View Full Version : character animation
12 December 2004, 05:23 AM
Im working on my new website and want to have lots of character animation up for the anmation section. So ive started on some walk cycles so far. Would love some c&c on the animations and stuff.
12 December 2004, 08:16 PM
Very Cool Idea! Would like to see more of it done.
12 December 2004, 08:14 AM
I think the idea is really nice. The concept is cool. The hips movementis beautiful like the breast one.The character concept too. But I have some problem with the arm movement. I think it will be nicer if your able to make it go the same distance each way.
12 December 2004, 10:57 PM
thanks for the comments guys:)
@ dictatoroz - What do you mean by make the arms go the same distance each way? Do you mean after you push the button or where abouts? I agree that something does bother me about the arms at parts too. Also I sometimes wonder if the walk to the button is a little to slow or not.
Any more critiques on the animation would be much appriciated. I know it still needs lots of work.
12 December 2004, 01:15 AM
looks really good, except there is some clipping when she pushes the button down.
12 December 2004, 02:35 AM
Nice work. I like the character design the most. I agree that the hip and breasts move well, but there a few areas that I think could use some attention. Mostly what I see are some timing issues. Although it's hard to tell if it's the animation or the playback speed since everything just seems a bit too slow. What is the playback framerate? It looks like about 15 fps, but maybe it's the connection (although I played through it a few times and it was always the same speed). Anyway, here are a few crits:
-I think the fall could be a little quicker to add some more weight, and you could probably offset the limbs so they are not twinning so much.
-The left arm does seem to have a hit in the motion when she first points at the buttons (after the fall). I think the problem is that the first part of the point is a sort of hard accent, but the rest is soft and they don't transition well (thus, the hit). You may be able to see it more easily by checking the arcs on your wrist with a motion trail or trajectory curve (depending on if you're using max or maya).
-When she goes over and pushes the button, everything just seems too slow. The actually push of the button has some nice posing, but it feels somewhat floaty (not neccessarily due to the speed, but more the spacing of the inbetweens). I sort of feel like the anticipation is lost because of the even spacing, and as a result, the impact of the push is not as powerful as it could be. Also, there's alot of twinning going on here. You could alleviate some of it by offsetting, but you may also want to try changing up some of the key poses.
-Another thing I noticed in all the animation is that the tail needs alot of attention. Secondary action can be a pain in the butt sometimes, but that tails definitely needs some nice whipping motion to accent the main action.
Overall good job, looking forward to the finished product. Good luck.
12 December 2004, 11:49 AM
@ GregRinaldi - thanks for the great advice. I'm saving the tail for last, as I have done some changes to the key poses in the past, and end up having to redo the tail a few times, and its not fun hehe.
I did alot of retiming and tried to address some of the issues right after the user clicks the first button. I made the initial walk alot faster, and just cleaned up some of the f-curves.
Heres a straight screen capture of the new animation.
I am alot mre happy with it all in all I think. Still got some cleaning up to do, and any more crits are welcome.
Again its flash and its gonna be choppy first run though, no preloader:
This is what will happen directly after the user hits the 1rst of the 5 globes.
12 December 2004, 05:32 AM
Im starting to make some animation tests to put up on my website. Ill be posting them here as I go along.
I started a walk cycle today, just blocked out so far and did a bit of animation/f-curve work.
I would like to give the walk a little more character yet somehow, maybe more head movement?
Animation is here in flash format:
12 December 2004, 01:05 PM
the animation is a bit shy, but quite good overall, and pretty nice.
1. the walk - it's not too feminine and a little bit defaultish (well, for a walk-cycle-exercise that's not a problem). a bit rigid too - maybe to equal. the legs have a slight sense of mechanical movement - they come and go evenly, and don't look too flexible. I like that you made a large movement with them legs...;) but the hips don't move up-and-down enough for a devil-girl especially :) that's arguable though. what is not arguable in my oppinion.. is that the brests aren't timed corectly. they start too soon and have a feel of 'being on their own' - or maybe like there's an unknown force moving them. they should be reacting to her movents ( following desynchronised), not be in the same time with the rest of the body. again - they don't act, they react.
ok, anouther thing would be that her body seems to be draging, and the feet are going ahead, like she's climbing...
apart from all this, I think I like you r red little devil. all that I said here is not too obvious, I think, and some of the stuff might be arguable (or wrong!?), so I'd say it's a nice walk, and what I like about it the most is that it's quite balanced, quality-wise - no big bugs! maybe all problems I've spotted are timing-related, but that's just an idea - I'm not entirely sure.
