What can be said about ones self that reflects their work? Realistically speaking, nothing should be said since the work is what needs to do all the talking. But in the end, only words can describe the person who has created the work. Looking back on all of the projects that I have done this year, all I can think of is how far I have come. Going into the class not knowing how to animate with Maya at all to a guy who can marginally deliver what is supposed to be made. Granted most of the issues in the earlier works are the result of not knowing about the IK functions in the limbs, but they were present nevertheless. It was eventually overcome and made the final animation in particular, much easier to make. One common thing I have noticed in my works besides improvement is the initial way I approached the situation. With the exception of the canceled sit up project, I have an unorthodox way of approaching my animations. From using multiple ball types and angles for the Ball Project, a really weird walk for the Walk Project, using gymnastics as a way to turn around for the Pace Project, and legs to lift for the Lift Project. The trade off on that is I give myself more to work with but it makes the end product more worth it. So that’s my work, an unorthodox approach to an improving method of animation. Still a long way to go.
For my animation, I wanted to have a guy lift a box with his legs. Eventually it would shift into him lifting something that would eventually crush him. For that reason I decided to give the surroundings a steel look like a factory. My guy’s reasoning for not using his hands is because he was lying down when it started coming down so he had to think fast. Though he does later on switch to using all limbs, it was in vain as the pillar crushes him anyway. Overall I believe this to be a major improvement over my previous animations as the first one had stilted movement and doesn’t flow as well as this one. The last one had a few inconsistencies but managed to live on its own eventually. I suppose that’s the real attraction of this animation, seeing how it has been animated loads differently from my earlier works.
What do you get when you try your best to turn Franz Kafka’s quote about fate into a video without using any words? A little something like this.
This was a project that was simple but had a few hurdles to jump across despite all that. Biggest issue being creating that sandstorm effect. I have tried using blender and after effects and they didn’t work too well given my lack of experience with both tools. Then I decided to mess with the weather tool in the Source engine and do that in front of a green screen so that I can put that almost seamlessly into the final product. The other big hurdle was audio. Because I do not have my own Midi keyboard on campus I had to borrow someone else’s and because of that, I rushed the audio and as such I kinda screwed myself over there.
Originally I filmed everything in color, including the sandstorm, but because I was basing my project on Franz Kafka I felt I should remove the color to take away any form of joy you can see.
So this is a project that I have gone through many alterations on. It honestly had so many setbacks to the point where I had to start all over again more times than I care to count. But in the end, it is done and it looks pretty good in my opinion. My guy is moving to look at a volcano but it erupts so he decides to run back to avoid the lava. And the guy is given an over the top reaction to the explosion, and doesn’t even look at it.
This one was tough to come up with at first, but then I remembered one phrase I used in my younger days. “When in doubt, reference Kafka.” So that’s pretty much what I will plan on doing, I’m supposed to turn a poem or a work of art into an original video done to be similar style. I will be focusing on a loose blend between Kafka’s famous speech on Fate, and Kafka’s book The Castle. The aesthetic of both works is very much like the style of Kafka’s own work, dark, dreary, and with a sense of hopelessness. Which is something people tell me I have done well of in the past. Some created ambiguous noise would help out also. Essentially make a depressing video based on works made by Franz Kafka.
(What I plan on Working With)
“You’re not from the Castle, you’re not from the village, you are nothing. Unfortunately, though, you are something, a stranger.”
— Franz Kafka, The Castle
“Sometimes fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn again, but the storm adjusts. Over and over you play this out, like some ominous dance with death just before dawn. Why? Because this storm isn’t something that blew in from far away, something that has nothing to do with you. This storm is you. Something inside of you. So all you can do is give in to it, step right inside the storm, closing your eyes and plugging up your ears so the sand doesn’t get in, and walk through it, step by step. There’s no sun there, no moon, no direction, no sense of time. Just fine white sand swirling up into the sky like pulverized bones. That’s the kind of sandstorm you need to imagine. And you really will have to make it through that violent, metaphysical, symbolic storm. No matter how metaphysical or symbolic it might be, make no mistake about it: it will cut through flesh like a thousand razor blades. People will bleed there, and you will bleed too. Hot, red blood. You’ll catch that blood in your hands, your own blood and the blood of others. And once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”― Franz Kafka
Funny how a working pattern can change when something comes out of nowhere. Truth be told, this isn’t my best work when it comes to my video projects. That is because I had to rush this project to meet the deadline and I only really had one day to get it done because of the fact that I had other things I needed to do the day before it was due and throughout the weekend. It also didn’t help that most of my peers didn’t have a clear idea of the assignment guidelines so I had to improvise when planning the film set. And lastly, I had to cut a lot of scenes out to meet the time limit and it doesn’t look as good as it could have. Here is the original cut here.
Overall, it’s not a bad project but it could have been better.
https://zachary101blog.wordpress.com/2017/10/12/walk-the-walk/ (Original Post)
For the process of this review, I will be looking at fellow classmate, Zachary Martell. Upon first looking at it without looking into the individual frames in detail, it looks okay. Stilted movements which look like more frames needed to be added into it, but it does look consistent in its animation, It could use some tweening but it is okay.
After looking into each frames individually, there was a lot to take note of in such a short animation loop. The first notable issue is that the first four frames are the exact same, while I know some people who have the exact same issue, I won’t be too harsh on it. But it doesn’t change the fact that this is the first issue right out of the gate. Then on the 5th frame, the arm transition seems very odd, maybe it is because of the stiff movement but it still doesn’t look very good. Then in the 7th frame we see the position is unchanged from the previous frame. Then again in the 9th frame, 11th frame, 13th frame, 15th frame, 17th frame, 19th frame, and 23rd frame. Frame 20 has too much jump in the arms and looks very odd. And finally, the last frame is supposed to set up the first frame, but the position in the left leg is jumbled up and doesn’t ease very well.
Now to end on the lighter side, despite the repetitive frames and frames having too much jump, the jumped frames work well since almost all frames have the same jump and they keep a consistent pattern. However one frame breaks the flow but having too much jump but it still has an overall consistent pattern. And the shoulder movement is completely spot on, never have I found the shoulder have a few hitches but the right kind since the arms move in a way that the shoulder needs to lift it up a bit more. Keep on practicing there.
disclaimer: I want to let whoever is reading this know that this assignment should not be shared online for the world to see. Because it can cause some to play favourites and others to lash out publicly online. I have no issue with peer reviewing people we know personally in a negative tone, I just don’t like doing it on the internet for everyone to see.