Having to put Luna Shores on hold for a few weeks, but I managed to sneak in rough thumbnails for a new shot! Above in blue are my initial plans and the ones below are the clean ups I am putting into Flash.
It seem's like Thursday has become the optimum day for me getting to update my blog, so I will change that to my official update day!
These are my thumnails/Key poses/Extremes what ever you choose to call them. I have found a great app for recording slow motion footage called Ubersence, it says its for Sports professionals but I have found it of great use! I recorded my self and others standing up with a rubber duck in hand from the angle that I wanted. I used that as reference to plot the sequence above out.
I started on lined paper so I could use the lines to help keep track of spaceman's proportions. I think it worked quite well and will continue to use this method. I then scanned and cleaned it up in Photoshop, I then plotted them like you see above and wrote what I guessed would work for timing. My timings changed quite a bit as I went along, I updated these in Flash all the time as I was working but not on this image. Finally I saved out every drawing individually and imported the jpegs into Flash to be the start of my animation.
I recently went through and revised my thumbnails, they have been sitting at head height on my wall behind my computer screen. I read through them again and again and, coupled with some great advice about character development, I realised that I could push the thumbnails further. I have tried to include a few more shots that add to his relationship with the duck, he is dependant on the duck and he puts it before everything, in the original thumbnails I don't think that comes across as strong as it could.
In the beginning I have added a shot of him playing with the duck and throwing it up into the air, this will show him paying much more attention to the duck which I don't think he does enough of in the first set. I then changed the Spaceman's reaction to the the duck vanishing, I think all of this could be pushed and heightened a lot more, before I think he was to casual about the ducks disappearance, now he is much more distressed. Finally at the end like the ducks disappearance I tried to amplify their meeting again, so instead of just sitting down by him causally, Spaceman now flops down exhausted and grabs the duck pulling it into him, which I think is much more effective as essentially he has just lost his world and gained it back.
These are my more developed backgrounds for the first scene in my film. I am happy with these, they are unified in their colour now and more naturalistic than the colour comps. I wanted it slightly alien but warm because of the sunset and I think this has worked.
I wanted the landscape to feel slightly inhospitable and baron so I researched a lot of old abandoned futuristic/retro futurism monuments and sculptures, ruins under the sea (lol not Atlantis) to try and get ideas for the shapes of the landscape.
These were all made in Photoshop at HDTV 25 resolution of 1920 x 1080, there is a slight sand texture on the beach and I haven't included the ocean yet as I am planning to create this in After Effects.
So far this is how my colour script stands. You can see from the 1st image of the beach that I settled for a less intense colour palette ( I kept my purple ocean!). It is not what I envisaged in my head but it feels better this way, I think that might mean I'm playing the colour safe. With that in mind I may go back and alter these as the animation progresses, as I did not make alternative colour comps for the images above (except the underwater scene which is no longer neon), and I also haven't planned the sunset between images 1 and 2 which as I've stated in previous posts is a big thing.
So far I'm happy with image 1,3 and 5 being a starting point. Image 2 I'm unhappy with the visualisation of the stark darkness I want to create with the total sunset. I also am not keen on the the amount of blue in image 4 its quite harsh in comparison to the other images, what I am really trying to create is an intense illumination from the moon.
As I stated last post colour is something that doesn't always see as much planning as the animation itself. I think a lot can (and should) be done with the colour and lighting of the film as it is all about a sunset, a moonrise and the total absence both. I think this is a good starting foundation and there is still a long way to go, I will continue to play with and improve upon the overall colour of the piece while I continue to animate it.
This was an eye opener for me, I tend to think more about movement and camera placement rather than colour. I never coloured the original comic, even though when I drew it I knew it was all about the misleading warmth and danger of the sunset, I drew it imagining red. I also wanted to create an alien feel to the world, I thought about having the sea and sand bright unnatural colours. I really wanted a purple sea, I even experimented with making the underwater neon, I researched a lot of coral reefs and the colours in them where amazing... and kind of alien!
I tried colour comping a few variations above, I found it really helpful as I realised that a lot of what I thought didn't feel right when I tried it in the comps, some of the comps began to feel like I was lying about what I was trying to communicate... I'm not sure how else to describe it, it was like I was purposely trying to make a look that I new was superficial. Eventually these calmed down a lot colour wise, I then developed them further into a small colour script as a guide for the film.
This is the inspiration for Luna Shores, my 2011 project A Trip To The Moon. In which a spaceman and his only friend a rubber duck get separated on a desolate planet.
This is not it's original format, it was originally drawn in pencil on a folded up piece of A3 paper to form a small fold out booklet, so the big moon reveal in the last panel was very dramatic as it's huge! I hope I can keep that drama in the animation.
Whilst hunting for all the parts of my original comic I came across these. The top line of spacemen drawings are my original initial sketches form 2011! Underneath are my recent development sketches he has come along way.
If you are wondering about the girl and the duck in the corner I had totally forgot that my original idea for the comic had nothing to do with the spaceman. The rubber duckie was originally meant to be a rock singers good luck charm which she lost on the night of her biggest ever concert, she was going to sacrifice her fame for her friend, the story didn't resonate with me then and it still doesn't today it feels very shallow and stereotypical, even by the end of the thumbnail page layouts of the comic she had turned into the spaceman.
Here are my very rough thumbnail storyboards for Luna Shores. I have kept them rough as the story originates from a comic I drew a few years ago, I started with a good sense of what I am trying to achieve and would like to stay as close to my comic as possible. The original comic 'A Trip to the Moon' as I originally titled it was drawn on paper, I have many A3 photocopies of it but I have no digital copy. I will one day scan and digitise it as I would love to see a comparison of the two side by side.
Some quick images of Spaceman and Duck playing in the cosmos.
The turn around is my first real visualisation of my updated spaceman, his initial design was more of a shape rather than a person. The second set are a collection of character sketches, he seems to have grown legs in these images which I think is for the best.