As this coming week is the last week of term at university there will be a Christmas screening on Friday in the university cinema for all the students on the animation course. We're hoping to have some good completed animated shots of Alphabet Patch to show as well as lots of interesting pre-production work. So far, everything seems to be going well for us to achieve this aim - in fact we are getting through the shots quicker than I scheduled.
All of the Alphabet Patch crew are now working on assigned shots and delivering some very nice animation. I've been putting together layouts to give to the crew as I assign them their shots, and have created some backgrounds ready for Friday's screening.
Lots of the backgrounds are close-up backgrounds such as the third one here. It has taken me a little while to get used to the style again as I have not been drawing much recently. I struggled trying to get the background to fit well with the characters and allow them to stand out well.
Producing is taking up a huge amount of my time, but hopefully after a few weeks it will settle down and become more routine.
For Friday I am working on getting two shots completed - one is more complex than the other and they both involve dialogue.
Here is the simpler shot, I haven't yet done the facial animation nor lip sync. I am hoping to get that finished today as well as the second shot. Tomorrow I would like to have a bit of time to experiment with post production things such as adding flight lines to the ladybird character and compositing the scenes together.
One of the animators on the project, Aaron Donlon has animated some leaves (designed by Jack) in Adobe Flash to fall down the screen. I will render out the leaf animations separately with a transparent background and alpha channels and then try placing them over some of the animated shots. Hopefully it will add some extra charm and atmosphere to the episode.
Everything is running along quite well, and it's lovely to see the episode start to come alive. I'm very happy with the progress we are making and grateful to have such a hardworking crew - although we must stay on our toes and make sure the good progress continues!