tirsdag den 14. december 2010

Trailer Project

Ever since the start of this semester our neighbor class "Computer Graphic Artist" has been working on the TRAILER PROJECT! Divided into seven groups, they've each gotten an old movie which they then have had to make a trailer of, with new design. In week 47 and 48 my class was then supposed to animate the their trailers, based on their animatics using their rigged models.
The CGA trailer I animated on, was based on the western "High Noon" now set in a caveman-like ancient evironment. Furthermore our trailer was a combination of 2d and 3d animation. I was in group with the CGA's Tommy, Tanja and Simon and Caroline, Carmen and Keld from my class.
Like the CGA's had divided roles, we should also choose a animation supervisor in our group. We divided it so that Caroline took care of all the paperwork and schedules, while I supervised the practical animation, which was alot of fun :) We also had Alex Williams as a general supervisor for the whole class.
I animated the following shots:

Everything was then colored, and the CGA's spend week 49 rendering everything. The final trailer looks like this:

I think the sum of all parts really came together in the end, I'm very happy about the done trailer :)
The other six trailers also turned out quite well. Take a stroll around on my classmates blogs and you'll see.

fredag den 19. november 2010

Daisy "Galloping"

Animation from week 44 when we had Sydney Padua (you can see her work here: http://sydneypadua.com/) teaching us four legged cycles. I choose to make a "galloping" cow. The way they run makes me wonder whether they're actually made for running after the way we've been breeding them for centuries.

tirsdag den 26. oktober 2010


In week 40 and 41 we had walk and run cycles. We got alot of time just for the basic walk:

We didn't get much time for the characterwalk, so the next one is on thirds (ie I've only worked on every third frame), except for the legs. I followed the guide layed out for a flamboyant walk in Richard William's "Animators Survival Guide:"

Finally we got the task of doing a "basic" run:

This was the last we did with Erik Schmidt as a teacher, who had been guiding us into maya since we started this third semester.

lørdag den 9. oktober 2010

Evil Minion Breakdown...

Poor Evil Master's Minion had failed his master, and now had to explain himself... But under the burning gaze of said evil master, who can explain themselves?

...Mercy your cruelness, mercy!

mandag den 27. september 2010

Flour Sack and Hogan Animations

As with the first weeks two weeks, week 37 and 38 consisted of more basic 3d exercises. Here's some of the flower sack animations I did:

I actually wanted to convey a bad feeling of panic in the last animation, not a humorous. But alas, when someone says it should've been falling pianos its hard not to laugh :)
And then "Hogan" - a model with all the traits needed to animate a human or humanoid.

lørdag den 11. september 2010

First 3D Animations

Yes! The title speaks truth, I now find myself stumbling into an entire new dimension: the third!
Ofcourse, entering a new ground of animation means reentering the familiar ground of bouncing balls, thus this animation from week 35:

We had a short explanation of the basic modelling tools, the room above I've created myself.

In week 36 we had an already made model of a lamp handed out to animate:

søndag den 5. september 2010


Drawings, drawings, drawings.. They are all from first half of 2010, the two top ones below are illustrations for a book. The torsos below are from a short weekend class with Lawrence's old teacher Glenn Vilpu. His work can be seen here http://www.vilppustudio.com/ - its quite impressive. The rest is drawings from my sketchbook I thought might be fun or interesting to show.

tirsdag den 31. august 2010

Scraps From Last Year

I'm starting at second year of the character animator line at the Animation Workshop now, hence these two animations from last year will probably be the last in 2d for some time:

Also, in week 21 we had colour class with Lawrence. Sadly, it was the last of his classes, but what a class! We used acrylic paint, but only warm blue, cold blue, warm red, cold red, warm yellow, cold yellow and white - everything necessary to create any colour nuance. The theory was gold! We learned everything, light, shadow, how colour mix, how to create long strips of nuances on the palette etc etc... We made several exercises, the last one involved creating colour thumbs for a composition sketched by ourselves, theme: monsterattack in the antique. Here's my thumb:
And here is the colour thumbs:
...Doesn't exactly match the sketch, but the improvement from the first to the last should be obvious. The final thumb took me less than an hour to create, and I had quite fun with it.

søndag den 16. maj 2010

CA 09's Animation Jam

Week 17 and 18... Animation Jam. Two rough weeks where we in groups of 3 should make a 30 second long movie (credits and title doesn't count). It wasn't the whole school with foreign directors that was making movies this time, but just my class supervised by Julia Bracegirdle. This meant alot of work and alot of discussion in the group about everything from overall plot to the placement of flowers. So it was great when the movie was done! I was in group with Stine Frandsen and Adam Boklund and we made the movie "The Slughter."

