Wednesday, 21 May 2008

The Jo Show - Part 2

It may be a bi-product of the stress of long hours I’m having to work in this last stretch, or possibly the anxiety of how well my film will be received come the deadline (4th June…fucking hell that’s close) but I’m feeling strangely melancholy with the absence of Jo, my wingman (or wingwoman...wing-gal?) for this project. Having lost her to the world of gainful employment, where her labours are actually exchanged with currency, for the most part I’m having to slog through the finishing touches on my own. It’s usually been that way when it comes to these types of projects - when producing music I find that the best work is done once the other musicians have left me alone with their contributions to work with. It’s not an ego thing (pinky swear), I’d just assumed that it’d have to be an interminable process to observe. I also get overly-focused and I worry that I come off as curt and irritable as a consequence.
Having Jo, as well as the film’s other helping hands (who I’ll later devote a separate entry to) as a presence has not only been a boone in terms of easing time and labour concerns, but I have also felt myself to be more driven and creative. Despite the stress, which would be inevitable with any MA, the production of this film has been one of the most satisfying experiences of my life to date.
Last month I posted up some line tests that Jo worked on for the Prospective Lay character. She has since made the effort to clean these up herself which again saved me loads of time, and I'm consequently ahead of my production schedule. Interestingly, there's a distinctly different style about the character when Jo works on the full animation shots. The emphasis is more on movement than detail, which is another trick I need to get comfortable with. When the shots runs together I'd wager that nobody would pick up on the difference.

A limited-animation drawing of the Prospective Lay that I drew (left), next to a still from one of Jo's full-animation scenes (right). If you look closely you can see that Jo is more economic with the character detail, letting the movement of the animation speak for itself.

Here are the main shots from the earlier post, now inked-in and coloured.

In the above shots the character's acting is timed to the Duck's dialogue. When both characters are on screen with the audio it plays really well. The same applies to the shot below, where the Hunter and Prospective Lay's body acting interacts fairly smoothly:

Overall my little outsourcing experiment paid off, and for the eight-gajillionth time I'm very grateful for Jo's assistance. I had hoped that she would be able to do more animation between now and the deadline, but as her schedule is getting busy with real work it's not looking like that'll get to happen. But I'm glad she was able to contribute these shots and make her own little mark on the film.

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