Jeff Gabor’s AnimSchool webcast recording is finally online and it is great. It is nice to finally hear him talk about his workflow and explain why his video progression reels regularly get pulled down. Check it out it is really funny and sometimes a bit politically incorrect so that’s very refreshing.
I want to highlight some of the gems he shares with us but make sure you quickly watch the video before AnimSchool removes it from public’s viewing.
Jeff obviously discusses the shot he animated for AnimSchool and goes frame by frame through it explaining his workflow.
He talks about acting in modern feature animation compared to traditional 2d one, the use of video reference versus thumbnailing for subtle acting, overanimation…
Interestingly enough, Jeff is one of those guys who animates exclusively in IK, I wonder if he uses Body Spaces or just regular unparented world IK….
TweenMachine! Yay I agree with version 1 being the simplest and the best, just like Facebook :-)
Someone asked about Tradigitools… the answer is funny. Come on, Tween Machine, Michael Comet’s AutoTangent, that’s all you need in Maya really, and they are both free.
Here is the link to the AnimSchool blog post, you will need to register to get the link to the actual recording.
While you are on the the AnimSchool blog, make sure you also check Garrett Shikuma’s interview. It is pretty long and very interesting.
Animschool just announced a live webcast next week with Blue Sky animation superstar and amazing actor: Jeff Gabor. The live webcast is already fully booked but Dave Gallagher announced that a replay will be available at a later date
well if you missed it, that great video, it is still online! Crazy smeared frames, “Zips” as they call them in France ;-)
He did it again! If you missed Annie nominated Jeff Gabor‘s “Horton hears a who” comparison reel, make sure you check out his new Ice Age 3 comparison reel and …. something I had never seen before, a day by day shot walkthrough so you can check how he goes from layout to final polish step by step in 33 days.
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Hurry up, Animschool just posted an special interview with Disney veteran Tom Bancroft. The interview will only be available to the public for few more days so make sure you don’t miss that exceptional interview.
I have only seen the beginning so far but Tom animated one of my favourite characters on Mulan, the crazy talking dragon Mushu. People too often forget that there is no one Disney animation style, it all depends on the story and the character of the character. Mushu is a great example of the exaggerated Disney animation style.
Here is the blocking for my “This is what you need” shot. I also shot some new video reference footage for Anakin as the previous video wasn’t very strong or interesting.
I am incorporating Blender more and more to my workflow as it has some amazing tools really suited to the Animation pipeline. Here I am able to write some notes on the video reference to single out some elements of interest. Other people like Jeff Gabor would edit their video reference in Premiere but I find it simpler and cheaper to use the Grease Pencil keys in Blender’s Dope Sheet editor.
The box at the beginning is a placeholder for the boxed Darth Vader outfit. I might add 12 frames at the very beginning it just so the first cut doesn’t come so early. I ran out of time and didn’t manage to fully flesh out Anakin or even the facial poses but with the help of the video reference, I think we know exactly what I am aiming for.
It is a very refreshing interview where Sergio explains what triggered his leaving from Disney. He talks about how animation is perceived in Spain vs the USA and how much of a challenge it can be to set up your own studio but as long as you take action, show persistence and learn from your mistakes, you should be able to reach your goals and Sergio Pablos with his involvement in Despicable Me, Titeuf, Rio and other secret projects is definitely proving this.
He also mentions the kind of movies he would really like to make, using the Iron Giant and Ratatouille as examples, but explains that comedies are probably the easiest stories to market and sell. The failure of the beautiful Framestore feature “The Tales of Despereaux” could prove him right actually.
Right, go on, why don’t you listen to the full interview now? It is only 11 minutes but it is packed with great insights by a guy who has been involved with many of the recent successes of the past several years from Tarzan, to Rio…
While we are at it, here is a link to a previous interview with Sergio Pablos on the Character Design Blogspot http://sergio-pablos-interview.blogspot.com/
Hables espanol? I do!
If some of you also speak spanish, you are in for a treat. Arte y animacion also recorded some podcasts with other talented spaniards currently officiating at Disney and Dreamworks, here are few links for you:
via: Arte y animacion
When looking for great acting I usually refer to boring and austere black and white or pre-1970s movies but once in a while I am amazed to find great performances in contemporary blockbusters or mainstream shows. The “Lost” TV series being my first source of reference at the moment but more on this later.
I am currently working on a shot involving two characters and a story plot based on Star Wars Episode 03 and while looking at the original movie and a specific scene with the Senator Palpatine and Anakin Skywalker, I was amazed at the performance of Scottish actor/theatre director Ian Mc Diarmid. To be fair, a movie featuring a 60+ years old stage trained shakespearean actor is very likely to present some exceptional acting moments. Everything from his body posture to his face and voice are outstanding. Loot at that subtle hand shake on the wider dramatic shot. Hayden Christensen’s acting seems cartoony and, as my friend Richie would say, almost grotesque in comparison ;-)
Here is the full keyframable quicktime video sequence between the sly Palpatine and candide Anakin followed by a series of screenshots to highlight the key moments of that very impressive performance where he reaches his goal after a series of tactical advances in the manner of a chess player.
Even without the audio you would be able to witness his emotional beats and get a good feel for his manipulative strategies, shifting between parental, authoritarian, cynical and sheepish attitude. What a little snake! ;-)
Notice how much a head rotation, squeezing of the eye lids, contraction of the nasal muscles can affect the expression. It is amazing how much he is able to communicate within the same body posture.
You can also pay attention to the asymmetry of his mouth in 4b and 4c and finish with a good look at that priceless fake smile on 9c that can only be detected by the fact that the eyes muscles don’t get involved in the upward motion.
I would highly suggest you to check out the HD version at the following address:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSy7nvRZ1E8&t=1m08s
I think this could be a nice add-on to the Jeff Gabor interview I featured few days ago. If you don’t have outstanding drawing abilities, there is no way you could work out and plan a similar animated scene in sketches and thumbnails. Using edited video references seems like the best option for subtle acting shots.
Have you seen Sony’s latest attempt at swiping Pixar and Dreamworks from the best Feature animation studio’s crown?
Because of it’s really plain looking character design, “Cloudy with a chance of meatballs” might have flown under the radars of a lot of animation fans but if you go pass the designs, you will realise that the underdog is a new home run from the Culver city studio. Yes the story is not revolutionary but that movie is once again a great piece of entertainment served with amazing rendering, gorgeous visual effects, funny lines and wacky animation.
One of those wacky shots I am referring to is the Eyeball shot by the dock.
How lucky! David Anthony Gibson, the animator behind it: has decided to share with use some insights.
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I previously posted few links to differents showreels of animators who worked on it but Blue Sky wasn’t too happy about them I guess as they have all been brought down.
I saw the movie yesterday. It is really fun and the animation is really much to my liking. Really really entertaining.
The only problem I have is that I saw too many behind the scenes and trailers than I had seen pretty much all the funny animation beforehand.
Here are few links for you:
Kenny’s pictures [working link]
Nick Bruno’s Horton showreel [reel taken off]
Jeff Gabor animation stages from video ref to final animation [reel taken off]