Sunday, August 30, 2015

Holiday - Michael

Hi everyone,

Posting for your feedback and thoughts.

This is still very much in "WIP" but with most of the notes addressed from Wednesday I wanted to see how people are feeling with the changes.


Saturday, August 22, 2015

Rough Blocking - Janel

Hey class,

My shot is still pretty rough but I'm ready for some fresh eyes and comments. Let me know what you think!

Syncsketch link:

Dropbox link if you'd like to download:

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Orphan Black

Hey guys! I mentioned briefly at the end of class last night that the TV show Orphan Black has some interesting acting in it, so I thought I'd share some videos about how the show is made, hopefully you guys find this stuff as interesting as I do!

So, Orphan Black is a show about a group of female clones, all played by the same actress. They don't discover that they're clones until they're adults, so each woman has grown up in a different part of the world, under different circumstances, etc. This gives the actress, Tatiana Maslany, the chance to differentiate each woman (specificity!) in terms of accent, body language, hair, makeup, etc. So she's using the same "rig" as it were, to portray a number of different characters (I think she plays six characters in season 1, more as the show goes on).

Here's a little scene of a bunch of the clones talking to each other on the phone, you can see even here how different she plays each of them.

Where it gets really interesting is when she plays clones in the same scene. There's a very technical side to it, she doesn't get to really act in an organic way like a normal actor (something closer to how animators often have to think about things) Here are a couple videos explaining how she has to shoot those scenes.

There are certainly actors who could portray these differing characters but I think the technical underbelly to all of this is what makes her so intriguing as an actress. The way she has to act in the scenes alone and also worry about where her eyelines are, her staging, blocking, etc is of extra interest to us animators.

In a later episode they did a dance scene with four clones and one other non-clone character, which has some very strategic staging/flow to make everything feel natural.

And here's an explainer of how they did it:

I'll probably end up writing this post up again on my own personal blog since I think it's a neat thing for animators to pick apart but for now I hope you guys enjoy!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Maya Rig List

Saw this on Facebook and thought I'd share with you guys. There are a couple rigs on there I didn't know about! Not sure about the quality of them all but worth a share, I figured.

See you guys tonight!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Janel's Audio Options

Hey guys! I'm planning on doing a 2 person dialogue for the next assignment (go big or go home, right? Heh.)

I've got three options (all from Mad Men, which I just finished watching and has some of the most brilliant moments of acting/writing I think I've seen on TV). If you think it's too much Mad Men, I've got some other options but I think these three all have good potential.




I think you'll have to download them to listen (blogger doesn't seem to like audio files). I'm leaning towards 2 or maybe 3 right now, I think they have the strongest contrast between the two characters and I already have ideas about how I'd like to stage them. But 1 could be fun too. Let me know what you think! Thanks guys.

Week 4 assignment

Hi Class,
Sorry for the confusion and rush at the end of last class.  I've run into some complications with compressing our curriculum into 8 weeks!  For week 4, here's what I'm expecting:

Intro to Acting students:
Facial Expression Change exercise, as I described in class.  Polish this to the best of your ability.  Remember to lock the body and just focus on face mechanics.  NO acting, 120 frames max.

Advanced Acting students:
I would like to see some sort of planning or blocking for your next assignment.  There are 4 suggestions for exercises in the syllabus.  I think you all can handle the dialog work, so it's your choice based on what's interesting to you and what you think would be best for your reels.  Let me know if you want my advice.  If you plan on doing a dialog scene you can post your audio clips here for early feedback.  I am out of town this weekend but I will try to respond ASAP.

3a - Pantomime - Endowment - Endowing means giving something power or specific traits.  Example: Bugs Bunny reacting to hot water (sorry for poor quality).  His acting tells us that the water is hot:

Or this scene from Raiders where Indy endows the idol with importance by the way he approaches it.  His acting tells us that the idol valuable and dangerous:

3b - Pantomime - Physical Conditions - Think of the clip we watched in class of the guy trying to light a match while he has to pee.  Tariq's clip would fall into this category, as drunkenness is an internal condition.

3c and 3d - Dialog Shots - Remember to present at least 3 audio clips for feedback.  Look for clips that show emotional changes.  I don't care about jokes; humor should come from the character and acting choices, not from funny writing.  Try to find dialog examples with clear gear changes, and in the case of two characters, different attitudes and points of view.  Do not exceed 6 seconds!  We want to be able to finish these, so edit the sound if you must.

Let me know if you have any questions.  Again, sorry for the confusion!  We'll work on getting Keynote better set up for next week so that we're not having technical delays.


Sunday, August 9, 2015

Updated Eye & Brow notes

Here's a link to the combined Eye & Brow notes from class.  I've been continuing to refine this keynote so you'll notice some reorganization and consolidation of material, as well as more images.  Please do not share these notes with anyone outside of class, just in case that wasn't clear.

Also, I showed a clip from the show "Outlander", featuring a character with crazy eyebrows named "Murtagh".  The actor's name is Duncan Lacroix and here's a bit of him promoting the show:


Friday, August 7, 2015

Getting Unstuck

Hey guys, I've been trying to brainstorm for the past day on what I want to do for my next assignment and realized that reaction gif websites are a good place to go to look for ideas, they are a treasure trove of expression changes and head turns. And since they're so popular, there are literally millions of them, tons of variety.

So I figured I'd share if anyone else is having mental blocks like I am. A couple good sites:

There's a lot of silliness to sift through but if you use the search options you can usually find some good stuff. It's nice if you need a jumping off point! Hope it helps.

- Janel

thumbs up animated GIF

Monday, August 3, 2015

Janel - Week 1

Hey guys! I was out of town visiting my parents this weekend so I didn't get to work quite as much as I'd hoped (had to animate on my creaky old laptop from college when I got a free minute) but I did the intro assignment as kind of a warm up and also the head turn, which is still in blocking as you can see.

Feedback is much appreciated! I am definitely feeling rusty after being away from polished work like this for so long but hoo boy I missed it and can't wait to dive back in!

I've included Youtube versions and Dropbox links so you can download and properly scrub/frame through if you so desire.


Head turn (thank you to the man who kept falling asleep on the bus the other morning when I was going to work, you were a great muse)