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What It's Like To Be Struck With An Idea

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This sums up what it's like when I get an idea.


The idea for this came to my mind during the middle of work this week. My mind was wondering the realm of animations and why I haven't really released any in the last few weeks, and somewhere along the lines this came to mind, and yes, getting this idea at work boosted my work speed (but not video insane. :P), because I wasn't feeling dull and bored anymore, but rather inspired.


Part of my problem in why you haven't been seeing much is that because in the time it takes to set up a scene, the inspiration energy becomes all drained because I've had the idea play over in my head x50 times already, making it seems a bit "meh" when the time comes to animate it, giving me more of a drive to do something more entertaining like playing a game instead of doing something more productive like making animations, or working on Voiced Scripts, etc. It's times like these I need a fish slap in the face with a cup of encouragement, but the only thing is that you guys wouldn't know when this is happening, so oh well (unless you're on my Steam friends list and see me launching games all the time =P)




I can say without a doubt I've had two animations started already, but I've been kinda putting them off for the reason stated above, so, I apologize.

Here's a couple spoiler images if you want to know what the two mentioned animations are about, if you want to keep it a pure surprise don't look!

[1] [2]


Here's an activity log I was doing to help myself keep track of my progress until I... well, stopped animating for a week:


I still tried to be subtle about things as to avoid what spoilers I possibly could, yes I was writing it with expectations of someone else possibly reading it.


Day 5: Released Batty. Finished up the scenery for 50% of the islands. As I was getting so drained of preperation for that other animation (still not near ready to animate), I started to lose a bit of interest.

Day 6: Didn't do much this day except a bit more preparation. At the end of the day I reflected a bit and relized why I wasted so much time doing 'not much' that day, and that I needed to refocus on what made animating fun in the first place. It wasn't making the content (at least not full time), it was doing stuff with it (and as well not sleep depriving myself in working so hard doing so). That night I jotted down some ideas for other animations that I could readily (or near-readily) do at hand in the meantime.


Day 7: Started work on another animation. Got a quick demo animation of the full thing done that day to show off to some people I wanted to get to voice it.


Day 8: Plotted to charge up (sleep debt racking up). I even avoided after-work snacks (finished work at just before midnight). Subconciously I self denied myself the will to go to bed, and stayed up late for no reason doing everything else (like writing this). With the short time remaining I worked a bit more of the scenery on the 'other animation', the myster location now known as Castle Island.


Day 9: Still waiting for a response on voice clips. I went to the stables and improved the lower leg structure of the horses (added bones).


Day 10: Got some voice clips in animation Rocket, started putting them in.


Day 11: Returned to the stables to apply makeup to the horses. As well I finally got the scenery of Castle Island fully complete. It sure does take a while to get 89 objects placed, and they were just rough positions via screenshots and not 100% accurate! Well at least now that it is done I can use the islands for whatever ideas I come up with in the future! :)


Day 12: FINALLY got to start animating on CI (Castle Island), yay! :D Still waiting to obtain a voice actress in the meantime.


Day 13: Made 7 seconds of animation on CI.


-No touchy for 2 days-


Day 16: Got the other half of the voices needed for Rocket clip, added them in.


-Dead Activity-


One week later: I made this thread.




Animation Trivia:

  • The clicking sound effect is from the mouse I currently use. Self recorded yep!
  • I reduced and edited a desk prop I found and as well modified the colour of it so it reflects the look of my desk irl.
  • The reason a waffle picture was used for the picture of inspiration wasn't for any particular reason other than the fact that I'm a bit known for waffling around sometimes. :wffl:
  • There was actually two planned ideas for this animation, and I used bits from both and shortened it out by far. I've gone and italicized the used bits below.

What happens when I get an idea v1

Narrator (my voice): This, is me. This is what I look like when I don't know what to do (see me looking bored at computer).
Narrator: This is what it is like when I get hit with an idea....
>shows me getting an idea and then going insane (using RL's Accelerato boost tune?)*
~One week later~
>shows me looking totally uninspired going into looking bored phase*

What happens when I get an idea v2
>shows me casually using a computer
>suddenly I get an idea followed by me going insane
!!Do the same for the next few scenes, those being:
*at work
*on vacation



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1 hour ago, Xiron said:

Part of my problem in why you haven't been seeing much is that because in the time it takes to set up a scene...


The woe of a Source Filmmaker animator...

...or heck, anyone using any animation software for that matter.


To be honest, I go through the same thing. I've set up entire maps, props and characters, all ready for action, and the session (or 'file') collects dust for all eternity.

I guess this is why the only 'animations' that I publicly release are nothing but a mere "test animation". In-fact, I'm currently working on a decently big project, so we'll see how long that lasts before being ignored forever.



Here is a suggestion (which just popped into my head) for next time you make an animation; Spawn in the characters or objects you need, but only the ones you will be animating. Then, when the animating is complete, clutter the screen to your heart's content. Add the props, particles, lights, etc that only provide visual aid for the scene or background.

I haven't tried this before, so I cannot confirm it works, but it is worth a try, right?

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I don't feel like I'm quite in the scene if some of the larger props are missing though, but it may work. Everything seen in the video here was there when I started animating except for one thing. The miniature Rocket Racer car that falls off the window sill that I added entirely afterwards, the door that slams into the picture causing it to fall off the wall was all additional animations I thought of after the main animation was complete. I thought about maybe adding something that flies by in the back at one point, but by then I was ready to just get the animation over with, so.

Oh and btw, the desk is custom, I edited a model from a prop pack to make it more personalized, so there was some time spent there. I plan to maybe use it again in the future should I revisit "my room" (I've got a few ideas that use it already), so not a complete waist, though my energy level for working on this sure dropped in the mean time.

I really went full force on animating this tonight (everything was animated in one sitting) because I didn't want to let this be dropped so easily.


10 minutes ago, Ben24x7 said:

...or heck, anyone using any animation software for that matter.

Can confirm as my brother use to do a few sprite animations with flash before (and a little bit me to an extent). Scene setup was definitely a time spender.

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I actually don't mind setup all that much, I like finding arrangements that work aesthetically and Tohunga are fun to mess around with. Never worked in 3D though, so that may be a different beast.


I find actual animation to be a bit of a drag at times, though. Particularly when people start talking. And, I mean, all I'm doing is timing head wobbles to subtitles. I can't imagine actually having to sync mouth movements to voice. Though, come to think of it, that's really a separate set of challenges - they way I'm working, the struggle is timing/readability. If you have a voice clip, that's already done for you.

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I don't really mind setup too much either, but when it starts to drag out, that's when it becomes an issue as the idea starts losing its fresh attractive aroma.


Haha, lip syncing isn't too hard for me! All I have to do is switch which texture is on the face which can be done in-program - although sometimes I have to create new custom faces if what I want isn't already made.

As for actual movements for those that don't have faces like minifigures but rather a real mouth, I still don't think it would be super complicated, but what do I know.

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