Saturday, February 24, 2007

Roughly Speaking

I have a rough cut (extremely rough) of the squirrel animation for you all to see. It''s not even 50% done, really, but I thought i would put together what I had done and give you guys a peek.

Friday, February 23, 2007

that Sync-ing feeling

I'm definitely a procrastinator- I haven't gotten any further on my animation, at least as far a finished frames go, but i have done a bit of doodling trying to come up with appropriate mouth shapes to fit the short bit of dialogue that the squirrel has. I had drawn some ideas before, but now that I've listened to it about a billion times, I am beginning to pick up some of the nuances of the expressions, hopefully this means that the end result will be more believeable cartoon acting- the goal is to have it look like that cartoon is saying the words, not doing a shoddy Britney Spears Lip-Sync.

The first pic is of my initial impressions, along with some unused ideas for funny actions during the squirrel's coughing fit. The second pic is of my most recent interpretations. and as an added bonus, here is a revised color scheme for my wasp characters.

Monday, February 19, 2007

No profit grows where is no pleasure ta'en

EDIT: this evening over dinner, I scribbled out some poses to go with the Shakespearean dialogue.I was thinking as I drew these characters that it might be fun to use them to animate some dialogue from shakespeare. In particular, I was thinking of this passage from Taming of the Shrew, between Petruchio and Kate, from Act 2, Scene 1:

Come, come, you wasp; i' faith, you are too angry.
If I be waspish, best beware my sting.

My remedy is then, to pluck it out.
Ay, if the fool could find it where it lies,
Who knows not where a wasp does wear her sting? In her tail!

In his tongue!
Whose tongue?

Yours, if you talk of tails: and so farewell.
What, with my tongue in your tail?
nay, come again,Good Kate;
I am a gentleman!
That I'll try!

She strikes him.

Sunday, February 18, 2007


i have a tendency to draw things small, then when i try to go over them with ink, i lose all the subtlety of the lines and forms. I took the drawing of the wasp i drew saturday, blew it up this afternoon and went over it again in pencil to recapture some of those more subtle lines, and to improve the forms that make up the character. then i took another drawing i did this morning of a female wasp and did the same thing with her. i think they both look much better now.

Get the Lead Out

Today I will attept to answer the decades-old question, "What happens when 3 cartoonist have to share a single sheet of paper and one pencil and pen?"

This happened yesterday- I, my 14-year-old brother Jake, and our friend Elijah (17) all contributed to this cartoon Melee. We took turns with the pencil, adding to, changing, and building on the drawing you see here. Then we used a pen in similar fashion to clean up the drawing.Oh, and here as a bonus is another drawing that just kind of "happened" yesterday as I sat at the kitchen table doodling. The pencil version was better, because this type of paper seems to have some kind of aversion to ink.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Compose Yourself

The last time tried to compose any kind of music was when i was in Much Ado About Nothing in college, playing the role of Balthazar, a servant and minstrel of less-than-dubious skill. in the play, there is a scene where he is called upon to sing a song, and he does so, much to the chagrin of those listening. Naturally, the original text has the lyrics, but does not delineate what the tune would be, so mr. Smith, the professor directing the play, asked me to just come with a tune on my own, so i found an empty practice room with a piano and plunked out a simple tune, and wrote it out, then, since i didn't play guitar had another cast member teach me the 4 basic chords i would need to know in order to accompany my I caterwauling. He even taught me some basic finger-picking technique, and with a couple week's practice, i soon knew the song backwards and forward, could play the chords with the guitar over my shoulder or even upside down with the wrong hands. Some 3 years later, i still remember those 4 chords, even though i forget which ones they were- i think it was D, A, G, and one other one. Dag. Since then, i have not set pen to a piece of sheet music once, except occasionally to turn the page in a piece i was playing that had been written by someone else.

TODAY, however...

I came up with a pleasant tune to play over the title cards for the Squirrel scene. I haven't written it down yet, or recorded it at all yet, but it's been stuck in my head all day- i've been whistling, humming, yodeling, squeaking, and squawking it incessantly, and even came up with some optional lyrics that would fit well with it, serving as an effective undercutting of the simplitically sweet tune with slightly tasteless words.

I don't know that i will actually use any of this or not, but here for your criticism or amusement are the original, unedited lyrics:

Dennis Squirrel,
He's a loopy guy!
When he talks he
Might spit in your eye!
Dennis Squirrel,
He's an acorn fan
When he wants grub
He's always got a plan.
Dennis Squirrel,
He's a silly git,
'Cuz all his plans are
Worthless as spit!

as soon as i write down the tune, and come up with some harmonizing notes, i may post it on here. or maybe not- it depends if i want to embarrass myself with my lack of skills in musical notation and composition.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Mc Art

a couple years ago, when I used to work at McD's, word somehow got around that i could draw (probably because of all the evil caricatures i did of managers, customers, and fellow employees), so one of the managers asked if i could draw some pictures to put on safety posters. these were the results.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Titular Nomenclature, AKA Insert Titles Here

I though I might facetiously make titles for the 13-second animation that I am working on, which would end up nearly doubling the total running time of the "Short Short." :-D
If I did this, they would be hand-lettered and painted, old-school style. Here are the sketches I did of the proposed titles.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Off the Cough

I finally got a few spare moments this week to spend on my animation, so now I am about 50% done. I did about 50 frames this week, inbetweens and all, then after I was sure it was moving smoothly, I went back and did some corrections on some rough spots, and cleaned-up the first 153 frames of what will end up being about 313 total drawings. (that's about 13 seconds, in case you were trying to do the math in your head) Here are a couple of frames to peak your curiosity.