool to select the area and fill with the bucket tool however after I deselected the image, the edge was extremely pixelated. To solve this I used the history menu to undo the fill action and modified the selection by expanding the selection by 2 pixels, with a slight feather, this worked well as the pixelated edge had gone and the fill worked with the lineart.

I believe that the final animation works well with my initial storyboard idea as the character disappears, in which I can introduce the name of the title sequence, Sandman Overture. The detail added in the outline works well as it still captures the personality of the character even though no facial features can be seen.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Sandman design development part 3

I experimented further with the style of my drawings which I could take with the sandman animation, by working with ink and watercolour to get a mixture of saturated and desaturated tones within the image. I feel that this worked well with the addition of the sand as the character disappears, however if I was to create the image again I would use a stronger guideline as when working directly with ink, I had to change the head of the character as originally I was going to draw morpheus with in the lineart of the character Corinthian. However due to the darkness of the ink the guidelines were lost so I decided to leave it with just morpheus's head, even though the head doesn't seem to have a neck as I drew his head lower to try and show the corinthian outline. I believe that the mask with in the hand outline worked really well as the hues were strong enough to show the outline and match with the characters head, however I still feel that corinthian needs to be the end character that disappears through his personality traits in the sandman comics.
I then moved on to drawing in graphite to gain a better understanding of the amount of detail that I would be adding to one of the images in the animation sequence, I decided to continue with a mix of Phil Hale and the original comic artist of sandman overture, J.H.Williams III as I wanted to develop my style into a more western approach but not too much to the stereotypical square chins and overly muscular male characters.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Sandman storyboard and animatic

When drawing the storyboards, I tried to incorporate the theme of the Sandman Overture comics, having frames link and flow into another, with movements/actions that would lead to the next sequence. I was debating with the amount of detail that I should add for the characters, as even though the majority would be silhouttes, I thought about adding a few lines that would show the hair line and the creases in the clothing, which I believe would work well when it shows the main character in full detail.

The opening sequence - showing the main character Morpheus appear,
I think with this introduction he should be in a silhoutte form but with slight detail as
to see his detailled appearance later on in the animation sequence.

As Morpheus moves his head, he begins to fade into waves of sand
carrying on into the next sequence with the butler.

The iron gate begins to slowly open, with the addition of audio of metal creaking and inside we see fate
and the camera moves around him

As camera zooms into the book, the image of the landscape and begins to appear.
Thinking of the addition of text, the text could be highlighted with a low opacity white box?
We see the girl in the painting begin to move.

The shooting star needs to move near the characters head and zooming past the head
and into the star.
In the actual animation, to give more focus on the star and character movement, visually it
might work better if the landscape faded was only shown with in the character
The star becomes the jewel which is around Morpheus's neck and we see
Morpheus in detail, cloak moves as background slowly moves with it.

Connecting with the previous sequence, the end titles show as the character moves his hand and disappears
as well as.

From this storyboard, I created an animatic, which I was able to think more about the timing and spacing of the sequences. I feel that in the final animation I will need to slow and quicken parts of the sequences, as through group feedback I realised that the title was not on for long and the addition of other text needs to be on screen for at least 3 seconds so that the audience would be able to read it.