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#1 Gerry

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:32 PM

I'm working on a new project, a music video for a song called "Cicak" by an American musician in Singapore. this is just a quick animation test using Squetchy Sam and a snippet of the song to warm up my animating skills. Just body animation so far, no face work. Comments if you like.

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#2 TheSpleen

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 02:35 PM

looks good, like to see more.
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#3 robcat2075

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 03:34 PM

Will he be performing the song? Or is he more of an interpretive dance?

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#4 itsjustme

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 04:19 PM

Great start, Gerry!

#5 Gerry

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 04:32 PM

No, he'll be singing the song, just haven't done any face animation yet. I think I will do a longer clip. This went faster than I expected.
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#6 John Bigboote

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Posted 26 April 2009 - 07:57 AM

AMTrack!

#7 Gerry

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Posted 26 April 2009 - 08:50 AM

Ya know I just might!
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#8 Gerry

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Posted 26 April 2009 - 10:51 AM

Here's a slightly longer clip, still no face work though. It's looking a little floaty to me in spots the more I look at it.

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#9 NancyGormezano

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Posted 26 April 2009 - 01:15 PM

It's looking a little floaty to me in spots the more I look at it.


Part of the impression of floatiness could be attributed to the fact that many of the arms/hands/fingers positions changes appear to "float" into their next position (ie, they move with torso) - Try some extended holds (which will produce a tension) and then quickly snap into next position (ie - take less frames to change position to move over a greater distance). Try not to have everything move at once.

#10 Gerry

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 05:46 AM

Thanks Nancy! I may tweak this a bit more and get the face working. This is all just practice, I'll be building a model from scratch for the actual video.
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#11 Gerry

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Posted 28 April 2009 - 07:11 AM

last night I video'd myself lipsynching this clip and I must say the way I move is quite a bit different from the way I've animated it! So I'm going to start over and work in a little more detail. I may wait until I create the actual model, or I may continue working with this setup just for practice, which I need badly. Isn't there a story about Abe Lincoln upon meeting Mary Todd at a party, said, "I want to dance with you in the worst way." And he did. I know my animation isn't terrible, but I can see that it's lacking in the crispness that comes with actual animation training. Or to quote "Ed Wood": Investor: Mr. Wood, do you know anything about making movies? Ed Wood: I like to think so!
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#12 Gerry

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Posted 01 January 2011 - 07:38 AM

This is the music video project I mentioned in the other thread. I've got an animatic of the first verse on YouTube from back in July, but I guess I never posted a link here.


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#13 Gerry

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 08:20 AM

I've been doing a lot of organizing and pre-production work on this project. I've completed a shot list, including whether each shot will be 2D, 3D, a combination, or a re-use (some imagery will be repeating), a list of models I need to create and whether they're sets, props, or characters, and next I think I will be creating a full-length animatic. Also making progress on the two main characters (a boy and a girl, natch!) and developing better character designs with a more pronounced silhouette. I'd been struggling with the girl character, both in her design and the kind of dress I've been imagining, and doing a lot of sketching, which wasn't going well. Then last night I had an intuition that I should look at some of the dresses in the film of "West Side Story" (the entire film is available on YouTube in short segments!) and lo and behold, I discovered that Rita Moreno's dress and dance in the "America" number was EXACTLY what I'd been imagining for the last two years I've been working on this! So, problem solved. I'll be doing a short dance sequence for the girl and I'll be using that movie sequence for inspiration. I've committed to completing a certain amount of work on this project over the course of the coming year but I've been slammed at the day job for the last three months, one fire drill after another. It seems to be slowing down at the moment so I was able to get some preliminary work done on this over the weekend. I'll try to post some sketches this week.
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#14 HomeSlice

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 02:21 PM

I was able to get some preliminary work done on this over the weekend. ...

You mean ... at home ... on your own time? ... <gasp>.
:)

#15 Gerry

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 09:28 AM

I know, it was shocking to me too! I'm still getting used to the idea.
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#16 Gerry

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Posted 03 February 2011 - 06:07 PM

And here's the young couple now.

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  • Cicak_couple.jpg

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#17 Gerry

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 06:31 AM

Here's one of the street scenes I've been working on.

