I have it set to be designed similar to that of the "tales of" series.
I feel that I need motivation to keep pumping in hours and so I thought using a forum would be a good place.
I plan on posting at least one well thought out animation on this thread everyday.
Any tips or critiques would be welcomed as I want to progressively challenging myself to become better.
Model sheet and close up of main character
walk and run animation in battle mode
Render of another playable character
rough rough of using an item in battle mode
Sketch of potential status image
screenshot of batlemode in demo
rough rough of attack up animation in battle mode
old idle animation in battle mode
revised animation in battle mode
http://imgur.com/a/z4gmG(only main keys)
charge attack in battle mode
http://imgur.com/a/jxyO6( more dynamic inbetweens)
rough of background of a room in overworld
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Are you going to use some animation software like Anime Studio(Moho) or you just going to make all animations by hand frame after frame?
May I ask what software you're currently using?
I guess you'll do it in final version, but more inbetweens will look better.
I would also remake walking animation, in my opinion it looks kinda "stiff", maybe add more body movement.
I really like "charge attack in battle mode", I think it might look better if you also move hair above neck line.
Yes, you will put in *many* hours. If you haven't already I would definitely check out Richard Williams' "The Animation Survival Kit". If there's only one book you'll ever gonna own about animation it should be this one.
The walks do kinda look stiff. Be sure to concentrate on the standard frames every walk should have (extremes, contact positions, break down, up and down positions). Accentuate these things. Show clearly in the contact frame "Here the leading foot touches the ground with the heel and with a fully stretched leg", "Here the legs bend to cushion the impact of the step and the whole body is in the down position", etc. The frames in an animation are over in a fraction of a second. You can easily exaggerate the important positions and it will look good in animation.
I wouldn't do them too detailed at first. First get the attitude of the walk right. It's rightly said that walks are the most difficult to get right.
Make the walks reflect the attitude of the character. How are the arms moving? Is the head leading? Is the body leaning forward or backward or just straight up? Is there a big bounce (or even the infamous double bounce)? It makes a lot of difference whether a person is in a hurry, just strolling, angry, etc. Take a look at real walks (from movies and stuff). If you see a person walking and you think "That guy is angry" then analyse the walk. Look at what the different body parts are doing.
These are all low frame count walks. Keeping them very simple allows for a lot of experimentation (the more time you put into a drawing, the less willing you are to change it). Don't try to do too much in the initial sketches. The important thing is to get the animation itself right. Stuff like waving hair is easily added afterwards.
I see you also use stick figures to try out animation. I'd advise against it. It's the silhouette and the change of volume which is important and with stick figures you'll only see a bunch of lines animating.
In your walk cycles I miss the stretched legs. The knees are constantly bent. In animation you want the maximum change in shape so you want to show the frame where the leg is the most bent and the frame where it's completely stretched.
Stiffness can also come from how the limbs move. Limbs don't move like a single stiff part. They move in a set order and that order is always from the part closest to the trunk to the part farthest away from it.
Try it out. Just pick up something in front of you. First the shoulder moves (actually, first the hips move to accomodate for the upcoming change in balance), then the elbow moves, then the wrist and finally the fingers. Getting the order right with the right timing gives a natural motion. Such things can only be studied from live action (movies) and then sped up because people in real life move slower than animation. Don't look at stuff like Dragon Ball for study because they cheat all the way
As for swinging huge axes around : I miss the anticipation phase and the recovery afterwards. I do see anticipation in the stick figure swinging the sword but the timing is off there (too little acceleration, too little cushioning).
Without anticipation there is no action. Before you swing an axe forward, you first move it backwards. You show the audience what is going to happen. With a right anticipation, the action itself can be very short and it will still "read" right.
The timing is important. The heavier the axe, the longer it will take to get it up to speed. The heavier it is, the more the body needs to position itself. Imagine the weight of the axe and the body itself : there is one foot that needs to be put exactly in the middle of that weight, the other foot doesn't carry the weight because it's getting ready for putting a step forward, etc.
I'll post a little animation later about what I mean because it's easier to put into drawing then to put into words
For now here's a swing. It's not a heavy axe but a light suitcase swung by a pencil neck salary man
You can get away with really silly actions with a bit of anticipation :
There's just another thing : if you start working on your game then get other people for inking and coloring the animation. For me : even cleaned up animation frames take twice the amount of time to ink and four times the amount of time to color. So, for me, doing all of the pencil animation is only 1/7 of the work to get it fully finished.
I'll keep an eye on this thread. It's good to see other people interested in animation and I'll upload a "swing axe" animation as soon as I've got it finished.
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The thing about anticipation (or "wind up") I talked about is that every action is preceded by an action in the opposite direction. Say you're going to hit someone with your fist then you pull your fist backwards before you bring it forward. This way there's a greater distance to accelerate it.
Also : the whole body, not just a part, is involved in movement. The heavier the object is, the more the whole body is involved in it. This goes especially for the legs, only they have the power to provide lift for heavy objects and they need to bend before they can lift something so before a heavy object can be moved upwards, the legs (and by extension the whole body) needs to go down.
Moving a heavy object takes effort. There's an acceleration. First the movement is slow and then it speeds up. This shows in the spacing of the animation. Every time the hammer is moved in a different direction, the spacing is small first and then it gets greater. If the spacing is equal then no force is applied and the object will look light as a feather. Also : the body typically leads the heavy object, it "drags behind" but when it's finally up to speed then it drags the body with it.
And, of course, balance needs to be maintained so that the hammer, when in the back position, is counter balanced by the characters stuck out leg.
Notice how crude the drawings of the animation are. They're far from accurate. Still, it does have weight and it's all in the timing and spacing (BTW, it's 20fps, basically on 1's, because it's a fast movement).
Drawing animation in this crude fashion can be done very quickly. When the animation works (meaning the timing and spacing works) then it can be used to make the detailed version.
Thanks! Im using clip studio english version. I plan on making everything hand drawn. Agreed, looking at it again it needs some adjustments.
Wow, thank you for all your indepth feedback! It's awesome to know there's someone so knowledgeable and passionate about animation here! You opened up alot of things I was unsure about. I agree with everything. My fundamentals are all over the place. I plan on scrapping the walk animation then posting a fixed version here later. Im going to look up some references of the way limbs move to get the more natural look. Before I didn't see what felt off about the attack animation but now I realized it was lacking in mostly anticipation, plan on posting a revised version of that later as well.
Thank You! Agreed, I need to have some inbetweens of a winding up motion.
Expression test rough
special move concept 2 close up rough
axe swing combo 1 rough
-Definitely plan on revising this as well to give the axe more wieght
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