Topic: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Hi everyone,

I recently did a casting call for my new project, and I now that I have two fantastic voice actors I can finally start sharing the project with you all. As I mentioned before, it is a story about a man and his adventure to save his cat from a race of aliens that eats cats. He meets an astronaut, Alice, who decides to help him get his cat.


Alice will be played by Brick7 and
Bob will be played by WillowTree

The project will be released in episodes, and I have finished the script for part 1. I have started creating storyboards to make set design and setup a little bit easier. I have also finished a couple quick animation tests to work on various new techniques that I want to work into the film. Expect many more of those. mini/wink 

Opening Storyboard
http://i.imgur.com/1vzdwEd.jpg?1
Opening Shot:
http://i.imgur.com/zCzIrul.jpg?1
Another Opening Shot:
http://i.imgur.com/uUjdOED.jpg?1
ALIENS!
http://i.imgur.com/mLaWdVd.jpg?1

I will post the animation tests soon! mini/smile

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Brick 7 rocks!  Such talent is a blessing to BiM.

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Hi everyone!

Sorry about the delay on the animation tests, I've been busy with work and life and whatnot. Anyways, here is the link. The primary purpose of the tests was to practice some key elements that I intend to use in An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday. Particularly, the use of camera motion, which is something I have never done before in a stop motion film. Also chroma keying and color correction are fairly new to me, and I want as much trial-and-error as possible before the real filming begins.

The blinking light was done by rigging a simple circuit behind the set, composed of a 2-position switch, and two resistors. Here is a quick schematic of how I did it:
http://i.imgur.com/2xLzBP4.png
Because LEDs have zero internal resistance, you must use a small resistor whenever the LED is connected to power, even on the "full" brightness setting. The actual value will vary, but most LEDs will be destroyed by more than a few volts across the leads. In order to create the slight dimming effect between the on and off positions, make sure that R2 is significantly greater than R1. Again, the actual values will vary, but I believe the two I used were around 100Ω for R1 and 1kΩ for R2. For the off position, I just rested the switch in between the two positions, so that no power could flow. The use of two different on-positions is very necessary in selling the blinking effect. I first experimented with a simple on-off circuit using only one resistor, and the blinking effect was jarring and unnatural.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

That set design and chroma keying was really good. Some of the animation was a little fast though.

I don't really brickfilm anymore, but I'd appreciate it if you'd check out my channel

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Thanks for the feedback!

Which parts in particular seemed to fast? I feel like the pacing seems a bit quicker than I'd intended (for the dialogue I was imagining) but I'm also going for a rather quick pace for comedic timing throughout.

Also, I will be posting pictures of the new sets starting very soon!

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

After the light started flashing. They were probably supposed to be moving a bit quicker but it looked a little unnatural. Are you easing?

I don't really brickfilm anymore, but I'd appreciate it if you'd check out my channel

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

It's been a while since my last update, since I've been very busy with work. But now I've built most of the sets for part one, and I'm getting ready to start shooting soon. I've received all the lines for episode one, and other than a few minor corrections, we should be ready to move into the production stage soon.

I've been working on new lighting tricks recently, and I have been experimenting with programmable LED strips to create more interesting subtle lighting effects. The LEDs can vary significantly in brightness, which makes for some really nice fading effects.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/light_test.jpg

I bounced the LED light off of some wax paper, and lit both the foreground and the background with an additional lamp + diffuser. This made the color a little bit more subtle. Here's a picture of the setup.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/light_how_to.jpg

Smocktopus wrote:

After the light started flashing. They were probably supposed to be moving a bit quicker but it looked a little unnatural. Are you easing?

