Self Critique

This semester, I have learned to animated in 3D. After some practice, trial and error I realize that it is not as hard as I was expecting. However, it takes time and effort to create believable and realistic looking animation. I define it as easy to learn and difficult to master. Above is a video of all the projects I have worked on this semester.

What I was hoping to achieve by the end of the semester was creating smooth-looking and believable animations. What bothered me, in particular, how jerky some of them turned out to be. Walk the walk and the pace look robotic in their movements and not real enough. Also some of the body parts and joints are static. They do not move a long with the action. In walk the walk, the torso and hips are stiff. In animation, it is all about the attention to detail and the subtleties that would not normally be paid attention to. Those details go a long way.

Despite its faults, I think the bouncing ball animation and push animations were the best looking I did this semester. The pushing animation was an example of me trying to get smooth looking animation down correctly. Using more frames turned out to work against me because the build up took too long, but it demonstrate ease in and ease out. The second ball animation is better. It demonstrates squash and stretch fairly well.

In conclusion, simply put, I need to keep animating. If I ever want to get better, I need to do it more often. I have realized that animation is trial and error. It may not always work out, but fortunately you can just delete those frames and keep trying until it looks right. Also I must look at a bigger picture rather than just one joint. When I first began animating, I would initially just focus on a single joint and go from there. But you need to take the whole model into account when doing so. As I tell others, animation is a slow and tedious process, but the pay off is so satisfying to watch.

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Sophomore Year, Semester 1: Animation Reel

Animation Done in Maya

  1. Bouncing Ball
  2. Walk the Walk (Walk in Place)
  3. The Pace
  4. Lift, Push, Pull (Push)
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The Pace

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Peer Critique

For the Peer Critique, I am choosing Lucas Schlenk.

Lucas demonstrates a clear understanding of squash and stretch. In the first part of the video, the ball squashes and stretches so seamlessly. It is natural. However, the only thing that was off was near the end of the first part when the ball was losing its energy. As the bounce lessoned, the ball slows down when it touches the ground for the last time. It looks artificial and loses the natural feeling of the animation. He uses arc well enough. The ball loses the arcing motion as the speed decreases.

The second animation demonstrates a clear understanding of the arc principle. As the ball loses energy, the arc diminishes in length. The squash and stretch is not as present in this one. Where it really shows off is when the ball hits the left wall. However, this is a problem. It instantly squashes to the point of being flat. Then in the next frame it becomes round again. It would have worked better if the ball naturally turned round again.

In conclusion, Lucas does understand what he is doing with the principles of animation here. What really works is how natural the animations look. The ball moves smoothly. What would help is to look over the animation again to see if anything looks unnatural. Those little nitpicks take the viewer away from believing that what they see is real.

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Walk The Walk

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Project 1

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Bouncing Ball

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