Saturday, February 18, 2012

Lukas Niklaus - Bottles - Critique

video

(Answers to his German questions)
Betr. Des zu animiert wirkenden schrittes bei x61, da hatte ich eigentlich vor gehabt, dass er die flaschen erst im letzten moment sieht und deshalb eine art “erschrockenen” schritt nach SL macht. Habe deshalb diese Woche den Kopf neu getimed, und auch am gesicht gearbeitet. Ich hoffe man verstehts jetzt ein bisschen besser.
This part works better and makes more sense now, given your explanation. My observation is this: the whole move has its focus on the arm, which distracts from his emotional reaction. It also doesn't help that the arm is almost moving first, before his reaction to the bottles being piled up. From a technical point of view it also looks a bit IK, mostly due to the horizontal movements and the visual cue of arm moving independently from his body (one of those tricky IK things).
I think to make it super clear, you could stake out separate beats, so that his reaction and the sidestep don't flow together. You could have a little bigger facial take (nothing crazy, just amp it up a little bit more) and then the sidestep (again, nothing seconds apart, but just a little bit more separated).
In der ganzen region um x142 muss noch viel tightening arbeit getan werden. Das timing der augen etc. passt mir noch nicht ganz.
You're right, the eyes could need some work, but to me it's also the amount of time he takes to just stare at the bottles combined with how little the pupils are (more difficult for audience to stay connected with the character).
Von x185 bis x245 habe ich deinen Mr. Bean tip versucht rein zu nehmen. Mir passts... Ich hatte etwas angst dass es ev. Zu cartoony wird, aber ich finde es passt :-)
Technisch hinkts noch etwas hinterher. (besonders wenn er von den zehenspitzen nach SR geht. Muss da nochmal in die video ref rein schauen.) Aber lustigerweise war der prozess viel natürlicher obwohl ich nicht zurück in stepped gegangen bin... Wie du sagst, man sieht das timing sofort... Kommt gut. Und was mir ein besonders gutes gefühl gibt... Als ichs den playblast zum ersten mal angeschaut habe, hat mir mein eigener shot zum lächeln gebracht. Und nicht weils so aussah wie ich wollte, sondern weil ichs witzig fand.
Absolutely! I smiled as well! I think the acting choices are selling the moment a lot better. There's always the risk of going too broad and being cartoony, but like you said, I think you didn't go overboard.
And again, I agree with your tip toe comment. What if he takes tiny little steps on his tippy toes? Rhythm wise it might give you some contrast. Right now you have mostly big moves: big look SL, big step to SR, big stop, big getting-on-toes, big last step. So rhythm wise it feels a bit even with constant ups and downs. If you add quick little steps towards the end, it would break up the rhythm.
From x199 to 206, during that side step, I think you could delay the upper body a bit, so that it's not one vertical line throughout the body. It's a bit stiff.




Wenn die flaschen das erste mal fallen muss ich glaube ich bald mal noch das timing anpassen. Hatte da eine Rigid Body Sim gemacht, aber momentan rutschen sie zu langsam. Er reagiert bevor sie anfangen zu rutschen.
Werde die Keys so anpassen, dass wenigstens die flasche die er fängt etwas länger braucht.

I see what you mean and good idea. Style wise it will work with the guy, since he's a bit more animated now and you pushed the acting, you can give the bottles a more distinct style in their fall, so it's not so real time physics. I'm all for that but that's a pet peeve of mine. It always bugs me when the characters' timing is stylized, yet how the cloth and hair moves is photo real, same with fire, smoke, etc. :)
I do really like how he reacts to the bottle falling and how his right arm goes for the bottle. There's also a neat feeling of him not fully grabbing the bottle and how the bottle bounces off his hand, makes it feel light, plastic-y and empty. Since you're potentially pushing the timing, the bottle could bounce off his hand a TINY bit more? Around x301 it could be a bit higher?

Ein weiterer sorgenpunkt den ich bisher etwas vergessen habe ist um x410 wenn er die flasch in seiner hand dreht. Ich hatte das ausprobiert, und es ist möglich, aber irgendwie unnötig und ev. Etwas ablenkend? Was meinst du? Ich habe mir gedacht, da ich eh in die Flaschen Animation eingreife, könnte ich die Flasche schon ganz zu anfang um 180° drehen, damit er sie schon 180° gedreht fängt...
To be honest, in this version it doesn't look like he's turning the bottle, it feels more like a constraint pop. But to answer your question, I don't think it's needed, he can put the bottle back in the orientation that he's holding it when he picks it up.


Mit dem Ende bin ich auch noch nicht ganz zufrieden.
Den blick bei x442 sollte ich glaube ich noch etwas länger halten. Und auch danach könnte es glaube ich noch ein paar keyframes mehr vertragen.
Was hältst du vom ganzen? War etwas schwierig referenzmaterial zu filmen, da man wenn mans plant nicht so gestresst nach links schauen kann...
Ausserdem glaube ich der Fuss würde nicht vom Boden weg kommen... Jetzt da ichs mir anschaue, glaube ich es wäre gescheiter, mehr auf die beiden blicke zu vertrauen, diese richtig zu zeigen und damit die gestresste attitude zu vermitteln.

About the ending, I'm not too sure this is working right now. There's a feeling of things being disconnected, both timing wise and body mechanics wise.
When takes the step with his left leg after x435, it looks like his body goes up and a bit screen left to around x439, but then that's it. Even after the foot starts planting around x442, I don't feel like his body continues the screen left momentum that you initiated, so there's no weight shift and correct weight distribution. Additionally on that x442, the head is twisted pretty far to the right, so while all the movement is going screen left with the body, you have the head stuck in that pose and moving independently (despite the head turn it doesn't feel like the neck nor the upper chest is affected by that head turn).
Also, looks at his right shoulder and upper chest rotation from x435 to 442, it's always in the same position, so that whole section feels a bit disconnected from the rest.
Watch out for his right arm, how it moves forward in space from x455 to 460, which also feels a bit disconnected from the rest of the body.
Give the body enough frames for the proper weight shifts, so when you have the root moving screen right from x447 to 450, it already starts moving screen left right after, even though the foot is fully planted at x452. Despite the cartoony aspect, you still have to consider the correct body mechanics, so when you move the body to the right, it will take the right leg a few frames to push against that screen right momentum so that it can change direction. Of course that timing can be pushed depending on the style, but your animation is not super stylized and a bit more within the cartoony/realism world, so I would have the body start moving screen left at x452/453 once the foot is planted and able to push.
I agree that the right foot being in the air around x463 feels awkward. You could keep it, but then I would push the pose more. Right now, at x463, the body is facing toward the wall in front of him, the left foot is pointed to the left, the upper chest feels like it's pointed a bit more to the left than straight forward, given the shoulder poses, yet the right leg is going to right?
If you bring the body a bit more to his right, so that it looks like he's about to take the step to his right, that would help (see super awesome green scribble), leading into a pose that's pushed even more (not holding that pose, that would go into Warner Brother's land), which would be there as breakdowns for a tiny bit of a faster exit?



What do you think? Right now it feels a bit timid timing timing wise and the poses could be pushed a tiny bit more.

I hope any of this makes sense... :)

JD

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