Promo Kit: Evaluation

For this project I think my strengths laid more on the written half of the brief. Although it did prove to be quite challenging extending what I wanted to say into 1250 words. I think I could of touched on the criteria of talking about animated characters and their connection to the audience but that plus my research would of over capped the word limit I think.

The drawing half I am not 100% pleased with. I think I could of presented it better if I had maybe done a poster of the evolution of man but twisting it so it was more like the evolution of dance. It would of shown what my idea is about more and the variation in styles. It also would of maybe given my artist skills just a little bit more justice than the animation but I think that the idea of a interactive web banner was and still is a better format of commercialising my project. Sure it wasn’t done beautifully, nor was it 100% coherent in what I wanted to say. It could of definitely have been better with more text, but I think the idea behind it is what it’s supposed to represent.

A lot of the possibilities, problems, and solutions were included in my Idea development post that I don’t think were as heavily inputted into my end plan. I think that the plan should of addressed more of them, or at least discussed more of the solutions being used.

Time management was a big one on this, that and deciding what I wanted to begin with. I spent a fair amount of time creating concept art and idea sketches for my initial idea that it left me not a lot of time when I changed my mind. I also could of spent more time on the animation/web banner and less time on the written work, although I do think my written work covered a lot more criteria’s.

Promo Kit: Web Banner

This is a super rough version of what I would like to be produced as a web banner but it’s a fairly okay example of what I roughly want.

The reason it’s 300×600 is because it’s the most common web banner format. There are dozens of other format sizes though, most example are shown here: https://www.stefanmaescher.com/top10-banner-sizes/ 

Here they talk about which banner formats are used for what and what kind of popularity each one has amongst the audiences they’re aiming for.

Promo Kit: Plan

The Idea and Marketing methods :

My final year animation will be a music video with animated characters taking turns to dance to the music. Each character is different to one another and has a unique style of dancing to the music based on their designs and characteristics. This will open the project up to outsourcing and working with other animators when producing it and possibly in the future if it’s popular enough. The music will be composed as a collaborative piece, using both classical and digital music. I aim to work with students in other departments/courses on this project as an encouragement to other uni students or tutors that see our short film to do the same. I also hope this will broaden the audience of artists we touch and if successful enough I think this would be a great uni challenge. Encouraging animators to create a small ten seconds worth of animation in collaboration with one another. One way I thought the animation and challenge could be pushed is through social media and other popular online websites like YouTube. The way we would advertise the film would be by using animated web banners. Each banner would feature a different character, from the original animation, dancing on to your screen and advertising the challenge as well as the animation. A lot of web banners now days come in various shapes and sizes so that will cater to the fact we have a lot of different styles and character designs. This will also allow our animators to have a wider choice in how they want to present their characters when advertising the animation.

Web banner’s have been evolving as well as art mediums and I think having an interactive animation will definitely grab the audiences attention. A lot of banners feature mini games within their ad, involve the mouse interacting with the ad’s assets, or allow the user to click and activate animations in the ad. For example we could have the characters dance and the user could click a judge panel to hold up their cards. Even just a small animation advertising the project will be better than anything.

The target Audience of the product and advertisement methods:

The target Audience will be Uni students, artist’s, as well as the general public, but the projects main goal of focus will be to inspire young artists to express and communicate their idea’s and skills with one another. The good thing about having multiple styles in a light upbeat context that makes sense for them to all be there, is that the audience won’t feel too disconnected and we can hit a wider range with the target audience because we’ll have a decent amount of diversity in styles that will apply to most people on the preference spectrum. This is why I think having a social network element to the advertisement will be important. The hashtag of the challenge and music video will help spread it’s popularity through social networks like Tumblr (which is popular amongst youth and artists), Twitter (Popular amongst the general public and even celebrities), YouTube (another keen platform for artists of all kinds, as well as the youth of today) and Facebook (which has an extremely strong net of artists and mix of the general public. It, as well as twitter, has started actively using hashtags to spread trends quickly).