I think you're right that the actions could use a little more smoothness. I usually try to ease but I always get too excited and animate the action too quickly... mini/lol

Last edited by Geouug (August 30, 2016 (05:44am))

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Those are great pictures, Geouug! The set looks very nice and the outdoors lighting is rather effective. I can't wait to see how this project turns out!:)

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4568/38739908282_82e034d65c_o.jpg
Matthew 7:20

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Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

I have finally started animating sequences, which means the project is now in the Production Phase. I've finished animating the title sequences, which are more or less static shots of the sets with minimal animation. I have also recently finished shooting about 20 seconds of action. Depending on how long the titles end up being, I am nearing the one minute mark of content. mini/bigsmile

Here is a sneak peak of the beginning of the film. It needs color correction still, but I'm so happy with how it turned out I wanted to share it immediately. The two shots (mittens, and the mug) are unrelated, and some important things happen in between the shots, which I have left out.

edit: Here are some frames from the video, with color correction.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/mittenscouch.jpg

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/mittenswindow.jpg

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/mugfall.jpg

Last edited by Geouug (October 3, 2016 (10:14am))

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Looks nice. Looking forward to this.

God is good. Jesus Christ is lord. I believe.
http://i841.photobucket.com/albums/zz336/Kaleb_Barkman/Screen%20Shot%202015-09-05%20at%209.11.27%20PM_zpsxqllqodb.png
Me on Youtube

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Those frames look really good.

"Animator Unknown" everywhere else.
https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8103/28674610113_88d73297f1.jpg
YouTube | Flickr | Twitter

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Update Time! I've been super busy with mid-terms lately, so I haven't been able to put in nearly as much time as I'd like on this, but I still got some animation in. I finally got around to editing a sequence today that I was dreading, because it involves multiple moving parts and lots of masking. I updated my lighting rig slightly for this scene, and now I can control two separate LED colors for the backdrop! I can tell this is going to be really fun to play around with, because I've got some really cool results already. I found some pretty good color combinations for sky backgrounds:


http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/lightingtestdog.jpg


I also figured out how exactly I'm going to set up my workflow since I'm not using dragonframe for a lot of the scenes. Exporting through Final Cut Pro was producing very marginal results, and I was (formerly) novice to using Compressor to render my video. Fortunately, I've figured out settings that give a very crisp image, without taking forever to load mini/lol . I also ordered a Logitech QC 9000 so I can get started with dialog, since I can't do that very well with my DSLR.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Alright, so the QC 9000 came, and it works fine with DragonFrame, but I'm really not very happy with the picture quality. It also doesn't have any optical zoom abilities, so its uses for this project will be limited to say the least. Fortunately, I'm not quite ready to shoot the opening dialog yet anyway, as I wrote the original script in May and I've decided to re-write a good bit of it. I'll have to wait until after we've finished recording the edits, which should give me time to figure out how to connect my T3i with DragonFrame without using the USB connection. I ordered an eye-fi mobi, which DragonFrame recommends for cameras without USB connectivity so I'll get to play around with that in the mean time.

I also ordered a small handful of minifig heads that I can use for Bob's facial expressions. I really enjoy seeing head swaps for expression in brickfilms, and I should be able to acquire a pretty good emotional range for Bob for cheap. Overall, I'm really happy with where the project is right now. I've finished almost everything required for the intro, which is just over a minute or so. I've only got a couple scenes left to do at Bob's house, then it's off...to SPACE!

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Why can't your t3i connect to dragon frame with the usb? I have a t3i and it connects just fine with the usb.... mini/jaw
Any ways this looks like its going to be awesome!

God is good. Jesus Christ is lord. I believe.
http://i841.photobucket.com/albums/zz336/Kaleb_Barkman/Screen%20Shot%202015-09-05%20at%209.11.27%20PM_zpsxqllqodb.png
Me on Youtube

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

The USB port on my camera was loose and didn't  connect properly when I bought it, but I never bothered to get it fixed since I always just use the SD card to connect to my computer. Only now that the warranty is long expired do I actually need the port. This one is definitely on me for not bothering to get it fixed when it would have been free mini/rolleyes . Fortunately, a 4GB Eye-Fi Mobi is only $20 on Amazon, so I am not too upset. It would be nice to have remote control over the shutter though. Taking frames by physically pushing the shutter button stresses me out... mini/lol

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

You can get an affordable remote shutter pretty much anywhere. You should buy one immediately; pressing the shutter button to capture frames is asking for trouble, even if you have a really expensive, heavy tripod.

