Viewers: in countries Watching now:
Bring a cast of characters to life. By following the basics principles of animation, you can build characters that interact naturally with their environments, convey realistic emotion, and talk and walk convincingly. In this course, Dermot O' Connor shows how to design a solid character and stage and storyboard your animation before you begin. He'll examine principles like anticipation and squash and stretch, which provide characters with a sense of weight and flexibility, and show you how to animate walk cycles and dialogue. Finally, learn how to thumbnail scenes from start to finish, so you can sketch out the action before you commit to fully rendering it.
These lessons are designed with Flash in mind, but work just as well with any other 2D animation program.
In the last section, I showed you how to animate a fairly generic walk cycle using the contact recoil passing and height point method. So let's see how we can use the same system to create walks that are very unique and personalized and that really have some emotion behind them. This is a notebook, I put some thumbnails into it, and then just colored them in, and so that's what these lines are. And I love thumbnailing in a notebook, because I can control the arcs, I can see how high my guy's head is and how low it goes, and I can check volumes, and so forth. So that's what you're seeing here.
So, the contact position is fairly routine on this top walk. And as you can see here, same pose. Look at the passing position, where that foot's coming out, almost kicking you in the face and his head's moving off in the other direction in depth. And the exact opposite on this, of course, because he has to swing the other way, and his head's coming out to face us and his foot's going off far, far away. And then I worked the recoil and the high point as best as I could around that passing position. So, notice as well the bend of the right leg here and compared to the bend of the right leg on the recoil position, where it's going the other way to really break that limb and make it look fluid.
On the middle walk, it's a little more stable, I think. It's the same attitude towards most of the walk, but I gave him a really, really angry attitude. And I want that to feel like he was furious, that he was stomping along. In the bottom walk, I was just messing around and wanted to try to get a really fluid curvy action on the walk, to see if I could make something that was totally loose and plastic. So anyway, let's see what these look like when you bring them into Flash and time them out on the timeline. So this is the first walk and when I took it into Flash, I did add a few in-betweens by hand.
It involves very roughly sketching them in with the brush tool, so let's have a look at the drawings there. It's on two, so this is really an effective frame rate of 12 frames a second. It's not even anywhere close to as smooth as it could be, but as you can see, it has that classic cartoony feel to it. And you can really sense there's a living vitality to that walk. As that was cleaned up, if you were to use this as reference for a 3D walk, I think you'd be pretty happy with it. Now, I wouldn't expect all of the details to be perfect at this point. There might be errors in the foot placement from frame to frame.
There might be arc glitches, all these can be tweaked and tied down but at this point in the process you're looking for absolute life like quality to the work. Let's have a look at the second one and here he is and he looks angry. So, again if you look at the foot placements is it perfectly smooth, no but it's easy enough to fix that once you have it on the timeline. This would basically be a reference layer for the, for the final animation class, be it in 3D or 2D whatever medium you are working in.
Looking through this frame by frame a little more closely You know, you would want each foot for example to be exactly the same distance from the one preceding it. That would be important so you might see a little errors here. It's not too far out but certainly things like the gap and the momentum of the head from frame to frame. He wouldn't want it to be too sticky and if you look about here, yeah sure it's sticking right there. So you would want to make some changes to the heads on one side or the other, to loosen him up a little bit. And there certainly a big gap, if you look at this one to this one, to here, that's a very big gap, that, that feels a little bit poppy Let's look at that again.
But the important thing is, what we have right now is a character who really feels like he's angry. So you've achieved the main objective. The other issues are technical. And they're just a question of polishing. And on this walk, we have the big draggy leg. It's like his shoe was full of water. He stepped in a puddle. And you can feel it squishing every time he hits the ground. And again, there's a little bit of you know, motion on the head that I don't like. And a second pass would be made over this. Now that I have this reference level, I would simply make a second layer over it. And then tie it down.
And of course now that I have the, the option of actually see it animate as I work. I would then be able to follow my procedures that you saw from the previous section. To really, really nail this. So let's take a look at an acting scene with a walk attached. And in this case we have a man who's just realized like, he's just lost his life savings. So we see him here at the beginning, and then he reacts, and then he goes into his walk, and he starts wailing and crying about his lost fortune. So we have the notes for the under the thumbnails for recoil, passing, highpoint, contact so forth all throughout the walk.
And, once I established the foot positions then I was able to go in and add the acting business of the upper body. And you can see his hands going off into these very dramatic poses he's slapping his head pulling his hair out. So again, let's have a look at this. Okay, so again, we're back in Flash. I cleaned up those thumbnails, and photoshopped them, and then just brought them in and laid them out roughly. And now we have what's called a pose test. This allows us to look at the scene for rough timing. And even though these key frames are six or seven frames apart You can still have a good sense of the timing of the scene.
Looks pretty good. So, then you can start building your animation around that, and you know you're not going to be a million miles away. So there's one last thing to cover very quickly. And that's the female walk, which is slightly different from the male walk. Let me show you the extreme example. So, here's a female body. The main difference between the female and the male body is the hinging. The female shoulders are, wider. Well, wide. Not as wide as the male's, but they're wide relative to the hips, and the elbows slope in. So you have, the joints are pointing inwards towards the body, as opposed to the male, who are sloping out.
Also, the same thing with the legs, which are sloping inwards toward a point. Rather than splayed outwards as you would expect with a male figure. So let's see how this translates in the most extreme hyper-feminine walk that you would hope to see. So the hips swing from side to side, the elbows are mostly pointed inwards, and the thing to notice that's very important are the feet. The feet are on these tracks, this would be the track on a male walk for the right foot, and this would be the track for the left foot In this hyper female walk the right foot hits the left track, they like, they cross over each other.
So that you have to have a point where one crosses over the other and hits the opposite line. So let's zoom out and have a look. Okay. And let's see all three together cause I've made three examples, slightly different. The one on the far left is a more masculine walk, the legs are still crossing over, just not quite as much, and as you can see, the elbows are pointing outwards So she looks more like a John Wayne cowboy walk, she's a little more masculine. And the one in the middle is kind of a hybrid between the two. So that would be the general principle to follow when you're doing a female walk. Be conscious of the fact, that the further you go along to the right side of this method, the more feminine she's going to appear and the more caricature.
So with that, we've covered some personality walks.
There are currently no FAQs about 2D Animation Principles.
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.