Monday, 15 December 2008


Perspective is something that takes a lot of time and effort to learn and I am no where near close to understanding it. Richard Williams book provides some insight into it, but it doesn't go into massive detail - combined with sat by my window watching cars coming from the distance and making smudges with my fingers when they arrived at certain points I was able to get a basic idea of what I wanted to happen in the opening shot of Eligh's Dark Fable. The boy should come over the hill, running through the grass with net in hand and his foot should stomp down and then leave shot for that added sense of perspective. There should be some kind of sun effect...i.e. blinding light and a silhouette and maybe some effect with the grass moving....but that will all be added afterwards, getting the animation right will be hard enough - or so I thought. My personal research and reading recently have really helped me get to grips with things like 'Solid drawing' and 'Appeal within character drawing'. They are both theories that I won't bother discussing now, but they have helped non-the-less. Here is a video of me making the opening shot:


1 1/2 Hours condensed to 30 Seconds.

I'll break down what I did to put the video into context. I started by ruling in the perspective...any reference on paper really helps put other things in their place because looking at a blank piece of paper is like trying to walk in a straight line the the desert. This gave my character direction. I then penciled in his end point, his halfway point and his beginning...along with a few other places for reference...this meant all I had to do was take the time to join the amount of time which isn't shown in this 30 second clip.

The main thing was making sure that the audience could read exactly what was going on and I think I achieved that, but to make sure of it the perspective had to be right. The character had to grow as he got closer to the camera, but he was also running past the camera or 'through' the camera, which meant you view him mainly from one side. To breath life into him he still has to appear to be a solid drawing...which he does or rather he will do when he is colored in.

He needed to look excited and focused. What this shot doesn't show you is the butterfly that flies past the camera before the boy comes running up the hill chasing it. It is quite a still scene in the beginning, with just the sound of the wind and heat. The special effects are whats going to make the shot. The camera wobbles when the foot comes down and the sun will blind the camera. The boy is also a silhouette as he comes over the hill, that is why he has no features until he gets closer.


Perspective running.

All of this is an attempt to really bring my piece to life right from the very start. Alright, this is only the opening 2 seconds of animation, but I have never done a perspective run before and combining two fundamental and difficult animation techniques successfully like I have is an achieve I am quite happy to say I am proud of.

In other words, for a first attempt I think I've done rather well.

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