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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.
I've set up this very simple rig in Flash using the Bones Tool. Now, if you're using CC Flash, be warned that they don't have the Bones Tool in CC anymore. But it's in all the previous versions. It's a pretty crude tool, but it's quite handy for doing solid basic animation like this. So, what we have here is essentially a biped figure setup, so I can show you some basic principles of how we make the characters move in a way that's sort of more interesting than normal.
So, what we have is a scene where the guy reaches for an object. And, I hate to say it, but you will actually see scenes on television animated like this. I have seen them. So, how do you go past this to something that's a little more interesting? Well, you certainly want to get from here to here if your director's given you a job of he reaches for a cup on the shelf. So, let's look at something with just a few more keys in it to make this thing work. We still have our start frame and we still have our stop frame. What we have now, however, is an anticipation into this pose, and then an overshoot into this pose, before he settles into the end pose.
And what this looks like, is that. Which is about a world away from what we were seeing in the earlier version. And all we had to do was to add a dip and then a slight slowing to this anticipation before he overshoots the final pose. So this key is really pretty much the same as this key. I just pulled it very slightly towards the right. I moved him slightly off-balance and then had him slow into the end pose. That's it. It really is that simple, anticipation, overshoot, and settle.
And I can give you another example here. This would be from a fight scene. And in this case, we have anticipation and punch. Let's go into this rig so we can see the keyframes. We have the start pose, and he comes down, to pull up into the final anticipation hold. We can hold this image as long as we like, and then bam. This is the overshoot frame right here. Then he settles. So you go a little bit past the point at which you want to settle into. And this is particularly good for really radical violent actions.
And the greater the overshoot, the more force it'll feel like it has. So that really feels like you put a hole in the wall. Exactly the same method, and you see how few keyframes are required to achieve this effect. This is a fully animated scene that I did some time back and it has a similar principle. Let's actually go into the symbol, so we can see the keys. And now I can break it down for you. We have our start pose, and then each of these vertical stacks represents one of the major key actions. So he goes from his start pose, down into a slight anticipation to the main move, which takes him into the main anticipation.
So, this is a baby anticipation into the big anticipation. We hold this for a few frames. And we have a nice line of action. A big C curve on the figure. Bam. And then we go from this. Yet another anticipation. This is an anticipation after an anticipation. And then huge hit from this point to this point. There is no in between from here to here. And this is the other beauty of a really powerful anticipation. It cues the eye. It actually telegraphs to you something big is going to happen.
So you don't even have to show it, the audience simply feels it. So then he overshoots. His body does, his hands are stuck in the ground they, they have nowhere to go. His shoes and his hat overshoot, and then he settles. Let's look at that again. So there you see the importance of this very simple principle. And I encourage you to apply it wherever and whenever you can.
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