Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Monday, October 29, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
took some ideas from some ppl and tried to piece them together...
played with some colours to try to set the mood...kept it as the greenish orangey kinda feel haha cant find my words right now...
anyways im guessing this jump still might be a little too simple? but i was thinking if we add too much it might get tooo complicated...sooo ideas? critiques?
i tried to incorporate a windmill as part of the jump but it actually being part of the town.. rather than ES building all the stunt things...why not use some in his surroundings?
andd here are some other sketches/roughs....kind of the thinking process i guess :(
Friday, October 26, 2007
I really like the discussion about the character designs you are having on the blog
I shows you are thinking about character in context of the story and back story
someone mentioned the peg leg as a metaphor...I maybe but as it stands you are using it as
a great device to tell back story and character personally of determination
Stevil's character design is looking nice but my first impression is that he does not look 110 years old more like 60 to 70, also his clothing is puffy making him look like he is more muscular
I agree that too much facial props like the goggles will become a pain , especially when trying to make the animation work, it can become tedious. but it can also add to the design...just more thinking to do about it
Remember (iconically(I'm not sure this is a real word)) very old people, shrink, deform, stiffen, shake, loose elasticity( things droop to gravity), loose body parts like teeth, and Eye site degrade
this is something we all know universally
and buy adding Stevil's as an unique old man because of his history, back story, and determining determination is creating great character possibilities
the blog discussion is great it shows you all care and are working toward Stevil and Death uniqueness and good story to be told
keep up the great work
Maybe we could all meet earlier this week, could we meet Monday or Tuesday
Love ya DUDEs
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Monday, October 22, 2007
Thanks for the interesting opinion piece Haine; I agree that it is a good idea to encourage discussion about all of this, and your post is a great start. After reading it I couldn’t resist chiming in with my respective opinions. Because I don’t have a tonne of time at the moment I will more or less limit myself to responding to the points you bring up in your thread, but at some point it’d be great to begin discussion on even more facets of Evil Stevil’s personality (as well as Death’s).
“neck extruding 90 degrees angle works really good and gave him anger look”
I totally agree; this was one of the best things to come out of our design meeting. In acting terms it seems like Evil Stevil’s character center would be in his head (he will lead with his head when walking etc.). This makes the decision to have it protrude forward not only effective in communicating his age, but his attitude as well. Centering him in his head is very representative of his stubbornness (like you mentioned), as well as his confidence and recklessness – he goes into things head first.
“his overall body shape was too elongated. I thought a man spending 50 years sitting on his chair doing nothing but building model ramp could be much much shorter and stubby”
This logic makes sense, yet, while I agree that he should be short and hunched over, I don’t like him when he is stubby. With the subtlety of live action I’d say it would be possible to have a stout Evil Stevil who at the same time looks old and frail, but in a cartoon I believe we have to make a choice between Evil Stevil looking stubby, OR looking old, broken and shaky. I have yet to see a stubby version of Evil Stevil that really manages to portray his age and creakiness, because visually stockiness communicates solidity and weight. For me a lot of the humour here comes from Evil Stevil looking way too boney, gangly, and decrepit to ever sanely consider doing his jump. The image of a thin old man snapping and contorting across the desert floor seems far more hilarious to me than that of a fatter man rolling and squashing.
To me, the key word in describing Evil Stevil’s stature is “wiry” – by all rights he should be dead, but sheer grit has kept him alive. He is hard edged, cantankerous, fiery and determined – I feel this kind of lean design best represents these harsh characteristics. His body is so old that it should be incapable of doing anything, but the pure strength of his will forces it into action allowing him to be relatively active – we just need to animate this action in a way that communicates the true age and weakness of his body in comparison to the vitality and power of his spirit.
The trouble with stubbiness: it is easily equated with jolliness, a comfortable life style, and other more laid back characterizations. (Evil Stevil barely eats or sleeps anymore; he just keeps working on the jump.)
THE PEG LEG
If, as we discussed with DQ, Evil Stevil is a metaphor for life – living it to the fullest and never giving up – than to me the peg leg works because is a metaphor for sacrifice and determination. We don’t need to know exactly when or how he lost his leg, what is important is the fact that he was willing to sacrifice his own body parts (and potentially his life) to reach his goals. This makes the level of his fanaticism clear, and ties into the overall metaphor because sacrifice is a part of life (we all sacrifice for the things we want). Moreover, the peg leg visually states his determination: in stead of letting the setback of losing his leg get the best of him, he straps on a peg and keeps going. In addition, the wheel chair design that incorporates the peg leg develops the “life” metaphor by representing the kind of ingenuity and adaptability needed to survive in this unfair world. No matter what life throws at him, he will find a way to do the jump.
No one goes through life without experiencing failure, especially when you risk as much as Evil Stevil, so it makes sense that he will have had to overcome his share of accidents. The peg leg is a visual representation of this, and as such, is not only funny to look at but has justified metaphorical meaning. Evel Knevil himself broke many bones during his career (*see skeleton pic), and since this is a cartoon we need to take this concept of past injury at least one step further, and a missing limb is a visual way to do this.
“Because we have death's eye Hollow.. or just a black hole, I felt that having a full eyeball for Evil Stevil would differ the animation value from death.”
