Sunday, 20 January 2013

Animation Practice - Rotoscoping in Flash

Very excited to be sharing my first attempt at rotoscoping.  We were tasked with producing a 30 second animation that displays our knowledge and understanding of the principles of animation. (Brief is at the bottom of the page)

In short, we need to display an animation that shows realistic movement of a character, showcasing a level of technical ability as well as creativity.

The simplest way for me to produce realistic movement was to rotoscope some video footage.  I looked at pole dancers, martial artists, my son waving and parkour.  I plumped for a short film on youtube Urban Ninja pwns jet and cut it down to 30 seconds.

I converted it to an image sequence using Media Encoder, see how here.  This was then imported to Flash.  I traced each frame, repeating some of them and adding tweens to create new scenes that mimic camera moves.  I also added some elements to enhance the scene and exaggerate some of the movements.  I used the pencil tool mainly whilst tracing the character, it is a little wobbly, but it gives the effect of a handrawn piece which I rather like.  The pen tool would perhaps have given a smoother, neater result, but I am a fan of drawing by hand and old habits die hard.

I used the pen, line, shape and paint bucket for the minimal background features and graphics.  I was rather pleased to discover the guidelines which I used to move some of the guide frames to reduce camera wobble.  Another happy discovery were the 'Close Large Gaps' option for filling shapes and the 'Smooth Pencil' mode for neatening up some of my lines.

I rather mistakenly didn't select any music until after the animation was completed, it is more tricky editing the music around the piece as opposed to the other way around, but I think it fits OK.  There are just a couple of bits I would make tighter if I had selected the music first, but its hand it tomorrow and I'm not starting from scratch now!

I'll let you know how I get on with marks.  Hope you like this and would love it if you could share it with your friends!

Here is the brief:

Module Assignment
Animation Practice
Total Mark: 100%
Hand in Dates:
Tuesday 20.30 Week 7 (CD Hand in)
Learning Outcomes: (being assessed by this assignment).

On completion of this module students should be able to:
·      Apply creative skills in the development of an animation
  • ·      Demonstrate an understanding of the theoretical principles and practical techniques underpinning successful animation
  • ·      Create an animation demonstrating an understanding of realistic movement
  • ·      Demonstrate realistic animation (through characterisation)
  • ·      Demonstrate your understanding of the principles of animation from the animation concepts module

In this module you will produce an 30-second animation that must:
be relevant to the context of your award

You are required to:
create a final animation in a format of your choosing: worth 100%

The Brief
You must create a 30-second animation that demonstrates realistic
movement through characterisation.
The animation that you produce can be 2D or 3D and in any program of your
choosing. Some examples of different types of animation are:
• Rotoscoping (As used in Star Wars etc…)
• Stop motion (Wallace and Gromit etc…)
• Image sequence
• 3D animation
You are welcome to develop your own idea but you must agree the idea
with a module tutor.

The Deliverables
The Rendered Animation
The animation that you produce must:
Be 30 seconds long exactly.
Effectively demonstrate the learning outcomes.
Demonstrate your understanding of the principles of animation
Demonstrate the following techniques:
• animation
• characterisation
• creativity
• technical skills

The final animation must adhere to the following technical specification:

Flash based projects:
Your final output should be a .swf file. (Publishing your .fla will create a .swf
which will be suitable). This file must playback as intended without the use of
external files.

Other projects:
QuickTime format
H.264 Compression Codec
1500 kbps data rate
Audio AAC, Stereo (L,R), 44.1 KHz
MAXIMUM File size: 100mb
Failure to meet this specification will result in a large penalty being applied to
your mark and may cause your work to fail.

How to Submit
All of the following elements should be burnt to disc:
• any Pre-Planning work such as sketches, animation tests etc
• the final Animation
Failure to submit your work on CD could result in a zero mark.

Marking Scheme and Deadlines
Deliverable Type Deadline Weighting
Final Animation Burnt to CD Week 7 100%
Total for assignment: 100%

Overall grade: 73

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