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Understanding silhouette

From: 2D Animation Principles

Video: Understanding silhouette

In this section, I'm going to show you the principles of the silhouette, Here you can see the animation and I think it's pretty clear that if we pause at And I think you get the idea from that.

Understanding silhouette

In this section, I'm going to show you the principles of the silhouette, and why it's very important to keep a simple outline for your character. So I've made this animation in Flash. And here's the Flash file, if you have access to Flash. If you don't, not a problem. Because I've rendered it out as a scene here. And it's just a regular F file. It should play in whatever media player you have. Here you can see the animation and I think it's pretty clear that if we pause at any point, and I'm just going to randomly tap the space bar, it's quite clear what we're seeing. This is a man shoveling rocks.

It's really that simple, that's the principle. You wouldn't want to have any pause where you weren't entirely sure what's going on. I don't expect every single frame to be a pristine, beautiful silhouette, but you get the idea. The main key pauses such as this one are very, very easy to read. Let's play it a little bit more. And I think you get the idea from that. So let's close that out. And this time I'll show you a static image. And this is a scene showing some poses of walk cycles from a recent project I've been working on.

And this is a very easy principle to demonstrate. As you can see, each of the three characters is in the typical contact pose with their front leg contacting the ground. And if you look at the bottom frame, obviously you can tell that they're walking, but you can also tell even purely in their outline form. There's no mistaking what's happening here. In addition to that, there's no mistaking the emotional stride. These are very confident walk cycles. And if you look at negative spaces, for example, this area here, it's large, clean, easy to read. Even the, the spaces in here between the cape.

The cape isn't cluttered up. And that essentially is the principle of silhouette. So, watch out for your drawings. Think of your drawings as pure black filled areas. And try to keep them strong and and like I said, easy to read.

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Image for 2D Animation Principles
2D Animation Principles

35 video lessons · 6888 viewers

Dermot O' Connor
Author

 
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  1. 1m 42s
    1. Welcome
      51s
    2. Using the exercise files
      51s
  2. 18m 9s
    1. Understanding appeal and design
      4m 3s
    2. Comparing body types
      6m 27s
    3. Understanding silhouette
      1m 52s
    4. Creating gesture drawings
      2m 50s
    5. Tying down the drawing
      2m 57s
  3. 18m 10s
    1. Comparing storyboard styles
      5m 8s
    2. Understanding shot composition
      4m 36s
    3. Demonstrating lighting
      4m 8s
    4. Understanding the 180-degree line
      4m 18s
  4. 13m 8s
    1. Understanding X-sheets (dope sheets)
      3m 25s
    2. Comparing frame rates
      4m 39s
    3. Creating sweatbox notes and preparation
      5m 4s
  5. 18m 42s
    1. Understanding arcs
      7m 38s
    2. Squash, stretch, and volume
      4m 59s
    3. Comparing timing and spacing
      6m 5s
  6. 10m 4s
    1. Using anticipation, overshoot, and settle
      4m 2s
    2. Breaking and loosening joints
      2m 43s
    3. Leading action
      3m 19s
  7. 19m 51s
    1. Understanding primary and secondary action
      4m 14s
    2. Using overlap and follow-through
      6m 0s
    3. Applying lines of action, reversals, and S-curves
      4m 34s
    4. Moving holds and idles
      5m 3s
  8. 15m 52s
    1. Understanding walk and run cycles
      5m 24s
    2. Creating eccentric walks
      6m 50s
    3. Animal locomotion
      3m 38s
  9. 14m 31s
    1. Finding dialogue accents
      2m 42s
    2. Creating dialogue through body movement
      2m 46s
    3. Creating stock mouth shapes
      5m 4s
    4. Using complementary shapes
      3m 59s
  10. 13m 8s
    1. Creating thumbnails
      4m 31s
    2. Comparing straight-ahead and pose-to-pose animation
      4m 37s
    3. Adding breakdowns for looseness
      4m 0s
  11. 2m 9s
    1. Next steps
      2m 9s

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