Self Evaluation – Ani,Modelling and Concept art

I think I did better this time around, not so much team wise but just in general myself. I was able to model two scenes one entirely by myself and another which was mainly by myself but with a few things made by others. I didn’t dislike Maya too much this time, I only disliked it when I couldn’t use the rigs for the animation part. I found that it was hard to put things in the places I wanted them to be and this was a bit of an issue when it came to my getting off a chair animation. I could visualise it but I couldn’t make it in maya properly. I also feel like I worked better this time because I had to be the one to make sure my teams weren’t falling behind but this also made it harder for me because I wanted to do my concept art stuff more but I had to sort out the 3D scene because my other members weren’t doing so much. I really did try my best to get my concept art team to work together and I hope that whatever advice I gave helped them a bit.

I enjoyed doing this project much more than the 15 second animations we done previously because I think I prefer modelling and concept art together. Three of my concept pieces had my two scenes in them and they made things for me so much easier. I tried drawing buildings myself and it’s just so hard to do it. I think if I ever have to do buildings in concept art I will be using maya for that. I also managed to UV unwrap things ok they might not be done the best but I was able to texture one building with how I UV mapped it and it looked ok to me so maybe I’ll use this to also help me make my future art.

Animation wise I struggle with timing. I don’t really understand it…so I never know what frames to use and I just guess. I think my walk cycle is ok probably can be better but out of the three animations I done, it’s the best one I have. I don’t think i’m one for animating. I’ll just stick to modelling things I guess.

I also want to add that doing the concept art part to this project has really challenged me and made me want to get much better at it. I kind of want to continue the Neo Tokyo city idea on my own and make my own things based on it because I really enjoyed making things for it. I think having it as a side project for me to do when I feel like it, could help me improve my concept art skills because after watching a lot of speed painting tutorials from a range of concept artists I feel like I need to improve on a lot of things especially painting and trying convey certain feelings through my art. I’m not used to doing full pieces like I did for this project so this made me go out of my box for once. I draw faces too often and not enough bodies and full backgrounds. I would like to do a full concept art project sometime without worrying about animations and such but that’s unlikely.



CS – Getting up off a chair Animation

I decided to that for the body mechanics part of the Animation assignment I would do a character getting up off a chair.

I had a go at trying this out for myself and working out what kind of poses were needed. I would record myself but I don’t really like doing that kind of thing so i’ll just be acting it out in my room.

This is what I have so far;

It’s 32 frames long at the minute and for each pose there is about 4 frames inbetween. I have no idea if this is right or not but I like it so far. I’m find this easier than the run cycle. At the minute I have just got the main poses down. I’m now going to work on getting the arms pushing her up off the chair.

I fixed up the arms a bit as well as the hands but I think the hands/fingers need worked on more since they go through her legs.

I continued work on and this is it so far. I want to make the elbows go out a bit when she’s pushing herself up but I’m having trouble finding out which part of the rig to use to move them out the way.

I asked Natalie again for some feedback on it and this is what she said;

“A bit stiff when she’s getting up. Have a bit more of a pause as she leans forward, getting anticipation to the standing pose. When she leans forward, bring her elbows out a bit from her sides.”

I’m now going to work on the things she said and anything else I think needs done.

I tried to make the elbows come out a bit more but I don’t know if you really notice it much.

I went back and worked on it a bit more and here is three videos at different angles.

I think i’m getting somewhere with this one.

I tried to fix it up more but I ended up messing up the hand and I think I need to redo all the hand key frames because they’re not right now…I was trying to get the hand pushing up off her thighs but I ended up making the hand turn around.

I deleted all the key frames and had a go again but I still can’t get the hands the way I want them to. I’m find this rig hard to use because I can only rotate the arms. I’m of sad that I can’t get it right because I’m trying the best I can but I guess i’m just not really having much luck with it.

CS – Run Cycle Attempt 2

I decided to restart my run cycle. I used this image from The Animator’s Survival kit;

This was to help me get the poses right. I attempted to make it and do the next part of it.

This is what I got;

It’s not great yet since I know the timing isn’t right but i’m going to go fix that up now to see if I can get it so it’s not super fast.

I haven’t fixed up the timing yet but this is just an updated version

3/4 View of it

I really don’t think animating is for me…i don’t really understand timing and where to put things on frames etc…Doesn’t matter how many times I try to read the Animator’s survival kit, I still don’t really understand it.

I went back and fixed up the hands and hips/shoulders a bit. I still don’t really know how I can fix the timing…I don’t really want to mess up my run cycle.  (Probably can’t see the changes since it’s too fast)


CS – Animation – Run Cycle

I started the run cycle but I realised that the diagram I had was definitely not the most useful for me…the poses were too fast and I didn’t really know to how to space them out right. I need to read the Animator’s survival kit again to see if I can find a better one with a bit more explanation to it. I didn’t include a video because it’s obvious you won’t see anything so I just included a screenshot instead. This time i’m using the Jack rig.


I made a video anyway and I guess he’s “gotta go fast” because the timing isn’t great and the poses aren’t either from what I can tell. Need some help with this so I think i’ll ask Natalie for some advice on this too.

CS – Animation – Walk Cycle New

I was trying to use the animator’s survival kit for the walk cycle but for some reason it wasn’t working out right…

So I went back to the walk cycle I made with Conann and it worked out better. At the minute i’m only getting the feet moving properly and so it looks right. I’m now going to move onto getting them to look better and then I will move onto the arms and everything else. I also decided to choose a different character…i was getting a bit bored of the Elle one.


I’m now doing the rest of the body and this is what I have so far

I think I need to work on the feet a bit more as well as the arm swinging. However, compared to my previous attempts I have gotten further with this one. Going to ask for some advice for the feet since they don’t look right to me.

