egypturnash: (work)
I've been realizing something, these past few months. Years, even.

Animation just doesn't pay worth a damn. Doing it right is a tremendous amount of work. Even doing it quick and dirty is a tremendous amount of work.

I still love doing hand-drawn animation. I still have no interest in moving to 3D animation, for all its potential to cut the work down. But I get a much better return on the time spent for still images.

The penny really dropped for me this week. I'd decided to back out of a website intro I was negotiating for - they were reluctantly coming around to my initial price offer, but I was really getting this sensation that they'd be expecting the sun, moon, and stars for a fair wage for a week's hard work on my part. And that they might end up deciding it wasn't what they wanted, leaving me with a week spent for no payment.

And today, I got some follow-up email on a little simple, quick illustration gig I'd done the other month: they want more, with the same terms as before. It'll be less money than the animation piece I turned down, overall - but when I balance it against the amount of time I project it taking, and the amount of stress it'd involve, this is a much better use of my time. I won't be lying around uselessly for a week and a half afterwards; I can do one of these pieces as a warm-up for a day spent on Absinthe.

I love the magic of animation. I love the moment of watching my drawings come to life. But I'm getting too damn old to pour that much of myself into anyone else's ideas, unless they're really aligned with my own*. And all the cheats I have to use mean I barely see that magic moment any more. It's just not worth the time and stress. Illustration doesn't pay so great right now either but at least it's over quickly.

(I am, of course, lucky that I have this option due to the tolerance of my boyfriends. If I was living alone I'd be stuck on a high-stress treadmill of grabbing any work I could. And slowly going crazy.)

* I still want to do an animated music video to one of [livejournal.com profile] doctorpinkerton's shorter tracks someday, for instance!
egypturnash: (DrProcyon)
I finally managed to convince Flash to output this properly. It's my cameo appearance in the COG's 10th anniversary show.

Flash 6, makes noise. Check it out. This is a link to a raw swf, so it may be pretty damn big - if it's slow, shrink your browser window and/or right-click on it and set the quality to 'low'.

This isn't exactly what appeared on-screen - Lewis added some blur to the bg in Premiere, and of course the voices would have been the actual band members interacting with the video - but it's close enough. Far from my best animation, but it was done from scratch in one week, with an episode of data loss because the Flash editor is crap!
egypturnash: (Default)
Huh. I just did a "wink"* for AG with my own art, rather than licensed stuff. It's the first time I've ever done something in Flash with my own art instead of other people's drawings. The keys were drawn in AI with attention paid to how I'd probably want to animate them; symbolizing wasn't a nightmare process of cutting up and extending the shapes in Flash. Barring a few little roundoff glitches in the translation, everything flowed well.

I actually kinda had fun doing it.

In Flash.

Fancy that.

It wasn't the fun of doing full animation in pencil - this was only six drawings, run through AI and then given the Flash process. But my pride-in-craft kicked in and this was easily something you could stick on TV, if you had a TV show that was a shameless rip-off of Samurai Jack with a cute mouse in the title role. (I borrowed my old Ensign K designs for this, which is moderately appropriate: I designed him not too long before images of SJ started showing up in the animation magazines, and was grumpy that Genndy got to be the first guy out there with a stark no-outlines show.)

Maybe I'll even animate something for myself someday, in my own style zone. That would be nice.

I took too damn long on this one, though. It's the first time I ever did the layouts for my Flash work; maybe I'm allowed.

I also did this. Read more... )

* Flash animations that show up in the middle of your MSN Messenger chat window, if you use the official client, and pay some money for 'em.

eeek!

May. 3rd, 2005 02:20 am
egypturnash: (Default)
Animation! (380k, Quicktime.)

"This drawing isn't Q enough. It's more like H. Maybe I. Certainly not Q." *redraw* "Yeah. Now that's going through Q." - me, doing drawing #15.

Way too long since I've done this stuff. Not great, but pretty damn good for someone who hasn't done any animation for, like, five fucking years and wasn't even warmed up when she started drawing it.

Edit: [livejournal.com profile] rhinoscillator made some sound for it! See? (544k, mpeg1, because [livejournal.com profile] postrodent's machine disliked quicktime mpeg4.)
egypturnash: (hiroshima (howarth))
I animated tonight. For the first time in... Too long.

Just a fraction. But it's distinctly my design. My timing. Me. No trying to work from other people's drawings, chopping them up in that horrible Flash way I got stuck in. No planning, I just sat down with some punched paper and a marker and started drawing.

Sammi had wanted to go to the lab at school to get a little work done, and in a what-the-hell moment, I came along. And grabbed some of the paper she punched and just sat there.

It feels good. I miss it.

I went through Q* on every breakdown. Oh yeah.

No planning, no design. Didn't worry about keeping the volumes too consistent. I just drew.

We got chased out just as I was about to start working from the second pose into the third one. It wasn't much. I dunno if I'll put it online. After digesting food I might fill out the rest (I drew three keys, then did some funky breakdowns between them, and then filled in from the first key to the first breakdown in semi-random order).

Crap. I can still animate. I can draw stuff and have fun and make it move.

I'd kinda forgotten about that.

* "going through Q" - my own slang for the method of working that Richard Williams espouses in his book on animation. Essentially, if you have drawing A and drawing E, the obvious thing to do is to draw C, then B and D. It's simple and easy. But character and acting happen when, instead, you go from A to E via Q. Going through Q is where you can show how this character does a motion. It's also just more fun.

Also, my hair is yellow-and-blue-becomes-green. I don't think it works. Not on me, at least, maybe on nobody. It was an experiment because the yellow-and-purple was fading fast.

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