My Work Experience


For those who wants to know the studios and the project I’ve worked on, here’s my past experiences 😉 MyJob

  • Senior 3D Character Animator

    Company Name: Goodgame StudiosSchermata 2017-08-14 a 15.38.26.png

    Dates Employed: Jul 2015 – Sep 2016

    Location: Hamburg Area, Germany

    Responsible for the in-game animations of the 3D characters of “A Little Lost” – puzzle game. In my role I had to deal with: set a workflow and the animation style, deliver animations for most of the characters in the game. In addition, I was responsible to guide and supervise other animators.

    My first experience in game started with this cute and fun puzzle game! I was responsible to animate the little 3D creatures that help you during the game…it has been a challange to find a way to keep this high quality of animations for this type of game, where you have technical limitations (limited bones, characters interaction with the gameplay, animations in place…) but looking at the result…I can say we have done a great job! 🙂

    We’ve been brave, we wanted to keep a quality comparable to a Tv series animation, and…we won! 😉

    “A LITTLE LOST” – IN-GAME ANIMATION REEL

    ALL.png


  • Senior Character Animator/Layout Artist

    Company Name: RAINBOW CGISchermata 2017-08-14 a 15.48.03.png

    Dates Employed: May 2014 – Nov 2014

    Location: Rome, Italy

    Working as Animator / Layout artist on the Tv series “Mia&Me – season 2”

    Between elves and unicorns! 🙂
    I came back to Italy after the French experience and I worked for several months on the second season of this successful tv series, a Germany / Italy coproduction.

    I took care of the layouts, and I also animated the transformation of the protagonist.

    “MIA&ME” TRANSFORMATION SHOT – PROGRESSION REEL

    Mia


  • Concept / Script / Design / Art Direction / Layouts / Animation

    Personal Project

    Pitch for a TV Series for Kids “Puppet House” I developed with Emanuele Leoncilli

    “PUPPET HOUSE” – OPENING

    “PUPPET HOUSE” – APP SPOT

    “PUPPET HOUSE” – AUDITION

    Bibbia001Bibbia002


  • Senior Character Animator

    Company Name:  2D3D AnimationsSchermata 2017-08-14 a 15.59.58

    Dates Employed: Feb 2013 – Dec 2013

    Location: Angouleme, France

    Working on the Tv series “Foot2Rue Extreme”

    Moved to France for a year, in Angouleme in the region of the Charante, I worked on the most challenging (but really funny) series in my career, the 3D tv series “Foot De Rue Extreme” (produced by Télé Images Productions).
    I won the challenge with “action shots”, also a girl can animate people who play football and do a lot of other crazy acrobatic stuff! (Yeah, ’cause I was the only girl in the team^^)

    “FOOR 2 RUE EXTREME” – ANIMATION REEL

    slide_foot2rue

    Here’s the fantastic ANIMATION TEAM I had the honor and the pleasure to work with, here in Angouleme.

    ExtremeTeam2


  • 3D Senior Character Animator / Layout Artist

    Company Name: RAINBOW CGISchermata 2017-08-14 a 15.48.03

    Dates Employed: Jun 2012 – Nov 2012

    Location: Rome, Italy

    Working on the CGI series “Winx Club – Season 5”

    One of the most funny projects I participated! Yes…the Winx 🙂 
    The Winx are a well-known successful product and, in the fifth season, it was introduced the computer graphics, that we animated! 
    In addition to the episodes, I had the pleasure and honor to animate part of the transformation Sirenix (in my opinion, the most beautiful transformation in the history of winx transformations  ^ ^) I made part of the transformation of Stella and Tecna. POWER OF TECHNOLOGY!! 😛

    “WINX 5” – PROGRESSION REEL

    “WINX 5” – IN SEQUENCE SHOTS REEL

    _winx_club_season_5Schermata 2014-01-10 a 16.27.53


  • 3D Senior Character Animator

    Company Name: RAINBOW CGI

    Dates Employed: Dec 2010 – May 2012

    Location: Rome, Italy

    Working on the project “Gladiators of Rome” Feature Film Production

    I worked on this project for 2 years! 🙂 First as a Layout Artist and later as  Character Animator. Challenging! Funny! Exciting! I grew up a lot thanks to this project! Awesome team! 2 amazing years! 🙂

    “GLADIATOR’S OF ROME” – PROGRESSION REEL

    48847.png


  • 3D Senior Character Animator

    Company Name: Toposodo Schermata 2017-08-14 a 16.52.01

    Dates Employed: Apr 2008 – Oct 2008 (season 1) / Aug 2009 – May 2010 (season 2)

    Location: Pisa, Italy

    Senior animator for the tv serie “Taratabong – The World of Meloditties – Season 1 & 2”

    Full in love with Meloditties!
     
