Here is our animation for the presentation day;
In our final presentation feedback our tutors said that we did a brilliant job and that we ticked all the boxes which i’m soo over the moon about. Michael Bass had started with “I have only one critique”, which really put a smile on our faces, the only problem he could see was the pause before the girl bird comes into shot. Conann Fitzpatrick also gave us positive feedback and only a few changes were needed. Yuanyuan Chen also seemed to be happy with our animation and advised us on some small changes with lighting and timing. So I will list the different critiques below and what we discussed as a team on how we would tackle them.
- Camera pause – During the over shoulder shot the girl bird takes a second before she moves into scene. Michael had advised that she should have already been in the shot once the camera and changed. Also he felt that she should have came in from the left, instead of right. Conann also commented on this point. He suggested that having the boy bird in the scene wasn’t really needed, and perhaps the camera could have been in between them or his point of view.
- Ice – The ice is a flat plane with coloured blinn texture and reflection. It was suggested that it should have marks or bumps to show that is being skated on. At the moment it looks like it has been smoothed over in a professional ice rink. We will be looking at bump map and texturing to try and making the ice more natural.
- Character Jump – During the bird slipping on ice and falling, Conann suggested keeping him up on the air a little longer. This would give it more character and a cartoon feel.
- Sun setting – Yuan suggested making it look like the sun was setting during the animation, so at the end it would be dark (similar to the credit scene). We discussed this as a team and thought it may look a little sped up if the sun set in just 30 seconds, so we decided to leave the lightings. She also wanted the credits to last longer to allow the characters to skate fully across the screen. The Render of the credits does actually have them going across but unfortunately we had to cut it for time. During the edit if we can spare more time for credits we will.
- Lights on girl bird – This was not mentioned on our feedback but it was something noticed by us. The light on girl bird cast a shadow on her face and she looked a little dark, so this will be corrected.
- More Animating – Again this was not in our feedback, but after seeing the other groups and their animations I was worried that we kept ours a little simple. I discussed this with my team and we all agreed. So instead of the girl bird coming in to wave we want her to skate in with a twirl before waving, that way there will be more animation and added character to the girl bird.
The first thing we tackled was the ice, Kristina and I had worked on the ice before our first render and made the ice a cloudy texture but the way that it was smooth made it look like it was professionally flattened at an actual ice rink and we needed it to have more texture. We started to look into bump mapping and using fractal texture. We adjusting the setting and rendered the scene out to pick which one was best which you can see below;
Too realistic for the scene
Too watery looking
Not much reflection with this, sort of looks like worms
We all agreed that this ice looked the best for our scene
For the jump I let Kristina and Robert both have a go at animating it since I did the majority of the animation. Robert and Kristina was still having a few difficulties so I came in and fixed up the animations, making sure that the timings were right and making the movements more organic looking in the jump. I then added the wave again and we were to check that off the list again.
I also fixed the jump and prolonged it as best as I could because I didn’t want to go over the time limit which we were all set on keeping, plus out end credits were short enough as it was. I looked at the coyote from Road Runner as there are so many episodes where he ends up falling off a cliff and hovering there looking all scared, you can see this gag here, poor guy;