Media Blog, VCD302

VCD203 Blog Post 5- Process and behind the scenes

My project ‘Call of the Wild’ is based on a book written by Jack London in 1903 and set in the Alaskan Gold Rush in the 1890’s. One challenge of mine was simplifying the designs, as elaborated in my previous blog post.

Another big issue of this project was time restraint. Although the restraints can also help to keep me in check to complete the project, it can also hurry the final project, especially when everything is hand drawn. It can create crunch, procrastination or all nighters, which I didn’t want to do. My solution to this problem to manage my time was to duplicate frames. People watching the video probably will not have to look too closely to see that some frames of the dogs look the same but in different scenes. Duplicating frames but changing them a little is the biggest way for me to save time, as I do not have to spend more times drawing and it can instead be spent on editing. In reality, I drew probably around 60 dog frames rather than 70 full drawings. The backgrounds were also done the same way. A snow landscape doesn’t need to be filled with details to be recognisable, so I reused the snow backgrounds a lot in my animatic. Since the summer Alaska scenes (green trees etc.) were short, I put more effort into making it recognisable than the snow scenes. I had some duplicates in there are well, but not as much as the snow. In all, I probably drew around 27 backgrounds for the entire animatic.

I have a lot of storyboarding and completed frames to show. Thanks to Procreate’s automatic time-lapse replay function, every stroke that I made creating the animatic is available. Here is a short section of the ‘speedpaint’ showing my drawing process (Slow video speed to 0.25), as well as the sketch version of my project that I presented.

There hasn’t been any drastic difference in my project development, my timeline that I outlined at the beginning is pretty much the same. Since I sketched everything beforehand to present at the Week 9 Presentation, everything was pretty much locked in at that point and I had to proceed with it if I wanted to make the deadline.

The only alterations that I have made were cosmetic because of the time limit of 4 weeks. I think my drawings are quite amateur and cartoonish, and I would have liked to go with a more semi realistic style had I been given all the time in the world, but it would have also been a lot more work. I was also planning to have the Buck and Spitz fight scene where they chase the rabbit at night. However, it was too much of a headache to change the colour palette for a single scene, so I left it as daytime. But this way also works, as it looks more cohesive than just changing day/night cycle. I go back and forth between selecting and implementing (according to the Ambrose and Harris 7 steps for design). Even though I may have all of the sketches set in stone, I have gone back and tidied up or redone a background so that its implementation is more recognisable. One example is going back to add blood to John Thornton (The man with the big brown hat in the animatic), to make it more clear that he was dead.

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