Saturday, July 16, 2016

Life Update / Thoughts on Staging

Been severely lacking art updates lately. I've been super busy! I've been super busy boarding at work. Then at home I've been working on other stuff.. Then there was birthdays, parties, a wedding, vacation and then I moved! I didn't move very far, just a few doors down to a bigger place. Much roomier.

Here's some pictures from my trip: I went to a lot of beaches while in northern California.

I also started doodling in my sketchbook again. There is something very therapeutic about doodling and not really thinking about what what you're doing or trying to make a nice drawing. Just, stream of consciousness drawing, or "oh wouldn't that be neat?"

(I draw these on my lunch breaks. Just a stream of consciousness kind of thing) 

I'm also starting to get back into studying movies when I can. I make notes on cuts, staging and transitions that I like. I don't really like posting pictures of my notes because they're just notes and not really """"my"""" work. But I've just been really interested in just recording things that I like and trying to figure out why I like it and why it works.  Another thing I've been very interested in lately is how to save a budget and save effort for scenes where it worth spending time and money on. They "money shots."

(going on a tangent here) 

Anime does this a lot so I've been looking over there for good ideas for staging things. Often there will be shots where there is no actual animation happening but maybe something simple like talking or something but the shot is staged so well the audience doesn't care. Then when I scene that actually matters comes up they just unleash and it's awesome. 

Like this shot above from  "Little Witch Academia" only really has that arm and the feathers animated. But it's staged so well that I don't care and it's not distracting. 

In this shot from "Spirited Away," nothing is animated. The car is flat and it just moves from right to left. So simple! 

Here's a gif from Pokemon where again, nothing is happening! They just animated the water ripples to make it look like they are drinking. Animating water ripples is the easiest thing in the world! 

This idea definatly falls into "less is more land." It's great to think about if you want to work on your own animated project because you just have to remember that there is only so much time in the day, money in the budget and work that one person can do. This is why staging something I feel is very important. Save your effort for the places where it really counts story-wise. 

You always thing going into a project that you are just some boss-level guy who is going to fully animate every shot in your sequence but trust me, this is not a good idea. You are just one person, for the love of God, work smarter not harder. Save your time and effort for the money shots and spend that extra time you've gained being smart and go get coffee with your friends or something. 

This is sort of a "no duh" thing but at the same time it's something that I've been really focusing on lately. I really want to build a strong visual library that I can draw from and get a really strong sense of rhythm. 

So that's kind of where my heads at right now. I may make a more formal post about this in the fall because this idea definatly would have saved freshman art school me. 

Also, I've been thinking a lot about comedy but I want to study it more before I go and talk about it. One thing I will say though is if you are making a joke, keep action and reaction in the same shot unless you are doing a reveal or there's a reason why you need to cut up the reactions.  I've seen too many good jokes be killed by cutting. 

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