It seems like Death should have pupils for the sake of eye direction and acting, but that they should be inverse, with his eye holes being black (to maintain the skull look) and his pupils being white (or a light colour). In Photoshop or After FX we could easily make Death’s small white pupils slightly translucent and glowing for a more mystical and subtle effect. I have tried to include these pupils in my drawings of death, and I have noticed them in several other people’s drawings as well, so I assume there are a few of us on the same page about this. Also, despite his head being a skull, his eyes should be fully able to change shape and squash and stretch for a full range of emotions. It is like the “Disney-ite” that Pete talked about last year, allowing characters like Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast to come to life, despite being made of what should be a solid material.
“So I thought if we are keeping the dotted eye, maybe we can bend the glasses frame to add more emotions.”
Definitely! Keeping the glasses pliable to enhance expression is something I’ve been trying to push from the introduction of this design, but perhaps I did not communicate it well enough in words or in drawings. You can see some pliability in the rough drawings I did on the post-it here, but perhaps it is still too subtle:
I feel that with proper use of the eye brows, bending the shape of the glasses, and changing the design of the pupils within their frames, the expressive potential of Evil Stevil is unlimited – it will just take a bit of ingenuity.
I’ll be pushing for the floating pupils in the glasses solution, if only because it is a stylistic device that really cuts down on line mileage and makes animation easier, which was something that a lot of people seemed really concerned about. I agree, there may be more subtle, and potentially effective ways of handling Evil Stevil’s eyes, but this design is a compromise between maintaining some visual appeal, communicating Evil Stevil’s age through the thickness of his glasses, and coming up with something simple enough for everyone to handle in terms of animation.
Like Haine before me, I apologize for the length of my rant (if I had the time I would have written something shorter), and I thank everyone for putting up with it. I look forward to seeing everyone else’s opinions.
(P.S. Frank - here is that peg legged tap dancer I was talking about...)
Saturday, October 20, 2007
As the time got closer to midnight, a state of anguish(!) rushed through my mind and wanted to explore Evil Stevil's character. Inspired by friday's mentor meeting, I decided to brainstorm and think deeply into the character.
All of us drew very nice designs of evil stevil the other day...and I felt my drawing was a little rough. So to compensate that, I felt I needed to write this huge psychological Shit and ANALysis about HIM.
I felt that having his neck extruding 90 degrees angle works really good and gave him anger look, because those types of neck gives strong impression about the personality such as stubbornness and pigheadedness.
However, I felt that his overall body shape was too elongated. I thought a man spending 50 years sitting on his chair doing nothing but building model ramp could be much much shorter and stubby.. I feel that old people shrink in size.. and shrink.. and shrink.. Ive been working in this variety store for 5 years and wow, I'm surprised to see how these old people got shrunk! lol
(theres a nursing home near variety store that I did volunteer work). Evil Stevil simply didn't die, or defied death until now to do this Freakin Jump! I can't even measure his stubbornness if he just had to survive to complete his one last goal. Very greedy, and very very stubborn... refusing to DIE. I felt that Frank's stout looking character design totally works for this behavior.
most of our designs had a pegged leg. first time I liked it because it was just funny to see. But after listening to DQ, I guess everything has to have a metaphor. maybe too picky, but at least it brainstorms us to think about the character :D. So I brought up a question: Pegged leg could possibly mean that he has got into an accident doing his stunt. Does that mean he is trying to regain fame from his prime age because he possibly failed previous stunt? (sounds like Frank's original premise! which is really good!) or 2. He lost his fame simply because he has been designing this Finale ramp for too long? (wow, I really sound like bitching...sorry...) I just thought that things has to justify the Character.
When I was working today, I examined OLD OLD people who are from Clarkson nursing home. Most of old people had their legs straight and carefully walked around with cane or walker. I thought that when they start bending their legs, it might pull them down straight because they can't handle the upper body mass... ouch..
This was the part I didn't understand about Evil Stevil. Is he totally feeble and powerless? Does he sit on his wheelchair when he's working on the model jump? or Can he walk around with a cane? or can he walk around without a cane?
Honestly, I liked the overall design that we agreed on thursday, but I had a feeling that something could be done with his eyes. I'm not saying it can't be animated, I felt that we are not using the opportunity to have more expressive eyes. Because we have death's eye Hollow.. or just a black hole, I felt that having a full eyeball for Evil Stevil would differ the animation value from death.
So I thought if we are keeping the dotted eye, maybe we can bend the glasses frame to add more emotions. Like the animation Stickin around [although its totally different style], they shift the shapes of glasses frame to give emotions. I am not sure how suitable it would be regarding the style that we are going to decide, but its just another possibilities.
Althought we have much work to do regarding action analysis over the break, I will try my best to come up with many sketches to help me and our group to recognize Evil Stevil more. I feel that we have very strong people in our group and I'm sure everyone in our group are capable of thinking about these.
After all, this whole thing was just another opinionated and totally dictated by the stereotype. The whole thread was about my view on the character. I just felt that I needed to post this long long b.s. so that everybody can ask questions and solidly express their opinions.
Thanks for reading this huge thread, and sorry for taking so much space of our blog! :D
Other than the thumbnails, were there any additional group tasks to be done over the break? I can't remember.
(My break looks like it's going to be insanely busy, but if anything else was assigned for the film I'll do my best to find some time to work on it.)
Friday, October 19, 2007
- Si Yeun
Just so everyone is clear, the setup is from the beginning of the story to when Evil Stevil is on the phone announcing he is going to jump again. The Jump (middle portion) consists of from when he begins the jump to when he is crumbled and dead at the feet of the models at the podium. Finally, the end consists of from when Death enters to see Evil Stevil's dead body, too obviously the end of the story.
Remember, they just have to be rough thumbnails and should be done on those tiny post-its.
Have a good reading week guys.