Sunday, October 5, 2014

Pug Rig - Animation Test

Here's a test I recently completed to see how the rig can hold up with renders/with extreme acting poses.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Pug Rig - Features Video WIP

I made a video which includes some features of my first character rig.  It's definitely a work in progress, and I would love some feedback on how to improve what I already have!


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Patrick - Rigging Progress

Haven't posted in awhile - Moved to LA, it's been crazy!

Enough of that - Here's some progress on my rigging for Patrick the Pug:

Rig progress so far
I added a tongue "auto-curl" which is screen-right.
In addition to the "auto-curl" control, I added manual controls on the tongue for fine adjustments / ultimate control.
Same deal with the ears - there are "auto-curls" as well as manual controls.  You can use both for the highest amount of control.

Same "Auto-Curl" functionality with his tail.

What I need to work on next is the hands/feet controls, adding blendshapes for facial expressions, as well as squash/stretch where needed (his flabby cheeks maybe?).  I'm learning a ton on this project, can't wait to get it done and animate something with it.

Monday, August 11, 2014

"Worst Tourist" - Blocking WIP 1

I haven't posted in awhile!  I'm back home in Connecticut with family preparing for the move to LA (which will happen at the end of this month).  Basically all of my time is spent with family, hanging out with friends before I leave, contacting LA studios, and TRYING to animate when I have the time.  I also have developed a minor obsession with ebay, but that's irrelevant....

This audio is from the AWESOME movie "In Bruges" (2008).  I always thought the dialogue was delivered so perfectly.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Updated Reel!

Got some tremendously helpful feedback on my reel from Blue Sky character animator, Stewart Shaw. It's really interesting to see their standards for animation first-hand. And I could immediately see a ton of flaws from my reel after the critique. I made a bunch of updates based on feedback, and my reel is now updated here. I will be applying to Disney's animation apprenticeship very soon!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Combat Exercise - Interpablocking 3

Got some very helpful feedback from Isabelle!  I'm going to polish as much as possible and then probably render this by the end of the month so I can participate in the next 11 second club.  I'm much much happier with this now than from when I started.  Learned so much!


Friday, June 20, 2014

Combat Exercise - Interpablocking 2

Added breakdown poses and adjusted timing. Time to interpolate!

Also, as suspected the gimbal lock issues are pretty bad...



Thursday, June 19, 2014

Combat Exercise - Interpablocking 1

Lots of changes!

- Changed the object the blue ninja is hanging onto, and made it bend based on his movements
- Finessed Blue's head scarf in shot 2
- Extended shot 3 with a crazy move that involves tons of constraints (and I'm terrified to interpolate due to there most likely being a bajillion gimbal locks).

The ending is sort of a placeholder right now - I got a bit lazy after the whole 'quarterstaff twirl' sequence :P.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Combat Exercise - Interpolation 1

Got some VERY helpful critiques from Brian Kim especially regarding the general weighting.  Shot 3 (the fight sequence) is very difficult but also fun.  The timing/weighting is a continual challenge..

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Combat Exercise - Blocking 3

Interestingly enough, this month's 11second club competition involves just sound effects, so pretty much just involves body mechanics/movements.  I think this was an interesting practice for body mechanics so I might hop on that next!  But first, I have to interpolate this exercise!...

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Combat Exercise - Blocking 2

Shot 3's still pretty rough - it feels a bit too 'pose-to-pose' currently (especially with the blue guy) so I need to make it feel more fluid.


Saturday, May 24, 2014


Animation is an 'easy' thing to be passionate about if you think about it - and I say that because it's inherently interesting.  Most people don't 'dislike' animation or are THAT bored when they see the latest Pixar film, for instance.  People have opinions on it!  It's... inherently interesting - And that's great!

But it's really special to see someone who is passionate about something that you wouldn't necessarily think could be interesting.. Like doing root canal's for a living-

After my cavity procedure was done today, my dentist started talking about his process with clear enthusiasm.  He spoke about how much of an 'art' dentistry is, and how he uses different instruments (one that spins so fast it could cut through steel, and one that is only JUST strong enough to cut through the decay) in combination to perform his procedures in the most efficient way possible.  He then proceeded to show me examples of REALLY BAD cavities to compare to my measly wimpy cavity I had, and explained why my cavity didn't require the use of novocaine.  Of course, I didn't necessarilly NEED to know all this information immediately after my procedure, but I enjoyed seeing his passion about his process, his tools, and generally - the study of TEETH!  

He LITERALLY started blasting Metallica as he did the procedure.  You can tell he loves his job.


This is... disturbing

And if you need a dentist and you're in the CT area check out Vaughn Family Dentistry ;)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Combat Exercise - Blocking 1

I haven't even gotten to the combat yet!

I need to work on the settle when he jump down - also something about his 'release' in the first shot bothers me.  Most importantly I need to HAVE HIM HIT THINGS!!!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Combat Exercise - Thumbnails

What I'm currently working on is COMBAT involving 2 characters with quarterstaffs.  I managed to find some pretty awesome reference for this so I'm pretty excited.  Here are some thumbnails/animatic (And yes, I have a LONG way to go with drawing -_-).  Thanks to Isabelle Gedigk for help with the ending:

Kudos to Isabelle - check out her blog!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Just in time for mothers day...

We all must appreciate when our mothers are there for us emotionally and... otherwise.  

