The age of sleepless nights and sore fingers is finally over and I can take a break. Not for long, but a even a shortest break will do for now. I have finally finished the most difficult part of my animation – the characters. There were a few things that went well and a lot of things that didn’t.
I’ll start with the things that went well. Firstly, following my initial idea and bringing the characters to life wasn’t such a bad experience overall: I followed closely followed my storyboard and stayed as true to the source material as a I could. I had to twist the original story in way to better fit the event happening in the animation. That had to be done in order to maintain an updated lore, since I’ve drawn my comic in my 1st year and a lot has changed since. I’ve changed the way my characters looked; changed their backstory (not massively, but noticeably) and slightly changed their macro and micro goals. These changes took place because over the span of 2 years I’ve learned a lot about good story telling and character creation. And to me, my old story seemed very underdeveloped and had a lot of plot holes. At some point in the future I want to continue my story and want my animation to be the starting point of the adventure.
So coming back to the things that went well. Overall animation was challenging, but rewarding in the end. Due to my slight perfectionism, I’ve made some of the movements more complicated than I originally intended, hence why it took me more time to animated certain shots. I had to cheat my way through some of the fast paced actions by limiting the amount of in-betweens and including warped drawings to imitate motion blur to save some time.
Time was the main reason for all the things that went bad. Before this project I thought that I’ve learned to manage my time better and completely dismissed the fact that things might still take a different turn. Simply put, I didn’t manage my time well. In the beginning I allowed myself to work on certain shots a lot longer than I was supposed to. Thus bringing myself to a point where I would have to rush certain scenes in order to finish them. My poor time management went further than just ruining some of the good scenes. Now I’m talking about contacting 1st and 2nd years for help. It took me a good 1.5 months to contact the people that signed up to help me with my project. I had 8 people in total that agreed to help. 1 of them I could never find, meaning they were never in class when I needed them, so I didn’t bother e-mailing them. I just thought that if they don’t turn up for their lectures, what would make them work on my project responsibly. Maybe it’s my poor deduction that played a role, but I’m certain it wouldn’t have been that different, to be completely honest. However the people that I have contacted, eventually, did a fantastic job at helping me with this project. I’m extremely grateful.
To wrap this up, I’ve learned that my time management has worsened – so I have to work on that from now on; however my writing skills have slightly improved, which means that I am making progress after all. Another thing that I forgot to mention is my backgrounds. I’ve never worked so hard on backgrounds as I have doing this project. I’ve practiced for weeks and it’s payed off. I’ve got good feedback regarding the environment that I’ve presented. So that’s one more thing I’ll have to keep working on. Overall, it was a great experience and now I will continue to animate some of the shots that I haven’t included; work on finishing those backgrounds and finally arranging the musing and foley.