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  • Toonline_test0.jpg

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#18 Paul Forwood

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 09:14 AM

This all looks great, Gerry. :)
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#19 Gerry

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 11:28 AM

Thanks Paul, it's nice to be back working on it again.
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#20 HomeSlice

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 02:01 PM

That's looking good Gerry. The set might pop a little more if you paint some gradients and a few little details and apply them as decals to the building and sky. Perhaps even some hand painted lighting effects...

#21 Gerry

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 02:42 PM

One more before I head home. Holmes you read my mind. I'll be doing some hand painted decals to enhance the "painted" look I'm after, and even thought about using the sky from the color sketch you can see in the animatic I've got on YouTube...

There will be a lot more done on this before it's finished.

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  • Toonline_test0.jpg

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#22 Gerry

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 08:44 AM

Wow, I just finished my first test ever with SimCloth and I must say I'm impressed! This is just after playing with it for an hour and a half or so, starting with the "Wave the Flag" exercise in TaoA:M.

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#23 Paul Forwood

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:05 AM

Wow is right!
Last time I played with cloth I spent days trying to get a reasonable performance, but that was at least a couple of years ago. Well done! :)
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#24 Gerry

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:37 PM

Here's one more of the street scene, with a little more texturing. Also replaced the left palm tree with a better one using hair for the leaves.

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  • Toonline_test3_0.jpg

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#25 HomeSlice

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:58 PM

What about some groovy gradients like in this image? :) Just throwing out ideas....

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  • smd_000.jpg


#26 Gerry

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 06:41 PM

Or like this...

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  • Toonline_skytest.jpg

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#27 HomeSlice

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 06:55 PM

oh yes. love the sky in that one :)

#28 TheSpleen

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 07:32 PM

very nice style!
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#29 Gerry

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 02:11 PM

This is looking kind of sluggish. I need to play with the keyframes to get a bit more sass into these dance steps but I think it's a good start. Ultimately the geckos will all have different coloration and there will be a lot more of them.

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#30 NancyGormezano

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 02:16 PM

cute!

#31 itsjustme

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:58 PM

LOL! That's cool, Gerry.

#32 Fuchur

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 10:58 PM

cute!


Very cool geckos Gerry!

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#33 Paul Forwood

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 11:44 PM

Heh. Perfect addition! :)
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#34 Rodney

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 06:10 AM

I can almost hear the music Gerry. Looks like they are groovin' to the beat. Great (and fun!) idea.
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#35 Gerry

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 01:16 PM

thanks folks! I have a newer version of this, but all I did was change the colors a bit. I don't want to post *every* freakin variation so I'm going to wait to post something that's a real step forward. No pun intended.
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#36 Gerry

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 07:54 AM

Here's the model of the guy. I'm still refining things but any comments on the mesh are welcome. The hands need smoothing but I'm not sure if I've got too many hooks there and in the face, and if the face is over-splined or under splined. EDIT: The colors are temporary!

Attached Thumbnails

  • CicakManScreenshot.jpg
  • CicakManHandScreenshot.jpg
  • CicakManFaceScreenshot.jpg

"When fortune comes, seize her firmly by the forelock, for I tell you she is bald in back." - Leonardo daVinci

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#37 Paul Forwood

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 09:30 AM

Looking good, Gerry. :)
I think that you could lose at least one spline ring from around the mouth, probably two, and yes I would be concerned about having hooks near a joint. You could get away with detatched arms, if his shirt is staying on, and run those splines all the way up past the end of his sleeves. A few extra patches is better than introducing anomalies on his wrists. (Just my tuppence ha'penny)
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#38 Gerry

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 12:30 PM

Thanks Paul, all good points. The arms are detached as a matter of fact, so I may do that to minimize the hooks by the wrist.
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#39 tbenefi33

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 02:24 PM

Those are pretty neat character I like the toon style town and the gecko.

#40 Gerry

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 09:40 AM

Here is a series of four various walk and dance cycles. I'm still playing around and getting comfy with the rig controls and keeping in time to the music. The first segment is just a walk cycle, the second and third are two different views of the most elaborate dance step I've done, and the last is a walk cycle, then he licks his eyeball and goes into the dance step. In the dance steps I've gotten a little lazy and mostly kept his feet flat on the ground, so they're just sliding back and forth. Because of the way I'll be shooting these scenes that will be sufficient, but I may continue to refine these so they can be shown from any angle.

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#41 John Bigboote

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 10:20 AM

That reminds me... I need to shop for lower auto insurance... :)

#42 Gerry

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 01:02 PM

Here's another test of the "eyelick" shot, a recurring image that will be used as a segue between some shots. A lot of these tests need to be a little snappier, my first attempts all look a little sluggish. But it's a start.