I will also explore other avenues of spreading a challenge like this. Social media challenges are very common and popular so there are a lot of avenues to explore when it comes to advertising them. Vlogging ones experience is very popular now, kellogg’s crunchy nut released a advert and sponsored popular vloggers/youtbers challenging others to eat cereal in bizarre places or situations. They used the hashtag TastesTooGood so that everyone entering and those interested could view each others videos doing this challenge. Chupa Chups a lollipop company also sponsored many youtubers like Dodie Clark, aka doddleoddle, to advertise their company by creating videos for them. Like song covers. Dodie’s cover of I want candy’ for Chupa Chups got 724,557 views on Youtube alone, not to mention it was advertised on many other websites like Facebook.

Exploring the use of music video’s by the mainstream media and independent artists:

Animated music video’s are extremely popular now and a lot of company’s as well as big businesses have used animation to advertise their products. Coca cola released a small music video in Brazil advertising their brand with stylised rotoscoped animation to accompany it (Coca-Cola Brasil. Funk e Repente da Parada. 2014). It did a great job of including various forms of art whilst including a very urban aesthetic to it. I think a lot of independent artists now days have a good understanding of modern culture and have taken that and produced some amazing animations in collaboration with musicians. For example (Five Second Story: Dance. 2015) and (Ba Beep Ba Bo dance animation.2014) both show great understanding of animation synching with music, both show cultural relevance with either choice in music or colour/style, together in a single project they could be pretty popular. One has over 19k views and the other over 2k because they’re using elements of social interests (things that are popular in todays society). A good example of this is a video/group called MEGALIZER. They have produced two video’s, one gathering 12.7k views (MEGALIZER.2015) and the other reaching 228k (MEGALIZER II.2015). These are probably the closest I came by that relates to my idea and it’s very popular, it featured in few articles on CartoonBrew (2015), Fubiz(2015), and animatedreview (2015). It was also hand picked by Staff Pick, which is Vimeo’s home page for their most popular video’s that they “really, really love”. I think their success lyes in their variation in designs that appealed to a wide audience, as well as they’re use of modern choreography and music. One of the biggest examples I could find that included such a big collaboration of artists was an animation called Dir Cut (2016 AICP Sponsor Reel – Dir Cut. 2016). We had already seen commercial use of CG and MoCap with London 2012’s Cadbury adverts (Enjoy the Olympic Moment with Cadbury Dairy Milk. 2012) but RSA really showed what CG can look like without restrictions. RSA made this video for the AICP awards that celebrate global creativity in commercial production.  The video got over three million views alone on vimeo and 931,419 on youtube, I couldn’t find any hard evidence of it but i’m pretty sure it was also featured on TV for a while. It did a great job of showing creativity within the industry whilst being simplistic and appealing to masses with popular cultural and social elements, like the song choice and the dance style. 

Not many people realise but big companies take inspiration from a lot of these indie sensations for example Thought of you (Thought of You. 2010) was an extremely popular animation of its time and inspired the google animation celebrating Martha Graham’s 117th birthday (Martha Graham’s 117th Birthday.2011) which a lot of people loved. My hope in inspiring so many indie artists to collaborate with one another is so that the challenge can touch the mainstream media/market and show the people what kind of art can be produced when we work together. Also hopefully this will help engage bigger companies to interact with indie artists.

References:

YouTube. (2017). I want candy – cover | ad. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQPwIRcEUnY [Accessed 12 Jun. 2017].

Kingdom, L. (2017). Crunchy Nut – Crunchy Nutter by Leo Burnett London – Television. [online] AdForum.com. Available at: https://www.adforum.com/creative-work/ad/player/34543886/crunchy-nutter/crunchy-nut [Accessed 12 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2014). Coca-Cola Brasil. Funk e Repente da Parada.. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/112729671 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2011). Google – Martha Graham. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/23562061 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2015). Five Second Story: Dance. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/126496147 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2014). Ba Beep Ba Bo dance animation. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/104509416 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2010). Thought of You. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/14803194 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Google.com. (2017). Martha Graham’s 117th Birthday. [online] Available at: https://www.google.com/doodles/martha-grahams-117th-birthday [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Method Design ~ Motion & Direction. (2017). AICP – 2016 Reel – Dir. Cut. [online] Available at: http://design.methodstudios.com/portfolio/aicp-2016-reel [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2015). MEGALIZER. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/125671045 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Vimeo. (2015). MEGALIZER II. [online] Available at: https://vimeo.com/125508172 [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Review, A. (2015). Megalizer II. [online] Animatedreview.com. Available at: http://www.animatedreview.com/2015/04/megalizer-ii.html [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Fubiz Media. (2015). Megalizer II Animation. [online] Available at: http://www.fubiz.net/2015/04/22/megalizer-ii-animation/ [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

Amidi, A. (2015). ‘Megalizer II’. [online] Cartoon Brew. Available at: http://www.cartoonbrew.com/cartoon-brew-pick/megalizer-ii-112190.html [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

YouTube. (2012). Enjoy the Olympic Moment with Cadbury Dairy Milk. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaFBYCuVmRA [Accessed 14 Jun. 2017].

