Throughout this project i had a lot of fun and found that animating is something i would like to look into further as a possible career choice for the future.
At the beginning i didn’t particularly have a very clear idea of what i wanted in animation style and other similar aspects, but i had rough sense of what direction i wanted to go in. What i did know was that i wanted to include a more moving, emotive or heart-stirring subject matter in the short story line.
Eventually, i settled on creating an animation that held a meaning and story that is quite personal to me. Adding this personal touch to it hopefully conveys more emotion in the animation, and brings a sense of realness to the story. The animation focuses on a character named Pearl who experiences many negative and homophobic comments from off screen and unnamed characters, and although they are indirect to her she is still shown to be effected by them. After showing that aspect in her life, the character Birdie is introduced, giving the animation a shift in emotion to a more warmer, positive note. Its is heavily implied that Pearl has a crush on Birdie. Birdie stands as a source of hope for Pearl.
I used Photoshop to create my entire animation, as well as Movie Maker at the very end to put all the pieces together in one final clip. I made all my characters, backgrounds, speech boxes, etc, in Photoshop and animated it all using many layers. I kept the movements minimal and focused mainly of facial expressions. I primarily used the pen tool on all of my animation, along with the warp tool for the blinking movement and to move Pearls arms in scene 2.
I used lighter and softer pastel colours throughout all of my animation (character design, background, etc.).
I was inspired by video game layouts for my animation, specifically keeping the movement primarily in the facial expressions and the text box to display speech.
For my characters i wanted to into detail about their design (like their names, colour themes, etc.), even if it didn’t show up in my final animation.
I used some colour theory mainly in my character designs more so than the rest of my animation. Green is often seen as the colour for hope, and blue can be linked to heaven and trust, so i used both these colours for Birdies character design.
In the end, i stripped back a good amount of the original plan to make it in for the deadline of the ‘sense of hope’ competition. Although it had to change from what i initially wanted to do, i actually prefer what was created in the end. I feel that the animation and its story came out clearer – even though most of the changes that were made were only minor.
I made the music accompanying my animation in Garage band. I used a repetitive piano tune throughout, adding slight changes here and there throughout the piece. Some critique I’ve taken into consideration for future projects from peer assessment is that the music is too repetitive.
While making the soundtrack on Garage band, i went through a couple of barely half made small tunes, mainly using the piano. most of those files got lost or were scrapped. Eventually, after a little while of experimenting with what style of music i wanted to use, i came to my final soundtrack piece.
For the piece i made, i wanted to keep a light, soft tune to keep within the cute pastel theme. I added lower notes on the piano to audibly represent conflict within the animation. Towards the end half of my piece i worked in a drum beat to insinuate a heart beat – pearl’s hear beat.
Overall, i really enjoyed this project and I like how my animation ended up as. I hope to further my skill in animation and programs used to create them.
I received positive feedback from my peer evaluation for ‘Pearl and Birdie’. Critique was that i could have included a less repetitive music, and that the character movement could be improved, as the movement is minimal.
For my stop-motion part of the project, i had initially thought to use flowers or flower arrangements in my final stop motion piece. Once i had my letter – which was ‘R’ – i primarily focused on ‘red’. I soon decided to use red lipstick in the end rather than red flowers. I used shiny silver paper for the background – although it didn’t show up very well in my final piece, likely due to the lighting.
In future stop-motion projects, whether personal or school related, i need to work better on lighting. As i partially used artificial and natural light, the natural light shifted slightly towards the end, more so in the unused frames.