    I love this TV series! I participated to the first and the second season! 🙂
     
    Animate characters with no voice except for “music” sound was so challenging and interesting! I learned a lot, especially how to give life to characters just through eyes and “timing” and how to animate following precise beats and rhytm of the shot!
     
    LittleGossip: during the production of the second season I knew the best partner that I could meet (at work as in private life ^ ^)

    “TARATABONG” – OPENING

    bfa0ecb6d577a1cbf322110c6948bb00.jpg

     


  • 3D Character Animator

    Company Name: ToposodoSchermata 2017-08-14 a 16.52.01

    Dates Employed: Aug 2007 – Mar 2008

    Location: Pisa, Italy

    3D Character Animator for the tv series “Bird Squad”, Rai Fiction_Toposodo

    We never forget the first series 🙂 
     
    Here’s my first job as animator in the “pretty far” 2007, when I didn’t know that the blood of animator was flowing in me. 😛
    Thanks to this experience and the people in the studio that believed in me, I discovered my “talent”.

 

“BIRD SQUAD” – OPENING

Schermata 2014-05-31 a 00.01.24.png


 And, where’s everything started… my School Diploma, the “horror” Short Movie “Rampicante – Hederae Sicarus”

That I realized in 2006 with other 2 students! (I wasn’t so confidence with animation at that time…. :D)

“RAMPICANTE- HEDERAE SICARIUS” – BLOG

“RAMPICANTE- HEDERAE SICARIUS” – SHORT MOVIE

rampicante.png

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Spartacus – tv show


I know… this is a bit off topic 😀  but I’m watching again this amazing tv show, I just love it! Extremely intricate plot and a huuuugeeee font of reference for Actions animations! 😉

I often go to analyze some poses and actions from this show when I need some references! It’s a goldmine for this type of animations! 😛

By the way, yesterday I just had this inspiration and creativity so I’ve done this “tribute” to some of the characters and their most famous quotes!

ps. GANNICUS ♥ deserves two of them! 😀 😀 😀

I really enjoy creating this 2D sketches and comics, I have an entire blog “My life Adventures Book” where I posted some comics of real life’s adventures (most of them are in italian). It’s been a while since I posted the last one, I should add some new comics 🙂

Do you need feedback?


I know…sometimes animators are a bit shy and reluctant to show their animations but feedback are really important to improve your skill. A “fresh eye” can see what you don’t see, to have a more “general view” of the shot and can helps you to improve it where really necessary!

I really enjoy the “feedback” process! (♥)

Usually I have a quick view at the shot “Does it works?” “Did I understand what’s going on?”Could be better with just some little modifications?”

After that I got to check the Poses! I have a thing for poses 😀 I love to see the characters in natural and original posesit’s probably the step where I spent most of my time when I animate! Then I check the Timing/Spacing, the Arcs etc..

When I prepare the image reference for the feedback I always try to keep them as much clear and easy to follow as possible, I don’t want to confuse the animator….I should just help him, not make him frustrated 😛

So, have a look on the feedback I’ve created so far (based on you “colleagues” works) and if you have an animation test or a shot and you need feedback…just use the page “Your Animation”and add a link in the comments! I will provide you with a feedback in a couple of days (usually) 😉

Have FUN! 😛

#iWantToBeAnAnimator #beananimator #animation #learnanimation #animationforbeginners

In a Heartbeat – short movie


The animated short movie many animators (and not only them) were waiting for!

Hey guys! I’m really excited today ’cause I’ve seen this beautiful and touching piece of animation that I want to share with you! 🙂

iNaHeartbeat2017.png

Finally, someone brought up a theme that has never been addressed so directly, so far…

Beth David and Esteban Bravo just did it, and in the more adorable and subtle way as possible.

In their animated short movie “In a Heartbeat” they follow this super cute redhair boy in an internal conflict (not so internal…actually :D) while the boy he likes is walking to school.

“A closeted boy runs the risk of being outed by his own heart after it pops out of his chest to chase down the boy of his dreams” this is the plot… and I just love it! 🙂 (from the official Facebook Page In a Heartbeat – Animated Short Film)
The idea of this little “brave” heart popping out of his chest… is just BRILLIANT!
Or, do we want to talk about the moment when the heart/boy touches his hair….. ? Beautiful…

I found this short really INSPIRATIONAL, you know…. when I see this kind of things I really believe that we do “the best job in world”
Besides this, I really loved the character design, renders and…..the MUSIC! When everything can be told with not a single word…. really well done!