 

Promo Kit: Idea Dev

I decided to change my idea of having a story element to the music video and instead stage it more like a challenge amongst artists. The base of the idea is to have multiple characters take turns on screen dancing for 10 seconds or more. Each character with their own design and dance style. This opens the project up for potential collaborations with other artists without destroying the flow and concept of the animation. It could also be an opportunity for animators like myself to broaden their skill set and experiment with different styles or mediums of animating.

I would very much like to collaborate with other artists when it comes to animating and character designing but I would also like this project to open to all artists. So I think collaborating with musicians and even choreographers or just those that like to express themselves and dance, would benefit the overall animation entirely.

When I mentioned this being a challenge I didn’t only mean it being a challenge to connect with other artists, I want to make this animation to spread through social media and see other uni’s or independent artists collaborate with one another in a similar fashion. I think the best way of going about this is through social advertisement. This kind of method works extremely well when working with the social norm but not what we consider the social norm. I’m talking more about the sub culture of the internet, sensations and trends that spike attention or are generally used by those on the internet. For example I would use a common social hub like Facebook, Youtube or Twitter as a platform, use a popular method of spreading my message like a hashtag, and then try to advertise my project with the social groups within the website that may be interested e.g. artists that are interested in the mediums we have used or that use them.

I will also explore other avenues of spreading a challenge like this. Social media challenges are very common and popular so there are a lot of avenues to explore when it comes to advertising them. Vlogging ones experience is very popular now, kellogg’s crunchy nut released a advert and sponsored popular vloggers/youtbers challenging others to eat cereal in bizarre places or situations. They used the hashtag TastesTooGood so that everyone entering and those interested could view each others videos doing this challenge. Chupa Chups a lollipop company also sponsored many youtubers like Dodie Clark, aka doddleoddle, to advertise their company by creating videos for them. Like song covers. Dodie’s cover of I want candy’ for Chupa Chups got 724,557 views on Youtube alone, not to mention it was advertised on many other websites like Facebook.

So maybe I’ll have this animation in a selfie POV style where a camera is passed around by each character or maybe someone is filming them almost like how people passing by stop to film street performers. I think that’ll give the animation more relaxed and socially common elements but it may be difficult for others to replicate so I’ll have to think about the way the animation is presented for sure. I may also want to look at other advertising avenues on social media like web banners or even by incorporating social humour like meme’s but I’ll consider the negative aspects i.e. Web banners are often associated with bad links/viruses unless they’re produced on a reliable website and conducted in a relaxed, reliable and professional manner. Meme’s are definitely a way of spiking viral popularity but are very temporary and people may not take it all that seriously.

References:

YouTube. (2017). I want candy – cover | ad. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQPwIRcEUnY [Accessed 12 Jun. 2017].

Kingdom, L. (2017). Crunchy Nut – Crunchy Nutter by Leo Burnett London – Television. [online] AdForum.com. Available at: https://www.adforum.com/creative-work/ad/player/34543886/crunchy-nutter/crunchy-nut [Accessed 12 Jun. 2017].

Promo Kit: Initial Idea

The idea is a story like music video to go to the song  Kitchen Door by Wolf Larsen. The story will be based on a young female vagabond. The story will show her gradual progression as a person through her journeys across a fantasy land. She finds an artefact of a hero and tries to follow in his footsteps on becoming a stronger person, a more loved person, and most importantly someone she herself can admire.

I’m thinking there could be a mentor/father daughter relationship between the two even though they have never met and that she only knows him through whatever information she gathers on her journeys. Eventually she reaches where it all started and you see the drastic change she has made.

This story could shoot off into a comic series or future animated series so there’s possibilities for it’s future use. Maybe not with the musician but it could definitely be a nice twist on a trailer and it would definitely set the scene for what kind of atmospheric music to expect and what kind of character development could be made.

