Tuesday, 26 May 2009


So, its all over. three years of university has gone by in what seems like days. its been a brilliant experience. now i have to go and build upon the things ive learnt and look for employment in the industry. its a very exciting time. heres the finished film.

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Animatic 26_08_09

here we are then, the latest installment of my film. only 3 1/4 finished and missing some sound effects but its coming together ok. the animation is never going to be right as each time i watch it i find another problem i could try to refine or polish. and im learning about character acting more by the day. but ive got a few shots i can use on my show reel, so its all good. the unrendered animation in the last section has been refined a little and rendered, but i havnt finished those backgrounds yet so i havnt included them in this animatic. the music has been re-timed to. also premier keeps ofsetting the sound. i'll get it timed out for next version.

Friday, 27 March 2009

my latest animatic, a few slight alterations with the animation and that should be finished. then i have to finish the backgrounds. i will be rendering the final shots with the correct lighting as i finish them. also the music and sound fx need tweeking to fit the new timeings.

Sunday, 22 February 2009

im still alive

Hello anyone whos reading. my blog has been neglected of late due to me putting all of my time into animating, i should have an updated animatic by the end of the week though, with all shots keyed and some inbetweened. but its all going acording to plan so far. cheerio!

Monday, 26 January 2009

Final mock up, again.

ok, ive now finished the dog too, so i thought ide better put him in his position in the mock up. i have also changed the lanturn as its bright red colour was detracting from thr dogs ball and drawing the eye towards it. the ball is an important symbolic link between the monk and the dog yellow is a much more subtle colour and less significant in this film, although it does still corrispond with the traditional chinese colour pallete.
in other news, i talked with a few tutors about bringing back his eyebrows. so i attempted to reattach them, but after skinning them and testing there manoverability, they turned out to be extremely clumbsy and they floated around his fourhead irritatingly. so there still out. i then had a go with some smaller ones and attaching them with a skin wrap modiffier so they moved with the morph targets, and it worked for a while, but then it went wrong, so rather than waste more time faffing, i will be leaving the brows out for good.

Friday, 23 January 2009

final mock up

here is my final look, im more than pleased with the outcome, it turned out to be a fairly easy proscess to give the illusion of the monk being stoodn on a 3D serface, just lined up the matte painting in a camera veiwport in max and added a matte shadow to a plain that the monk was standing on. simple, and very effective, he now looks as though he is in the environment.

Monday, 19 January 2009

This guy!

Oh joy and wondrous rapture! the monk is alive and ready to go. its like having a mountain with a particularly big boned donkey living on it, lifted off ya shoulders. anyway, you may have noticed some changes to the old chap, Ive done away with the comedy eyebrows and given him bright blue eyes. i really think the lack of silly brows opens up his face and brings attention to his eyes, (the windows to soul, don't ya know) thus making subtle emotions more readable. big blue eyes just felt much more appealing with the added bonus of them complimenting the colour of his robe.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Flip book test

a little flip book test to break up the monotany of rigging. i will probably do a lot of my scenes as rough key frames in flip book first to save time when it comes to posing in max. need to get those golden poses right first.

Tuesday, 13 January 2009


hello all, ive finished the rigs for the characters bodys, its taken a while due to the fact that ive never done a full body rig before or a quadreped for that matter. there not professionel by any means but they will do nicley for my film, as they have a farly good range of movement. i did want a twisting bone set up on the monks forarms to stop skin folding and twisting when the wrist rotates,but it proved to difficult and time consuming, even with a tutorial. but i did manage an ik/fk arm rig with a switch. so thats splendid. theres also a lovely custom hand set up for ease of control when animating. now on to the facial set up! Add Image

Monday, 12 January 2009

aesthetic mock up

ive been working on getting the right easthetic and i think i have finally done it. as i said before im now going to be digitally painting all of my bacgrounds over rendered stills of 3D geometry. and after some unbeilvably good refrence material from a programe about daoist monks in the chinese mountains, its all coming together. so ive been experimenting with the idea and heres how its looking. im still keeping to the old brush painting style colour palette but not going for the actual brush stroke look so much. i want to try and capture the feel and simplicity of an old painting as appose to actually being one. if you know what i mean. anyway heres some bacground final mock ups with characters for colour refrence and composition.

Friday, 9 January 2009


ive had a bit of a wake up call with regards to my timeplan. ive still got huge amounts to do so ive been thinking of ways to cut down my work load with out compromising the final outcome of the film. after talking to Adam i realised that i was making my life more dificult than it needed to be with regards to my backgrounds. so ive decided not to attempt the complicated task of textureing all of my environment models and instead im going to render out my shots and digitally paint them and then comp them all together as 3D layers with my CG animated characters in after affects. this method will also give me greater control over the final aesthetic.
anyway heres a couple of experimental backdrop ideas.

Monk machete

ive been meaning to post some images of this guy for about a month. its plasteline modeling clay over a simple wire armature. as i said in a previous post, i was thinking of building a small model for help with the CG modeling procsess. im glad i did because it really helped having an actual 3 dimentional model to work from rather then just a 2D turn around. it made modeling the head considerably easier and more acurate. i also did a simple colour study in photoshop for refrence.

Saturday, 3 January 2009


with my models nearly complete ive begun the task of getting colours and aesthetics right. as ive said before, my main priority is on the simplicity of the colour and texture. i want a global illumination feel like with pocoyo, ive used a sky light with the samples down to about 6 wich gives it a nice grainy feel, but i will probably just render an abiant occlusion pass for a similer but less memory consuming effect in the final cut. this lighting effect gives a sense of the outdoors wich is just what im after. ive also used some simple 3 point lighting in the scene matching the colours in the background image. this should hopfully make the characters feel as though they are out side, high up in the mountains.

Dog improved

after some splendid crits, it was drawn to my attention that the dog seemed to be a bit dissjointed. so i had a look and realised that this was quite true. the body was ok but the head and neck had lots of issues. the neck was almost swan like and the nose was too large. so i had a fiddle and got the proportions better. i also mad a few refinments on the body. im much happier with this updated version.

Friday, 2 January 2009

Dogs in!

the dog is pretty much finished, heres a turnaround. ive decided he should be a little stockier as he's been living on a mountain for most of his life, but ive also tried to to maintian some cuteness for appeal, with big eyes and a larger nose and feet. ive also gone for cutesy rounded cheeks for extra cuteness. did i say cuteness?

now i just need to work out how to rig the little bleeder!