Elsinore - Wooden Houses - Animated Music Video

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Pig!

Here is the first computer based drawing of the Pig. I am finally at the point in this process where I am making things that could end up in the final video, which is very exciting. I'd really like to hear feedback on this in particular.  I want to know if the whole texture idea is working. I'd also like to hear opinions on whether the shading adds to the whole thing or just makes it seem more cluttered.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

More Storyboards

Picking up where I left off with the last storyboard post, the pig has just moved into his new rural house, having left his partner in the city. The wolf has just woken up to see the other side of the bed and the bed already made. she looks around the room for a while confused.

She enters this dining room area from the bedroom. The high-rises across the street are visible through the windows behind her. She discovers the half finished drink and the turned down frame. and examines it more closely.

From here she leaves the apartment and takes a cab out of the city in search of her lost pig.

After my four day weekend, I am headed back to work tomorrow. Hopefully, I'll have some down time to continue on with the storyboards while I'm there.

I'm also almost finished with a computer version of the pig which will go up soon.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


First of all I want to give A Thanksgiving shoutout to my homie Lynda.

 hosts tutorial videos on a wide range of software packages. In particular I want to give my sincerest thanks to Mr. Chad Perkins and Mr. Feorge Maestri whose courses I have used most frequently. Chad Perkins is responsible for the tutorials on Adobe After Effects. his videos can be a bit corny at times but effective nonetheless.

Mr. Maestri just released a new course titled "2D Character Animation" whcih I am quite excited about. I looked up Mr. Maestri on IMDB and discovered that he was a writer and animator on one of my all time favorite shows:

Rocko's Modern Life!

He has also done some work on South Park.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to watching the rest of his 2D character animation tutorials and employing the knowledge gained in this video.

Also, much more importantly, I am thankful for my brilliant, inspiring, and supportive family, my friends and my Kinzie (check out her amazing blog ath that link).

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


At work today I spent my down time working on some storyboards.

This will be the opening shot of the video. A framed snapshot of two pigs and a wolf. The pig sets down a drink in front of the pig on the left, picks the photo up and places it face down. The pig crosses frame in the foreground obscuring the scene. One element of the Catch Me If You Can Intro (which you can watch in this earlier post), that I really want to retain is the way they play with forms and have elements transform and grow from each other. As you read my explanations of these storyboards you'll see some of my ideas for that. I'd like to do something of this sort in this first transition to set the tone right away, but haven't thought of anything yet.

Here we have the pig closing the door of his apartment and pausing for a moment before pressing the down button on the elevator that I forgot to draw in this particular sketch.

The transition to this shot will occur when the pig presses the button. It will light up. The "camera" will zoom in on the button. Everything except the lit button will fade to black.

 The lit button will become the top center light. The other lights will turn on in sequence down first and then out from the center. Once all the lights are on the rest of the scene will fade in from black and the pig will exit the building. The yellow cab will pull up and the pig will get in.

I am missing a storyboard or two here. The cab will carry the pig out of the city through a very suburban area and into a more rural setting. Aside from the wolf and the pig all fo the other characters will be other pigs, with one exception. The cab driver is going to be based on an armadillo. I have yet to design the cab driver so I have not yet drawn the storyboards containing him, which will incidentally be the business of my downtime at work tomorrow.

Anyway, back to what I have drawn.

as you can see, here we have a sketch that I stole from a two-year-old of two concentric "circles" with some scribbles on the left side.

what I'm thinking, and I don't know that I quite have the chops to pull it off is this. We're looking at the cab with the driver and the pig as the background zooms by in the background. That background blurs and bulges out. The camera pulls back to reveal that the image is distorted because it is the reflection in a domed hubcap. the black of the tire then splits and becomes a straight line. the image in the hubcap un-blurs (?) and becomes the house. The black line of the tire, then, it becomes apparent, is the road in front of the house.

The cab pulls into frame and stops in front of the house and the pig gets out.  I know that if I were keeping more strictly to the "Three Little Pigs" tale this house would be brick, but the song is "Wooden Houses" so...

Anyway, I've been working on anthropomorphizing the house for a while and I may have taken it a little too far. It will be hard to say until the computer version is done. I want to have the house display some doglike characteristics over the course of the video. I may reshape the garden hose into a more snout-like shape. I also am planning to have smoke come out from the chimney in a swaying motion, resembling a dog's tail.

As my mom would say, "Hi! I'm Mr. House!"

I have more storyboards but I think this post is quite long enough.

More soon.

Monday, November 9, 2009

First flash character

Here we have the wolf made in Adobe Flash. This certainly has a long way to go, but I am going to sleep and I wanted to put this up tonight. The periwinkle dress will be replaced by a static texture like one of the ones in this earlier post. Let me know what you think

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Wolf

I had been having some trouble developing the wolf character for the video. I did some sketches earlier on that I was too embarrassed by to post, and when you see some of these you'll understand how bad they must really have been.  Just like with the pig I started with the eyes and built out from there. I don't want to implement speech bubbles or intertitles yet I need to convey a lot of emotion with these creatures. One of the best options at my disposal is to use the eyes. I tried to come up with a simple yet expressive design for the eyes and had various levels of success (and failure):

various eye shapes.not too exciting. I made an accidental face in the upper left. I kind of like the bottom one. I guess I liked it at the time because I did quite a few iterations of it before dismissing it.

Here we have from left to right: a giraffe, a robot nun, an angry pony and a Noh mask. oops.

A few more eyes and the stars of my next project: "velociraptor and baboon start a small business"

and here I started to settle in on the eye design I liked. It should become apparent pretty quickly that I recently watched Grey Gardens (the HBO version. I still havent seen the original.)

Playing with the eye shape and still trying out a few other versions. In these last few, I really like the way the curve of the nose follows the curve of the eye and the curve of the face follows the curve of the nose. I also noticed I've started drawing the carnivorous wolf in furs and making her kind of the bad guy in this whole thing. I don't know about the anti-fur, pro-vegetarian/vegan bent this video is starting to take. KINZIE!!!!!!! I guess the anti-fur part is alright.

Putting the wolf in motion. one thing I was trying to do here is make it look as though the fur stole she is wearing is trailing behind her where a wolf's tail would be. I still like the idea of that, just as I like the idea of some curly wire sticking out of the back of the pig's suitcase or tool belt to take the place of a tail. I'll have to see if I can pul it off.

I did these in just a couple of minutes to show how expressive this two line eye design. I think it's going to work just fine.

I just got a new job answering customer service phone calls. over the course of training I have had a lot of time to do more sketches, but I didn't want to put too much into one post (though I may have done that anyway). More to come soon. This weekend I am going to be spending some time working on vector art versions of these characters so's I can start to animate them. I'll be putting those up as soon as they're ready.