I Really didn't notice the King Kong similarities until afterwards...OK
In this brief we were asked to take our concepts and storyboard a thirty second animation from them. After roughing out basic camera stills an animatic, a functional animation, was created in Adobe Premier to give a sense of camera movement, timing, pacing and sound design. 20 points to those who spotted the Wilhelm scream, my homage to countless films. I really enjoyed getting the timing for the shots just right, i found it was particularly important to have a quick pause in any camera movement where you wanted to focus the audiences attention.
It was also a chance to learn and implement the 'Rule of thirds' with regards to camera composition. When setting up a scene it's important to have the focus of the scene in one of the red cross positions as seen in the image below.
This is the most aesthetically pleasing location in terms of composition as it creates more interest, rather than centering the focus of the composition.
The story sets up the dilemma that propels my hero character into the narrative, the Wicker Man army kidnaps his sister.
I really wanted to do the whole animation in 3D but first i had to model my characters. I used Ivy_Gen in Max to produce a still of the Wicker Man. I was persuaded to animate what I'd done unfortunately the mesh was pretty dense as I never designed for it to be animated. That led to issues when i started experimenting with skinning, rigging, and Maxs' Character Animation Toolkit (CAT).
CAT is an amazing tool but because i couldn't easily preview my model, animating in Maxs' viewport, it led to issues that could only be seen after rendering, like the snapping knee and flickering shadows.
I used elements of the environment I'd created for the concept art module as the basis for my scene. This is one of the stills in 3D, it would be where the children are playing at the beginning of the animatic. I was still missing a crucial element, my main character!