So, all my respect to this two great guys and…Thanks for made me dream today! 😉
I really look forward for new projects from you! 😉

Ok, now… LET’S GO BACK TO ANIMATE!!! 😀

The creators:

EXERCISE #4 Animate a Throw


In the Lesson 08 I explained the Animation Principled “ANTICIPATION” so now, following the corresponding Tutorial 08 you could try to re-do this exercise of a character throwing an object! 😉

Tutorial #08 – How to Animate a Throw


-How to Animate a Throw-


How to Animate a Throw RECAP

In this quick tutorial I will show the main poses, the timing and the spacing to animate a character throwing an object. The tutorial is linked to the Lesson 08 “ANTICIPATION”

I’ll use Ink, the official rig of my channel! Ink has a very simple design to better focus on the poses and animation, and has this flat monochromatic texture with shoulders, chest and hip lines to helps you to create nice and appealing poses for him! 😉

Schermata 2017-08-02 a 11.26.56.png

Let’s create the object he will throw away, a simple ball. We go to create the control for the ball and we parent the mesh to itSchermata 2017-08-02 a 12.10.47.png

I set the camera, with the character on a side and I create a plane to check feet position and compenetration

Schermata 2017-08-02 a 11.27.26


We set the first pose, you can do the pose you want. In my pose he holds the ball with both the hands, he’s quite relaxed, the shoulders are rotated downward, the head is a bit rotated downward like he’s watching to the object and the feet are pretty spread, the weight of the character is more on the left foot

Let’s adjust the finger position, to avoid compenetrations and be sure that the hands are really holding the ball, so keep attention to pose each finger in good and natural pose

Now add a constraint for the ball! Select the right hand control, then the ball ctrl and create a translation and rotation constraint


Let’s create the anticipation main pose, around frame 28

The timing I’m using is just indicative, to give you an idea of the distance between a key pose and an other, but you can do it with your own timing

So, for the anticipation he will move backward with the entire body, stretching the chest, and he also moves back the right foot to balance the weight, raise the hell of the right foot (he’s really stretched in this pose, so he needs to stand on his toes)

Now just one hand holds the ball, the right one and I move it pretty backward, is not completed straight but a bit bended (try to simulate this movement yourself, you will see that the more natural pose is keeping the hand faced towards the area where you will throw it, and you will naturally move upward your shoulder)

The left hand started to move forward and it’s bended towards the body, it helps to maintain the balance and gain more energy


Now let’s move forward in the timeline for the extreme throw pose, around frame 42

The body moves and roates forward. The weight of the character is on the left foot, but the right foot in the air helps him to balance the weight and contrast the power of the throw that moved him forward. Create a nice and pretty relaxed pose for the right foot, with the toes pointing down.

The right hand is now straight and stretched in front of the character, the left arm moves backward, and it’s still bended at this point

The head is rotate upward, contrasting the rotation of the chest, he’s following the ball movement


Let’s add an other little anticipation, around frame 8 with the very small movement upward with the hip and the hands, just before the big backward movement (pose 28)

Practically, we go to create an anticipation of an other anticipation!


Now we add an important breakdown, around frame 15, when he starts to move backward, here we need to slow down the spacing between the pose at frame 8 and the pose at frame 28

The body starts to move down and backward, the left hand is not touching the ball anymore but it’s still pretty close to it, the chest is squashed and rotated forward, and the right foot started to slide backward, I keep it flat on the ground, I just overlap a bit the toes that moves offsetted by 1 frame


Let’s add an other important key to slow down before the pose at frame 28
(we need to keep this pose longer) so let’s add a in-between approximately 5/6 frames before the pose at frame 28

On this new in-between, frame 22, the body is already stretched and ready for the throw (with a pose really close to the pose at frame 28)

So the big movement and change in position is between frame 15 and frame 22


Now we slow down again just after the pose at 28

Add an in-between at frame 34 where he just starts to move a bit up and forward , very small change


On frame 39 he continues the movement up and forward BUT the chest is still rotated backward

Bend backward the right arm so that the hand with the ball don’t moves too much, maintain a position closed to the position of frame 28 (use deformers for the arms and create a very dynamic pose)

The right foot starts to move upward in the air and the hip in this transition moves a bit upward as well


Now we need to add two poses at the end for the SETTLE
On frame 46 the body continues to move and rotate forward, the right hand goes down, the left hand continues the movement upward, and the same for the right foot


On the last frame the body starts to go back, the right foot to go down and forward, and we have a follow trought of head, forearms and wrists


Now that we have all the poses we can switch the curves in stepped to see the result (the ball is still attached to the hand, but let’s ignore it for the moment, we will animate the ball in a second time) throw_BLK


We can now proceed with REFINE, we change again the curves in auto tangent and let’s polish the path of arms and the right foot

We start with the right arm: if you create a motion trail, you will see that the path of action of the arm movement is not so nice, we can do better then this so we go to add some poses for the arms in order to create a nicer path

Continue to polish your curves and when the body is done you can move to the ball

