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I dont have much room to talk when it comes to making money in the field of animation and graphics design. However, what it should come down to is whether or not you are enjoying what you do. I’m not a professional, I will probably never be one. The industry itself isn’t looking too good, we have so many things that are automated these days, some of those things are really cool and have helped to cut costs on production, but they’ve put many people out of work. Traditional 2D animators work for very little and often have to put in many hour of work to get something done. While the results are ones that are very unique, they are simply becoming impractical. 3D animation on the other hand, has become a mainstay in our entertainment industry, try and find a movie made after the 1990s that didn’t use some kind of special effects. It’s really too bad, while 3D animation is a fantastic thing, it can never quite capture the essence of 2D films.

I’m just kind of writing to write here…

Video

MiserableMac, the animation I decided I didn’t like half way through. It’s finished, it’s on newgrounds and youtube… I think it turned out alright, so watch it! Maybe you’ll like it, watch and then judge. the Newgrounds link is right there, or it’s here. Watch in HD!

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I’ve decided that, even after spending almost a year on this toon, I don’t like it, I don’t like how it turned out, I didn’t even really like how it looked at the beginning. All my animations I’ve done so far I’ve been pretty satisfied with the end result, but this one, this one is something else. I don’t understand it. Did I really just waste all that time? Of course not! Experience is experience, and even if I don’t like the end result, the time that I put into it all the way through helped me hugely in developing my talents as an animator. Do I plan on uploading the video? Of course, so what if I don’t like it, it’s still my best work, and it needs to be out there for everyone to see. I guess I really don’t have much to say here, except that because I learned so much from this first animation, I’m super psyched to start on the next one, get a whole lot better and make this series!

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I absolutely LOVE coloring, that and the final line work, once I got around to finishing the roughs of this scene, it became smooth sailing. I’m practically done with this scene, at least 3 more days. The line work took literally 4 days, with minimal time spent each day on it. As of this post I’m just over halfway done with the coloring. I just have the backgrounds to do after this. Then just 1 more half-scene, and the credits!

LineWork and Coloring… The reason that you do all the roughs before you do the finals is because then you can see how it all fits together. How many frames per drawing, and where they go. That all works just fine, the problem is that you have to use those to your full advantage, otherwise it’s not even that practical to do them in the first place. Take these last 2 days for example. I blazed through all the linework, without even considering coloring ones that have non moving parts mixed in with moving ones to shorten the time I’d end up spending in the end, there are a lot of drawings in this scene that are like that, something as the character bobbing down before leaping forward, it’s a totally new frame that must be colored, were, if I had looked ahead, I would have realized that I should have colored one first before making the next frame, and just slightly transforming the shape of the previous frame. Another example that I’d just now finished sorting through is a non changing object that moves around the stage, say an arm, it waves. It’s on a separate layer from the rest of the body. Eventually it’s gonna need to be all colored, so why don’t you save yourself the time of drawing in the lines from the one end to the other just so you can use the paint bucket on it about 1000 times, and just do it once, and then manipulate the object from there.

Really it’s just a few simple, logical things that you can do to greatly improve your productivity, and save you from a huge amount of avoidable work… Kinda like saving your work, it’s pretty darn important.

Oh yeah, What da ya know?

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Roughs in animation are without a doubt the most boring, lifeless part of the animation process, I could literally turn an overnight scene into a multi-week project, just cause I take soo long on the roughs. Seriously, what are they good for? sure, you use them to make your final artwork much cleaner and precise, along with giving you a solid guide on how the scene unfolds, but other than that? I don’t see the necessity.

I wasn’t exaggerating when I said it’d turn into a much bigger project than normal, and it’s not because I spend too much time actually drawing the frames, it’s the masses of time not doing it, as I’m typing this right now, I’m avoiding it. It’s this terrible, terrible process that makes me want to just give up! The lack of color and fills are what screws things up for me, all I have to work with is a light blue, and in the rare case that I’m doing a multi layer scene that requires something more, a boring orange. Now of course if I wanted to add more colors and fills to the otherwise bland and blegh, i could. But it’s just the simple fact that putting any more time or effort into something as not noticeable as roughs, just isn’t worth it (time and effort-wise). The time is debatable though, if I say, added solid fill colors for certain things, then I’d be more motivated to finish what I started. On the other hand, the amount of time coloring each of those frames equals out to be around the same (depending on how much you hate roughs).

