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  • Writer's pictureMauricio Botero

SCAD: Animation Performance

Updated: Jun 17, 2019

For this quarter, I will take a class whose objective is to make an animation worth for demo reel material. The quarter has not started yet but I feel like I need to take time before the quarter begins to think about the objectives of this assignment and do a portion of the planning stage (at least having three options for audio files).


Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 70h and 35min

Lighting:

Total Time: 145h and 35min

 

Day 1, March 14:


I meet with the professor to ask details about the assignment and he told me that it's intended to be an animation with dialogue of around 12 seconds maximum (with multiple shots and character interaction). He suggested me maybe to take the characters that I will be using on my thesis (which are available in Internet) to practice more using those rigs. I'm considering that option and I started to looking for audio files of a child.


Today: 1h and 00min

Planning: 1h and 00min

 

Day 2, March 19:


I keep looking for audio files focusing on kid movies. I found a list of kid actors who performed successfully in the past and I will start use that list to continue to look for the right audio file.


Today: 0h and 51min

Planning: 1h and 51min

 

Day 3, March 25:


Audio searching and Pose Library setup.


Today: 3h and 07min

Planning: 4h and 58min

 

Day 4, March 26:


Audio search and prepare class materials. Materials submitted to the Dropbox and started to do the brainstorming for the scenario.


Today: 2h and 33min

Planning: 7h and 31min

 

Day 5, March 27:


Brainstorming for the two selected ideas during the class using the matrix strategy provided by the professor. Story-boarded the first and second idea to show to the professor and ask for feedback.


Today: 1h and 31min

Planning: 9h and 02min

 

Day 6, March 28:


Write Characters Biography as a part of the written assignment for the class. Also, I draw the Storyboard and prepare the speaking assignment for the class.


After the class, I started to modify the storyboard with the notes given by my peers and the professor. I changed the context and I started to look for the rigs to build the layout. Lastly, I setup the Maya scene for the layout.


Today: 4h and 03min

Planning: 13h and 05min

 

Day 7, March 29:


Download potential male rig. I also created Loui and Laura picker (Loui and Laura are the names of the characters).


Today: 2h and 10min

Planning: 15h and 15min

 

Day 8, March 30:


I think on other scenarios and options thinking on shots which are character driven. Also, I tried to think on shot choices that focused first on Laura, then on Loui and in both at the same time.


Today: 0h and 19min

Planning: 15h and 34min

 

Day 9, April 1:


I scan the thumbnails that I do for story options and put them into Photoshop to redraw them to show to the professor in today's appointment. I get to redraw 3 of them and get some feedback by the professor. He recommended me to look for more business into the shots and combine all the ideas that I present to him. Also to start doing the layout first in the top view to see the arrangement of the elements of the scenario to arrange the cameras more easily.


Today: 4h and 0min

Planning: 19h and 34min

 

Day 10, April 2:


I revise the background story of the characters and the scenario for the deadline submission. The background story is pretty much the same but it some details were added or changed. The scenario changed more drastically.


Also, I work on the layout taking into account the new ideas. I try to use simple and quick poses but also ones that are able to convey the performance that I'm going for.


Today: 1h and 31min

Planning: 21h and 05min

 

Day 11, April 3:


I continue working on the master layout of the sequence and I will try to show the progress very quickly to my chair, however I will post it on the pod group to receive some feedback.


Today: 2h and 10min

Planning: 23h and 15min

 

Day 12, April 4:


I shoot the live action reference and edit it in Premiere for today's review in class.


Today: 3h and 10min

Planning: 26h and 25min

 

Day 13, April 5:


I research references images to build the environment of the sequence. Also I modified the layout by adding some elements to the background and re-stage the cameras and the characters.


Today: 2h and 45min

Planning: 29h and 10min

 

Day 14, April 6:


I brainstorm more ideas to change the context of Laura and Loui on the shots in which my classmates and the professor thought that the performance could be better. I also worked creating the facial expressions for the pose library and craft a better eye shape for Laura's default shape.