On the frame where you want to turn off the constraint on the ball (frame 41 for me) add a key on the ball control and it will create a blend parent attribute: set it to 0 and add a key

On the frame before (frame 40) add an other key on this attribute and set it at 1Schermata 2017-08-02 a 11.31.23.png

Now the constrain is active up to frame 40, after that you can animate the ball

On frame 41 we move the ball forward following a linear path, it must be already pretty distance from the hand, with a very fast spacingSchermata 2017-08-02 a 11.31.34.png

Add a stretch on it, then move forward in the timeline and place the ball so that it goes out of the screen in very few frames, 3 or 4 frames, keeping the stretch!Schermata 2017-08-02 a 11.31.48.png


That’s it, this is my final resul! 😉Throw_Refine.gifIf you want to re create this throw animation you can do the Exercise #4  following the steps of this tutorial and send me your animation (adding a link in the comments)  to receive a feedback !

Lesson #8 – ANTICIPATION


A new Lesson available! This time talking about ANTICIPATION and the different types of animations that need it! 😉

In the Lesson I’m using my NEW “cute and super cool” (♥) personal and official channel’s rig INK!!! 😛


Anticipation RECAP

One of your first goal, when your are creating an animation, should always be to make something that is perfectly readable! You can create awesome poses and have a great concept, but…if you don’t make it clear and readable… would be impossible to catch the sense of what you are trying to communicate!Anticipation01.png

Anticipation02.png

that’s why we use ANTICIPATION! That, as the word suggest, is nothing more than the “preparation to the action”!

We can haveAnticipation03.png

let’s see some example:Anticipation03b.pngwhen the movement of a body (or an object) prepares for an action

Example #1: if a character throws something far, he would prepares the action by moving back the arm with the object (preparing for the throw)

In this way he will have enough energy but this movement also prepares the users for what will happen. From this anticipation, you already can imagine that he will throw the object!

Example #2: a character running out of the screen, is made more readable thanks to an anticipation of the character moving in the opposite direction and raising one leg!

This helps the user to read a very fast action. Without this anticipation…. the user could have some problems to read the scene!

Example #3: or you can use it for a very cartoon effects…. or for something more realistic, with a much more soft anticipation!


Anticipation09.png

Another way to use an Anticipation is to create a funny effects!
Example: if you see the same run anticipation of the run we’ve seen before, you imagine that he will run away super fast…but…adding a pretty slow run just after this big anticipation…you will create an unexpected result!Run_Fun.gif


Anticipation10Or… you can use it to direct the attention to something that is going to happen or leading the eye in the right screen area.

Example #1: if your character is standing in the middle of the screen and something is going to enter from the right, if you don’t add an anticipation, the users would probably miss the first part (when the second element is entering in the screen) ’cause you are looking at the character in the center.

But…if you add an anticipation of the character looking on the right your attention would be re-directed in the right area, just in time to better follow the action!

Example #2: in case the character is going to take something, a fast look at this object prepares the users to what he’s going to do

Or you can use the anticipation with the hand, holding it in the air for few frames, this is an other way to communicate to the user that he’s going to take the glass!


Anticipation15.png

Example: thanks to the anticipation you can better feel the weight of the character in two different jumps.

In the one on the left he makes a soften anticipation cause he’s pretty light.

In the one on the right he’s bringing an heavy backpack so he needs more energy for the jump, he needs a stronger anticipation, bending and keeping this pose a bit more


Anticipation17.png

depends on the action!

Usually with fast action or big change in position we need more anticipation!

Like for the fast run or the cartoon one, both this examples has big anticipation, and a very fast action just after them!
Or, an angry reaction like, a character smashing a door, would require a big anticipation to enphasize the action and after, the door is closed in very few frames


Anticipation20.pngSome Anticipation must be really subtle!

Example #1: an hand that is going to grab a light object would have an almost imperceptible anticipation! The hand just goes upwards for few frames before going down to grab the apple

Example #2: in a simple take we have a little anticipation, a very small movement with the character moving upwards before the take, few frames of anticipation, is there but it’s not so visible


Anticipation24

Example: the door settle doing little movements back and forward in few framesAnticipation25


Anticipation26.png

You absolutely don’t need an anticipation for every single movements of your character…with practice and experience you will get used to it and you will naturally know when an action need it, as I said, usually we use it before big and or fast action, but also to make the movements more fluid and readable! 😉


Now that you know how to use ANTICIPATION you can follow the Tutorial #08 “How to Animate a Throw” and try to do de Exercise #4 following the steps of the tutorial! 😉

I Like To Present: Ink


INK – Character RIG

I want to introduce you the Official Rig for my Channel – INK 🙂Ink_Rig3.gif

I wanted something simple to better show you same basic principles and I love the 2D effect in general!