I got some advice from Natalie because my Animation group isn’t responding to me in general these days so I felt like she’d be a good person to go to. She pointed out things about the feet that I noticed too about the feet below is what she said,

“it seems like the red foot sort of glides back. The blue one needs lifted more when going forward”

She suggested to also look at a reference image which I was doing but the one I had from the Animator’s Survival kit only had half of it and for some reason I found it hard to flip them to do the rest of it…maybe i’m just doing these at points when i’m too tired…Anyway!

Natalie sent me the reference image she used for hers;



I think this one will be easier to use than the other one I was using.

This is what I have so far after using the advice I was given. It looks much better but I feel like I need to get it to suit the character a bit more…I’ll worry about that later. I kind of just want to get a decent walk cycle done and then I can fix how she walks, since it’s a girl I feel like she needs to take smaller steps but i’ll do this after I fix the rest of the body etc.

I started to use the graph editor to help me get the animation a little bit better…I don’t really know if it’s made much of a difference but here’s the video

Also this is just an example of me using the graph editor and showing what changes I made to one section.

So this is what I have so far

I think it’s ok now, I’m going to get some more feedback incase there’s things I can’t see wrong with it. For now I think the arms might need fixed.

Got some more feedback from Natalie based on the previous video

“It seems pretty good, the blue foot goes through the floor at one point though, and maybe have the hands a little bit behind the arm swing to make it look more natural… Turn the feet outwards a little maybe? Unless your going for the catwalk thing, and swivel the hips forward and back maybe to give more sway but the feet are definitely better”

I decided that I should go with a model’s walk since the character is an adult female and it seems to suit it best so Natalie give me some more advice on this.

“the arms are pretty easy to do, if you get one done then just use the values or minus the same values on the other side. I think if it’s a catwalk you should have the feet sort of swing out so they go in front of each other, if you know what I mean? Like she’s on a tightrope, so instead of the feet sort of being beside each other? Does that make sense? Or am I being confusing?”
So I went back to it and tried to work on everything she talked about and this is the result of that
I’m actually quite happy with it now, it’s much better than all my previous attempts and I will get more feedback later on but for now I will leave it at this and work on the other animations I have to do.
I posted it in my teams group too but I never did get any feedback sadly.
Edward also gave me some feedback on my walk cycle too;
“The only things that I would change about yours is the upper body and the obvious leg jump. The upper body is a bit static, I also thing the upper body might be leaning back a little bit too much. The head is also too still in the side view and it might be a little too exaggerated in the front view. (I’m being very critical)”
If I get the time to go back I will fix up my walk cycle and make it better.

CS – Walk Cycle Update

I’ve been attempting the walk cycle again and it’s not going well. I was referring back to the one I made with Conann for help but that wasn’t working out for me. I then tried to use the diagrams in The Animator’s Survival Kit and I was starting to get it but when it comes for the next step I seem to mess it up. So far the latest one (WalkCyle_06) is the best start for me, although I can see a bit of a problem with it but i’m sure I can fix that some how. I’m going to work on that first then I’ll move onto the body.

Below is just a video of my attempts so far.


CS – Walk Cycle – 28th Nov 15

I started to work on my walk cycle for the Animation part of this module. I haven’t got very far yet because I kept making mistakes like putting the feet in the wrong position and trying to get the poses right.

So far I have this:

I have a long way to go but I’ll eventually get there. I looked back at my walk cycle I made with Conann and i’m going to use it as a reference as well as using the walk cycle from The Animator’s Survival Kit.

CS – Topology and Rigging class – 26th Nov 15


Today we were learning how to re-toplogize  a head. This is kind of easy but also quite hard…I messed up parts of it and didn’t really get it the same as the reference image but I tried and didn’t give for once.


In the end I got this. It’s not finished obviously but I think I did ok? Some parts obviously aren’t right but I tried.


Later on in the day Conann took us again for another rigging class. I didn’t understand some parts but I did follow along with what we were doing ok until my maya crashed…I had to use a copy of Oisin’s instead because I would have been really far behind if I tried to redo everything we had.

I didn’t really take many screenshots of the progress but here’s two sort of showing what we were doing.  We were trying to make an IK – FK switch and we were using the node editor to join things together. I find rigging to be really confusing…I should probably try things like this myself but I think I prefer just drawing.

ik node

CS – Team Meet up for Animation and Modelling + Concept Art Sketches- 23rd Nov 15

I finally met up with Animation and Modelling team. We talked about what we’d like to do and how we’re going to do everything.

We have to create a scene inspired by the concept art Alec has provided us with from the previous second years.  We really liked the idea of a  Sci Fi theme, we particularly liked James Dalton’s concept art but our idea isn’t really very similar to his art. Maybe we’ll get more inspired by another piece of art.

James’ Art (Source:


Ideas they had last week:


Oisin also posted a really interesting vehicle from the 80s which I thought was kind of cool; 

It’s silly but kind of cool, it reminds me of the bikes in Akira but less cool.

Oisin decided he was going to have a go at actually modelling the bike from Akira with this tutorial;

I also found this really cool Bladerunner Sketchbook online which has the sketches and some art from the film in it

They liked my scene I made up myself for the concept art part of this module and we might use some parts of it for our final scene.


Concept art 

I got some advice from Pete about perspective drawing and such so I did a few sketches from my maya scene and just a street I made up.


I also done a few sketches the night before:



Creative Strategies – Rigging and Animation class – 19th Nov 15

Today Conann took the class and he showed us some things about rigging and how to do a walk cycle. I didn’t really understand all of the rigging stuff but I did manage to get the button made right. Doing the walk cycle was a bit easier though, I think I need to have a go at doing it again but with a different character to see if I can remember everything.

The videos below are progress playblasts from today