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Gunshot - Interpolation / Tweaking

Added a dynamic simulations for the books (had to do a quick refresher on that!):

I'm gonna spend some more time tweaking and polishing this but then I'm gonna move on (axxing shot 3 I think...).  I really want to do a quick fight for practicing body dynamics.  This piece by animator Stephen Vyas really inspired me:

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Gunshot - Blocking WIP 3

More updates!  I might have to slow down the second shot a bit during the fall... Happens pretty quickly.  Thanks to Isabelle for some awesome feedback (I say this like I have more followers :P).

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Drawing Progress

One of the things I really like about drawing is you get better at it pretty consistently as you practice.  I guess this happens with most things, but I'd argue that this connection is SUPER apparent with drawing.

Like I've said in previous posts - I'm drawing poses on a daily basis for practice.  A little over a month ago I drew these beauties:

And today I drew these:

It's funny - I keep cringing at things I've done a week or two ago.  I'm probably going to delete this post because I'll cringe at what I consider 'good' now is going to be garbage in a week.  

Progress FTW!

Gunshot - Blocking WIP 2

I finally managed to get my embedded videos to display at higher resolutions (w00t!).

Also, here's a pretty great pose I happened to 'find' in my animation (this is meant to be sarcastic FWIW - Her neck is quite broken):

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Gunshot - Blocking WIP 1

In order to practice using my thumbnails to help my animation process, I've started on an acting bit where a mother takes a child's game too seriously.  Here's where I'm at with the blocking:

I personally think the ending need a lot of work (with the mother throwing her son up in the air).  I'll be posting more updates as I continue!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Using 2D to help with 3D!

Props to Isabelle for sending this to me!

This is a progression shot from disney animator Daniel Peixe.  It's very helpful because it really shows how you can use 2D to plan out your shots in 3D (which can be cumbersome).  I find it interesting how he says in the description that he " use[s] 2d animated rough tests a lot in [his] workflow , specially for a broad cartoony shot like this one.".  So my guess is Daniel really benefits with 2D animation the more exaggerated the poses are, which makes sense because that stuff is probably hard to use video reference for (you can only 'squash' your face so much :P).

Very cool stuff.

Oh and I'm doing more life drawing to try and get better at thumbnailing.  PROOF:

Not sure what's happening with her left hand :|
One of these days I'm gonna post my drawing progress.  I'm nowhere near good now but my first drawings are really funny.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

11SecClub Entry Submitted!

I just submitted my entry for the 11 second club - it's not even rendered because they apparently don't care about that stuff.  I can still update it as long as I re-upload before the 31st!

Monday, March 17, 2014

11 Second Club March 2014 - Blocking/Interp Pass #3

Did some more work interpolating the first shot, adding some lip sync, and making the captured guy REALLY fearful at the end of shot 2 (I will probably tone that down some...)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

11 Second Club March 2014 - Blocking Pass #2

Made some more blocking changes, also changed the direction of the camera and positioning of the characters a bit (Thanks to ISABELLE for some storyboarding/layout tips!).  Anyways - always looking for feedback from anyone!

NOTE: There SHOULD be audio in this pass (check to see if youtube isn't muting it by default).

Saturday, March 15, 2014

11 Second Club March 2014 - Blocking Pass #1

I will be participating in this month's 11 Second Club for the first time!  I got a bit of a late start so if I don't end up finishing before the month is over that's fine - I just want to focus on the acting (but it would be great to get it in the contest too..)


I would love to hear anyone's feedback or critique!  If anything is unclear, or looks strange (or could be better in some way) please let me know!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Reaction to TV - Render

For now I'm done with the TV reaction, and I'm onto working on the 11second club for this month!  Also working on helping getting renders out for scene 2 in Wings...

Here's what it ended up like:

And here's the one I did about a year ago:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Reaction to TV - Interpolation Pass #1

I'm not totally happy with this one, but I don't know if I'll ever be!  I'm calling it quits on the blocking, and going to continue to tweak the interpolation/timing a bit more.  The important thing is I learned a TON while doing this and am very inspired to continue with more exercises :).

Monday, March 3, 2014

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Reaction to TV - Blocking Pass #4

I got some critique from a professor - made some big changes!  The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is making the emotional beats work logically/causally from one pose to the other.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Reaction to TV - Blocking Pass #2

Made a lot of changes, trying to make it more interesting / his character feel more 'real'...  The last bit of audio isn't in yet!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Reaction to TV - Blocking Pass #1

It's been a few weeks since I last posted due to work!  Now that that's over, I'm doing another revamp of an old exercise from my animation reel.

Here's some blocking:

Monday, January 20, 2014

True Grit - Animation Comparison

January 2014

January 2013

"God Forgot About Me" - Animation Bit

This post on reddit caught my attention.  It's a 2D character animation bit by Erin Humiston.

Here's a link to the animation.

It's a great illustration of using accents during dialogue bits to emphasize the acting.  Just look at the character's expressions when he says "Flatbelly Experts/Dirt Nap/30 years ago!".  Great stuff!  Check out his website here: 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Sunday, January 5, 2014

"True Grit" - Interpolation progress

I've started interpolating some of the "True Grit" animation.  I'm going bit-by-bit , so I'm only posting the first 140 frames.  From now on I'm adding timecode in all of my videos, so if anyone wants to critique feel free!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Blizzard Blocking

the view outside my apartment...

It is snowy and cold outside (and in...) my Brooklyn apartment, and in order to delay the grim commute to work I am doing some blocking work!  This piece of dialogue is from "True Grit" and I actually animated the same dialogue a year ago, so I'm doing this one as a revamp.