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#1 2010-12-04 13:09:56

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

THE SOLID STATE PROJECT: Pilot Episode
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/PilotEpisodeTitle.png

About:
This thread will act as my personal blog for the production of a short film I've been slowly working on in my spare time called the Solid State Project, this particular project will act as a sort of 'pilot episode' to get a feel for how fast the workflow is and what challanges I'll face during the time I make these; They will also act as a means for me to reinforce my portfolio as I have little time to focus on that while doing work for other clients or various jobs most of the time. The name itself is derived from the use of USB solid state memory sticks that I have utilized for back-up for my data. Since these projects are very small in memory size (including the programs themselves) I tend to back them up on these.

Current State of Production:
This is my current production workflow chart that I will constantly update when I've made progress along the pipeline, it will indicate where I am at in production at the current time:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/ProgressChart_zps7c31105f.png

As time goes on I will continue to make posts about the state of production with discussions, sketches, and clips that the general community can see and respond to.

**Production Complete**

Media Design:
I've always been fond of computer animation and its capabilities in producing work ranging from wacky to hyper-real animations. But at the same time I've also been fascinated by what traditional animation has allowed animators to pull off that sometimes is either too difficult or simply too time consuming for computer animators to pull of when utilizing a bag of tricks for their work. When done right both together can play a role along-side each other in a very visually pleasing style. Several animations produced in the past decade have proven that the approach of this mixed-media idea can become very successful and I have toyed with the idea of doing something like this as well. As a result, the inception of this project was in one way centered around the "mixed-media" approach. I had originally planned to use Flash as the main software of choice to produce the character animation while I left most other background designs and layouts to the 3D arena and experiment with toon-shading. However, after recognizing what Pencil will be capable of as it grows over time I have decided to instead do my principle character animation through Pencil to demonstrate its ability to produce solid animation as an open-source alternative.

Pipeline:
Currently I've decided to set-up my pipeline utilising a mix of low to high-end tools to test their ability to produce solid quality animation. I've always been inspired by the Rust Boy project and despite its incomplete status the animator had proved to the community that impressive work can still be produced with tools that may not be percieved as 'up-to-par' standard. The current tools include:

Pre-Production:
-GNU Image Manipulation Program
-MyPaint
-Alchemy
-Celtx
-OpenOffice
-Pencil
-Blender
-Inkscape
-Audacity

Production:
-Pencil
-Adobe Flash
-Blender

Post-Production:
-Blender
-Audacity

This list of software is subject to change and may not crop up on this list at various points of the project.

The film:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/Skjermbilde2012-01-18kl174737.png

The Production Poster/Banner:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/MC_poster.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Open Content:
Since the conclusion to the project, content has been released under creative commons to allow users to learn the process and manipulate it for their own works, the download link can be found here.

Licensing:
As stated in the earlier posts I have decided to license this project under the: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License, unless the work I post (be it text, images, or special files) explicitly states otherwise it will be under this license. A link and licensing icon is also included to indicate that the content licensing is available to view for each respective work.

Last edited by ayetach (2012-01-18 08:59:16)

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#2 2010-12-04 15:47:21

mathman
Member
Registered: 2010-11-18
Posts: 12

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

I can't wait to see what you make.  Your plan is very thourough, it must be taking a long time to do.

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#3 2010-12-04 16:49:06

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Early Concepts:
These images below were produced roughly a year ago when I was scribbling various ideas on what the protagonist would look like - at that point I haven't established any real stories or plot lines. I was actually more interested in producing random ideas that form up in a similar manner that you would see with Peter Chung's animated Aeon Flux shorts. You will notice creative commons licenses below each image (if you're uncertain you can simply click on the icon below the image or the image itself and it will take you to the Creative Commons page that briefly describes to you what rights the community and I have to the image). I haven't established what licensing I want for all the content yet, but for now these particular images will be licensed under the specified creative commons that they have below. Enjoy, more to come soon smile


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/076.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/066.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/039.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/83.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/077.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/027.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


The Solid State Concepts above by Mikko Stimbra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available via email with author.

