View Full Version : Character Animation:Made to Move

06 June 2003, 12:32 PM
my latest animation,C+C are most welcome

Made to Move thread (



06 June 2003, 04:28 PM
hi craig, well done, mate, i liked your animation there. I did notice that you seem to be missing out on some basic animation principles there, have a look at balance and centre of gravity stuff - you can see some stuff about this on basic physics websites, but there are times when he lifts a leg in the air and you havent shifted the weight of his body over to his other leg so it looks like he's as light as a feather haha. it would be impossible to do this without him falling over lol!

also, I noticed that there are times when you seem to have quite a lot of movement going on in one part of the body, yet this doesn't carry through to the rest of the body - think of it as a chain - if your body swings round it has an effect on your arm, similary, if your arm's flying around everywhere it has an effect on your body. i think this is letting you down a bit. without this sort of effect, it is very hard to get any sense of forces acting in your scene - you want the audience to think that he is MADE of something, that he has mass and therefore the mass must have a reason to move.

you could also try and get a bit more fluidity in there; a lot of the movement suffers from the classic stiff spine that you sometimes see with 'pose-to-pose' animation, try going back over your animation and offsetting some parts of the body - again, this naturally follows on from the bit i mentioned about showing where the force is coming from. if it's his hips driving the motion, offset the parts of the body around that so that you see the hip[s move, then the spine, then the arms etc etc. of course, if the arm moves, delay the clavicle, then the spine, then the hips and so on, this will get you a nice fluid motion.

most of the other stuff is just nice little touches that you could add. for instance, when he lands from his spin show that he has some mass by showing the angular momentum in his spin - he can't come to an absolte stop like that unless he's acted upon by an immense force in the opposite direction. if you get time, try twisting his spine and swinging his arms round after he lands - again this is simple offsetting and shows that there is a force acting on his body and because you can see the force you 'feel' that he has substance, he seems more real, not just a cg character. at the end of the day, you dont want people to notice your animation, you want people to look at it and think 'wow! that's a cool dance move' because if they notice the animation you have failed.

06 June 2003, 04:59 PM
Thanks Andy....i appreciate what you are saying and in normal circumstances i d agree with you 100percent.Its a bit of a stupid thing for me to have animated to show my off my skills, im not saying that its perfect cause its not, but the trouble with this animation is the guy the animation is based on is not made like the rest of us....
check out this clip to see what i mean...hes the second guy that comes on with the orange jumper....



06 June 2003, 05:38 PM
yeah, i can kinda see what you're saying, it's a funny one, but i can see LOADS of fluidity and wave-like action in there, right up his spine and down his arms. you need to try and show where the motion is coming from , that will help show WHY he is moving, things dont move without a reason, some sort of force has to be at work, whether it's an outside force or simply his muscles making him move. i've seen a lot of dance routines which play around on this idea and make the motion come from different parts of the body - have you seen that dance move where your head and shoulders slide to one side and the rest of the body catches up? that's what i mean. it's hard because you're trying to make him look light, BUT HE STILL WEIGHS THE SAME as everybody else, you have to try and animate him as if he has weight but he is trying NOT to have weight - therefore he needs to have propper balance or he will fall over, simple as that, there is no way that he can do the things you animated without propper balance. as a test, stand sideways against a wall with your right arm pressed up against it. now see what happens if you try to lift your left leg in the air out to the side - you cant without falling over. that's because your centre of mass is not above a point of contact with the ground - draw a vertical line done from your centre of mass and, with one leg on the floor, that line will have to shift over your other leg to remain standing. that's why a lot of martial arts uses wide stances - becasue it gives them a wide base so it's harder to knock them over. same here - you can give him a sense of mass without making him look heavy and i think this is where we are on crossed purposes. if you look at my shitty drawing (sorry i cant draw on a computer ;) ) then i hope it clarifies the matter - drawing A has the centre of gravity withought any support beneath it, drawing B has the centre of gravity above the foot so it wont fall over. most of your poses seem to be like drawing A. when he takes a leg off the ground there is no shift of weight over to the other leg to show that he actually weighs SOMETHING and he's not just a piece of paper. if you want something to be believable it must follow the basic rules of the universe it is in otherwise it will just look wrong, even cartoony stuuf which could be based around poses etc would still have to follow the rules of balance and centre of gravity, unless the rules were broken for comic effect.

in short, you can still make something move lightly and have it seem like it has mass, but his body is made of SOMETHING so look again at the way he moves in the video - there is LOADS of overlapping action going on there (why is it overlapping if it has no mass?!).

hope that clears things up! good luck! it seems like a hard thing to have a go at :) haha at the moment, to be honest it looks more like 'broke' dancing haha haha lol

06 June 2003, 06:25 PM
as much as i love to argue ...i cant argue with that!

thanks Andy


06 June 2003, 03:05 AM
"as much as i love to argue ...i cant argue with that!"

. . . i can :)

- coming from a dancers point of view who can also manipulate ones body as a style of dance (in more styles then one), i'll vouch for skunk in defense.

- i thought skunk did an excellent job mimicking Elsewhere's (the dancer who he was inspired to make the animation from) movements. LOl, how many times did u watch that clip to get every precise movement down? i cant even sum up a number! :P

- not to brag yet still being realistic, but after studying skunk's animation, i can say with all honesty that i can execute every move in the *exact* way which was portrayed by his character. (the one HE created). The *only* angle (that i cant do) which myte defy the center of mass would be during the end when he squats parallel and also having his back tilting slightly outward. -but one can also argue that with adequate ham conditioning, a pose in that position would not be impossible.

- *Adavies* does offer many significant points which can alter the animation to a more realistic level, but i was jus stating that although those actions seems to defy gravity, its still very within human limits.

-nuff props craig, im going to reference your link to show the many dancers (poppers) who also kno the dancer whom you've been so inspired by. ;)

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