Julia had made some bags from which we should pick the stylistic theme, an emotion and a random word. We ended up with the theme, "Disney 1928-1932 combined with Gary Baseman," the emotion "fear" and the random word "wig." Gary Baseman is a modern artist which can't quite be explained, but his pictures can be seen here: http://garybaseman.com/
Disney from 1928-1932 is basically all the black and white shorts with Mickey Mouse.
We choose to let the Disney shorts be the inspiration for the animation, while the style of the design was taken entirely from Gary Baseman. These choices enabled us to focus on funny animations and interesting background compositions rather than realism, in other words it gave us alot of creative freedom.
We all worked on the characterdesign. I made these sketches:

After discussing the different ideas for the design we devided the characters, so that Adam made the final design for the old lady, Stine made the designs for the slugs and I made the design for the final monster.
As for the animation then I animated, cleaned and coloured the slug's running scene, the scene were it dodges salt and the final monster scene.
Otherwise I had fun making the style for the backgrounds. We had devided the backgrounds into tinyworld backgrounds, medium world backgrounds and huge world backgrounds (Though the last one was just a sky with clouds). I made the very first background in the movie, and the mediumworld background with the floating trees and the windmills. I also made a good part of the simple bacgrounds that was just colour.

The final film:

Slughter from Stine Agerskov Frandsen on Vimeo.

mandag den 10. maj 2010

Layout Class With Lawrence

Week 16 was layout week with Lawrence, which primary consisted of good theory about composition and staging, less interesting practical studio rules for numbering cameramovements and backgrounds and ofcourse different assignments.

First assignment was to make a layout for the first act and scene of Hamlet. We needed to have the three guards and the dead king's ghost in the picture, and the style was to be realistic like Pinocchio, but we had otherwise rather free hands. Good shading and toning was essential.

Second assignment focused on camera movement: We should make the backgrounds and overlays for a Yogi Bear sequence already storyboarded. A zoom and a pan:

Yogi Bear Zoom from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Yogi Bear Pan from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

In the week's final assignment we were given rather free hands stylistically and settingwise. The title for the assignment was "Escape on rooftops," and it should both contain cameramovements and great layout. In pair of two we should make a little sequence of four backgrounds where a rough character should be escaping on rooftops. I teamed up with Bo. We got rather inventive with the style and setting. The escape was to be in a middleage-like city, but were the houses was build upon one another so that there would be different social lives at the different levels, with bridges and catwalks. So the rich people would live in the top. At the centre of the city there would be a giant castle, somewhat shaped like a big tree with small branches sticking out. I made these two backgrounds:

The sequence ended up like this:

Escape On Rooftops from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

søndag den 25. april 2010

Dancing Hippos and Flying Mountaineers

In week 14 the Danish animator Christian Kuntz came to teach us dance animation for the week. After spending weeks trying to make animation with uneven and interesting pace, and lots of overlapping actions - having to animate strictly within a beat that should be hit with the movement was a challenge.
I choose the hippo from Fantasia and the beginning of the Michael Jackson song "Smooth Criminal." I once worked on a musictheater where we put up the stage for a so-called "Michael Jackson" ballet. I thought it was weird back then, but now that I've tried to make a hippo dance ballet to one of his songs, I can kinda see the idea.

Dance of the Hippo from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Ten seconds of animation was taking things a bit too far, so not everything is animated.

Christian Kuntz is a part of the four-man company "framebender," you can see some of their stuff here: http://www.framebender.dk/

In order to expand our capacities to make our own films, we spend week 15 being introduced to the editing program Adobe Aftereffects having Henrik B Clausen as a teacher. We did some small exercises and finally got the assignment to create something that moves really fast. Out of these two pictures:
and photoshop and aftereffects I made this:

Untitled from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

fredag den 23. april 2010

TVPaint animation with Fabian

After the winterbreak in week 7 our lighttables and pencils were exchanged with computerscreens and tablets, so that we may animate on computer - still in 2D, we draw in the program TVPaint.
It fell upon the shoulders of Fabian Erlinghauser to introduce us to the program and more advanced animation during week 8 to 12. Fabian has among things supervised the animation in the Oscar nominated 2D feature "The Secret of Kells." I think Fabian left a really good impression on the class, and it seems we left quite a good impression on him aswell!

Week 8 was a relaxed getting-to-know-the-program week. I made a bunch of animations, some of the more interesting was these two:

Untitled from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Hogarth Take from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

The last upper animation was a so-called "take," with Hogarth from "The Iron Giant."