Today: 2h and 35min

Planning: 31h and 45min

 

Day 15, April 7:


I rethink the idea that I though yesterday about the changes in the performance of Loui and Laura, however I didn't made much changes, just a little ones.


Today: 1h and 50min

Planning: 33h and 35min

 

Day 16, April 8:


I shot live action reference with a different performance for both characters. I started to work on the rough blocking.


Today: 3h and 10min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 3h and 10min

 

Day 17, April 9:


I work on the Rough Blocking of all the shots and submitted for today's review in class. I also build the pose library for Leo (the basic facial expressions and brows).


Today: 4h and 0min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 7h and 10min

 

Day 18, April 10:


I address the notes on the layout given in class and I add the rat prop on the last shot.


Today: 1h and 25min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 8h and 35min

 

Day 19, April 11:


I worked on the rough blocking with the new ideas and I submitted for today's review.


Today: 3h and 30min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 12h and 05min

 

Day 20, April 12:


I brainstormed ideas taking into account the feedback provided by the professor. I will go to his extra help session to show him a new idea that I come up with. I show to him the new idea and he like it. He told me to send me a syncsketch link when I edit the new version to see the result. I also work building the pose library of the lipsync shapes for Laura (Kayla).


Today: 3h and 50min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 15h and 55min

 

Day 21, April 13:


I finish to building the pose library of both Laura and Loui, except for the hands. I plan to do that after the first pass of the refined blocking to avoid spending more time building poses and allow me to experiment more with the performance.


I modify a little bit the rough blocking of the close up of Laura delivering the line, thus this shot will remain the same regardless the changes for the beginning and final part.


Today: 3h and 0min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 18h and 55min

 

Day 22, April 14:


I created the selection sets for the characters and make it work for every shot. Also, I start to do thumbnails over the live action reference on syncsketch to plan better the acting.


Today: 2h and 20min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 21h and 15min

 

Day 23, April 15:


I started refining the poses of the close up of Laura and add more breakdowns for the refine blocking.


Today: 3h and 00min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 24h and 15min

 

Day 24, April 16:


I brainstorm ideas for the assignment writing the beats of the story and the thought process of the characters.


Today: 1h and 30min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 25h and 45min

 

Day 25, April 17:


I shoot the live action reference for the last shot.


Today: 0h and 50min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 26h and 35min

 

Day 26, April 18:


I worked on the refined blocking of the sequence and I submitted for today's review.


Today: 4h and 00min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 30h and 35min

 

Day 27, April 19:


I organize the Maya project files in the folder structure.


Today: 0h and 45min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 31h and 20min

 

Day 28, April 20:


I re-organize the Premiere project and created a better folder structure inside Premiere and Windows Explorer.


Today: 1h and 10min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 32h and 30min

 

Day 30, April 22:


I started to watch Ken Fountain's video tutorials to get his insight about approaching a shot. Also, I shoot (again) a reference for Loui taking into account the notes given in class. I hope I don't have to do it again, I think if the performance changes I will just act it out, I get tired to shoot reference.


Today: 3h and 35min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 36h and 05min

 

Day 31, April 23:


I write the checklist that the professor provided in class today in my Todoist project to keep it accessible online and go back to it.


Today: 0h and 35min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 36h and 40min

 

Day 32, April 24:


I worked on the blocking of the new shot and the previous shots. I needed to finish the first pass of the body in all shots but I didn't get to that (just for the shot 2, but without the performance corrections)


2h and 15min were spent on the blocking and the remaining hour I spent on the first polish pass on the body.


Today: 3h and 15min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 38h and 55min

Final Polish: 1h and 00min

 

Day 33, April 25:


1 Hour of Polish. I worked on the three shots for today's submission, however I didn't finished entirely.


Today: 3h and 30min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 2h and 00min

 

Day 34, April 26:


I start doing the first pass on the face by adding the lipsync and retiming it.


Today: 2h and 20min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 4h and 20min

 

Day 35, April 27:


I created a workflow to follow for now on. This will serve me as a guide to be able to complete my animations.


