It has been over a year since I last produced an animation, so my first point of call was to refresh myself with the theory. I hate reading animation texts that talk about software! My interest lies in the transferable knowledge – character design, motion techniques, styles and so on. I’ve basically gone back over the walk cycles and storyboarding, as well as some of my old Flash and After Effects projects. I found Pixar’s John Lasseter to be particularly insightful as he is building on the principals developed in the 1930s by Disney Studios and applying them at the forefront of CG animation.
These articles have left me rethinking Nellie’s design. I’m may need to over-simplify her if I go with a 3D option. The more realistic a human is in 3D the more critical the audience will become. I get so stuck on the artwork side of things sometimes I forget that animation is primarily about believable motion.
Going into a third dimension will be a bit of a learning curve. A lot of my preliminary research at this stage has been focusing on the difference between traditional and CG animation. Due to my double degree status I haven’t had the electives available to do the foundations in 3D courses so I’m going blind into this. The ambition is there but unfortunately time is not on my side. It is a very complex jump, so it will largely depend on whether or not I can find an interested group in the studio tutes! You don’t want to dictate an idea to someone or lose your creative freedom. The project idea is quite resolved in my head which would make it difficult for me to ditch it in favour of something else, but I certainly would be willing to do so if someone knocked my socks off with a grander plan. I can always transfer the Nellie project over to Creating Narrative In Multimedia if it all falls in a heap!