taking one frame at a time since 1999

Hey guys.

I have just about finished a cut paper animation and I would really appreciate some feedback about what I can change. There is no title to begin with hence the blank 5 seconds at the beginning. I know I need to adjust some sound levels and also a couple of odd color lines at the edges of frames. 

Any small changed I could make to make it better would be appreciated! (and any title ideas  )

I know its not perfect but its all self taught and I am getting there!

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It's very well done - only 2 things I can suggest, and they're both super easy.  

It bugged me slightly that downstream was exactly the same as upstream - didn't seem to make any sense. I was happy to see that 'upstream' actually involved the paper puppet moving upwards on the screen, then it moved up again for 'downstream' - and in the same direction you had just established as upstream. A very simple solution would be to just flop the piece of video, so it's visually reversed. Then she'd be going physically down as well as the opposite direction from upstream. Most likely it's a simple matter in your video editor - or just reshoot it. 

The spelling one is right at the end - it's Incompetech (you have Incomtech).

If you flipped that downstream shot left to right, the canoe would be going in the opposite direction, which would help.  But it would still be going up towards the top of frame.  If you also flipped it vertically so she's going down, she's be upside down, so that doesn't work.  It would be best to shoot it again, with the same stream, but the canoe going the other way down the stream.

With the Incompetech credit, you also misspelt Kevin McLeod's first name as "Keivn".  (I noticed because I use his music too.)

I think overall it works well, a really good use of simple shapes and flat colours but you get all the information you need.  And it's a nice looking style!  I like a lot of little things, like how all the things going into the backpack start wide, then sort of funnel in as they go down.  The jungle looks nice and lush -  and all you had to do was change the brown path to a blue river and you could use it again, but I didn't notice until the second viewing.

With the story, was she setting out to find this boy all along, or did she just happen to see him?  There was a line about looking high and low, like she was looking for something, but nothing at the beginning to say there was a purpose to the expedition.  I missed it the first time, that there were two sets of footprints after she spotted someone.  I could have used a pov shot of him as she saw him through her binoculars.  Then the 2-shot with the fire made that clear, but he remains a slightly mysterious figure we only see from behind.


Thank you very much.

Spelling- I am not great at spelling at I keep having to change it because I  don't tend to notice so I defiantly appropriate that!

I did flip the river scene but it just looked wrong because of the shape of the river, so i think I may re-shoot it!

The quest was to find a crocodile like the picture but instead he found a girlfriend!

Thank you both!!

Nick and I both assumed the girl was the protagonist, so if it's the male making the first sets of footprints you might want to make that clear from the beginning as well. And yeah, I realized after it was too late to edit my post that flopping it side-to-side wouldn't make the boat go downwards onscreen - whoopsie!  

I like the idea that he sets out to find a crocodile but finds a girl instead! I think maybe a little additional text or something could make that all more clear, and as Nick suggested a few added shots to clarify what's going on in places. 

Ok, I just re-watched it. The first time I saw it I really didn't understand what was happening on the beginning - but now I see what you mean about a picture. Knowing what you just explained I can see the story now, but it wasn't clear without your explanation. I think we need to see the boy from the front and make it more clear he's a male - somehow I was getting a female vibe from him. 

I get that he went into the attic and found a picture, and the lightbulb is a clear symbol that he got an idea, but I had no idea what his idea was. Maybe you could show a thought bubble rising from his head where he re-constructs the picture, but with himself holding the crocodile-head-on-a-stick. And maybe a caption like "a plan is made" or "the quest is on" or something. Often the hardest part is to make things crystal clear at the beginning so the audience really understands what's happening. 

The title you come up with could also help to clarify and explain - something like "Crocodile Quest" maybe.

ah wow thank you so much I really appreciate both your feedback as it gets difficult when your viewing your own stuff over and over!

I can see were you get the female vibe from! 

So far I have changed the spellings and the down stream scene, I have also added a scene with a thought bubble thank you for the idea Strider!! (hope you don't mind).

My lawyer will be contacting you..  

Just kidding!  Of course, feel free to use any suggestions or any variations on them that you want - that's why we do this. 

Ok, I'm watching again as well.  I'll stop to comment as I go.

I did see the protagonist wipe away the cobwebs from the picture in the attic.  The thought I took from that was that he/she was respecting the memory of his/her father or grandfather who had been an explorer, and the lightbulb idea was that he/she was going to emulate him.  All the crocodile head said to me was that this is some tropical location, and the explorer must have been a bad-ass crocodile hunter.

If the croc matters, maybe we need a newspaper clipping with something about a rare species of crocodile?  In Australia where I live, crocs are no big deal (well, in the tropical north, not around Melbourne where I am, that would be a big deal) so it didn't jump out at me.  And why would he have decapitated it?  Why not pose for a photo with the whole croc lying on the ground, or strung up to a tree?  That's more what I would expect a hunter to do.  If the croc was seen, and killed, why does there have to be another expedition?  So this looks like the part that isn't quite working to set up the story.  When I made films for the ABC natural History Unit, we always had to show a rough cut to people who knew nothing about the story, to see what they got or didn't get, and if they dozed off - which was painful sometimes, when you knew it was right there on the screen if they would only pay attention, the morons!  But it did help, because by that stage you are so immersed in it, you just can't tell any more.  And that is what you are doing here.  (Sometimes you have to whack the audience with a 2 x 4.  With a sign on it saying "this is a 2x4!")

All the preparations for the journey, the plane around the globe to get there, work perfectly.

You could say "HE walked and walked",  over the brown path shot, which would clarify the gender.  At that stage I thought it was a girl, and the gender didn't seem important anyway.  

Searched high and low - I did pick up that something was being looked for at this point, but had no idea what. 

I like the binocular shot of the parrot and frog, they shows the person is looking, and the frog one makes a good cutaway to separate the upstream and downstream shots.

I was confused by the thing swimming in the water.  A spikey bit, what looks like a pair of eyes front-on, then another bump.  Was it 3 things?  I think now it is a crocodile, but they don't have spikes around their nose, there were no nostrils (which stick up in a croc) and the 2 eyes didn't go with a profile view.    I would re-think the design of the croc and re-shoot that one.

So the guy is watching the croc and following it, then sees something that makes him break out in love hearts.  But we don't see what.  And here, I guess you didn't want to show what he saw right away, but to show the double footprints, then do the big reveal with the fire shot that finally explains it.  Showing the binocular view of her would certainly make it clearer, but might feel like explaining the joke before we get to the punchline.  But if that isn't a problem, it sure would help.

So I'm not so clear why, if the crocodile was important before, it isn't any more.  You could meet someone, and still want to complete your mission.  I can make up my own story - he was going to go shoot a big croc like his dad did, he's more a hunter than an explorer.  But the girl holds up her hands to say, "No no don't shoot it, take a photo instead", so he took some nice widlife shots, and went home with her and left the croc at peace in its environment.  But I don't know if that was your story. 

So I saw before that there is a couple in front of the fire, one with pigtails, and now I realise that is not the main character we have been seeing all along, it is the other one.  Right there and perfectly obvious, but I didn't pick it before.  Just like those idiots who couldn't see what my films were showing them in plain sight. 

A final thing - FinalMark1 as a title doesn't do anything to help set up the story for me, so a good title might make a big difference in how we interpret what we see.

I know its been a while but I change little bits up until the deadline and it must of been alright as it is in the top 3 in 16-19 animation in the competition I entered it in to! we find out who has won on the 19th of September but I didn't even expect to come in the top 3!

Thank you !!

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