Thursday, April 21, 2016

Opening Shot

This will take a while...

I wanted the opening shot to emulate one of my favorite logo clips of all time:

Along with the color schemes of some vintage National Geographic:

I must have gone through hundreds of these, I'd post more but I'll just let you peruse if interested. This has been my go to for framing/color/everything lately:


Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Had a day off.. figured I could knock out a quick little guy.

Sparrow Finished-er and Beyond

    I've added some more technical nonsense to the model to make certain shots more interesting. Now there is some more stuff covering the areas of the glass I didn't like. 

Thinking about making 1 or two other ships to have sitting idly in the background. We'll see though, I'd like to start building some set pieces and storyboarding. The reason I've been building assets first is because I'd like to keep in mind certain physical limitations/capabilities of the models while I plan out the shots. 
I've had a lot of different landscapes and architecture buzzing around my head for this, things from yellowstone to dense english villages. I need to nail this look down before I do anything else. 
Also looking into a new computer, I need to up my tech game before I take on another big project. It'll be expensive but worth it. 
I'm still conflicted about how to shoot this. I imagine I'll need to bring some greenscreen skills back up to speed for wider shots. I will be animating with these "helping hands". They've already been delivered and they are AWESOME. It's a solid 8' by 8' or so, and really sturdy. Excited to actually work with some stiffer ball and socket joints. 
I also don't know how I'd like to animated the characters. My first thought was to have the characters appear minimally and as 2d animations. Their designs are simple enough. The only example of this juxtaposition I know of is "Dancing on the Moon":

Lots of techniques I wanted to employ with 2d on 3d are present, including the large rotating set piece set against a static background. I'm sure there are other examples out there, but searching for them specifically hasn't yielded much. 

More junk soon

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sparrow Fin...ish?



You just paint and glue and done it. It's done then. #brodoyouevendone?

Anyways, it's done. I didn't feel like doing anymore in progress posts; the rest was just a lot of sitting around waiting for paint to dry. I might add a little here and there in the future, but I'm digging the minimal design so far. I don't like the plastic covering the cockpit. Those little fins stretching over the back of it should have come off before glueing it on there, they're really distracting. Shouldn't have used balsa wood, AMATEUR MOVE WES. It's fine, I'm not going for an golben glorbe for this animation. It's still really posable and light-weight, so a general success all around I guess.

Now what

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Sparrow Progress 3

      Fitting in a few cockpit components, making sure the glass still fits over everything. The thrusters are going to look really cool, I think. I had to re-carve out some of the area at the bottom so that the fin could fit inside of the wood, kind of messy, but nobody will really see it.

Flip-flopping on potential colors; I've been really drawn to entire washes. They are both really memorable and stand out really well against abysmal backgrounds.

Next step is to fit some these unmoving pieces together, probably with some wood glue so that I can fill in an awkward gaps between the balsa wood and the plastic pieces. All in all, I'm really happy with how it's turning out. It's still a bit of a mess, but it is super lightweight and really posable. Both of those things will be kind of invaluable when it starts getting animated.

[image credits:
Voyage to the Forbidden Planet // Chris Foss
Translucent Worlds // John Harris
Retro Rocket // Les Edwards]

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Sparrow Progress 2

      I did a bit more gathering to find all the major pieces for the ship. Wood is still pretty rough in this one, and I still have to carve out some spaces for the thrusters.

I went ahead and carved out the space for the windshield, or whatever it's called. SPACE windshield. The picture is kind of bad, the underlying wood still needs to be sanded. I think this is the last time I work with balsa wood, this stuff breaks just from sneezing at it. I have to add in a little part underneath the front part of the glass because the part I was leaving on broke off when I was cutting out the cockpit area.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Sparrow Progress 1

        The Sparrow is the ship that I'm going to be animating. It's going to have a number of movable parts, which will prove to be an interesting building process since I want to keep it really mechanical. Most pieces before have been characters and other organic bits, which didn't need such defined articulation. That said, a lot of the materials for this little guy are going to be a lot different than what I'm used to.

The main piece is going to be carved out of wood, since it's a pretty specific form.

Balsa wood is eazy peeezy

        I've smoothed it a bit more, and tried to make it symmetrical enough- but I wont break my brain over it quite yet. I may ultimately wrap something over the front for a sleeker texture. I've appropriated some small joints and things from a few different model sets:

      I'll probably be using a few more pieces from these for the fins and smaller details, but I don't want to get carried away yet. I figured the best next step would be to make some spaces for the joints to be glued in. The 3 main moving parts are the 2 top fins and the single bottom fin. All of them are able to shift up/down and rotate in place. It's a bit of a frankenstein, and the overall design wont be as economic, but it functions ok. I wanted to make sure these would be good to go before working on the wood piece any more.


    I'm gonna sleep on it. Next chance I get to work on it, I'll probably be taking a look at the front end and fitting the cockpit into place.