Stop Motion Animation Trail Run

Research 12th January 2017

Today I did my first ever attempt at a stop motion animation. It was a lot harder than I expected. We decided to choose a simply idea as we wanted to be able to understand the process properly and not get all confused. The idea was a pack of pencils being shaken out of their cardboard casing. We thought it would be quite easy to move the pencils out the case and give the illusion of them falling out. However, it turned out to be quite difficult. Moving the pencils individually a fraction of a cm each time took patience and also a very steady hand. The slightest wrong movement meant that the illusion of the objects moving by themselves just would not be successful. At the beginning we had a paintbrush in the shot too. But as moving the pencils was quite a hard task we decided to remove the brush otherwise it would have just looked out of place.

We had a time limit of 1 and half hours to complete taking pictures. We stuck to the deadline quite well but our story line was not complicated therefore it was quite achievable. 400 photos were taken; we filmed in twos hence so many photos for this animation! We managed to do 25 fps, which is high enough for the persistence of the eye illusion not to work.

I thought that I managed to do this method (for the first attempt) quite well and I did not loose my temper at how painstakingly slow it is. I think a more interesting topic would make this technique a little more entertaining as at some points I started to get rather bored. I did sometimes nearly forget to take two pictures of each frame, as I just wanted to move the pencils into a new position.

Screen Shot 2017-01-16 at 12.04.03.png

When it came to editing the animation I thought id be quite simple. But in the end I added effects and manipulated the speed to make it more entertaining. First, I nested all the images together and speed it up 300x its original speed. This made them move a lot quicker as otherwise the frames per second would have been below 10. Then I decided to do something with the random paintbrush that was in shot. So I used the green screen effect and edited in a laser and explosion to make it seem as if the pencils were killing the brush.

After editing the whole 15-second animation I quite liked what I produced and am happy with the outcome. From this being a first attempt I don’t think it’s too bad. I have learnt a lot through this process. Next time I will move the object so little each time it will create a smoother animation as I want it to be as realistic as possible.



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