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!

Thursday, October 27, 2005


Today i thought i'd write a little bit about the upcoming Curious George. I've been hearing a lot of bad mouthing about the film, and I think, frankly, a lot of it's unfounded opinions by people who just like to have an opinion or feel like that it's the 'popular' opinion to have. I worked on the film, and i have to be honest and say that i think the first screening was pretty weak. I walked out of the screening room shaking my head like everybody else thinking "this is gonna suck." But as the film progressed and animation started getting approved, i really liked how the performances started to add a dimension that wasn't percievable while watching the story reel. Plus, i have to say that i think Matt O'Callaghan (the director) really did a great job in reeling everything together. Once he replaced the last director he started over from scratch, and from what i heard the film needed it. Plus he was overseeing animation from probably at least 12 different studios. He was always cool and collected when i would have my approval sessions with him, and some people would flip out with that kind of pressure and treat others around them poorly. Is the film going to be an Incredibles? No. Is it gonna be better than the last few Disney features? Heck ya! My point is that it is what it is... it's a fun film and i think people are gonna enjoy it.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Some fun stuff!

Here's some realllllllllly old quick sketches i did back when i was at CalArts (2000-2001). I feel like quick sketching is a lost art now with computers and all. I used to LOVE it, but i just got out of the rutine of it. It was fun going thru that old sketchbook, anyway, check'em out!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Remember to Be an Artist!

Just got off the phone with my good friend Steven Macleod... we talked for an hour, just geekin out about animation and hand drawn especially. Talked about our favorite animators like James Baxter and Sergio Pablos. It just made me think about being an artist and having artistic integrity with your work. cause a lot of people don't do either in animation (although there are plenty who do as well). I know a lot of people who have either forgotten or never loved this artform. It makes me sad cuz i know a lot of guys who DO love it but can't find an opportunaty do use their skills (in hand drawn). I'm posting this drawing because i drew it at a point in my life (about 3 years ago) when all i had to worry about was being an artist. Now that i am, i guess, a professional almost everything i work on is a lame idea with a short schedule and very low budget. That can kinda sucks it out of ya after a while and your personal sense of artistry dwindles. So here's to remembering the passion God gave us that we might use it to Honor Him with.

My very first post, no way!

I never thought it'd happen, but it has. I'm finally online. I've contemplated for years doing a web-site, and have had the desire but never the time or knowledge. So anyhow, i am starting my own blog now cuz i was having so much fun keeping updated on all of my CalArts friends' blogs like Steven MaCleods and Elizabeth Ito's (i don't have her link handy yet). so anyway, no ones knows about this yet so i'm gonna take a shower and then come back and start uploading a few drawings and pics to keep everyone updated! cheers!