Finally is ready and I already started to use it for my new lesson! 🙂

(the Rig is not available for download)

How to make the best use of this channel!


Little and quick video with some explanations 😛

Animators Corner #2


– A BLOODY NIGHT-

When an animator creates his own game…

In this second video I show you an indie game created by an animator, Emanuele Leoncilli! It’s a pixel-art action game released on Steam  😉

Animators Corner #1


– Animator’s Survival Kit-

This is the first video for ” Animator’s Corner “ where I will talk about different topics: books, movies, softwares, games…. everything that comes up in my mind connected to the animation industry.
I want to start showing you the masterpiece of the animator books, written by the animator Richard Williams (animation director of “Who framed Roger Rabbit”), and published in 2001 (FF).

 

Tutorial #07 – How to Refine a Shot


-How to Refine a Shot –

PART1: Before start to show my workflow to Refine a Shot I need to do a quick explanation of the main tools of the Graph Editor (for Beginners), here the main topic:

– Introduction to the Graph Editor
– Main Useful Tools
– Create a Cycle Animation
– How to Bake an Animation
– Quick fix gimbal Lock and Flipping with Euler Filter

In the Tutorial I used the “Alya’s Rig” https://www.facebook.com/AlyaRig/

PART2: I will use an animation I made a while ago to show you my workflow when I have to refine a shot! 😉 ANIMATION SHOT

In the Tutorial I used the “Eleven Rig” http://elevenrig.blogspot.it/

—————–

“Refine a Shot – Graph Editor” – RECAP (BEGINNERS)

GE01.png

First of all, it’s not something you have to be scared of!GE02a.png

I know exactly how you feel when you open it for the first time, ’cause when I started this job, I tried to avoid it as mush as possible, I found it too

 

…. “technical”, I had the feeling to lose part of my instinct and I always preferred to work directly in the viewport, like “I don’t care how my curves look like! The animation works so ….it doesn’t matter!” but…in hindsight, now that I’m used to work with it and I know how useful and important is to make beautiful animation, I would like to show you and explain the Graph Editor in the easiest way, so that you can focus on the important aspects and you don’t be too much intimidated by it! GE03

When you have your keys on the timeline, open the Graph Editor

Window –> Animation Editors –> Graph Editor

(I’M USING MAYA 2015, so … if you have other versions you may find it a bit visually different!)

Like any other panel you can click in the button right angle to scale it and adjust it as you wantSchermata 2017-06-22 a 16.57.04

Or, you can change the layout of you view scene by choosing the Persp/Graph option and you will have the view scene splitted in 2 windows: with your camera in the upper part (in this case you have the persp but you can change it with the camera you prefer) and the Graph Editor below. By clicking in the middle you can change the size of the windowsSchermata 2017-06-22 a 16.57.09.png

Select all the controls of your character and … as you can see your animation is visualized in the Graph Editor as CURVESSchermata 2017-06-22 a 17.05.18

Each curve is the rapresentation of the motion of the different axis, that you can see on the leftSchermata 2017-06-22 a 17.05.23

You can select each axis one by one, or select multiple axis by keeping press shift!

To Move in the Graph Editor, just do as with the viewport navigation:

  • Pan: press Alt or Option and middle-drag 
  • Zoom: press Alt or Option and right-drag

To Fit the entire curve in the window: point on the graph editor and press A

If you want to zoom on a part of the curves: select the keys and press F

GE05.png

I’m going to show you the tools you’ll use most of the time from this menu:

_________________________

GE05_cycle.png

When you have an animation and you want to create a cycle (a walk cycle or anything else you need to loop) the first thing to do is to open the Graph Editor and switch on the Infinity to visualize the cycle from VIEW –> INFINITYSchermata 2017-06-22 a 17.23.58.png

then… select the curves and from the menu Curves turn on the cycle on both Pre Infinity and Post Infinity. In this way you will cycle before and after your first and last keys

cycle1

an other type of cycle you can use is the CYCLE with OFFSET, in this case when you have the first and last keys values different (for example like in a walk cycle forward, or in a cycle in place when you move forward the main control with the first and last keys with different values) the cycle starts from the values of the last and the first keys (in a progressive way)

cycle2

If you want to take off the cycle: just select Curves –> Pre and Post Infinity –> Constant

_________________________

GE05_bake.png

in some cases you will need to bake your animation: this means that the software will convert each frame in keyframe (this is useful in case you need to convert in keyframe a cycle or to keyframe a constraint, or to export your animation for a game engine and other cases)
to bake the keys, go on CURVES –> BAKE CHANNEL and open the options:

here you can choose which part of the animation you want to bake: you can decide to bake a range of frames based on your current time slider or to chose a range typing the start and the end.