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#43 Gerry

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 01:24 PM

I've posted a complete animatic of this video over on Vimeo rather than here, since the file size was pretty large. I"d be happy to hear any comments!

http://www.vimeo.com/20167713
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#44 mouseman

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 05:43 PM

Wow, it's really coming together. I like the repetition of the visuals, and I don't think it's over done. Pretty decent color model that goes with it; I like how some scenes have the color changing. One area that you might already have covered ... the sequence with holding the photograph and then the closeup of the man sitting (repeated a few times, for example, from 0:08 to 0:13 and 0:13 to 0:21 and 0:26 to 0:37) seem a bit long. It might be good to have some other "business" in there. Another suggestion for something to try (I know, a bit beyond the animatic phase) ... have you done any reference video for the soulful-singing on top of the building parts? Keep it up!
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#45 Gerry

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 07:29 PM

Thanks mouseman. Those are all good points you make. Getting some reference for the singing is a great idea too. Glad you liked it!
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#46 robcat2075

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 08:01 PM

Here's another test of the "eyelick" shot, a recurring image that will be used as a segue between some shots. A lot of these tests need to be a little snappier, my first attempts all look a little sluggish. But it's a start.


that's a neat idea!

There's probably a shot of a real lizard doing such a thing to use for reference. I think he will open his mouth less and get more horizontal wipe with the tongue.

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#47 Gerry

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 06:56 AM

Sure there is, I found it on YouTube! I bookmarked it about a year ago but didn't look at it prior to this test. Mostly I've been sweating just how to rig the tongue for this, downloaded a sample prj from someone here with an extensible tongue and was completely baffled and intimidated by it. Then last week I realized I could do it completely in muscle mode and did this in about a half hour! So I'll go back to look at the video and do this over. Though I'm still a little thrown by a lot of rigging things, I'm way more comfortable going in and tweaking cp weights, redoing things that don't look right, and generally getting more comfortable with rigging/animating as an ongoing process rather than something I'm stuck with. That last paragraph makes my work process sound a lot more dire than it actually is, and your comments are really helpful.
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#48 Gerry

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 02:15 PM

Here's a still from West Side Story. I want my girl character to have the same style of dress as this pink one, a very full skirt with fluffy crinoline underneath. I will be doing a cloth material so the dress can flip and flounce, which works fine in my tests with just one thickness of geometry. But how would I accomplish this crinoline look? A hair material? several layers of geometry in the skirt? I don't know if this is doable, just looking for suggestions.

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  • pinkDress.jpg

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#49 Gerry

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 10:56 AM

Here are two test render stills, one of the street for the sax solo, and one for the opening shot in the guy's house. Both are still being worked on. The final animation will all be toon-rendered btw.

Attached Thumbnails

  • SaxSoloStill000.jpg
  • KitchenStill_test000.jpg

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#50 Rodney

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 11:42 AM

This should be a very interesting music video. It's also quite an undertaking. I look forward to your updates! A thought for the repeating scenes: If you render those out to large resolution you may be able to zoom in and or pan a little and keep those images fresh and new as they are repeated. If you end up at the end with time to spare (always unlikely) having several cameras set up and re-rendering from a slightly different angle will help to hold the viewers attention. I guess what I'm trying to say here is that adding even the slightest changes to these repeating sequences will increase their interest exponentially. Whereas the opposite is conversely true and using the exact images will detract from the quality of the piece. The goal I would set for myself were I doing the piece would be to progress those similar sequences just a little each time we see them. The geckos on the wall for instance might progress ever so slightly up the wall throughout the music video but in each individual sequence this would hardly be perceived. (So in those shots perhaps only the background would change) Viewers looking for texturing and detail would certainly sense they were different and perhaps spend more time with your imagery. My concern is that while the words of the song must necessarily keep repeating, the imagery must really strive to avoid that unnecessarily. Planning that progression now will save a lot of time in the rendering stage. This requires a little non-linear workflow but as a test to see how successfully you've accomplished this progression you could play each of these similar sequences one right after another (out of sequence) where observing those in order will allow you to see the progression clearly and make adjustments as needed. There should be something new (even if only a little color/brightness change) in every sequence. At any rate... for your general consideration. Your animatic is looking really good Gerry. Very impressive.
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