Warburton Animation Task 4

For this task I had to create a hand-drawn storyboard, animatic from that storyboard and a final animation, using Adobe Photoshop, Adobe After Effects and Adobe Premiere Pro. The storyboard I based my animatic and animation off was 30 frames long and I tempted to make my storyboard have different angles such as mid shot, close ups and long-wide shots. On the animatic I drew outlines and put a grey opaque on certain layers to show its boldness, especially on the rock star granny and KISS members. Different images (props) were used during the final animation which I would then put different layers on to it to give it a  cartoony look. Simultaneously I went out and got voice overs using my iPhone 6s microphone.

This is my 30 frame storyboard where I believe I added quite a few details about the story as well as having appropriate angles for certain frames, for example the close up shot of the granny’s face so her expressions are more visual to the viewer and the long wide shot at the beginning of the story to give the viewers a scene of where the advert is taking place, Bolton. From these frames hopefully its clear that the animation takes place in the old lady’s house and the band come through the side of the house, left to the side of the sofa. Once drawing the frames I then drew a 360 character view for the granny, the basic shapes of the KISS members and the possible facial features that would be used on the characters. For the face features of the characters I took a tally of what other students thought would look good, I circled the ones which were most popular.

I feel like I could’ve improved my storyboards by using a thicker pen for key areas such main characters and props, additionally I could’ve added more directions for the panning frames and possibly worked more on body structure because I feel that some of the body parts are out of proportion. However I did enjoy that I was able to draw clear frames and create a clear structure for my storyboard, I found it interesting experimenting with different body shapes though I did find it kind of difficult because I am not used to draw cartoon characters from scratch.

After drawing the storyboards and character designs, I then scan them into the computer and started separating layers and highlighting key features i.e. the Warburton factory and houses in the first scene. The programme I used to do this was Adobe Photoshop 2015, as you can see I worked on both an Apple Mac and PC during this and the next process.

To create my animatic, I would take one frame from a storyboard sheet and separate certain features into layers using the ‘Quick Selection Tool’ (plus the ‘Quick Mask Tool’ if too little or too much was selected). After creating the frames I then animated them on Adobe After Effects 2015 and then put all the individual videos together on Premiere Pro 2015. This process didn’t take very long however I feel that I outlined far too many features, one thing that should of gone without was the old lady’s hair because it wasn’t a relevant prop to the story, and I feel that it draws too much attention away from the movement of the frame. On the other hand I do like the frames where I gave certain forms the appearance of coming out of shadows into the light, a few examples would be the main scene with the KISS band the shot with their shadows coming out of the explosion. Additionally I enjoy the frames where there is no outlines and its just my drawing moving in a frame, these give more of a professional look, somewhat similar to the Iron Man 3 mansion attack animatic Westlawn Films created.

Creating an animatic I believe will be useful technique to use in the future if I was ever given the task to create another animation or even make my own film- it will give me an idea of what will what will happen in the story as well see what aspects will/ won’t work during future productions.

The final stage of this task was to create the animation where I would give my story colour and allow for more movement in frames. Like before, with the animatic, I took the frame from the storyboard I first drew and separated the layers that I wanted to move, however this time I got a collection of pictures from Google Images and put filters on them to make it appear that they were drawn on the computer. To animate the different characters, I mainly used the ‘Puppet Pin’ tool, this way they would have more natural flow in their movements plus then I wouldn’t have to worry about drawing them frame-by-frame.

This stage I have to say was much harder because I had to keep colours the same, such as the granny, KISS members and the décor inside the house. Unlike the animatic I had to outline the old lady’s hair because then it would match the style of Studio Yotta, the artist group I was basing my animation off (their style is mainly characters with no extra detail, just block colour with outlines for most of their characteristics/ features). Additionally I used the same programmes as before to create my animation, Adobe After Effects and Adobe Premiere Pro.

Once my main animation was finished I then added text for the band member singing and I added a rock music track which I collected from recording a group play various instruments. I attempted to get the track to start as soon as the guitarist strums the guitar, also I added an explosion effect on the frame of the explosion and an upbeat melody- I found both of these files online due to not being available to the instruments myself. The quiet melody  fits in with my target audience of women ages 25-40 years old due to it not being too aggressive or too calm. The sudden explosion sound catches audiences more by surprise than just the animation, furthermore I believe that the surprising element is somewhat comedic being that it’s a break from the peaceful grandmother scene. When it comes to voice overs, I got myself and another peer to be the singer for KISS and the old woman, just to bring the animation to life and I recorded it using the microphone of an iPhone 6s.  I decided to put captions for the KISS singer because the voice is somewhat difficult to understand, making it similar to Gene Simons, the vocalist for KISS. Having captions for the KISS voice also links it to my animatic, and looking at some professional animations/ music videos they even use captions.

Some parts that I enjoyed about this animation is that I got quite clear movement especially in scenes such as when we see the lady’s hair flowing from the sound wave and the different mouths I gave the KISS vocalist when he was singing, I believe that this made the character appear like he was singing. These two shots made my animation appear more like well-polished motion picture, like Studio Yotta’s music video ‘Hero of Rhyme’. Even though these two frames work particularly well, there are some frames that I dislike such as when the guitar plays strums the guitar for the first time because I feel that it shows too much of that characters features, which should appear a mystery until they emerge from the shadows, next time I will make him into a more solid figure. As well as improving that scene, the section where the old woman is playing the guitar- I should have added a more dramatic background instead of dark purple and clouds, maybe one similar to the stage scene in the ‘Hero of Rhyme’ video, where Link (the protagonist from Legend of Zelda) is singing to a crowd on a stage with lighting and speakers, furthermore I could’ve sped up the scene where the old woman throws the new thin bagel, it’s far too slow. In addition to that I could’ve made the KISS voice over more quiet to make it blend in with the music, instead of appearing all of a sudden, as well as making it more in time with the beat to make it sound like a written song. This problem could have been resolved if I had a professional recording studio where there would be no echo or background noise to distort the voices.

Finally once I was done with my animation, I got a fellow peer to assess what I had created. From looking at the review I can agree with what my peer had said about the vibrant colours because I didn’t want my animation to be dull and I wanted to catch the viewers eyes. Additionally I am thankful for what my peer had said about the character design considering I did base them off Studio Yotta’s style. However when it came to making my animation smoother, I feel I could do this if I had more time, even though my peer did say that it was a minor improvement-  I would separate limbs on each character to make their movements seem more natural.

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Overall I am pleased with the out come of this task, even though there are some aspects that I feel could be improved such as the outlining on the animatic and the possibly putting in extra frames of my animation. I feel that my animation had turned out pretty well considering I had never animated before, additionally I believe that the skills that I learnt during this project will help in the future if/when I want to animate again. I am also pleased at how the sounds/ voices turned out in my animation. If I had more resources and time this animation could most definitely be better and appear more professional. There are some aspects of my animation that may appeal to men instead of women of aged 25-40 however I believe it mainly focuses towards females due to women enjoying visual humour rather than spoken humour, and the old lady dressed like a metalhead is quite amusing.

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