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anim8tr
08-29-2007, 08:27 PM
I have been tasked with animating a ladybug. Being my first ever character animation, I am clueless. Currrently I am reading Animator's Survival kit and trying to get things in the place.

This is overwhelming. I have no workflow and no reference. I don't even know where to begin. How would you professionals approach it. Right now, I am trying to create a walk cycle (in Maya) and I don't know where to start. With the legs? Animate the whole bug moving from frame 1 to it's end frame then go back and do the legs? Animator's Survival kit has a dog walk cycle over 20 frames. But, I think the 6 legs is confusing me. And the author has the dog already starting his walk.

Any help, tips, advice you can give would be greatly appreciated. I really want to make this animation sing.

Thanks in advance.

jjdon
09-07-2007, 09:31 PM
This is the second time today I've replied to an animation thread, and I ain't no animator ;<}. I have an excellent tutorial on doing a walk cycle, though - really excellent and thorough. I don't remember who did it (it's not here, and if I go look I'll never reply), but it's either Gnomon, Digital Tutors or Lynda.com. I think Gnomon- if you have time you might look for it. He discusses using certain numbers of keyframes - odd numbers as I recall, and why. But then he moves a leg in a reasonably good motion, and copies it across every other keyframe (I don't remember how to do that, but there's a way), and does the same with the other leg, and then goes back and does heel motion and hip and body sway and arm swing one at a time, and copies each one across the proper keyframes. He really gets into it - in the end the character is just loping along with all sorts of natural action - really good. But the point is that he does it incrementally - not expecting to get the whole leg, ankle, knee and hip thing all right the first time. And he's copying it across frames - right side is 1,3,5,7 (wider spacing than that) and left side is 0,2,4,6. Well, I may misremember some of it, and it's obviously complicated (and I ain't no animator). He's not animating each step, since it's a repetitive motion. Plus he used the graph editor a lot, to get a smooth and even flow. Like that.

ErikSvensson
09-08-2007, 07:31 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZBnb5T-moc There is always youtube. :) Apparently they're moving very fast, so it'll probably be like 4-5 frames / in 30 fps / step. I thought i could try to explain how to make the legs moving, but i cant, due to that the multiple legged creature i animated once was a spider, and he had 8 legs apparently. So im not 100% sure how to animate a 6-legged myself.


Erik

anim8tr
09-10-2007, 05:39 PM
jjdon - Thanks for the reply. You think you can find out specifically who that tutorial was from? And, also maybe provide a link to your tutorial? I'll gladly purchase the tutorial.

Eric - Thanks for the reference footage, much help.

Thanks for your replies.

jjdon
09-10-2007, 06:34 PM
jjdon - Thanks for the reply. You think you can find out specifically who that tutorial was from? And, also maybe provide a link to your tutorial? I'll gladly purchase the tutorial.

Eric - Thanks for the reference footage, much help.

Thanks for your replies.

I'll try to remember to look for it - I have some plumbing to do this afternoon, unfortunately (emergency). I'm at work and my tuts are at home....

EDIT - I found it another way - it's Gnomon workshop, Cameron Hood, Here: http://www.thegnomonworkshop.com/dvds/cha02.html - it's not on the main page, had to Google to find it. It's bipeds, of course, but I found it really excellent as to how to go about getting walk cycles together in general. Gnomon Character Animation 2 - Animating Bipeds.

jjdon
09-11-2007, 07:49 PM
Ian, I'm not going to animate your ladybug for you LOL - don't know how, anyway. It occured to me that maybe Wikipedia might have something like how six legged creatures move their legs. I didn't find anything, but I found this link: http://www.idleworm.com/how/anm/02w/walk1.shtml

See if it helps, or maybe he has more, too, I've only just glanced at it so far.

Groovedog
09-11-2007, 08:47 PM
The youtube vid reference makes a good point. What is the desired style of the animation?
Are you looking for realistic? Notice the randomness of the direction in the youtube ladybug.
Are you looking for cartoon (possibly easier because it gives you more freedom)

jjdon
09-12-2007, 10:11 PM
The link for this comes from another thread here. Go to http://www.gfxcube.com/index.php, sign up for an account (free, like here), go to the forums and there's one for free online tutorials. There is a link there and a un/pw to use. There are 40+ hours of tuts, but the "Walker" tutorial is a very good, if simple, walk cycle tutorial. Just watched it and thought of this thread....

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