Friday, June 8, 2012

stop, hammer time. no wait, stop motion time

I decided I needed a way to blow off steam in a different animation medium. I've been attracted to the idea of stop motion animation because of it's tactile nature. Seeing professional, beautiful stop motion always freaks me out. It's the pure and real form of my medium, cg animation. There's little room for error, you can't 'layer' in animation or endlessly noodle it. If you mess up you need to more or less start over. One of my early forays  into animation was actually with stop motion animations I made in middle school. They're on some VHS somewhere at my ma's house, would be sweet to get that digitized and up on the web to share.

With some doodles in mind, I just kinda started doing stuff with some wire and tin foil. I wrapped the tin foil around toilet paper. The TP to form the majority of the bulk of the shapes but keeping him still light as possible. I didn't have proper pliers on hand to cut or bend the wire so I had to rely on my good old hands and my trusty wine-opener to get the job done.

I shortly thereafter ended up with this guy. I call him Drake. His design was inspired by The Count from Sesame Street, who's also a vampire like Count Dracula, so yeah, Drake.

All this was to have something to play with, so I started moving him around in front of a camera why not. Then his foot broke and he fell over so I stopped.

Things I learned from this first test, I need to use wire that's not so strong so  I can actually pose him. I also need to use harder clay or figure some way to make hard bits at the joints where I plan on manipulating him so I'm not constantly smushing the clay around and making him fall over/break. It'd also help to not just use my floor and instead have some sort of thing he's on such that he can be anchored from below or something... And if it were a perfect world, I'd have my camera hooked up to my computer so I didn't have to keep bobbling my camera slightly each time I take a frame. Then I could get something like Dragon Stop Motion and test my animation as I go so it's no so much completely animating in the dark.

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