Cartoon pig character is finished. The pig does not talk in our story, it just eats like a pig. The pig will get bigger as it eats, which will be done by scaling it. I am not sure if it will be a layer scale or just select all the points and scale. Most likely it will be a layer scale as it is easier to do and there is no need for individual points to be different.
cartoon pig afathersdream.com
As you can see I also made some corn for this scene. A red barn and windmill was also made. This scene will be a typical barnyard scene.
As I do these sample scenes I am finding out the more shading you use, the longer it takes to render. It is also a good idea to turn off any unused items that may be in your project as these will render in the background and slow down the process. I did one scene that was about 25 seconds long and it took 5 days to render it. I had rendered it earlier and it was done in about 12 hours, so I could not imagine what was making it take so long. Then you get into, “well it has been working for two days, do I stop it now to check and maybe have to redo the 2 day render time or do I let it roll to the end?” Well I decided to let it work the process and then look at it when it was done. Well after 5 days it was finally done. I then looked at it only to find my main character was missing from the scene, argh! So I checked it out and found that when I had brought in some assets from an earlier animation, it doubled my scene and rendered both. So I now check all the assets before I render and turn off the ones not needed. I also learned the hard way to save just before rendering. I have lost a days work when it locked up during rendering. I know, I should save a copy while I am doing it, but I often forget. I heard they put an auto save in a later version, it is something that is needed.
Here is a Wizard Character I put together in Anime Studio. I really like making characters in Anime Studio. The wizard is a secondary character, however he is in quite a few scenes. In the original story this character was a witch, however we wanted to tone him down as this is a kid’s story. So we changed him into a wizard. Actually we changed him into a magician, however saying magician was hard for our voice actors as they kept stumbling on the word. So he kind of changed into a wizard as it was easier to say ; )
Stock photo companies are a great source of inspiration for characters. Just purchase the rights, and then you can make derivative works inspired off of the design. It is much easier then trying to design from scratch. Some people that is their strength, however some do not have that talent or do not want to take the time. It is kind of like changing your oil. Most people can do the job, however they have others do it as that is what they specialize in. There is a lot of talent out there just waiting to be tapped into your project. Many talented artists would love that you use their artwork in your work. There is a large number of outlets online where you can purchase the rights to use photos, sketches, vector drawings, 3d artwork, backgrounds and the list goes on.
Our character is kind of a folksy, hillbilly type of a wizard. He tries to get things right, but he messes up most of the time. I am not sure if he does it on purpose, or by accident. You will need to follow the story to figure that out : ) His robe is purple as that seems to be the standard color for this character.
Wizard Character afathersdream.com
On another note, I was sad to hear that one of the last remaining munchkins from the Wizard of OZ has past on.
Karl Slover, one of the last surviving actors who played Munchkins in “The Wizard of Oz,” died on Tuesday in a central Georgia hospital. Only 3 of the 124 actors playing Munchkins remain. Slover made 50 dollars a week playing this part. He was fond of saying ToTo the dog made more money then he did on the show.
Well I completed the frog character. I put him in the header with the dog since they are the main characters of the story. The dog talks, however the frog just kind of sits there and looks cute. The story is about a dog who had a friend frog. The dog wants to have another dog like him. So he visits a wizard to have his frog turned into a dog. The story has many turns. Will the dog get his wish? How will it all turn out. Stay tuned for the rest of the story.
Here is a short animation
I am working on the other characters for the story. Generally this kind of thing is already done before the animator begins. However, since this is a one man show, I must get everything together myself. I have several people I run things by and seek their creative input, however when it is all said and done it boils down to what I am able to accomplish. That is a little intimidating. I have never been one to shy away from a challenge, however there is a difference between shying away and just not having what it takes to do something. I am reminded of the time I was going to shear my sheep. Being a farmer, I always look for ways to cut costs as it is so difficult farming these days. I decided that I would shear my sheep. I got all the tools together and then I watched every shearing video I could find on YouTube. They made it look so easy. In less than a minute they would be done. I rehearsed it over and over in my mind thousands of times. I could do it in my sleep. Then the day came. Looking back I feel sorry for the chosen sheep that would be my sacrificial lamb. Well to make a long story short, It took more than 2 hours to shear this one sheep. I was exhausted, the sheep was exhausted and my sheep shearing experiment was forever put to rest. The sheep recovered in a few minutes and was back grazing probably wondering what just happened. I recovered in several days. My pride took a little longer. I now have the greatest respect for sheep shearers. They make it look so easy, but like any skilled trade it takes training to get good at it. My advice to beginning sheep farmers? Either get a hair breed that does not need shearing, or find yourself a good shearer. Once you find your shearer, treat them with the greatest respect. Give them coffee, donuts, breakfast and anything else you can give them to keep them coming back. As they are sure worth it : ) You could not pay me enough to do that again.
So there is a difference in putting your mind to something, and just not having the training to do something no matter how hard you try. As I am making this animation, this is forever in the back of my mind. Will the animation pass muster when I am finished? Will the artwork be good enough? Will the music? I am reminded of a Bible verse in Colossians 3:23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily… That has been my motto for most of my life, and I think it applies here. If you do your best, others will appreciate it. So I will do the best I can do. : )
Dog modeling is pretty well finished now. Below is him sitting and standing. I am still learning and it will take a while. It feels good to finally get a face to the story. I think I will add him to my picture theme. Doing an animation will be a long process, especially as you are learning the tools of the trade. Computers certainly help make it a process that I think is doable. Without them I do not think realistically one person could animate a story as it would just take too long.
A cartoon dog and a frog is what this story is about. I started on the dog first as it seems to be the main character.
Below is the beginning of my dog. I think it will be a beagle type dog. Beagles are one of the most loved dog breeds as they seem to make very good pets. So many pet owners will be able to relate to our little beagle.
Aftathersdream.com cartoon beagle
I started with a basic shape on the head of what I think a beagle looks like. Drawing with anime studio is easy once you get the hang of it. I only had to draw one ear and then copy it to the other side.
Aftathersdream.com cartoon beagle
Here I added the pupils of the eyes. I wanted the eyes to be big and round to give the lovable puppy dog look
Aftathersdream.com cartoon beagle
Now the whites of the eyes. I figured out if you make one eye first, then you can copy and scale the other eye to the right size .
Aftathersdream.com cartoon dog
Now the eyebrows, hopefully they will help me to give the dog more expressions.
aFathersdream.com cartoon beagle
Now a cute little nose. Our beagle will have a short snout.
afathersdream.com cartoon dog
Here is my completed head. I think it turned out pretty good. I don’t really like the sour look on the face, but I can correct that later with the mouth shapes I will using for lip sync. Anime studio allows you to set shading for each element which helps to give it that 3d look. I like both the flat look [without shading] and this look, but I think I will leave the shading in for now. I can always take it out later. Anime studio allows you to define a style, so you can make changes to colors easier. You can also define shading, so changing that will not be too difficult later if I decide to.