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Greetings Everyone,

I decided to start a thread that will document my progess in the 6 month stop motion course from www.animationateam.com .  My mentor is Chuck Duke.  I started the course on Feb 28th, so I hope to have some great stuff by August 28th...haha.

A little about me:  I have been working as a cg animator since 2006, after graduating from the first round of students at AnimationMentor....we were the guinnea pigs...haha.  I have posted a few vids here and tried to be active in the community, but I'm still so new that I don't have much input yet.

Here are the few shots I did on my own, trying to just get some experience before the class starts.

Wanted to do a walk cycle and messed up from the start, so improvised:

Did a lipsynch test with mouth shapes I got from Marc Spess at www.stopmotionstore.com :

My 11SecondClub entry for Feb 2013 (I ended up tied for 48th out of 263 entries):

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Assignment 1 I went back to the basics.  Ball Bounce.

This was the latest pass:

I got some notes that I plan to address while the shot is still setup.  I think I can just reshoot a few frames. 

Here were my notes:  There are still little things that could help. Like the second squash ball frame 17 should not be that large of a squash. The ball is not moving fast enough to give it that big of a shape.  At the very end of the shot the ball just stops. It would have been nice to add just a little roll then bring the ball to a stop.

My next assignment is to do the ball bounce in 3D space with a rig.  One version from a side angle and one version with the ball bouncing directly at the camera. 

Stay Tuned!

Good luck with your 6 month course Dieter and please say hello to Chuck for me.
Sounds like a lot of fun. I like all your stuff so far! The is definitely a thread ill be following. Good luck and enjoy it!

Here is my fix based on the notes from Chuck

I was assigned to do a bounce in 3d space from the side and front, here are my results:

I need to work on better lighting setup and green screen.  Still learning how to best paint out the rig...haha

Those look great.  The ball has some good weight to it.

THANKS!

Anthony Scott said:

Those look great.  The ball has some good weight to it.

So Chuck liked the ball bounces.  He felt the side bounce should have had a bit more roll and ease at the end, but he felt I did a great job covering distance toward the cam in the front view.

My next assignment is with a ball & socket armature.  I'll post my reference and the blocking pass here once I get them finished.  For now, here is the armature (www.animationsupplies.net Standard Armature):

Here is a video of my first attempt at a blocking pass for my new assignment.  I shot some reference and edited them together to get the performance and timing.  Chuck had some notes, so I am going to do another blocking pass and get some more poses in there to really define the motions that I want in the final animation.

One thing that I'm still getting used to is having the armature balanced.  Knowing just how tight each joint should be seems to be an art in itself. 

Has anyone used this armature before?  The joints with one side locked seem to have a bit of play in them where it rotates loosely.  If I tighten it down to remove that, then the ball side is so tight I can't move it.  Should I use loctite to hold the locked side together?

Chuck had a few notes on the first blocking pass, that I probably could have addressed as I animated the shot.  I went ahead and redid the blocking and tried to put in more detail and get some offsetting of movement, etc.  I think this turned out much better than the first pass.

Time to actually animate now! 

Blocking looks great! I'm loving this thread. So interesting! Keep up the good work.

Thanks Josh!  Looking forward to some updates on Abeline's Well!

Josh O'Brien said:

Blocking looks great! I'm loving this thread. So interesting! Keep up the good work.

Here is the full animation pass on this assignment.  I don't think it turned out that great, and all my planning in the blocking seemed to slip away as I animated.  I did a horrible job on the ball's timing and spacing...haha.  Having to keep an eye on so many things moving, trying to keep the offset, and watching arcs, ease in, and ease outs was overwhelming.  I definitely learned a lot.  Hopefully I can remember everything I learned on the next shot. 

I am waiting for feedback from my mentor.  I will let you know his thoughts once I get them.

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