Sunday, October 30, 2005

Spacing: Tricks of the Trade

Good evening class! This one goes out to all you animation students out there... hopefully EVERYONE from the CalArts guys up to working professional still consider themselves students. anyhow, today we talk about the technique behind spacing. This, i feel, is something few animators truly understand. There is always a balance between your concentration between technical stuff, and performance but i feel that without proper execution of technique your performance will not be as powerful as it could. Different animators value it differently ie: Glen Keane vs. James Baxter. I personally take the view that if your technical stuff is off it could potentially ruin the performance because when that ear slides all over your characters head, or he just doesn't have the weight he needs it could pull you out of the moment.
Here is a very simple trick that can really help you on your slow in's and slow out's in a shot. Looking at the pic above you'll see that all the inbetweens are halfs EXCEPT number 3. It is on a 3rd favoring 1. The reason for not putting it on an even is because the space between 1, 3, and 5 is even. Even spacing will KILL weight and give you a watery look. What's funny is that not many guys use this method. Even skilled experienced guys! but you, now you can have to upper hand on your spacing!
Now, this IS NOT a 100 percent "always use this chart" kind of a thing. Sometimes you want a watery look, in which case this would not be useful. Or, if your slow in is about 36 frms long you may not need to put your last inbetween on a 3rd because the spacing would be so tight that you wouldn't feel it.There are lotsa different scenarios about why it could not work but if you want something to be progressing or degressing in speed, this is the way to go!
anyhow, Matt Williames signing off for now. Next post will cover some more tricks of the trade on spacing! later!

7 comments:

SMacLeod said...

Me and some guys were talking about this at school. Many don't use charts until they start working in the studio system, in the which they have to struggle to keep up figuring out charts of their superiors or those who work below them. I envy those guys who can start working and BLEND right in to the system...for their chart wisdom!

Matt Williames said...

It is still so odd to me that they don't teach this at CalArts. It's one of those very simple yet VERY important things to know. Grim Natwick used to say that it's all in the Spacing and the Timing. He couldn't be more right when it comes to mechanics of animation. The fun part with spacing is when you start to learn it well enough to sorta get creative with it. Most of the time it's a functional thing, but on occasion there is some opportunaties for really creative spacing. I think Kuzco has some really iteresting timing and spacing on him. Nik's the king at that stuff.

Jimmy Trujillo said...

Don't feel bad, they don't teach this at AAC either. Thank god for my animator survival kit. Thanks for the tutorials Matt, if your an animator starting out save this stuff, It's next to impossible to find this type of info in writing. Thanks again Matt.

Chetan Trivedi said...

awesome awesome awesome..
i wass told today that i hav spacing issues in my animation so i landed here lookin for somethin..i was goin through the pages..
we were taught at our school to go for the halfway mark (except when u want favouring).. but going by the halfway mark sometimes lands me in weight issues (or being dumb i m doing that wrong too) but anyways i always did wonder abt this coz i hav gone frame by frame of other good animators work n wud always wonder y they spaced certain things in the manner they did..
this post just answers one of the questions i hav had for sometime..
thanx

matthiusmonkey said...

they dont teach this stuff in uk animation schools we havent even looked at timeing charts yet and im in second year now, ive asked about it and never got a straight answer,
thanks for posting. although im struggleing a bit, im not sure what 3rd faveouring 1 meens could you explain it sorry :( i may be misreading it and not understanding it right. sorry :(

Tom said...

they dont teach this stuff in uk animation schools we havent even looked at timeing charts yet and im in second year now, ive asked about it and never got a straight answer, thanks for posting. although im struggleing a bit, im not sure what 3rd faveouring 1 meens could you explain it sorry :( i may be misreading it and not understanding it right. sorry :(

Anonymous said...

simply dropping by to say hello