Last edited by ayetach (2010-12-04 16:56:36)

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#4 2010-12-04 16:57:33

ZZDas
Member
From: Portugal
Registered: 2010-02-25
Posts: 536

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Sounds and looks good Ayetach!Keep up!

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#5 2010-12-04 17:25:59

Oluseyi
Member
Registered: 2009-09-22
Posts: 774

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

I do believe the accurate technical term here is, "EPIC!" smile

Nice work. Looking forward to more.

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#6 2010-12-04 18:55:49

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Early Concepts (continued):
Every protagonist needs an antagonist, a good for every evil, a light for every dark, the balance that sets the conflict. These are some of the earliest scribbles and designs when I was initially "searching" the face of that role. Just like post #3, these images are also licensed under Creative Commons so you can click on either the icon or the image itself to see a brief description on your usage privileges to each image. More to come!


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/065.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/071.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/074.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/030.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png



http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/011.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/022.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


The Solid State Concepts above by Mikko Stimbra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available via email with author.

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#7 2010-12-05 07:43:41

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Past, Present, and Future...
Okay now you've had a small glimpse into some of the earliest work I've done to contribute to this project I have set aside for myself (mind you this is roughly over a year ago), I've decided to put it in full swing as my recreational project to promote certain aspects of Pencil (and my portfolio). What I hope to see in the future is projects using Pencil that require less dependancy on other external programs such as shot layout, compositing, image panning, and certain 2D previsual shots. In this post I will be discussing a little bit about what things I have done in the past several months in terms of planning and development that have created the stepping stones for what is to come for this animation.

Since way back in the day I have been using tools that generally cost money to produce anything you wanted (my earliest animation kit was Hash's Animation Master in 2001 at something like 400 USD), Photoshop 7.0, and the likes (I actually wasn't introduced to Flash until I was 18 I believe), since then I've been using high-end tools like Autodesk Maya, After Effects, Flash, etc. Most of these tools today have rediculous price tags on them (in the thousands). I always thought it was criminal that these firms charge artists an arm and a leg for tools they can use to create - this ultimately lead me to the world of open-source when I discovered Linux in college. After that I played around with various programs like Blender and GIMP I soon discovered that there was in fact a sort of Flash equivilent in animation called Pencil. Since then (a few years before I logged on as a member here) I've been playing with Pencil's capacity to producte different work. I honestly wasn't impressed at first, but over time I became very fascinated by the efforts and revisions different community members began to put into making this a more stable program.

Fast forward to 2010...
Now its 2010 and I can proudly say that I use both proprietary and open-source tools. So now I feel I want to put Pencil to the test with this project. The Solid State Project has been something I've been adding and subtracting content with over time to mold it into something I can enjoy doing as a sort of hobby from work.

Project Goals:
This animation without opening or closing credits is set at a legth of 1:34 (one minute and thirty-four seconds) I don't see that changing drastically anytime soon since the soundtrack has already dictated the length. I figure this will take probably a month of work if I put something into it every day - ofcourse this will not be the case since I have work from L.A., a life, and many other variables that dictate my time - so it is safe to say that the deadline for this is TBA. I originally had a leika reel ready with a few pre-visual shots already included (done in Maya - but I plan on moving over to Blender to be better accustomed to its new 2.5 interface), but I feel it still need to flesh out a lot more so I can get a much better idea on the timing and motion of things. I'm going to attach a preview clip of the first 30 seconds of the leika reel here so you have an idea on where its come from. You'll notice a pre-visual is already in place early on in the film, there's a lot of interesting design I want to put into this particular animation that is rather unorthodox for my workflow. Yes there will be computer animation involved but they will be pre-rendered images that will act as matte backgrounds or special effects that quite frankly is easier to simulate with 3d and render as a 2d image than it is to attempt the planning and illustrating of it in traditionally drawn form. I'll also be producing this in 720i resolution so as to maximize the available area on my window real estate (which means probably a widescreen resolution of 16:9 or something like that) and since I'll be animating in 24 frames a second it will all need to be converted in post for NTSC and PAL for dvd production (but thats not really an issue since I have the net for distribution).

