The end is near

A lot has changed since my last post, as the project is in full go at the moment a lot of details are being changed and considered greatly.

After the last presentation we changed our narrative and updated the animatic;  to the bird being shot, the rock playing with the feather and then the dead bird splatting on the screen, which is kind of dark. Below the animatic;

Over the break it was a mutal agreement that each of the team would start on character designs and concepts for the final animation, below is my design of the crow/bird character, I tried changing subtle detail’s about him as well;

crow design7 crow design6 crow design4 crow design3 crow design2 crow design1

I decided that that the angry yellow eyed one was my favourite and began trying to model him;

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And for my first ever official character design and model I think I done a pretty cool job;

crow design4 Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 20.26.24 Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 20.26.35

I’m excited to see what Courtney does with it! As for the rock character’s I tried experimenting with different shapes instead of a plain old rock, trying to give them character proven to be difficult at times but I really enjoyed it;

rock 1 rock2 rock3

My favourite being the fat one, why what else would a lonely rock that can’t move look like…

Straight into modelling again, after I finished I sent courtney the fat one for eyes and rigging;

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Again I was constantly watching the blackwater gospel, trying to achieve the grunge look but I do believe it is helping although I know concept art is still not my strongest talent!


I also began wondering about our 2D background mixed with the 3D animation, I ventured out and began getting ideas together on how to create it, still sticking with the grungy style of The Blackwater Gospel, I began looking at things that gave the illusion of depth, such as pottermore, the random adventures of brandon generator by Edgar Wright and Tommy Lee Edwards, a fan made video I found on Youtube based around the Game Of Thrones series and finally a artist named Nicky who has a online studio and website, I loved the fact that she seems to have power lines in her work, the paint also bleeds together! I thought our background didn’t have to be definite and clear but as long as the idea of what’s there is portrayed.

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 20.33.03


I then began messing around in Maya on what should be 3D in the scene, I think I’ll tweak it a lot before it’s finished though;

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I also found this short Animation online;

I love the movement of the bird! It’s his own character which is something we hopefully carry off in our own animation.


After the next presentation we realised that we had lost the eerie feel of our animation without realising. The feedback we were given was to make it bittersweet, we could create something with depth and meaning we just need to figure a way to convey it! We were told to look into deeper meanings and poetry, which I found really interesting!

We got back into thinking of our narrative and coming up with different ways we might end the story in such a short amount of time! We decided eventually on;

The bird being shot and falling, the rock looking at the feathers in wonder or playing with them and the bird’s body falls on front of him but he can’t move, he can’t help and just sits and watches him die, dirt blows over the corpse and the stone mould’s itself into a grave stone, the same bird rig is used to portray another bird sitting on the grave stone, the camera zooms out and fades but show’s bumps around the ground where other things have died.

Looking into deeper meanings, the meaning of life, how time goes on even after we’re gone and how the cycle of life works. Looking into poetry as well I created a short poem;

Once upon a time there lived a rock near a long winding road,

up above crow’s wings flowed.

With a bang the rocks attention sprang,

a graceful fall to a unheard call.

As time passed the rock watched peace arrive at last,

the sorrow of death as the crow drew his last breath.

The rock watches the cycle, all things eventually decay but he does not despair,

come morning light behold a brand new day.

I loved the idea of having it being read over the top of the animation like the tale of three brothers in harry potter;

but we’re struggling for time. As a team we’re deciding if we should add it, if it should be written on a blank black screen before the animation, if it should be read over, if it should be read before the animation, etc.

Over the next two weeks a lot is still to be done, I created a list for the team to work off;

1. Update Animatic
2. Blocked Animation
3. 3D Set Design
4. 2D Background concept design (then when agreed; it needs to be moved and done in photoshop saved in layer’s of what need’s to be upfront and what need’s to be in the back, other than the drawing the rest of the image needs to be transparent)
5. Final Animation
6. Textures
7. Add in the 2D background from after effects (final version)
8. Shot list
9. Camera angles and lighting in the animation
10. Music and sound; maybe poem
11. Rendering and editing
12. Title design and credits

So we have 4 people and two weeks… wish us luck!


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