And the interval between the keys: you decide if have a keys any 1/2/3 or more frames

_________________________

GE05_euler

this is not the only way to fix a Gimbal Lock or a Flipping rotation issues, and it doesn’t work always, but it works in many cases! 😉

so, if you have this type of issues you can try to use the EULER FILTER: you can see in the graph editor the curve with the issue (should be pretty visible :P)

select the keys and go to CURVES –> EULER FILTER! Schermata 2017-06-22 a 17.52.32.png

_________________________

GE05_refine.png

This is my personal workflow when I go to refine an animation.

I’ll use this animation I made a while ago, this is the final version

For a matter of time I’ll show just a little part of the animation and this is the blocking I started fromBLK.gif

If I’m sure that the blocking works well, that everything is readable, that I have the right timing, appealing poses (nice and readable) that perfectly fit’s the character mood …..so… when the biggest part is done, what we are going to see in the shot is already there, I just need to refine the animation: make everything fluid, polish the curves, adjust the spacing, offset some parts and add some details!

I set in spline (or auto tangent) all the keys and…let’s see how it looks likeAUTO.gif

if you have done good blocking (adding the right keys in the right position, with a good timing) when you’ll convert your tangents in spline, the result should be something enough clear and polished! 😉

BUT … if you just started to animate recentlyyou may have something more chaotic the first times! Schermata 2017-06-22 a 18.35.31.png

Some animator tends to add too much key poses during the blocking, two many acting choices or too much breakdowns and in-betweens, and when they convert in spline … the graph editor is a bit confusing! Sometimes they have to delate most of the blocking and re-do the work, so here some tips for your blocking:

so don’t be angry if the first times you will have something more confusing, you’ll get used to it with the experience! 😉

My version already works but the movements are a bit roboticAUTO the character needs life and a bit of love ! (Don’t care about the lip-sync ’cause I just added some poses in the BLK and I’ll try do do an entire lesson just for the lip-sync ’cause it would take too much time)

the first thing I’ll go to adjust is the:Schermata 2017-06-22 a 18.45.10.png

for example: the first movement is too slow, everything starts to move too soon so I want to keep the first pose for more frame. But I don’t want to freeze it, I just go to slow it down!

In the timeline I quickly add keys and move them back or forth to edit the spacing! This will make the process faster, ’cause after that… I’ll go to clean them in the graph editor but I already have the right spacing to work with and is also faster ’cause in this way I can move all the controls at the same time and not one by one

after I worked on the timeline, I go to clean and adjust the curves in the graph editor, trying to smooth the motion.


Now I will adjust the Moving Holds at the end of a movement, slowing down the spacing in the final part! To do that I add an in-between before the last key pose, with a value really close to the final one, so the animation stops more softly.

If you reach the final position too fast and then you don’t keep a bit of motion (a great motion and suddenly a flat curve with no motion at all) the resault will be an abrupt stop and very mechanic motion.

If the stop is too slow (so if we have too much motion at the end) the result is not realistic anyway and would result too floaty


Now I go to add Follow-through and Overlap offsetting same parts, example:

  • offset the upper torso from the middle torso, the neck from the torso, the head from the neck
  • the same for the arm, I need to offset the forearm, from the arm, the wrist from the forearm, and the fingers from the wrist
  • same for the leg, shin offsetted compare to leg, foot offsetted from the shin, and toes from the foot

after the blocking I have all the keys on the same frames, so each part of the body reacts, starts to move and ends the motion at the same time, on the same frame with exactly the same timing!  We need to add variation, ’cause each part would react in a different way and time!

To offset the keys I just select all of them (a controller at the time) and I drag them forward in the graph editor or directly in the timeline as much frames as I need, then I adjust the curves in the graph editor and I add some in-betweens when necessary (adjusting shapes, arcs etc)


Then I add more Breakdowns: I add the blinks where needed or I simply adjust them, I animate the squash for the head and I check my arcs!

I want to be sure that each movement follows a nice path: the arm, the head, the chest…you can use motion trail to visualize the paths of your movements and adjust them to create smooth and nice arcs!
To use the motion trail you have to select the control of the parts of the body you want to check, and in the Animation Tab, go on Animate —> Create Editable Motion Trails and then turn on the visibility from Show —> Motion Trails
the software will displays a red line that is your path of action. Anytime we move the control (so we change the position), the trail changes. You can also turn on the handles to adjust the arc. In this example you can also see a motion trail displaying a figure 8 path, that is very used in animation, for example for the swing of the arms during a walk.
Why arcs are so important? Most of the movement should create an arc in their path of action, this makes the animation more fluid and more realistic!
BUT There some particular cases where straight paths are necessary so … always keep in mind the type of animation you are doing and make your decision based on that.