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Geouug: thats no fun, If you can get it fixed animating in Dragon Frame is supper nice, and way easer to get a nice shot. But if not good for you for making a video without it.

Last edited by osomstudios (October 27, 2016 (09:29am))

God is good. Jesus Christ is lord. I believe.
http://i841.photobucket.com/albums/zz336/Kaleb_Barkman/Screen%20Shot%202015-09-05%20at%209.11.27%20PM_zpsxqllqodb.png
Me on Youtube

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

This looks awesome dude mini/jaw

"Of course I'm lucky, I'm a leprechaun!"-Fred the Leprechaun
I hope no one has realized I like emojjies mini/shifty

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

I am happy to report that I am finally animating the first dialog scenes. I am very happy with the lines I have to work with, thanks to my lead actors Brick7 and Willow Tree, who have both been incredibly helpful with their talents. I have a few other characters that I was planning to voice, but if anyone else would like to help, I am always open to more voice actors! The sequence isn't finished, but wanted to share anyway. Here is a frame that I animated today.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/who_broke_this.jpg

I also took a bonus shot of the Lighting Rig Mark II (a.k.a. half of a cardboard box, and wax paper) from the previous shot. This is how the lighting has been done for all of the shots so far.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/kitchen_ultrawide.jpg

Also, the Bob heads came in the mail, which is going to allow for a lot of fun animation. I hope to acquire as many faces as possible that could be an extension of a simple black, eyebrowed smile. I believe he exact position, thickness, shape, etc of the eyebrows is not as important, as long as they show expression and don't change color. However, I haven't done any animation tests with these new heads, so I won't know how smooth the transition will appear when animated. The only face not pictured here is the original Bob face.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/heads1.jpg
http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/heads2.jpg

School is keeping me from giving this project as much attention as it deserves, but the results that I am getting from the little progress I am making are making me very happy. It's going to be a long haul, but so far I am able to achieve the exact pacing and tone that I am going for. I will update again when I have finished the first dialog scene.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png

Re: An Otherwise Uneventful Sunday

Hi everyone! I haven't had much time to work on animating much at all since the last update as once again school, work, and life have forced this project to take the backseat. However, it is not dead, and I'm slowly but surely making progress when I can. I have written most of episode two, and I am very happy with the direction that the story is going. I had a very vague idea going in with where I wanted the story to go, and now I have a much clearer picture. I'll put out a formal casting call sometime soon for some supporting characters, but for now I want to focus on animation while I have the time since it's still early in the semester.

I've made a little bit of headway in the current scene, but more importantly I figured out how to do automated batch crops in Photoshop, which will greatly reduce the time required per scene. Previously I was loading each frame on a separate layer, and cropping the canvas and saving each layer individually (a terrible idea, believe me I know). Here's a frame that I shot last night. Surprise! We're still in the kitchen.

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/img_8017.jpg

Also, I have been putting together the "soundtrack" for the project in Spotify. I've got soundtrack in quotes because I don't think any of the tracks are going to make it into the film as is, but I wanted to capture the feel of music to help me keep consistent pacing and whatnot throughout. I've got one Spotify playlist of the actual music for the film, which is entirely piano. Ideally I will be able to get an original score, using this as a reference. I also have a Spotify playlist of an abstract interpretation of the film, from which I don't intend to draw, but will serve as a personal guide for different elements of the story. Most of these tracks can definitely be taken at face value, but some of the tracks are in there for specific, not directly apparent reasons. This one also changes quite frequently as my plans for the project change. Anyway, I expect the next update will actually be once I have finished this scene...

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/minifig77/stills/aousbanner.png