I haven't yet decided what kind of licensing I want for the project as a whole just yet - but I'll establish that soon so there isn't any confusion over the content sharing. In the mean time I've clearly labelled the work that do have sharing licenses so that everyone knows what's public domain and what isn't.

On to the Meat and Potatos:
With all that introductory material out of the way, I will not present to you my most recent (and almost finalized designs for this pilot episode's) character designs along with the first 30 seconds of the Leika Reel. Any input is always welcome, I like some dynamics when getting suggestions on various workflows so we'll see what evolves over time. There are technically only 2 characters that I will be animating for this piece (all for the sake of simplicity and experimentation) - I won't be providing names just yet but MC is one exception (the girl). So without a further ado enjoy:

Concepts
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/036.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/78.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/79.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/82.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png






Character Designs:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/80.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/81.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png




Additional Character Concepts:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/019.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png


http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/001.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png





The Leika Reel Preview:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/Skjermbilde2011-08-23kl100850.png

As always, more to come.


The Solid State Concepts above by Mikko Stimbra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available via email with author.

Last edited by ayetach (2011-09-26 10:42:57)

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#8 2010-12-07 10:34:38

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Animation Design:
Before I went ahead with designing the storyboards I had to establish what kind of aesthetic design I wanted. I played around with different ideas but as you can see something along pseudo realism is the design idea, an obviously hard approach, but visually appealing if pulled off correctly. I also decide to go a monochromatic color scheme (there's already a lot of stuff going on to complicate the process let alone color scheme) using blacks, whites, and various values of gray. I'm not sure if I want to use cool grays or warm grays yet but that will be established as time goes on. Even if there are 3d Shots I'll be using and experimenting with various toon shaders in Blender (and probably other external render plug-ins) that will match the character animation that I produce in Pencil. The difference between the different renders can be demonstrated below:

Realism:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/HorrorMystery.png

Toonshading:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/ToonShaded.png

The character animation itself will be produced solely in Pencil along with the coloring and value painting of it as well. I'm leaning on the idea of the original intended workflow of sketches and line tests on the raster layer and a full clean up for the vector layer. It may depend on the circumstance so its flexible on a case-by-case basis. Based on another thread I have here on the Pencil Forum I worked out the fastest process at the conclusion of my work on the Skuzi animation - this experimentation educated me on how to best handle Pencil's layout and workflow, now that there's shortcut keys it will prove to hopefully be much more flexible (and faster):

Sketch:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/Stage1.jpg
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Clean-up:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/Stage2.jpg
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Finalizing:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/Stage3.jpg
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

There's actually a lot of issues with how it currently works with the vector layer in Pencil but I'm sure that will be ironed out over time. I'll have more content coming in sometime in the next week (maybe some tid bits here and there for the next couple of days) so stay tuned wink

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#9 2010-12-08 17:36:07

Lusa5
Member
Registered: 2009-12-18
Posts: 84

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

That is kick ass

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#10 2010-12-12 13:35:33

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Licensing:
I added information in the first post regarding the licensing of this project and its content, everything is outlined there. I will also be posting some of the script content from the first 30 seconds. There's no real script necessary since its all visual but shots and presentation is one reason for doing it. Enjoy.

