Tuesday, November 20, 2007

New Character Jump Stage 2

So I had to do some traveling for work and have been busy with the tutoring assignment and am just now getting around to making a new post. As part of my tutoring session, in addition to to tweaking the ball bounce, I was given a new character model and asked to try out a new character jump and explore a new working method called Layering. I will go into this in more detail after tonight's session and will post the notes, what I'm trying to achieve with the jump and other general comments post the third session. Can't believe we're half way through this thing already! Feel I'm still in a little ditch just before the base of the Animation mountain. Could use another six weeks after this....oh wait, I begin AnimationMentor just around the bend.

Below are a side shot and a perspective shot of my character jump:

Friday, November 9, 2007

Ball Bounce Part Tres

Sent in my new ball bounce post first session, and Stephen was kind enough to offer some feedback...basically the new bounce was REALLY good, but had one minor blip of strobing in the first bounce due to the contact position being slightly too far over to the left of the incoming arc of motion. See here is a diagram of the old incoming bounce:

Now I corrected that position and made a slight downward move in the spacing of the ball two positions back just before contact. Here's the new bounce diagram followed by the movie of the new bounce:

More Tips from Session 1

New Bounce w/ 3D Ball

with the 3D ball this time

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Tutoring Session 1: Recap Related to Ball Bounce

So I had my first meeting with Stephen Gregory of Pixar this past Tuesday. It was a stellar feeling to be in the presence of a master animator. Stephen is really down-to-earth and definitely has quite a zeal for this art form.

Our first session was jam-packed with info leaving me with a lot to absorb, digest and apply to the first two assignments [ball bounce and character jump]. I'll first tackle the ball bounce and then in another post I'll discuss the critique of the jump.

Basically what came out of the critique from the bouncing ball is: SPACING [since my timing seemed pretty good and I think a lot of folks have a pretty good sense of timing, but it's the spacing that seems to take a lot of practice...I know it's gonna for me!]

Stephen thought the ball bounce was really good with the overall timing and animation working well. The problem area though, lies in the fact that the bounce suffers from what is known as STROBING.

In the case of my bounce, I'm getting strobing mostly where the ball makes contact with the surface. This is due to the gap being too large between the ball in the air and the ball on the ground in the next frame.

In addition to that gap being too large, the next position of the ball taking off is too similar in location to the spot where the ball was before contacting the surface. This makes it seem like the ball was in the same place in the air for two frames and enhances the strobing effect.

The problems that occur in the bouncing ball scenario occur in all other animations which is what makes this exercise such a good one to master.

So, I've gone and implemented these critiques into the ball bounce and re-shot the scene.

Here's a look at the break down of each "drawing" or pose [since this is 3D animation after all]:

Here's a look at the spacing between the poses just before the ball contacts the surface:

Here's a look at the Graph Editor of the Translate Y for those of you into that kinda thing:

Now on to a new character jump using a new character rig and implementing a new working method which I'll discuss in another blog posting.