Saturday, March 14, 2009

Introducing Skulkin

Meet Skulkin. He's a puppet I whipped up quickly just so I could get in a little practice at animation. He's built similarly to the Radkin puppets for the film I'm working on, because I don't want to practice with them and break their aluminum bones.

Don't worry too much about the words... they have no meaning really, just something I thought up to connect these completely unrelated clips.

I don't know why the clip is squashed on my site... but if you download it to your own computer (right click and Save As on a PC, or control click Download Linked File on a Mac) it shows the way it's supposed to, and you can even watch it fullscreen. I'll see if I can figure out the snafu... I know the clip wasn't squashed like that when I uploaded it. In the meantime, please just bear with me and download the clip to watch it.

I've also added it to the sidebar with my other clips. Enjoy.


people in gorillasuits said...

...and that was another thing I was waiting/looking for for a long time: Stirder animating again. Skullin fits beautifully into the world of - was his name 'cosmo' ? - and the whole surrounding. I like the way he bends back a little bit before he bends over. And then the fast movement in the last part. And how the red ball bounces back - in a very naturally manner. Stirder animates !
First there was this posting yesterday, now a little animation... spring ?

emmyymme said...

Holy **** Strider! Seriously that was amazing movement, the changes in timing of fast and slow, it looks like live action when he tilts his head back up after the bow... I have to go practice now.

Wesley Bohannon said...

Very cool! I always look forward to your stop-mo. Inspiring stuff!

Sven Bonnichsen said...

Great lighting. And the set really looks good in action. And a nice camera move. And good color/texture on Skulkin.

Excellent work!

UbaTuber said...

Awesome bow!! Nice spotlight too! More, more :D

Darkstrider said...

Wow, you guys really know how to make a strider feel good!!!!

These tests were to work out a lot of things... lighting, timing, how these little guys with their short legs can move, etc. And of course to work off some of the rust.

I was concentrating especially on anticipation and followthrough, ease-ins and ease-outs, and timing. And also on interspersing action with title screens, since that's how the film will be done.

And also, when I animate now, there's one piece of advice i always keep in mind, that I got from Misha Klein when I posted the Buster hat tip test.

He told me if you want to animate in the pantomime, use everything.... wrists, elbows, knees, ankles...

Now I try as much as possible to express through the entire body.

Shelley Noble said...

He did! He did juggle his way into my heart! Loving these clips, Mike. Fantastic animation, especially on the bow's anticipation and graceful follow through.

The camera's looking great, Man. Particularly with your mad lighting skills.

Darkstrider said...

Hey P. I. G. (um.... ok, I won't call you Pig!! I'll call you Michael, how about that?)

Yes, indeed it might be the beginning of a thaw around here. I haven't really done anything on the film in a long time, and once you quit it can be hard to get going again. But I really want to now, and posting this clip is the beginning of it. Another big push and I just might be able to finish this thing!!

Darkstrider said...

Shelley, Skulkin says he loves you too!!! You blogged and Halflanded your way into his heart, just as you did into all of ours!!!

Anonymous said...

Ah, the 3-2 pulldown... I see someone's crossed over :)

Don't be afraid to switch to twos! Especially on eases. The main move can be as little as 5 frames, but it's the ease just before the hold that really sells it. Ditto for easing out.

Nice work, by the way. Great imagery, puppet, lighting, and set-and most importantly, ANIMATION!

Jessica said...

A bit late as the others already complimated you on that lovely piece of animation, but you got two thumbs up from me as well! Well done! And: MORE!
Just a tiny hint: if you'll give the scenery ten to twelve frames before the actual animation starts, it would be more helpful to the audience to follow. But I guess that's not so important on this exercise.

Paul (Vortex42) said...

Superb animation here Mike - Really excited about your film - I think you have a flair for cinematography. How are you getting on with it?

Fidget is on hold while I focus on the film I'm making with Nick and Ron. It's worth it - The work so far is looking very cool.

Darkstrider said...

Wow... Don, Jessica and Paul...

I didn't realize comments were still coming in on this one. I haven't been getting email alerts to comments on a long while, but that should change now since I've figured out the problem and fixed it. It seems I had an old (dysfunctional) email address set up.

Thanks to you all!!!

Don, yes, I'm stepping up to 24 FPS on 1s, good eye buddy!

Jessica, you're right, it is a bit hard to read. These were all just tests, or rather practice animation, but still I should concentrate on always making things read well for viewers.

And Paul, as for how the film is coming along... as I've mentioned a few times here and there, I've been spending a disproportionate amount of time getting drunk with some new friends lately (the past 10 months in fact) -- but now they've left town, so I find myself with a lot of free time on my hands and a film sitting here gathering dust that very badly wants my attention. I need to blow the dust off and get crackin!! Comments like these I've received here are extremely motivating to do just that.