The assignment for week 9 was to let our character of choice be tempted by a valuable item, ponder upon wether he should take it, but leave it in the end. I learned a lot that week - mostly by my mistakes! I choose Roger from 101 Dalmations. While the initial key poses I did were fine, having Roger freeze into them killed the acting and made him look more like a posing model.

Untitled from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

So I went into week 10 determined to make something better than the Roger animation. The assignment was a setting where our character was sitting alone on a date, realising that she is not going to come! I choose Bernard as my character:

Bernard's Miserable Date from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Its a few too many things that's happening, but I think the animation is much more lively than the week before.

In week 11 it was time to make our characters speak. We could choose between two soundbits, which our animation then should centre around. My character was Sinbad from the dreamworks movie, and the soundbit is the voice of Gandalf:

Foolshope from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Its rather amazing how much more real the animation becomes, once it breaks the silence and actually says something. Again, a bit too many things is happening - and how should anyone know that its supposed to be a cookie jar he is holding?! But I like the animation.

The last week was about monologue, meaning we had to do two characters. I thought I was beginning to get a rather good idea of animation, I just put too many things into them, so I wanted to make something where I only tried to tell one or two things, rather than tree, four or five! I choose Kerchak and Kala from Tarzan:

Wanna toke? from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Four seconds with two characters was a bit much, so the animation is in a bit of an unfinished state. I think its some of the best I've done though, so I might finish it sometime.

All in all, it was five quite good weeks. I learned a lot, especially on the acting part of things.

Finally I will recommend a visit to http://www.cartoonsaloon.ie/ - the place Fabian works. They got some really neat stuff going on with their experimentation of styles, especially the backgrounds in the short "Old Fangs" are very beautiful and not something I've seen before.

lørdag den 27. marts 2010

Popsickle Add, Midtyear Exam and Animation Jam

In week 4 we had storyboard with Tod Polson (www.todpolsonart.blogspot.com) who has been affiliated with the school for a good amount of years, especiallly helping out at the 3rd year bachelor films.
At first we were to make a 30 second animatic (or 25 since the last 5 should be reserved for a logo) for a Popsickle commercial, based on some work Tod already had done: http://todpolsonart.blogspot.com/2010/02/space-sicle.html
I made mine with Nicholaj and it ended up like this:

We made a another board of mastershots over our characters from "taste," but it seems the drawings is lost for the moment being..

In week 5 we had a midyear test exam, which basically just meant a week of animation without teacher. The assignment was to make a 5 second animation with the pink panther standing up and try to open a door without luck. The background was given to us.

Pink Panther Midyear Exam Animation from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Week 6... Now that was something. The school had a visit from 6 different directors which were to make 2 shorts each, with a group consisting of both the first and second year character animators and computer graphic artists. All the movies can be seen here http://animwork.dk/en/news.asp?AjrDcmntId=451
I was on Pritt Tender's movie. Basically he just threw out some ideas, designs and overall story, and then let us create all the fun and weird stuff that were going to happen and the ending. The two movies were to be connected to one, but otherwise we mostly worked in two groups, both using the first day to come up with things and make a storyboard and then the rest of the week to animate. The movie ended up as this:

I created the last scene. Since us 1st years hadn't been taught Tv Paint at that point, I created my scene on paper and then two second year students cleaned it up in Tv Paint. I think it has a certain charm in rough, so I'll post it as I made it aswell:

Scene 110 from Niels Dolmer on Vimeo.

Basically I thought this should be a contrast to the rest of the movie - a moment of a certain grace coming out of - and into a rather mad and surreal movie. If we've had two weeks I would have made it at least 15 seconds, I think its hard for the viewer to catch all the small ideas that was in it in just 10 seconds.

lørdag den 13. marts 2010

Week 2 - Character Design

In week 2 we had character Design with Julia Bracegirdle. She put alot of focus on alternative methods of character design, and alternative character designs. The week started out with alot of focus at shapes; hence the first thing we made was shadowplays. This one was made by me, Kenneth, Benny and the intern.

