Turn around…great turn around animation process.
Turn around…great turn around animation process.
Matte painting is important and a good method to use in creating your anime backgrounds. If you read alot of webtoons, manga and watch anime you notice often times the artists will trace over real life backgrounds for speed, accuracy and a nice look. Look if it is good enough for the pros to do then it should be good enough for you to use. Just saying.
What are your thoughts? The reason I post these is to give you an idea of what you can do and maybe things you want to avoid in your own anime moving forward. So it applies.
I love 2d animation but for a one man show I think 3d is the way to go because once assets are built animation goes quite quickly. Here are some great 3d animes that show you what can be done.
I’m okay using 3d to tell my story.
If you don’t already know him, I wanted to introduce you to MDotStrange. I think this dude holds the record for making the most animated movies all by himself. He has created 3 animated feature length films. He set a bar if you ask me on what can be done.
So often I have spent my time in areas where there are tons of artists. These tons of artists have wonderful skills and abilities but they waste it working for the man. Instead of creating their own way they exchange their life for a buck. I mean if you like animating for someone else that is great. But I’ve seen so many artists desire to make their own stuff but think it is impossible, that is it too hard and it takes too long. So they don’t attempt to create their own original stuff. It really is sad considering how many stories are waiting to be told and never will be.
Here is the truth.
1) It is not impossible.
2) It is not hard especially if you can draw or do animation (digging ditches and working construction is hard work, not sitting in the AC creating)
3) Too long? In 10 years MDotStrange created 3 full length films. Now imagine if you use premade assets and things like mocap and use various short cut methods that build results, then the truth is it doesn’t take 10 years to make a movie.
Here are some of his works.
We Are the Strange
Heart String Marionette
I loved watching this tutorial. It was pretty neat seeing how things are done in the making of this show.
Again the same techniques can be used for creating your own anime. You could go about making an anime puppet in 2d similiar to what they do here. Remember story is important. I hope you enjoy this little workflow video.
I saw this on CGBros Youtube page. I always love to watch breakdowns of the anime process. This one is a little violent for my taste but has a lot of good technical information.
I’ll just add another one.
One of my favorite aspects of the creation process is to create characters. For me I use them to drive my story. For me characters come first. Usually I’ll scribble up some character and then it inspires me to think about that characters life.
Below are some of the characters I have created over the years.
One key for me when creating a character is to keep them simple. For example the guy below. Not much to him but a humanoid snail. But for me I think he is awesome. When I see him I start thinking about what he is like, where is he from, what kind of life he would lead, etc.
Personally I like characters out of the norm. I get tired of the good looking guy or girl being the main hero ALL the time. I always wanted the monsters to be the good guys. I wanted the little side kick like character to be the main hero and so for me I’ve always designed characters that were a little off and I would give them a weakness of sorts. That weakness would be part of their character.
Another thing I think about when I’m creating a character is to give him a goofy name that just fits. Here are a list of some of my characters names.
Kalimar, Sasquatch named Joe, Snailo (pictured above), Flog, Alienboy (Raimi is his real name) Low-Key, Spoon, Taco, Soft, Poke, etc.
While some are stupid they are recognizable and say something about the character.
For example SOFT. Pictured below. Soft’s father gave her up when she was only around 2 years old. She was bought by a robot from a planet similar to Cybertron. Basically it is a planet that was taken over by robots. Being advance technologically they joined the Galactic Federation as any other alien race would. This robot is a criminal and has brought Soft to his home planet as a show piece and to have fun torturing her. She endures being frozen and released for over 100 years. However being the daughter of her powerful father she escapes the clutches of her robotic owner, she wreaks havoc on the planet and ends up taking over the robot planet all on her own. Her name is Soft because she is a soft thing in a hard world. This is really where her story begins. She learns her father has taken over several planets over the years and has put her younger siblings in charge of these planets. Her goal is to undermine her siblings to make her way to her father and prove she was the daughter that should never have been thrown away.
All that just to tell you why her name is SOFT.
SOFT is actually a part of my Bigfoot Vs Nerd Universe. I’m thinking big. LOL. Make sure when creating characters that you also copywrite them.
That is just a side note.
Now if you can tell I’m about to start creating my own anime and show you step by step how to do it. Step 1 is creating great characters. Some folks go story first but I go character and let it organically go from there.
Making animation is not easy. It is a labor of love. It takes time, energy and you have to really stick to it. I wanted to take this time to talk about the challenges that will get in the way of you making your own anime and how you can overcome them.
The 3 basic challenges are
I see these as being some of the biggest challenges. Not in that particular order. They do go hand in hand. Each of those 3 elements is required for every animated production.
You need money to buy time and talent. You need talent and time to make money. They are all connected. Lacking any of these will be a problem in your storytelling endeavors.
For example if you are really talented at animating you still need money to live off of but if you to make money you need to take time off your project to work. Work then wears you down and you don’t have the time to animate like you wanted. It is a vicious circle but one that can stop.
It really hurts if you have little of all three which is where I find myself. My drawing style is not where I would like it. I don’t have time to make animation as I have adult bills and have a full time day job.
There are solutions to these challenges. Do not let the challenges turn into excuses. Acknowledge the challenge and attack it. In the next articles we will attack each of those 3 major problems.