Today: 3h and 20min

Plannning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 7h and 40min

 

Day 36, April 28:


I watch some tutorials to how breakdown an audio file to don't mess up with the lip-sync and avoid too many notes to be addressed for the next week.


Today: 1h and 35min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 9h and 15min

 

Day 37, April 29:


I practice repeating the audio file with the tone of the audio and I address the notes given in class for the body animation of Laura. I also break-down the live action reference of the lip-sync.


Today: 3h and 00min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 12h and 15min

 

Day 38, May 01:


I worked on the shots 1 and 3 polishing the body animation addressing the notes given last week. Also I watch some video tutorials about audio breakdown and eyes animation.


Today: 6h and 45min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 19h and 00min

 

Day 40, May 02:


I prepare all the shots for today's submission by keeping polishing a little bit the body and adding some facial expressions and double checking the lip-sync.


Today: 1h and 30min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 20h and 30min

 

Day 41, May 03:


I started by watching tutorials about facial expressions design and a lip-sync demo to feel more confident while working later on the lip-sync today.


Today: 5h and 30min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 26h and 00min

 

Day 44, May 06:


I work polishing both the body and the face of the shots of the sequence.


Today: 1h and 20min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 27h and 20min

 

Day 45, May 07:


I keep polishing the first shot addressing the notes and pushing the poses and modifying the timing at the same time.


Today: 4h and 00min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 31h and 20min

 

Day 46, May 08:


I add some blinks to the pose library after some troubleshooting and I started to address my own syncsketch notes of the first shot.


Today: 1h and 20min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 32h and 40min

 

Day 47, May 09:


I address some of my notes before today's submission in the class. I didn't get to all the notes, but it's good enough (at least the first two shots) for the review in-class.


Today: 2h and 40min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 35h and 20min

 

Day 52, May 14:


I work on the polish of the last shot. I focus on setting up the constraints and fixing the hand shape.


Today: 1h and 20min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 36h and 40min

 

Day 53, May 15:


I worked on the polish pass of the shot 3.


Today: 4h and 10min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 40h and 50min

 

Day 54, May 16:


I work refining the facial expressions and overall the body motion of all three shots.


Today: 3h and 15min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 44h and 05min

 

Day 55, May 17:


I work polishing the body of shot 3, without touching the face.


Today: 3h and 40min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 47h and 45min

 

Day 58, May 20:


I worked polishing the body of the shot 3.


Today: 2h and 00min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 49h and 45min

 

Day 59, May 21:


I work polishing a little bit more the shot 3 and also I add some final props to the environment.


Today: 2h and 00min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 51h and 45min

 

Day 60, May 22:


I work polishing the shot 3. I showed my progress to the professor and he recommended me to modify some things to change the feminine attitude of the walk of Loui while approaching Laura.


Today: 3h and 05min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 54h and 50min

 

Day 61, May 23:


I work polishing the shots 2 and 3 and I submitted what I do for today's review. I have to push myself at this stage to try to get it done on time. I also worked a little bit on the lip-sync.


Today: 2h and 35min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 57h and 25min

 

Day 63, May 25:


I start polishing the shot 2


Today: 2h and 05min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 59h and 30min

 

Day 67, May 29:


I started polishing the shot 1. I haven't touched the shot for a long time and I was surprised how much things have to be addressed! But now it's starting to look much better. I haven't finished to polish the shot but it's looking much better.


Today: 7h and 05min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 66h and 35min

 

Day 68, May 30:


I continued working on the shot 1 until it's completion and I submitted the shot for review for today's class (is the last one). Now that the class it's done the idea was to finish the shot by now, but because it goes longer in seconds (now it's 18 seconds long instead of the original 12), I will continue working on it throughout the summer. I think I will subscribe again to AnimDojo and I will be on the feedback sessions for extra guidance in my animation (not just this one).


Today: 4h and 00min

Planning: 33h and 35min

Final Blocking: 41h and 25min

Final Polish: 70h and 35min

 

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