Last edited by ayetach (2010-12-12 13:35:43)

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#11 2010-12-17 13:02:30

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

2D Design Work:
Okay so I sat down yesterday and did several sketches on paper to which approach I wanted to go with this in terms of design of the character animation. I wanted it to match the cell shaded 3d work so I decided for the sake of simplicity and to be flexible with experimentation I'll be going for a flat black and white design using certain grays as a means of value for defining surfaces. I did these designs in Pencil to see how my workflow would be:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/086.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/087.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

I realized that Pencil's vector functionality lacks a lot of tools and functions that would make my day working on this so much less complicated and frustrating, but it was nonetheless a very rewarding experiance for my approach to finalizing animations down the road. I initially thought about drawing outlines to the masses of lines I made with the raster image and filling it with black would help make it more easy to control in terms of placement, but I soon realized that using a thicker brush was all I really needed. You'll see some variation in the lines and several out of place or mismatching elements in these pictures, they're just tests though.

The Solid State content above by Mikko Stimbra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available via email with author.

Last edited by ayetach (2010-12-18 14:55:47)

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#12 2010-12-17 13:27:25

Kasper Hviid
Member
Registered: 2010-02-22
Posts: 140

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Nice!

I know you aim for black'n white + grey cellshading, but just for no reason, I colorized some of your stuff:
http://img257.imageshack.us/img257/8043/solidstate.jpg
(I guess the copyleft status stays the same)

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#13 2010-12-18 14:46:36

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

December 18 Progress:
Okay so first thing I got started with when I was prepping Pencil up for some pencil tests was to create a template that I could use to reference off of. This template had to indicate to me the dimensions of the film space I could use so that when I rendered everything out I would be within the maximum parameters that I have established. 720p was the resolution of the film that I would be using, therefore 1280 by 720 in a 16:9 ratio is what is needed. Furthermore I also wanted (but don't necessarily need) action safe and title safe outlines to be certain everything I want in the picture stays in the picture. Based on the BBC titlesafe guidelines a 3.5 and 5% border for each respective safe zone from the picture edge is necessary. I drew up a design that matched that with alpha channels in the dead space and a grid to simply use if measurement or spacing references were needed (title safe is the innermost outline, while the action safe is the outline outside of titlesafe):

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/720pgridlayout.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by/3.0/88x31.png

I started with some of the easier scenes to visualize, there's a nice portion of value animation going on but this screen shot will give you an idea on how my workflow will look as I progress with each segment of animation:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/12-18Progress.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

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#14 2010-12-19 00:34:09

Lusa5
Member
Registered: 2009-12-18
Posts: 84

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

woo hoo cant wait for this to come out!!  keep us updated big_smile

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#15 2010-12-19 07:24:19

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Script & Concept References:
So I completed a rudimentary draft of the script. Since there's not much of a story for this short it isn't really necessary, but it helps plan out the shots in description and divide up the scenes. I'll probably use that as the foundation for my list of shots and planning when I work on a more thoroughly developed pre-visual animatic.

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/script.png

As far as references go, I have done some thorough research on many different elements I want to use for this film both as settings and props. Since the plot takes place in a city I wanted some interesting skylines so I looked to Hong Kong:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/23/Hong_Kong_Skyline_Restitch_-_Dec_2007.jpg/800px-Hong_Kong_Skyline_Restitch_-_Dec_2007.jpg

Singapore:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a2/Singapore_Panorama_v2.jpg/800px-Singapore_Panorama_v2.jpg

New York City:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b1/26_-_New_York_-_Octobre_2008.jpg/800px-26_-_New_York_-_Octobre_2008.jpg

and several other cities like Taipei, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Shinjuku, London, and Chicago.

I also looked at various other props and vehichles used in the short, one being the McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier II. I wanted to go with the earlier generation from the English airforce but this particular fighter had a pre-designed layout:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/ce/McDONNELL_DOUGLAS%2C_BAe_AV-8B_HARRIER_II.png

This will help reduce the time I would spend on designing the fighter when the blueprint is already freely available smile

We'll start seeing some 3d work here soon once I get more designs established and locked-down for production.

