Wednesday, April 27, 2011

quick peek

Clip 4

I animated this in Harmony using both straight ahead traditional drawing and some tweening Flash type tricks

of course you couldn't get lines like this in Flash-not easily anyway. Once I got the whole scene set up and the main drawings done, most of the rest were drawn clean in 1 shot with no real roughing needed

I moved the head up and down using the camera peg in Harmony on a 12x beat. the whole cartoon is structured to a 12x 4/4 tempo

the legs are animated straight ahead, 6x per step, 2 steps per beat

the mouths were animated mostly straight ahead and moved up and down with the pegs as the head

the eyes are a combination of straight ahead drawing, with some shrinking and growing using scaling and tweens for accents

I put the pupils on a separate layer from the eyes so I could overlap the accents and actions

I think when I am totally confident with using the program I will hardly ever need to rough anything again, because it's so easy to draw confident lines. Drawing confident shapes right off the tip of the stylus is harder and I'm not so confident with that yet. Not as confident as with a pencil but it's coming

That's why I'm hoping that Harmony will eventually allow animation be to be done in the country again when animators can just whip out finished animation that's already 90% clean

There is one Korean studio that has Harmony but they take everything that was drawn directly on a cintiq (here in LA) print it out then animate it on paper and scan it all back into Harmony-which seems like a complete waste to me. Might as well just finish it here and leave it all in the computer.



diego cumplido said...

This stuff you've been doing lately using Harmony looks great, I love the design and the animation.

BlakeJ said...

Whoa man, I am excited to see these! I'll have my "dead days" next week, so it will be the perfect time to see these!

Steven M. said...

Great animation. I'll be looking out for it next week.

Mak said...

Looks great, John! Can't wait to see the whole thing.

I think it's great that this program is working out so well for you, and I hope you're right about it bringing an end for the need to export. I'm a little sad that traditional hand-drawn stuff isn't feasible anymore, but this really does seem to be a nice compromise (especially since it IS hand-drawn, just with a tablet).

And if it will bring good cartoons back, then that's what's most important.

SunshineFox said...

Looking pretty amazing, cant wait to see the finish product when its on TV.

Curious what the "ear" things on the back of the head are doing though?

Thiago Levy said...

It looks sick! Next week when?

Archie said...

Do you think software like this would encourage executives to make more cartoons? Or are the production values still to high?

Damiano D said...

Thanks for the insight, John! Do you think with innovations like this, animation will be essentially cheaper to produce? And if so, make it easier to create independent animation?

John Rouse said...

I found that 'big-head' Pink Panther style hilarious when I was a kid. I used to draw them all over my book-covers in school. The 'dick-chin' and those goofy ears are cartoon gold.
I would rush out and buy a copy of Harmony today if I wasn't so goddamn broke from buying a new computer. I'm stuck for the time being with the Corel software, (which sucks ass) that came with my stylus pad, or open-source stuff like Gimp...but on the bright side...the upgrade in processor speed is awesome. I feel like a caveman in a spaceship.

Zoran Taylor said...

Call me nuts, but I'm holding out hope that exporting sticks around just long enough for me to get good enough at cartooning to bash out a real nice layout and send it to the almighty BOB & KELLY!!! That must be like being touched by the #2 lead of Jesus.

J C Roberts said...

Looks really sharp. He has a bit of Kirk Douglas to him.

I don't see anything I couldn't have done in Flash (I just mean the linework), but I agree with the "not easily" factor. I'd have to do plenty of fiddling and fixing to get it that smooth. I sure wouldn't mind a program that allowed me to get cleaner lines without having to sculpt them.

While I don't begrudge the Korean studios the opportunity to gain employment by helping the mighty USA make cartoony shows, it still bugs me that there's so little room for artists here to find work. Yeah, I know all the reasons for it, but I really would have liked a career in the industry, and not a mail center job and an animation "hobby" on the side. I'm sorry to keep cluttering up the comments with my bellyachin', but that's largely what's kept me from trying to enter the field. Seems you have to either be at the top, or live in Korea to be part of it (or be a barely known internet solo act in your spare time).

All that aside, it's great to see some new animation coming. I guess I'll have to take a look at Adult Swim to find it, even though they'd lost me a while ago with all the live action stuff. Every cable channel feels the need to abandon their identity eventually and just do what everyone else is doing.

Trevor Thompson said...


J C Roberts said...

I just noticed one of the tags for this post was indeed "Kirk Douglas". Makes my little observation before seem kind of clueless, but since I hadn't noticed that before commenting then I guess it just means the intention comes across well.

James Sutton said...

Looks great John. As a frequent swimmer I'll probably end up seeing this.

It's also a pleasure to see your work in action again. Cheers!

J.R. said...

Hey, John...I have a question. I love the idea of musical, metronomic timing in's what made a lot of the old ones so cool. I also enjoy listening to a lot of oddball music, which is sometimes in a meter other than 4/4. Has anyone ever timed a cartoon to a compound meter...say 12/8 or and odd meter like 7/8 or 5/4? I think that, in capable hands, a cartoon could be made to be funnier with an odd-beat score in places. I'm thinking some of the Carl Stalling scores have a triplet-swing and some of the Mancini stuff in Pink Panther has some jazzy that something the animators have to think about, or do they just smack it together and see if it works?

Brett W. Thompson said...

Wow, awesome!! I love it!! Thanks for sharing this :) I want to see the whole thing in the future!

K-T said...

Who did the voice, John? Is it you?!

Thiago Levy said...

Did you see Kirk Douglas last Academy Awards? Old Kirk must be turned into cartoon!

chris said...

Still looks very limited and flash looking if you ask me. Especially if you focus on something like the stilted leg movement. But at least its got alotta style. Does Adult Swim just not give you the budget or what? Is it really very expensive to make a 10 second bumper look as fluid as that intro you did for Pick of Destiny?

kurtwil said...

"cyntique" = cintiq ? Those LCD/Tablets have been around a while and can be a bit tricky to draw on as the hand covers a lot of screen detail during drawing. But it's presently the best way for an artist to draw directly into a computer.

These posts are enjoyable and hopefully we'll be able to see some of the final product without having to tune into Adult Swim (I ditched watching TV years ago).

Peggy said...

so yeah i'm doing some rough animation in harmony's baby sister toon boom studio

and holy shit john, i just changed the color of all my rough drawings, while the thing was playing it back, and they all changed to match. this is what computers are supposed to let me do: magic.

god, so many hours wasted struggling with flash by everyone who got used to working in it when it was the only thing available. now i see why you had this series of posts with you pointing at all the amazing things harmony can do.

and for the beginner? sheeiit, this is $200 vs. flash pro's $600. they seem to have discontinued the 'simple' version of flash.