In the in-betweens and breakdowns you can use deformers to adjust the shapes to better follow the arc.


before the arms stops I added this little settle back and forth ‘cause the gesture is pretty fast and strong, so adding a simple slowing down at the end would take off a bit of power from the gesture, resulting too soft! I already have a smooth and slow movement before, when she moves the pencil while she thinks and stalling before make the question, so… it’s more interesting to break this rhythm adding a faster and stronger movement when she finish the question, also the contrast with the soft bended arm before and this straight rigid line at the end helps to emphasize the acting!
What is a settle at the end of a motion? Some type of movements need to settle after the stop! A sort of soft or strong rebound back and forth
An object reaches a forward position, then goes back and forth 1 or more times!

If the object (or the character) is composed by different parts, they will stop at different time and different way to settle!


Now I add a bit of movement to each part of the body, this because we should always move the entire body!

A human body is composed by parts connected to each other and each part has an influence on the closest one!
So even if with very subtle movements, in most of the cases we should consider that when we animate a part this should affect an other one.
In my blocking I didn’t add any movement to the right arm, it’s totally freezed in position and also there’s no movement to the lower part of the body, the hip, ’cause this parts actually don’t do nothing, but they need to react anyway! Something soft, but enough to make it part of a body in motion, and not a separate object and also to add vitality to the entire animation!

I look throw each poses to be sure that are nice and readable, I use deformers if necessary to adjust arm and legs shapes
I check if there’s some compenetrations with props and environments or with the body itself!

I check the eyes, the more important part to make a character alive, eyes are so important, the look have to be focused on something (unless the character is thinking to something, or…other particular cases where the eyes just stares off) I check the pupils position, when a look is on a side, keep attention to don’t put the pupil too inward, it’s unnatural, and we lose the characters life! So keep at least half of the pupils visible!

I go to add all the little details at the end, like the offset of the prop, the pencil, that must has a bit of delay compared to the hand movement. I add the hair animation and….that’s it!

I hope this video helps a bit to show you how useful the graph editor can be, and how to approach refine to make your animation looks better! 🙂

Let’s share feedback and tips for your Animations!


UPDATE 20/01/2018update


I created this new session “Your Animations” to give you a space to share your shots, exercises, animation test, cycles… YourAnimationsTitle_Base2.png

I receive a lot of emails and messages with your shots asking for feedback! I’m always happy to help (sometimes it could take some days but I try to find the time to answer to all of you) but … right now it’s a bit confusing ’cause I receive your emails (with your shot’s link) on my emails, facebook, youtube, twitter, linkedin….and can happen that I miss some of them! SO.. 😀 I thought to create this new category to gather all your shots and questions so that everything is more clear and organised and I’ll easily have access to them! 😉

You can use the comments below to share links to your animations or ask questions! In this way also the other people could give their feedback if they want or … help with some questions/topics! 😉 Hope this will make the “feedback process” more easy!

 


Me BMan – June 23, 2017 at 8:06 pm


Brenda Ibarra Ruvalcaba – June 26, 2017 at 5:09 pm

So, in general, your main problems cames from the poses, after that you will also have to adjust the spacing and smooth the curve, right now everything is too linear and there’re a lot of pops/jerks here and there! All this things create the mechanic feeling)!

Hope this helps, and remember to always start with the blocking and create good poses, spend time on this step, it’s super important!! 😉


Ankit Singh  – June 28, 2017 at 17:03:55


Me BMan – June 30, 2017 at 9:34 pm


GLEB45 – July 12, 2017 at 1:48 pm


ROSANA – July 21, 2017 at 5:58 pm

ZAMIR UDDIN – AUGUST 1, 2017 at 8:42 pm

feedback#7


CAIO HIDAKA – AUGUST 5, 2017 at 11:37 pm

feedback#8


ALEXANDRE – AUGUST 6, 2017 at 06:02 pm

feedback#9


BHUWAN SHARMA – AUGUST 8, 2017 at 02:01 pm

-Second Version-


JEACOM – AUGUST 12, 2017 at 04:24 pm

feedback#11


ALEXANDRE – AUGUST 10, 2017 at 02:39 pm


BHUWAN SHARMA – AUGUST 31, 2017 at 09:25 am

feedback#13


THALITA – SEPTEMBER 5, 2017 at 04:32 pm


BHUWAN SHARMA – SEPTEMBER 7, 2017 at 08:04 am


 

Little Update!


