I started out by deciding on a Story idea that could be easily told within the recommended time and frame number. A story that didn’t try to hard and got the point across to the viewer. I then had to choose one of three different complex options given to me for this assessment. At first I decided a single bouncing ball would work for my story . But i quickly found out that it wouldn’t meet the criteria of this assessment . So instead i went with a Character with a movable tale , that would bounce its way through a small obstacle course . Next i took my idea and sketched it out as best as i could, to give myself the easiest reference possible, and take it over to Maya and create it. This consisted of not only showing off the obstacle course that i had in mind , but to also visualize what my character would be doing within the course , which showed off a small sketch of my character bouncing frame by frame and showing off the necessary bounces. Research was needed for my characters sketching, below are some video references that i found , as well as sketches of my own and from other artists showing off the step by step nature of bounces.
I then headed into Maya and got to work on my obstacle design. Much like the story , the obstacle stayed simple , only 4 parts were made for our character to interact with. Enough for the viewers to see and take in , and enough to show off our characters animations nicely. I then began the animation process by blocking my characters movements through the whole animation. Then creating its ups and downs , as well as its anticipations. This step wasn’t to troublesome , i had my idea laid out , and executed it nicely. The movement however was stiff and i had some trouble with making the character come to life through the 12 principles of animation, Squash&stretch, Timing etc etc. This came down to polishing.
Polishing was the most tedious part of this animation. Many hours were spent in the graph editor pulling and pushing keys trying to make it perfect. The tail was the most difficult part of this animation due to its four control rigs. Jumping from control to control made this a little more of a hassle then it could have been if it were just the ball itself. A lot of times i would find myself keying frames on the wrong control, or trying to fix animation issues on the wrong axis, and getting nowhere with time passing. But during these frustrating periods i learnt something new every time , and have not repeated mistakes since. Animation is definitely something that with enough time , i will get the hang of , especially as more complex tasks come my way. But this process of starting something of my own and finishing it has exited me to push my ideas further and challenge myself to do better.