As many faults as roughs have, they do in fact have some good characteristics. For one, they allow you to perform complex animated segments without worrying about finding that it looks all wrong and deleting all of the smooth and filled line art. Another thing is that it allows you to be less precise on your work, you can scribble if you want. I know a lot of different animators who have a lot of different ways they do roughs, a handfull put a lot of effort into making the roughs look really nice, no unnecessary lines, just clean polished work, others (something that I used to do) hardly put any time into their roughs, just leaving themselves with basic shapes and scribbles to work with, (something I don’t recommend doing, it makes the line art much more tedious when you can’t figure out whether or not you are actually drawing a face). Personally I’ve started putting more time into mine roughs, just cause I’ve ran into the problem I mentioned above about not being able to determine one thing from another. Not to the point were I could submit it without doing the finals and expecting it to stand on it’s own, that’s just not worth it.

To leave with a small summary: I hate the roughs in animation, but they do provide you with a solid way to make the line art look clean and perfected, And unless I have an incredibly strong dedication to my work (such as a deadline) you can expect me to take longer than what would be reasonable to finish something.

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So I’ve been working on this animation for the past 8 months, it’s getting pretty ridiculous, considering that I had only planned on spending a grand total of 2 months on it. It’s not as if I don’t want to finish it or anything, I’m sure if I do everyone will love me and think that it’s sooo good, but stuff just shouldn’t take that long. My original battle strategy was to spend 2 weeks per scene: half a week on the roughs, and the rest on the actual finals, I didn’t realize that that would mean spending over 2 hours a day on it, something that I have the ability to do, and feel like I should do, but regardless I don’t. Do you ever get the feeling like you need to take a break and do something else, but at the same time, you don’t have anything else you want to do? That’s what I feel like, I want to finish this animation so badly, but I just need a break from it, I still want to work on something while I take that break, but nothing comes to mind, so I just end up not doing anything.

Right now I’m on the last scene on the animation, in the beginning stages of it. almost frame 200 of 800. As numbers it doesn’t sound that bad, but when looking at it on screen it’s just really overwhelming. Part of what makes me so hesitant to finish, is the fact that I know I’m gonna end up redoing it someday, once I’ve gained a lot of experience. I’ve had this idea since 5th or 6th grade, and I’ve waited until now to animate it, thinking that I’m now at the skill level of an animator that can handle doing a massive project like this, not only art-wise, but also deadline and mental-wise. Right now my art is good, but it’s not where I think it should be in order to complete this, and I know that my deadline and metal capability isn’t up to it. 2 months turning into 8 or 9? it’s not sensible.

There’s no doubt that I’ll finish it sooner or later, hopefully sooner… but I’ll spend more time on the next one, carefully planning how I’m gonna do things, whether it’s scheduling prior to starting, or making things simpler to animate. either way it’ll hopefully end up working out much better.

Answer
  • Question: WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET? - tumblrbot
  • Answer:

    On my planet? I’d visit the shining palaces of Galvatron, floating above the mercury rivers!

Quote

"Don’t take life too seriously, you’ll never get out of it alive."

- Elbert Hubbard
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I’m an animator as well as an artist and occasionally a musician. I started my work on newgrounds.com back in 2007 creating a few simple games and animations. At the time I started out with minimal drawing knowledge (regardless that I’ve been drawing since I can remember), and no knowledge of flash and how it worked. Now I’m really working hard to improve my animations skills and art. I have a passion for animation, a hobby and dream that I want to pursue that may one day end up being a paid professional job. Right now I’m in high school making my way through my sophomore year, but someday I want to become a professional animator. Until that day I’ll just be getting better and better.

I’ve tried started numerous blogs in the past, all failing due to no one visting them and because of that, not having any reason to update them. Hopefully this will be the last blog I have to set up and start running. I’d like to say about about a month and a half away from releasing my latest animation that I started back in may of 2010. Honestly I’m a terrible procrastinator, that’ll spend more of his time thinking and talking about doing something, than actually doing it. For that reason I use twitter and facebook (and now tumblr) to make sure that people don’t forget that I exist and that I’m working on making content for the web to enjoy.

I guess in conclusion you could say that I’ve got a long way to go, but I’m psyched to find out what I encounter on that “long way”.