2.your website - this is where I again ahve to say: it's a bit shy. the animation. maybe, again, it's a matter of timing. and again, overall - very nice and good quality. on the details (the little devil hides there...:D ) there are some issues.
stuff is a bit even (spline-ish), as opposed to some more clear movements - that's why I'm saying it's kind'a shy. when she comes in/falls down in the beginning, the shock of the fall, the hit, is almost none. no shock. it'd be more realistic to see some more contra-motion/movement, especially on the head and upper body. well, on the legs too. ok, then you have a nice loop... let's see what's coming next...
very nice poses, but when she opens the 'thingy' I'd say it needs a bit more force - I mean, I'd put a BIT more force to it. I don't agree very much with some people who believe that everything should be "more forceful" *, more exagerated, so that the animation can live... but in this case, I feel like it needs that. if not more force, at least a more sharply/clearly defined movement. ok, and then it's again very shy, to the end. by shy, here, i mean the same thing, but I'd add - natural human motion is definitely not similar to a spider's motion... in that it's not THAT sharp/fast/cliky... it doesn't jump from pose to pose (and I can see this in your animation and it's great, I think), but in the same time, it's not that equal, smooth. It's somewhere in between, I think. all life on earth (and maybe everywhere else...?...) is turbulent - as opposed to spline-ish (mathematically perfect). so, even though a spline can be fairly close to a real movement, it will always be 'off', because it's perfect. think of the difference between a mathematical perfect sphere and a mountain. now, the human motion is the mountain:) no matter how close to 'perfectly smooth', equal, calm, it will always be turbulent. I think all animation curves on a human character (or any other living creature/or natural object/fenomenon) should look like scratching with pencil on paper. even when it's smooth, it's not spline-ish.
ok, that's pretty much it. I think your best chunk of animation was the 'opening of the thingy'
* - a certain guy on a certain reel on a certain website... (hm, hm, that'd be Rick O'Connor @ Animation Mentor..;) was saying that if you have a character standing with his arms crossed... "and in your reference your character's like "this" (see the reel for details) why'on't you make him look like more forceful, and, you know, exagerate the arms..." etc, etc. well, I guess you could, but as he was saying - "why?", I'm saying the same "why?", but the other way around: Why Would You? unless there's a need for that, of course, but it all depends on the context. Rick is actually right about how a character looks... many a times... better when the pose is more sharp/clear/exagerated even. but the way it 'reads' on the reel is like this is a 'general rule' - I might be mistaking here, and maybe they didn't intended to make it sound like a rule - but anyway, my point is that there are times when you can do that, and there are times when you shouldn't do it. maybe your reference is less "forceful" for a good reason :)
depends on the context.
anyway, too much typing. I'll take a break. ha ha ha. have fun animating your red cute devil!!!
12 December 2004, 12:29 PM
I updated my walkcycle a little, added some more exageration now and retimed the hips:
Soon the scrubber will be working correctly so that poeople can scrub frame by frame ect.
Thanks zamolkes for that advice. You brought up some really great points. I tried to make the walk cycle look a little less linear as it was bothering me as well, I also made both hands have diffent movements. Not so happy with the head movement though, I think its overdone a little.
I think you are right about my website too, that I should exagerate all the key frames a little more and so on, right now it kinda just seems to float by at parts. And I think that is why.
So thanks again :thumbsup:
12 December 2004, 07:55 PM
I like the changes! She is more devilish now.... :) Definitely more alive and more appealing. The breasts move OK (:)). Small detail - the tail is a bit stiff. But I like the hands movement a lot and the hips too. She's got attitude :) I find very hard to pronounce myself on the legs movement. They seem well done, but there is still a bit of dragging and stiffness. the dragging must come frome elswhere though.... I'm not sure. Maybe the upper body (?)
Much more fluid and appealing walk! Great job!:thumbsup:
12 December 2004, 09:01 PM
I think there is something there though - in the connection between the steps and the body movement. In how the legs are supposed to push the body up with each step, and the timing of this. But I'm not sure. Maybe you move those hips, but the whole lower-body doesn't go up&down. :shrug: Not sure. Could be that the hands are making a large, ample movement, while the rest of the body is more moderate. Especially on the vertical.
Oh, and I just saw another thing - when the legs go up to come back upfront: they drag and are a bit too slow, with a too round curve, I think. There is something with the legs too.... must be... the contact might be a little stamp-like, a bit...
