Monday, 25 April 2011

Updated playblast!

Stuff I've changed:

Camera position - I parented it to the right hand this time, as it should have been in the first place. Had to reanimate both hands. Also changed where the boy looks. Not too many issues, just some tedious pose adjusting.

Personal opinion: improvement! Needs expressions still, but I want to do the next shot now.

Shot 11 involves an over the shoulder shot of the boy swimming towards iceberg opening. Off I go!

Correct hand posing

I've done some reference photos with my grandad's old camera, to get an idea of how the hands should be shaped in my current "The Deep" test

Serious face is serious :V

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Resizing issues

Been trying to resize a camera object that is made up of several parts. It keeps coming apart!

Apple + G = Group Selection
Group Selection + Scale = WIN!

Rookie mistake, but I'm glad I got round this with the modeling genius, Fahran! Thanks man!

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Smitten - Tower shot revised

Oh dear. It's not the best bit of animation I've done.

Well, it's taken me a while to get this animation to this point. I think some bits of this shot are ok, and then I think he is walking so awkwardly too. Ughh.

After this shot I need to animate him cartwheeling, and then after THAT will be doing some shots that focus on expressions. Yay, my speciality!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The Deep - Shot 8 Playblast 1


So, what dya think?

This shot is the part where Kid has already left the sub, and is looking around the ocean before heading for the massive iceberg. The shot has the blocking done, and some bits of animation on the shoulders and hands. I parented the box (camera subsitute) to the boy's hand, so that I don't need to faff around with animating them separately.

Had some issues with animating the left hand. It kept doing that weird spinning thing that happens occasionally, I think probs because I rotated it wrong. Anyway, I fixed that problem. I have also realized that I should have placed the camera in his right hand, not his left. I'm not sure whether this'll be a problem right now, but I had agreed with Mel that his right hand is his strongest. Mmmm. I shall discuss this further with Mel later. We need to keep in cognito. The beginning part shoul probably be a little slower too. He's underwater, so I think he should be a bit more slow motion.

The next stage is refining the arms and hands a bit more, then animating his head and legs. :D

Sunday, 17 April 2011

*IPP* Louie Del Carmen

Louie Del Carmen wrote a very kind e-mail giving me some feedback on an animatic I did a while ago! Here's the correspondence below:

Dear Emma,

Sorry it took so long to get back to you.  Now for the feedback to your short......    

Overall I like the idea of the story.  I like the "hunter becomes the hunted" theme and thought that you told the story as best as you can with the boards that you drew.  Here's my recommendations on how you can best improve your work:


1.  Drawing -  although boards tend to be rough, there is a certain line quality and level of drafting that is expected.  Basically what you see on most "art of" feature animation books is what you should shoot for as far as quality of drawing.
2.  Staging/Framing/Compositions -  Some of your shots are decent but overall I am missing some dynamic cutting and framing as well as use of creative staging. 
3.  Acting / character development -  I'd like to see you come up with designs that are really appealing and pushed.  Consequently I feel that your contrasts in acting can be pushed further as well.


I felt that the timing is very even and quite sluggish overall.  The animatic or reel is your chance to simulate movement and animation so use it your advantage.  Learn better timing and spacing and plan your shots more carefully.  


Improve your drawing and film making and your boards will improve concurrently.  Remember that you are the film maker which means you are the director of your own movie.  Therefore you have the responsibility of holding the audiences interest and you should do everything in your power to make your story the best as it can be.

I hope this helps.  Take care and much luck.

Best regards,


Name: Emma Wyton 

The visitor commented:
Subject: Feedback on animatic

Hey Louie!

I just want to start by saying congratulations on all the fantastic work you've done! I am immensely inspired by your success and have really enjoyed looking at your work and watching your interview on CGMW. I am a huge fan of Dreamworks, and had a riot seeing Megamind recently

I have been working on my storyboarding and animatic skills lately at Ravensbourne College in England, and recently completed an animatic for a pitch.

I was wondering whether you could give me a little feedback on how I can improve. Would that be okay? I understand you are busy with the recent film "Rise of the Guardians", but if you do have a spare moment, I would greatly appreciate it!Here's a link to the vid. My friend helped me upload it. you very much!

