Hey guys,i learnt stop motion by myself,self taught,collected few informations from the net and i practised and practised,i had no idea of animation,but then i studied the movements and learnt animation,so i dont know the basics,cause i improvise while doing it.

I have few questions in mind which i would like to know

for example i am planning to punch someone in 15 fps,the whole punch should be completed in 15 pics that is one sec? or can the whole movement be completed in lesser frames like for 14 frames in 15 fps? is that ok? 

what i want to know is..is it mandetory that in 15 fps all the shots should be having 15 pictures ?

how to plan this? 

btw here is something i made - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjldC37oZhA&t=2s

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The end of the punch would be completed in less than 15 frames, but most of it is in the anticipation. At 15 FPS which is technically shooting on two's if you consider the full frame rate of 30 FPS,  you would do the wind-up which might be a third of a second (5 frames at 15 FPS) and then the actual punch, which would be initiated by one frame to ease into it, then a middle position frame, then the contact frame where the fist is actually touching the character being punched (although you may want to go straight to the extreme frame, where the fist has punched beyond where the character's head was), and then one frame to ease out, another middle position as the arm pulls back slightly, and then 3-5 more frames of the hand settling. The farther you end with the fist out, the stronger the punch will look. 

My friend Martin did a nice punch of a shark character you can study here: 

The punch happens at 1:38 in the video.

i get it,,so what is this shooting in 2s and 1s..i dont understand,all i do is improvise.i dont know the basic

one more question,while shooting in 15 fps,every action should end with 15 frames?like,punching..whole punch,kicking,whole kicking.blocking,every action should be consist of 15 frames?what if i change the camera angle for shooting the punch,if i use 2 camera angles,for each i will have to have 15 frames? or half? which would add to 15?

There is no set rule about how many frames to end a movement with, you just want it to be able to read (give the audience time to see what happened before and after a big move or change of pose or camera angle).

Shooting on two's just means that you take two frames per time you move the puppet. One's would be taking one frame each time. If your spacing of the move is the same but each time you take two frames, it will move twice as slow as it would if you only took one frame. That is timing, at its most basic. Most of the time, shooting on two's is done to cut the amount of time it takes to animate a shot in half (twice as many frames means only half the work). Hope this helps.

so when i shoot in 2s and 1s,,the fps should be same..then i can notice the change?

i heard animators need to calculate a lot while shooting..but i never felt that way,i dont have to calculate the movements,is this because i dont know something? or is it same for all?


Shooting on [N]'s is just the input method; playback framerate is different (usually 24fps, 25fps, or 30fps). Shooting on twos makes for a more stroboscopic form of playback. It's more stuttery. Shooting on ones makes it smoother on playback. If you shoot on ones, you need to move each increment half the amount as shooting on twos if you want them to play back at the same speed. Digital, of course, will let you mandate playback speed to what you shot at, if you want, but IMO that's not a best practice. Better to stick to standard playback speeds.

Whether you use dope sheets or x sheets - calculating and counting frames - depends on your experience, instincts, and needs. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. If I have something that needs a real rhythm, I count it out and have an x-sheet; as soon as I'm animating more than one character or object at a time, I find I absolutely need an x-sheet as a checklist per frame. If you're attempting to follow real-world reference footage, that takes more planning. If you're kind of "freehanding" it, that's no less of a viable option. My current project didn't use x-sheets or much in the way of calculations at all, other than a sticky note here and there reminding me of certain cycles I wanted to be consistent.

Your thread, and Don's response, suggests that you may want to spend some more time researching easing, anticipation, and follow-through animation concepts. There are no rules, but if we're trying to make things feel like they have mass and movement, then these are the keys to emulating natural movements and physics.

thank you,by the way what are  x sheets and dope sheets?

i am planning to make a ballet stop motion dance sequence,can you kindly give me some suggestion regarding how to match the animation with song rythm?the song is a 4-4 count.. i plan to shoot at 15 fps,

If you have pre-recorded audio (music, sound effects, or dialog), that is another reason to use an X-sheet. It makes it possible to know what the animation needs to sync with in the soundtrack on a given frame number. Most of the time, the sound is completed first and then the animation is made afterwards to make sure that they both play at the same time. The exception is when sound effects are added in real time after the animation is completed (Foley) or voices are dubbed in a different language for an international film release (ADR- Automated Dialog Replacement). An example of Foley is when you improvise a movement that was not in your storyboard or audio track and dub in the sound for that movement during the editing/post production process. An example of ADR is when a character onscreen is being spoken to by a character offscreen, but they are never seen, so there is no requirement for perfect sync.  In live-action filmmaking/feature length movies with real actors, ADR is often done when the set was too noisy to capture the actor's spoken lines cleanly because of construction noise or other unwanted ambient sound.

You don't have to know all of that at the moment, but these are all examples sound timing in the audio/visual rhythm of storytelling.

One good way to time out a character's actions/poses is to count out loud: "one-thouand-one, one-thousand two..." This is especially nice when working at 24 FPS because each second is exactly 24 frames and that divides nicely into four blocks of time. So, "one-" would be 6 frames, "one-thou" would be 12 frames, "one-thousand" would be "18 frames, and "one-thousand-one" would be 24 frames. Not all actions are going to happen in neatly divided fourths of a second, but this is an overall good way to quickly figure out how much time it takes a character to do something. This is a tip Anthony Scott (the owner of Stopmotionanimation.com) came up with and shared here on the messageboard a few years ago and it been very helpful to a lot of us. That tip is also mentioned in this book, which has a lot of useful information about stop motion.


This is actually the third edition, which has newer information that was published this year. 


Don is right with his book recommendation. That book is what you need in order to learn the basics. Congrats for just jumping right in and getting your feet wet, that's most of the challenge right there, and you should be proud and excited to get started. But to progress in this (or any other) art form, actual study, deep internet searching, and reading will get you really far, really fast, and will address 90% of the questions you have asked in this thread.

thanks for your help guys,really appreciate it,,,the book does not even ship to my country,sigh..i will have to do more research then..still wondering how should i match the dance steps with the actual music,i have the recorded music,i understood what don said regarding lips sync

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