Oh, I see. I think I found it! And this might be also the reason for the overall drag in the body (the 'climbing-like movement'): when you (well, she) put(s) each foot down, instead of coming back to front, stepping on the heel, it's a bit backwords - well, she actually steps pretty evenly (stamp-like), but from this view I have the feeling that the front comes first and the heel last (hm, hard to tell...). The heels are always the contact in a regular walk. Have you seen opera singers waking "with an attitude"? ha ha. That's a funny one to watch. They drag their feet sometimes like there's no muscle in there (in dramatic-romantic-love-scenes), thinking that it looks sort of expressive... that's when the heel comes later - sometimes. It's a ballet movement, I believe.
So, to conclude my observation: I'd work on the foot rotations at the hips and ankles. The way she raises her feet from the ground is too shy... ;) (too round), and then I think that because the body doesn't get enough up&down - not very sure on this one - , you have a bit of an exagerated leg-movement. Like it's supposed to do something - at that amplitude of motion - that is not doing.
Hope my comments make sense... If they don't, I appologize. I'm not very sure I'm being objective here... (:argh:), so please don't be mad if I'm wrong...
12 December 2004, 03:25 AM
Wow... I really like what you're doing so far! Definately has appeal. Noticed you're doing a lot of twining (such as having both legs, then both arms hitting the ground at the same time). Is that sort of smooth, almost mechanical, precision intentional? If you said it was intentional, I'd believe it, she's a devil after all!
Edit: I'm talking about the animation on the main page, when she jumps down.
12 December 2004, 05:35 AM
Really cool character and great movement, I'll keep checking back here for more :bounce:
12 December 2004, 09:55 AM
I updated the exaggerated walk cycle again, Its close to being done now I think. Most of my time is spent learning flash at the moment though.
the exaggerated link is the one updated on that page
thanks for the feed back guys
Thanks for the great crits again zamolxes. Always helpful. :)
@pollywoggles - some of it is intentional but I do want to vary the keys up a little more, that animation is mainly just blocked out stage still though, havent gone over it again yet. And your right she is a devil so has to have some of that smoothness quality to her moves :D
 just updated the default walk as well
01 January 2005, 12:23 AM
I must say she's got a Very Interesting walk now!!! Both walks. The tail si moving very nice and she's got character. I love it! It's great! Great arcs and all!
The breasts though... Yeap, that's my only comment for now ;) more reference... more reference...
01 January 2005, 12:55 AM
Maybe you've seen this... if only for a neat comparison male-vs-female walk... and it still is great! Check it out:
01 January 2005, 11:34 AM
yah ive sorta been ingoring the breasts on these last few renders, I kept getting them right then changng some other part and had to redo them, same with the tail. I think from now on I am going to leave anything that has over lapping action for last, woulda saved alot of time :D
I updated default walk cycle (http://www.anotherhell.com/walkcycles.htm), I think its pretty much done, the head bothers me a little and the breast are a little to bouncy, I am using soft bodies mixed with deformers so its lots of trial and error work on the settings at times .
Its suppose to be played at 30 fps, even though I set it to that in flash it still plays slower, at least on my pc. so it looks a little diffent slower to.
btw are the renders a little small? I was trying make them as small as possible but with being able to see enough detail, I can render them out at a larger res, I was thinking maybe 6 or 700x*instead of 500x300
thanks for the c&c
01 January 2005, 12:06 PM
I started a zombie type walkcycle. Its uploaded here (http://www.anotherhell.com/walkcycles.htm) at the zombified link.
Im pretty sure im done with the default walk now as well. Unless soemone points soemthing out Ill be doing the final render with the version that is up eventualy
02 February 2005, 06:42 PM
small is good. keep the qualiy up and the rez low, and everybody will be happy. We can see well enough - take a look at Pixar trailers. Small to very small rez. But clear picture and the sound is good enough. You can maximize a small hi-quality video and it will still look OK, but if it's large and lo-quality... nobody wins.
(PS.The breasts are still floating a bit... Reference! Reference!)
02 February 2005, 07:34 AM
yah do you think that size is a little big right now?
Ive been swamped so havent been able to get at this for awhile. Hopefully this week sometime ill update some more
03 March 2005, 06:58 AM
finaley got some more work done on the zombie walk, its pretty much done, I want to do a few tweaks yet after looking at it again..
03 March 2005, 06:58 AM
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