***Here's some bonus material showing some early concepts of this scene done in Alchemy.
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/088.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Last edited by ayetach (2010-12-19 12:53:22)

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#16 2011-01-10 11:19:15

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

2011 Report:
With obvious delays such as freelance work and the winter holidays I was unable to really do any real work on this project without comprimising my time used on other more important activities (such as consuming akevitt big_smile) However! I did design banner artwork to celebrate the stable release of version 0.5 of Pencil on the 20th of December, but unfortunately nothing materialized for release that day. That, along with no New Years art, I feel obligated to show this as a token to my creative efforts in supporting the Pencil development. Hopefully we'll see a release very soon, I'm thoroughly excited to see what technical routes I can take with the use of features such as a functioning PNG Sequence exporter and the likes. Since I'm 95% finished with my current project I'm working on for a client I'm going to dedicate this week to really digging in and animating sequences, producing 3d scenes, and doing the full production lot with lots of material for you to see (only the first 30 seconds will be previewed content ofcourse). So stay-tuned! Hopefully I can continue at a pretty high pace this whole month while working on my other projects as well but we'll see what happens. So without a further ado:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/celebrate.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

This is as stated under creative commons so just click on the link to see what rights you have with the image.

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#17 2011-01-11 11:12:52

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Toonshading:
Okay so one of the technical aspects of this short was to experiment with composited animation using 3D rendered images and 2D computer-produced images using Pencil and Blender as the main programs for the pipeline. I had deliberated a little while about whether to paint the matte backgrounds and segments that would layer be composited together with the principle animation but I think using toonshading with 3d models that - if textured properly - will hold water in the design process of this short. Below is a test render of various objects I included in a scene to get a feel for Blender's Toonshader capabilities:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/ToonShading2.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

You'll notice there's a lot of activity and artifacts on models with complicated meshes (like the dummy human for instance). This might pose a challange for the Harrier but I'm confident that if I texture it just right it'll do well to blend into the scene. Most buildings and surroundings will take on the look that is more subtle and neutral in design (such as the cube) - still a degree of thorough texturing and pseudo-complex modeling will need to be done to help Pencil's animation aesthetics match the CGI being produced here and vise versa all the while keeping it pleasing for the viewer to observe.

Shot Planning:
That said with the ideas I discussed above I had to break down the script into segments for each shot and decide on how each layer of footage composited together was going to look as well as how it was going to be produced (CGI? Drawn? Matte?) - This is a glimpse at one of many experimental methods I'm playing around with to go about that planning scheme:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/celtx2.png
(c) Mikko Stimbra

Done in Celtx you'll notice the yellow note cards on the right hand side - that's my shot planning layout for each scene, if there's multiple shots (such as one scene that contained over 7 shots) I would simply note it prior to a layout description and work from there. Each note is placed at the beginning of the scene to indicate the planning for that particular scene. Very convenient when you have shot planning and script working together in one small document smile

Last edited by ayetach (2011-01-11 11:13:59)

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#18 2011-01-12 14:04:42

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

12 January 2011 Report:
Just a brief update on my experimentations in toonshading. I managed to figure out that raytracing was causing such oddities in the renders with the softer values so I exnayed on it and got much better results. Afterall I'm not going for hyper realism just flat clean colors. This test render shows only a portion of the many buildings I'm modeling, so far no texture map, bump map, or specularity map (if its necessary) has been applied so all that remains are flat gray colors but I'll have that up soon enough. That, along with very careful lighting since each of these shots will either be rendered out first and composited in animation later or rendered out in sequence images. More to come smile

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/citytest.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

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#19 2011-01-30 14:50:10

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Work vs. Solid State Project:
As the title suggests my work life has been consuming my time enough to take my focus off of this project for a few weeks now. Since I'll be busy periodically throughout the next six months, I'm going to make some time a few days a week to sit down and work this to completion. Right now I'm nearly finished modeling all the buildings and I'll be texturing them in the next few days, I'll demo some results then. I'm fairly certain if I keep to pace I'll be able to animate most of the short this next month. I'm pretty excited about experimenting and tackling with various creative obsticles throughout this project. Stay tuned! wink

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#20 2011-02-04 14:00:07

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

The City:
Okay, I completed modeling all the buildings (something like 43 unique architectual designs) - I'm hoping to design all the textures for these this weekend so I can complete my first shot on this short, then proceed to modeling all the other non-essential and matte background images before I dig into Pencil for principle animation work. Here's what I've got so far...