I look forward to hearing from you

 Emma Wyton

 All in all, extremely positive, though it definitely highlights areas of my work that needs editing, to help perfect it.

*IPP* Possible contact for storyboarding opportunities

This is an e-mail I got from a guy our family have known for ages. There's a long story behind this, which I will describe briefly.

His wife needed somebody from Ravensbourne to come to a careers evening at the school she works at. I came along and helped provide information about the college to the students there.
Terry was there, and he said that he might need somebody to help storyboard for various productions in the future.

Anyway, here's the e-mail he sent. 

Hi Emma,

This is the company that develop the motion capture technology, for which they have a variety of uses as you will see.

I can certainly take you to see the Looney Tunes show at Butlins but we may have to wait a few weeks yet before I am able to do that.

As for the storyboarding... this is something we need from time to time.  I will keep you posted on our projects and let you know when we might need a storyboard produced.

Best wishes,

Terry Morrison

I'm really glad I helped out with the careers evening, because it has proven that I am a responsible and hard-working person, who is committed to animation and Ravensbourne college. It has also provided me with some work experience in the future! Great stuff!

Also, oooo Looney Tunes show at Butlins! :O Yeh there's motion capture involved, so I might be able to get involved somehow :D

*IPP* Confidence

I think now that I'm nearing the end of my Ravensbourne journey, I should think about how I have grown and how I continue to go on in terms of work.

I feel that I have learned a lot about myself in the last few years. I know my strengths and I know my weaknesses. Here they are for you to look at.

Good quality of work
Works well in team
Drawing ability
Maya know how
Adaptability to new things

I think there must be more, but I can't think of them right now.

I do tend to worry a lot, even though I put on a smiley face. I think I need to try and think better about myself sometimes, and be more independent because it tends to hold me back sometimes.

*IPP* - Website in progress pt 2

I've decided that this will be my new main site location. The site I have applied for is called "Posterous, and it's really easy to use. It enables you to upload posts using e-mails! How cool is that?! If you want to upload pics, files and vids, you simply attach them to the e-mail and send it off!

Here's what my site looks like atm

I eventually gave up with the Iweb and Cyberduck option I said about previously, because it was too difficult to use.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Outside Of Animation...

Well, I think I have had my fun, and had some time to relax a bit. Now is the time for an intense animation work out!


Jokes aside, I am just working on a new tower test, similar to the one I have originally done for Smitten. The previous test was too long, and needed to be a little less pre-meditated and more careless. He should throw the chewed chicken bone out of the window without being dramatic about it. His focus is getting up that tower asap.

I also plan to character design the roast chicken. I had a delicious roast yesterday, so I feel inspired to get that done today and tomorrow.

The walk tests for the Deep have gotten some pretty positive feedback, though I feel that I should do it again properly. I have also been given some shots to do, which I need to examine properly.

Now for the main point of this blog post. Not only have I been working on animation for this project, I have also been helping Rebecca Black with some research for her project. She is producing a orporate video for a charity called "The Burgess Autistic Trust"

Since I have a brother with mild Asperges, I felt encouraged to contact her and help with getting some information about the trust. I put together some questions that I felt would get some more answers to our queries. Here they are below. (Click to enlarge)

I got some really good answers from the questions I asked. It's a little difficult for me to post everything the Trust sent me and Rebecca, but I will post a few things they sent.

Answers to E-mail

How did Trust start:
Please ensure that all future communication is in our new name of “Burgess Autistic Trust” and not “Bromley”.  Our name changed on the 1st January this year.
The Trust was started in 1981 by five Founder Trustees:
  • Janet & Bill Burgess – parents,
  • The Right Reverend Edward Holland – Vicar of St Mark’s Bromley
  • John Robinson – Director of Bromley Y – a community projects initiative
  • Margaret Keir, Secretary of Bromley Council of Voluntary Services.

