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Competition Entry – Soccer Poses

Last month in honour of the FIFA World Cup, Animation Mentor held a competition challenging participants to submit their best football poses. I didn’t win some free lectures (dangit) but I thought I’d share my thumbnail sketches and my entry here anyway!

Competition entry

The pose I submitted.

The pose I rejected.

The pose I rejected.

And these are the thumbnail sketches I did to create the poses. As you can see, I did have some more “hero” type soccer poses like bicycle kicks, but I wanted to do something different from the other entries, and so I went in another direction. For reference I looked at top players like Zlatan, Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Messi, Pele, Beckham and Rooney. Thank bejeezus I have a soccer-loving boyfriend who could point me to all these awesome athletes!

World Cup Competition Sketches

Click the image to enlarge.

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5 Great Tips from an Animation Pedagogy Forum

The panelists from Pedagogies for Practice.

The panelists from Pedagogies for Practice.

“Ummm, pedagogy? Is that like a Ped Egg for your foot?”

Nope! It’s the forum I attended on the weekend where professionals (including Academy Award winner Adam Elliot) discussed how animation should be taught to students. They also shared tips about the industry and these are 5 points I took away!

1. ANIMATION DIRECTING SHOULD BE PURSUED; ANIMATION SUPERVISING CAN BE OFFERED

Having experienced the role himself, Florent de la Taille (a GOBELINS graduate) pointed out that if you want to become an Animation Director, you have to pursue the role from the outset. Waiting for the role to float gently down to you from the heavens in a halo of gold is probably not going to happen.

On the other hand, you can be offered the role of Animation Supervisor based on your excellent work. You just have to give an indication to your studio that you want to be considered. Animation Supervisors bear a lot of responsibility for the sequences they’re supervising, so not everyone puts their hand up to keep the kids in check.

In addition, Florent advised that if you’re really gunning for the role of Animation Supervisor, you have to check that the studio where you’re working even NEEDS one. If they don’t, then apply elsewhere specifically for that role. Be aware: some studios don’t take on outside supervisors. Some studios work on a Japanese system where you have to work from the bottom up. I feel like I can hear Drake rapping as I wrote that…

What a polite ass. Shrek 2 (2004, Andrew Adamson, Kelly Asbury, Conrad Vernon). Source: Reflectionary.

2. CREATURE ANIMATION – DECIDE ON A VIABLE REALITY

How can you layer human behaviour over creature animation?

By deciding on the rules of that world before you begin animating.

Myrna Gawryn (a teacher of character behaviour and movement) answered my question by giving  an example of Donkey from Shrek: sometimes he walks on all fours like the quadruped he is and  sometimes he sits with crossed legs. Ergo, sometimes his physiology is respected and he walks  like an ass (tee hee!) and sometimes he’s given human behaviour like washing his hoofs to ramp  up the humour. Each creature should have rules to follow so that we as an audience  understand  why Donkey can sit cross-legged, but isn’t walking upright like a pig in Animal Farm.

3. SCRIPT, SCRIPT, SCRIPT

Audiences can forgive bad animation but they won’t forgive a bad story.

This one is especially true because it comes from Adam Elliot, a claymation animator who says  he’s never animated a walk-cycle in his life. Seriously. Check out his Academy-Award winning  short film Harvie Krumpet. It’s just a lot of it blinking eyes.

But I would take his lack of walk-cycles and Harvie’s endearing story any day over Frozen. Pretty  pictures are one thing, but not knowing who is the villain is another.

If only they’d followed the mantra: SCRIPT, SCRIPT, SCRIPT.

4. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE MORE TALENTED THAN YOU

WOAH, epiphany! No one has ever told me this before. Now that I’ve heard it, I realised it’s something you should ALWAYS do.

If you surround yourself with more talented people, then they can fill in for your weaknesses and also help improve them. Now I know how to fight you, my terrible texturing skills!

5. ANIMATION IS A PART OF A LARGER ECOSYSTEM

If you think about ‘art’ as being an ecosystem, then you realise that animation is just one part of it. Go explore what the rest of the ecosystem has to offer!

Like my cousin’s theatre performance that involved crazy nuns. Or trying to play ‘Edelweiss’ on the harmonica. Or learning how to make croissants from scratch!

*Note to readers: You need to have foresight into your croissant cravings. If you think: “Mmmm….yeah I do want croissants in 72 hours”, then go ahead and bash the butter into that pastry!

5TipsPedagogies_Ecosystem

The point is explore – try – create! Everything you experience can help you to evolve in your chain of the ecosystem. Who knows what your outside interests can influence next?

 

Week 3 Sketches and a Question Answered!

Excited Sketches

We’re up to emotion poses in Animation Mentor! Week 3’s emotion was “excited”. I wanted to do something like my previous post:

Pixar_mentor_02

– but I think the CG model doesn’t have 3 elbows and 2 knees, so I chose a subtly girly version of excitement.

I know what you’re thinking: “Steph. Don’t torture us with these preliminary sketches. Give us what we lined up for in the bitter cold. Show us your final emotion poses. Show us animation. Show-me-the-moonnnnneeeyyyy!” You know what, you’re right fantasy audience. I shall give you a show!

But only at the end of the term, when I know the work is as good as it can be 😀 For now, you’ll have to put up with sketches.

On another note, blogger The Byronic Man TOTALLY featured my question in his segment ‘Sexy Stalin’! Check out the article for his advice to my query. Have a great week everyone!

Péter le Cerveau – A New Art Movement

WHAT. ARE. YOU!?

WHAT. ARE. YOU!?

Art-world, let’s admit it, Post-modernism is so last century. We need something new! Bold! Exciting! And I have it:

It’s called “Péter le Cerveau”. Look at that French name! It’s totally legit, because, let’s be honest, any reference to art with relation to France increases it’s credibility. Louvre? French. Monet? French. See? Two examples.

The guidelines are that it’s an artwork that is created out of lack of creativity for the task at hand. For example, my drawings today for a job have been shocking, so I began to doodle using Adobe Illustrator’s vectors. Little did I know I would become distracted like a diamond ring distracts a gold digger. DARN YOU HYPNOTIC VECTORS! STOP LOOKING SO SINUOUS!

But enough internet yelling. The point is, I created this piece and now, I’ve created a whole art movement out of it! Please, join me in promoting the modernity that is Péter le Cerveau.

Oh and if you’re wondering how I got the name, I typed “brain fart” into Google Translate.

So in conclusion, this is what my brain pops out when I’m stumped.