I know….it’s been a while since I’ve posted my last video but in this month I had (in order):

  • a RELOCATION ( from Hamburg to Italy )relocation
  • a “PROBLEM” WITH MY RIGHT ARM (unfortunately I’m not ambidextrous) arm
  • And….I also started an EDUCATION COURSE for my little “tank” EVY……evy

so, I was a bit busy.. 😛

BUT! I’m working on some new videos and soon I will post a lesson based on another animation principle “ANTICIPATION“! So, wait for updates! 😉 LessonTitle_ANTICIPATION.png

Alya’s Facebook Page


My friend Eyad Hussein created this Facebook Page where you can follow the progression of his amazing rig ALYA that will be available for download very soon! 😉

Schermata 2017-05-02 a 19.36.35.png

18209234_666029010260844_7920042157227307922_o

I already used this rig for some lessons and animation test and I definitely recommend you to download it as soos as it becomes available! 🙂

Tutorial #06 – Animate an Head Take


-Animate an Head Take-

Learn how to animate an Head Take in two variations, a soft take and one more cartoony! 😉

This tutorial is connected to the Lesson 07 where I explain the principles of SQUASH and STRETCH!

In the Tutorial I used the “Eleven Rig”eleven3

“Eleven Rig”

After the tutorial I suggest you do do the Exercise#3 “Animate an Head Take”Exercise_003

Lesson #7 – Squash & Stretch


Let’s continue with the Principles of Animation … let’s see how to handle with “Squash & Stretcht”! 😉

(In the Lesson I used the “Eleven Rig”)

Exercise #3 Animate an Head Take


If you watched the Lesson 07 you should have enough knowledgment of the principle of Squash & Stretch to create this simple basic exercise. You can follow the Tutorial 06 where I show how to animate two variations of head takes: one soft and an other more cartoony! 😉

Feedback is always Welcome! ;)


Lesson #6 – Slow In & Slow Out


Let’s continue with the Principles of Animation … let’s see how to smooth our animation with “Slow In & Slow Out”! 😉

(In the lesson I used the rig “Pete” by Long Winter Members)


——————————-

Slow In & Slow Out RECAP

The Slow In and Slow Out principle or Ease In and Ease Out is so important but also really easy to understand and put in practice!

The concept is:

 an object doesn’t have a constant speed during a movement. It will have an acceleration at the beginning and a deceleration at the end

slow_in_slow_out_02.png

So, will starts slower, SLOW IN, increase the speed in between, and ends slower before to stop SLOW OUTslow_in_slow_out_03.png

To add a Slow in and Slow out to a movement we need to change the spacing of the in-betweens at the start and the end

If we have an object that moves from A to B and the tangent is linear, so we don’t’ have any variation in the speed, we would have a stiff and mechanical movementslow_in_slow_out_06.png

But…if we have the same movement, but we just change the position of the in-betweens  near the first key pose and the last one, the movement result more soft, smoothed, and realisticslow_in_slow_out_07.pngslow_in_slow_out_08.png

Always remember that we are doing cartoon, so to have a more appealing animation, we can also exaggerate this principle!slow_in_slow_out_09.png

This doesn’t mean that you have to encrase the timing of your animation to have more in-betweens at the start and the end. It’s always based on the speed of your action. In a faster action you will have few frames but you still can manage them in order to have a slow in and slow out

slow_in_slow_out_10.png

Changing the curve in the Graph Editor is very easy to achieve the result we need, using a FLAT tangents we already have a smoothness on the extremesslow_in_slow_out_11.png

if we use the SPLINE tangents we can reach the same result using the handlesslow_in_slow_out_12.png

We can also add an in-between near the first pose, and an other near the final pose, and move them on a value closer to the extremes, until you don’t reach your desiderata effectslow_in_slow_out_13.png

But…keep attention!

When you adjust the handles don’t create this type of curve, where it goes on a higher (or lower) value compared to the last pose valueslow_in_slow_out_14.png otherwise you will have a backward and forward movement. So, if you just want to smooth the forward movement, the curve should be like this one belowslow_in_slow_out_15.png

slow_in_slow_out_16.pngSlow_In_Slow_Out_Pendulumlook how smoothed is the movement on the two extremes. SLOW FAST SLOW

But…

with the same key poses and timing, but with a different spacing, we would have a linear movement, that is really unrealisticSlow_In_Slow_Out_Pendulum_Linear

As you can see in the graph editor , I created a Loop animation so I have the two poses at the beginning and the end with the same position, and an other extreme in the middle with the pendulum in the opposite direction, in this case the tangent is LINEAR, that’s why we have this stiff effect, the interpolation has a uniform velocity, so all the in-betweens have the same distance between each other

…just switching the same curve in FLAT, the spacing of the in-between change and the movement is more realistic

If we create the same movement with a character, the principle doesn’t change, we will always have a movement that start slow, takes speed and slow down again

Slow_In_Slow_Out_Character_FrontSlow_In_Slow_Out_Character_SideSo … use this principle, with all its variations, for your objects and characters animations!  It’s easy and quick to achieve and your animations will change a lot! 😉