At that time, people with special needs tended to be sent away to live in rural communities.  The Trust was founded with the dream of inclusion, of a house that would be a home in the local community, enabling people to live an “ordinary life”.  It was the first home of its kind in the UK and when the first house – Hamilton House – opened in 1985 there were 150 visitors from all over the UK to the open day.  There were also visitors from Japan and Canada.  It was seen as a really pioneering development, and met with much acclaim.
What service does the Trust provide for people with Autism:
Burgess Autistic Trust (BAT) is an independent specialist charity committed to improving the quality of life of people with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). BAT has been in existence since 1981, and we provide services in the London Boroughs of Bromley, Bexley, Lewisham and Greenwich.  Through our Outreach Service, we have recently opened a lunch club in Croydon.  We offer the following services:
  • Family Service who work with over 1300 families
  • Three residential homes providing homes for 16 adults with ASD
  • Nineteen supported living houses and flats providing support to 35 people
  • A day service for adults with autism and challenging behaviour
  • Independent Lifestyles Service provides domiciliary support to around 40 adults
  • Outreach provides information and support to young people and adults who fall outside the eligibility criteria for services.  We currently support circa 150 people through our social clubs and group activities.  Numbers are growing.
NB: Please note that our numbers change constantly and so we need to agree a form of words around this.  At present we tend to say we support around 1500 people living in the area.
How would you like the Trust to be in 5 years time:
Still providing high quality specialist services to people with ASD
Greater brand recognition among the general public
Higher profile in our local community;
Additional members/supporters
Happy and dedicated working staff
New services opened in other borough
Continuing what we do now and making it even better

Would the staff, individuals with Autism and their families feel comfortable being filmed:

We would have to speak with them and see how they would feel.  It would be helpful if we could give their perspective, but will need their permission to do so.

What problems do you come across when running a Trust for people with Autism:

Funding is our major challenge especially in the current economic climate
Trying to raise awareness of ASD
Helping people with ASD to achieve the support they need from local authorities.  ASD is sometimes called “the hidden disability” because people can present themselves very well in some ways, but in fact this does not reflect the difficulty they have with understanding information or representing their needs.  We often have to support people in making claims for their benefits because they are unable to express what it is they need. 

Is there a message you would like to get across to the viewers watching the corporate video:
  • For Autism to be seen positively
  • That we provide a good service which makes a difference to individuals and families
  • That we need support from a whole range of people, and that their support really makes a difference to the people we serve
  • That together we make a strong team who can change things for the better.  

Do you help Autistic people develop life skills and, if so, how do you go about doing this:

Yes everything we do is underpinned by a person centred approach which looks at each individual’s skills, interests and abilities and helps them to achieve their full potential.  This differs hugely from person to person, but may include things like support with budgeting, travel training, domestic chores, meal planning and cooking, and creative interests, sports or hobbies.  People join clubs and we encourage ways of learning more about special interests e.g. visiting museums, art galleries, railway stations, gardening, walking, horse-riding – whatever works for them!  We also help people with employment skills, work experience or volunteering opportunities if appropriate to their needs and abilities.  We support people in their own homes or at our day centre or clubs.  We provide a full range of flexible services tailored to individual needs.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

*M* Kid Walk Test continued 2

Here you can see that I have completed the sequence here. Kid walks and stops. I wish to add a little more character later on, but the walk is the essential part to pay particular attention.

The hands, hips, individual shoulders, face, and fingers haven't been animated yet. I haven't looked at the curves yet. A slightly scary thought, that. Haha!

I'm pretty proud of this, though I am only to aware of its sluggishness. I have tried to speed up the walking a bit, but it clearly needs more adjusting.

Ughh my right hand feels so stiff from all the mouse work. I think that bit of text pretty much sums up what I've done. More to come

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

*M* Kid Walk Test

Here' a short unfinished walk test of Kid from The Deep. Just wanted to show the progress

It's weird doing walk tests again. It's been quite a while since I had to do this, but I'm enjoying it a lot more then I used to. I seem to have got the hang of it, though I think the legs stretch a little too much. However, I'll see what my team thinks

The rig has been absolutely fine so far, credit goes to Clym for making it so easy to use. :D

Friday, 1 April 2011