Tuesday, April 24, 2007

A bouncing ball and "Excitement"....some how they go together this week. :)

Click the little triangle in the lower left corner of the video above to play the animation.

There you go...my first Animation Mentor animation. I agree with you...its not that exciting. But when someone is just starting to learn how to animate, they will usually start with the "famous" ball bounce as their first assignment. At Animation Mentor, regardless of your previous animation experience you will start from the beginning again. Personally, I am excited about going back to basics because I am going to understand it all, and why things work so much more this time around.

This week using Stu, we had to make a pose that portrayed "EXCITEMENT". So I researched on the internet what "excitement" looks like, a did a whole pile of sketches. Overall last weeks assignments went really well. My mentor liked my ball bounce, and only had me make a minor adjustment in my Stu pose.

I can not believe I am already in week 4. Time flies when you're having fun I guess. :)

Thank you.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

I introduce to you...... Stu!

Alright, well "Stu" isn't too exciting right now, because he's just leaning up against that trash can. I promise though, eventually he will get more exciting to watch, along with some of his relatives...oh yes...he has relatives that we will be using too.

Stu is the character that we were given to create our favorite pose from the sketches we did. So this is actually last weeks assignment that has already been graded. My mentor was really pleased with it. (Yes!!!) I got my first e-Critique this week. An e-Critique is a video that is in a split screen view. On the one side we can see and hear our mentor talking, and on the other side we can see him drawing over top of our work to show us exactly what we did right, and of course the areas or parts we need to improve on. His only critique for this was a little thing with the right foot which I already fixed. I was really happy with the way my first assignment went.

This week I am working on another pose, and a ball bounce. Yes!!!! I am actually animating now. Its only a bouncing ball...but its animating. :) Its a little weird though, because its a ball bounce with no squash and stretch. Squash and stretch is one of the 12 fundamentals in animation. This week we were only learning about ease ins, and ease outs. I think next week is squash and stretch. Anyways, I will save that all for you next time.

In case some of you don't know, always right below one of my postings there will be a little area that says comments, which you can click on. Please feel free to leave one of your own about my work...or just to say hi, or even just to read what some others have said. You don't have too, only if you want too. :)

Thank You.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Class 1 - Week 2

Hello Good Peoples,

For this weeks assignment the big thing was to just go out and observe people and study their postures, and the way they did things. We had to do some simple sketches of people we saw. So I went to the university here on Monday and Wednesday and just sketched. But what I really loved was just observing what people do. I honestly never thought I would get so excited about seeing a person set down a can of pop. Now you think that I am off my rocker completely don't you?...Maybe I am. But seriously...when I watched this guy set the can down between his legs onto the floor....I saw something awesome! As the can neared the floor, his fingers just slightly released pressure and the can slid the last .5" to the floor, his fingers were just merely guides pretty much at that point. When I saw that....I began to smile because that is one of those little things that we naturally do without knowing it. I'm sure you can relate. Its those little things that I need to incorporate into my animation to help give it life and believability.

I also watched two people having a conversation. The little things and motions they did with their hands was amazing to watch. Well it was amazing to me. :)

The rest of our assignment for this week is to then pose a 3D character out in the computer of our favorite sketches. I will post those eventually....I promise. Some of you have been requesting visuals, and I will get them for you in a couple days. I will do my best to not make you read all the time.

So if you ever need a person to animate a character setting down a pop can. You know who to contact.

Thank you :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Met the mentor and classmates tonight

Tonight's web cam session was the first time our class (16 students) got to meet our mentor (Paul Allen) and each other. It was great to see and meet the people we will be learning with for the next 3 months. Paul seems very laid back and cool, but when it comes down to getting the work done...its business, as it should be. We have students in our class from all walks of life it seems. Some are beginners, some have gone to school for it already like myself, some have been doing something totally different but have decided to chase their childhood dream, and one student already has 4.5 years of industry experience including work on commercials, tv animation, and feature films (Jurassic Park). She said she wants to learn a better work flow than what she is used too. So thats cool. I don't have a whole lot to say about tonight because it was all about introductions. The excitement and energy amongst everyone is awesome! It makes my smile just that much bigger.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

I AM EXTREMELY EXCITED!!!!!!! First Day!!!

Hello Good People!

Well, today I had my first day of class "at" Animation Mentor. Even though its an online school and I am doing it from home in Canada. We got full access to the website which is overwhelming at first, but I think its going to be AMAZING! My mentor for the first class is a guy by the name of Paul Allen. His most recent work was in a movie called The Ant Bully.

I just finished up a Live Q & A session with one of the schools three co-founders Shawn Kelly (Worked on such movies as Star Wars, A.I., Hulk). A Live Q & A session is basically a web cam video conference with our mentor and the students in our class. We submit our question by typing them in a little dialogue box, then our mentor will click on it and our web cam will be "live" so our mentor and the class can see us. We can always see our mentor. Tonights session was only supposed to be an hour long, but there was just so much excitement amongst everyone, and especially Shawn...it lasted 2.5 hours. It was really relaxed and a good time.

I have 16 students in my class from countries around the world. United States, Australia, India, Cayman Islands, and one other person from Canada.

Well I hope some of you will bookmark this blog and follow my path as I journey through this intense 18 month program focusing on character animation. I will be posting videos of my assignments so you can see everything I am creating. Its going to start with a bunch of bouncing balls ...but I promise it will only better. I am very excited about going back to basics and doing ball bounces again. Graduating from the animation department at California State University Fullerton last fall (Aug '06) and learning from the many talented professors and students there is going to help me immensely.

Thank you to my very special best friend Claire for supporting and allowing me to chase my dream. I can't even put it into words how much it means to me. A huge THANK YOU to my family and the Shaffer family (including Ollie & Polly) for their endless 100% support. This is the right thing.

I promise I won't make you all read this much again. :)

I'm so excited I feel like a little kid at Christmas. Wahooooo!

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