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/workspace_buildings.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/skyline.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/dramatic_skyline.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png



...more to come soon smile

(P.S. Although high contrast grayscale toon-shading has been applied to the camera settings the designs will be in full color.)

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#21 2011-02-06 04:13:56

ruy
New member
Registered: 2010-12-13
Posts: 2

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

It looks inspiring
I wish success
smile

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#22 2011-02-09 13:18:05

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

The Website:
Just news on the side I managed to put together a website for this project that directs users to this forum to follow my production log and the video link for the leika reel. As time goes on I'll add more content to it but for now this will do. There's still a few kinks in the site but I'll iron those out as well over time. Kindly show your support by sending this link around to friends, family, other users, etc. so that Pencil can get some limelight with recognition in this project. smile

The official Solid State website: No longer available.

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/website.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Last edited by ayetach (2011-10-12 14:19:39)

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#23 2011-02-12 06:55:17

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Keynotes:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/notes.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

As the notes suggest I've drawn up a plan to finish this project in early/mid-April. You can see all the general goals I have in mind for each period. I have more detailed notes but I'll keep those secret since it gives away the rest of the film. I realized that Pencil has some capacity to composite some of the footage but not for complex shots I have in mind so I'll do a mix of both to continually promote Pencil's use in the process.

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#24 2011-02-22 10:18:05

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Modeling Progress:
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h49/Mu-Shu-Fasa/Pencil%20Forum/modeling_22_february.png
http://i.creativecommons.org/l/by-nc-sa/3.0/88x31.png

Okay just to show that I'm still alive and working hard I'm making this post just to show progress thus far. Since establishing the guidelines above in the previous post and adhering to a very strict schedule, I dove into the first week of principle modeling. The whole experience feels so intense since I'm already working on another animation project from L.A. at the same time (but it helps me crash out real fast at night wink). I'm learning soo much about certain Blender nuances and functions in this new version they have out and about certain production techniques that either slow me down or speed up the process which, drawing on those experiences, will prove very useful as time goes on. Right now I'm finishing all the texturing for the buildings in the short - I should be done by tomorrow I'm hoping. Make no mistake the 3d element in this short isn't actually going to play a role in a very computer animated way aesthetically. I plan on adding 2d texture designs that will be added to the models which then will be positioned and rendered out (using toonshaded renders) as flat mattes to pan on (the rendered images themselves) in the screen they'll blend in with the actual drawn animation that will be composited over it. I haven't yet decided if going all 3d with this process for background mattes is the best method yet but I'll keep experimenting and adding to new concepts and techniques that will help marry 3d and 2d together convincingly and beautifully.

(P.S. I realize that doing 3d modeling is sooooo boring! No offence to all the 3d modelers out there, I'm just more of the animator type wink)

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#25 2011-03-12 10:52:32

Ayetach
Administrator
Registered: 2010-05-30
Posts: 1136

Re: SOLID STATE - Pilot Episode

Progress Report:
Things have been moving at a crawl since work has swamped me in the past few weeks (hence a lack of updates on the modeling department), but hopefully I'll be finding time this week to put into modeling the rest of the scenes and texturing them. After that I'll begin some of the composited animation and traditional animation in Pencil. I'm hoping to utilize Pencil in more of the composited shots (the simple sequences) if and when a stable version of v0.5 with a functioning PNG Sequence exporter becomes available. Again, this short will be a TBA release - its likely not to be completed in April now so hopefully May or June depending on my other projects.

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