Ooooo it's been a while! It's nice to get time to add something to this blog at last! It seems that after five years of university study, I have done what every student fears...I have had the misfortune of aquiring a job! Sadly, it has nothing to do with animation. Nothing to do with physics either. I spend all day plugging numbers into a computer for an insurance company.
And that last sentence brings me nicely onto the subject of this post - CGI.
I remember going to see Toy Story at a little old cinema in Wakefield over a decade ago and, like everyone, being blown away at what appeared on the screen. I had grown up with Disney movies, seeing the quality of the artistry improving with each film, but here was something that was such a huge leap forward in terms of visuals. To me, as was the case with a lot of people at the time, these new computer techniques were the future of animation.
I used to dream of animating for a living, but never really seriously considered it until recent times. As a lot of animation newbies do, I turned to the computer and began to learn to animate - first with Cinema 4d, then 3ds Max, and finally Maya. However, after seeing behind the scenes of the computer animation process, I began to feel like it was becomming a bit of a cheat.
Here is one of my earliest animations. It was used in a presentation that I was part of at university, preaching the perils of bird flu to my peers. I was in the "Orange Group" - hence the writing on the floor and the fruit.
Halfway through the presentation, this one was used to show a chick getting infected with flu and the virus replicating.
I then started to experiment with facial expressions, resulting in this guy sneezing. Notice the inclusion of simulated hair.
My follow up was an experiment with hair - and here is where I fell out of love with CGI.
The bouncing ball was produced using colliding rigid bodies (essentially the computer works out where the ball should be at any time using my old friend, physics) and the hair was simulated in a different way, but amounting to the same principle. The point is, though, that I didn't actually animate ANYTHING!!
Lately, I have noticed that the most important part of a movie (the story) has begun to take a back seat in computer animation. Even more recently, I have noticed that as the medium becomes cheaper, the actual quality of the animation itself has begun to deteriorate. It was this, that spurred me on to get involved with the hand drawn stuff. Thus this was my last computer animation.
Notice that it contains only true animated components, no simulations. Computer animation will always be around, and I have no problem with that. But please all you digital animators, keep the quality high.