In my next post I will go over the lyrics and make a roughly drafted story detailing the underline message and also talking about what art styles I will take inspiration from. (I already have three in mind so i’m pretty excited).

 

Project 3: Live Brief: Evaluation

(still needs to be proof read)

This project has proven itself challenging for everyone individually but together I feel we have strengthened and widened one another skills and abilities. We started this project very well, discussing ideas, what animation techniques would be most effective as a team, and who would be able to handle each roll best and how one another could benefit each other in those rolls. So we decided on After effects because that would be an animation software we could all use, some better than others but that’s why we researched and helped one another by teaching each other what we had learnt i.e. after learning how to rig characters I was able to give Anthony the spliced up assets to a character I had made and show him how to rig the character. Although he was only able to rig the one character, this did save me time and allowed me to focus on the others. This also helped him understand the rigs so that he could animate more effectively. I also made notes as I learnt which made sharing information amongst the group quicker i.e. hotkeys/shortcuts for executing actions and what dimensions we’re using for scenes and characters. Generally we kept most information verbal though, asking each other constantly on what improvements could be made to either the script, scenery or characters. Multiple changes were made, some even mid process but they were necessary to achieve our clients expectations. For example our clients wanted the script changed to include more information which in turn lead to new character to be implemented (the nurse in red scrubs). Multiple changes were made to our background and without a doubt I don’t regret asking Kia to redo the backgrounds. Her outcome the second time round was drastically better after getting to understand illustrator. We also made changes to many scenes and transitions after the script change but we managed to pull our heads together and come up with a suitable outcome. To handle those easier Anthony took the liberty of learning premier pro a bit more and editing the scenes already completed, whilst Kia took over one of his scenes.

So a over-cap, I handled the art direction (Character design, Colour schemes, Storyboarding, Creating and rigging the characters, and Animating), Anthony covered more of the written side (Scripting, exchanging information with the Client, documenting progress, Audio and editing), and Kia also helped oversee some of the art aspects (Recreating the background in Illustrator, Animating, Voice recording, and Drafting the initial script). These were our general rolls but we were all able to help or contribute constructive criticism amongst one another.

In terms of timing, initially we started very strong. There were a few hiccups i.e. we had everything need for the presentation except a finished storyboard. Fortunately they weren’t too bothered, liked our idea as well as designs and organised another meeting with them and the children soon after. We were able to produce the storyboard along with a simple animatic to present in time and it went very well although they did ask us to add more specific information which lead us to adding another character and more to the script. Afterwards our pace did slow down slightly due to the animation process waiting on me to recreate all of the characters spliced up and rigging them but this did allow the others to brush over everything. Making sure the script was nicely put together, the background assets were all completed without size complications(which was an issue that was fixed in that time), and to have the audio put together enough to animate off of. Our final production shamefully wasn’t fully produced at it’s best by the uni deadline due to some scenes causing issues and taking longer to animate than anticipated. Although our clients are okay receiving the animation whenever and are happy for us to take longer to perfect it, I am annoyed at myself for not giving myself and the team longer to make the changes we made. I didn’t anticipate the issues occurring with the rig and how long it would take to fix them (some rigs didn’t work well with just three pins in each limb, some limbs were needed to produced as separate PNG’s so that they layered behind certain objects, and most of the limbs didn’t work being layered behind the body, etc.). Nor did I acknowledge how long it would take to animate a walk cycle in my final scene. We did produce an animation on time but not a fully complete version.

If I could go back now I would love to reassemble the rigs and the spliced layers for them. It would cut down on animation time tenfold and allow smoother actions without distorting limbs too much/at all. Going into a project next time involving after effects now, would be much easier knowing what works and how it works. No more composition size issues, character issues, and animating issues. I would though like to learn more on how to create characters and assets easily and quickly in After Effects straight away, instead of having issues with size and file management/transfer with photoshop. I would also have liked to produce my designs and storyboarding quicker so that in the future I have more to present and receive feedback earlier on in the process. In order to achieve that I think I should draw more often in pen to increase consistency, as rough as possible to produce more but with a larger range, or within a time limit to increase speed. Maybe I should even start trying to create my characters straight off in the software we’re using to animate. Speeding the design process and giving room for testing the animations assets, I think will allow a more consistent work flow amongst colleagues and with the software in general further down the line.