Eventually we got around to creating a set of characters based on the short story "Taste" by Roald Dahl (he also wrote Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). It is a rather curious story, and very well narrated since we received it in sound instead of text. You can read the story in very short format here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taste_(short_story) - if you don't want the ending spoiled then just read the two first parts.
While Julia suggested alternative methods to creating the characters, I really just felt like spitting out alot of different suggestions for the characters:

The characters physical appearance was not really described in the story, so we had alot of creative freedom with them - except for Richard Pratts lower lip and noose that was troughoutly and rather funny described when he tasted the wine. It was an easy decision to go for the monstrous Pratt. I think several of the Mikes would have worked, though in the end I thought that the one with big furrows on his forehead would suit Mikes unsecure and worried character best. My initial thoughts on Louise were that she should be the one we could feel sympathy for, since both Mike and Pratt was gambling about her. So the upper-second-from-the-left Louise was my first choice. However after a short discussion with my teacher I decided that I might as well just present all three of them as unsympatic characters, thus enabling me to do whatever I wanted with them. I also played with the idea of giving Louise a sort of smoky form, since she smokes in the story, but it didn't work well enough. The final characters ended like this:

søndag den 21. februar 2010

Week 1 and 3 - Clean Up and Inbetweening

In week 1 and 2 the class was split up, one class would have clean up the other character design. We would then switch in week 2. In week 3 We had Inbetweening. I'm gonna talk about the characterdesign week in another (big) post. As for now, I can hardly call the work done in week 1 and 3 my own. Let me explain:
We had Clean Up with Lee Huxley who gave us about 13-14 frames from a short scene from the movie "An American Tale: Fievel Goes West." It was the key frames/breakdowns done by the animator, so we should clean them up - make one consistent line with a technical led pen, following the looser drawing made by the animator. Not very creative, not really my thing.

In the inbetweening week we were lucky to have Uri again. This time we got 11 frames from the movie "Balto" which was to be inbetweened with 13 frames. It was a bit more creative than clean up, but again it can't be called my animation:

We we're alsp supposed to make four poses with the character before the inbetweening:

Its supposed to be: Surprised, the conqueror, fleeing, and in love...

tirsdag den 5. januar 2010

Drawings, away!

First of all, look at this drawing:

She kindly sat still for 3 hours so I could draw her. The portrait doesn't quite catch the life from reality, but I guess that it would be hard to smile for 3 hours, even for this sweet Swedish girl :)

Now, to judge from my blog, all I've been doing in the last four months of 2009 is animation. That is not true, I've just been too occupied (and sometimes maybe a bit lazy) to post all the other stuff. Well here goes, from the second week in September to the middle of December:

In the second week, week 36 that is, we had perspective with Bjørn Lomborg. This meant going through alot of different rules for making correct perspective. The only time we saw us triumphed by reality, was when trying to make the sides of a cube technical equal in length when the cube only has one vanishing point and only two visible sides. So if you know how to, do tell me!
We went to draw at the cathedral Tuesday morning:

Our first teacher Zdenko most kindly decided that we should have homework for when he came back 8 weeks later, infact Zdenko most kindly decided that we should make 8 good, solid and clean drawings, 1 sketchbook of hands and feet, and one with sketches....On top of all the other homework other teacher's give from day to day. The 8 drawings was eventually turned into 7, and the sketchbooks into half sketchbook as we grew closer to his return - only a very few students made everything.
I ended up with these 7 drawings:

The first couple of days was mostly used on getting alot of critique on each and every drawing turned in. At the end of Wednesday we could finally continue with the final assignment: Creating a line of characters based on a setting chosen by the class. After alot of discussion the setting ended up being "Clown Hunters..." In a dystopian future some kind of 3th world war has turned society into a primitive, scattered wasteland. Clowns are the only kind of entertainment, hence they're hunted by ruthless "clown hunters" hired by evil circus managers..!
Thursday morning we all sat down to create our own 3 clown characters, I made these:

After another class meeting where all clown was rewieved, 4 was picked to be further developed by all. I ended up with these designs:

The "ninja clown" is more or less the original design, the big clown is pretty much my work - it was the size that was chosen. The female clown is a combination of what I liked from my own and from the one chosen on the class. Finally, my own little clown was chosen as the 4th character, though I myself didn't get around to develop it further.

In week 44 and 50 we had "Elements of Design" with the fabled Lawrence - no teacher at the school has so many stories surrounding him and such a reputation. It was two great weeks, alot of theory, but very, very useful theory. As mentioned we worked with the elements of design:

Line, shape, value, form, space, texture and colour

In order to get the abstracts right before the details we were very limited in our use of materials, thus to prevent us from drawing, the first many assignments was to be done with a 1cm broad tusch. And to get the feeling right - which is what creativity is all about - the assignments included tasting and hearing. These are my final pictures:

Each assignment focused on one of the elements of design, but without excluding the others.
1st assignment: Taste the strawberry icecream, note down whatever words come to mind then make the taste of strawberry icecream with line.
2nd assignment: Taste the dark chocolate, note down whatever words come to mind, google them and find pictures then make the taste of chocolate with shape.
3rd assignment: Listen to jazz (I don't remember which cd it was, something new yorkish) make the sound with black and white and two values inbetween.
4th assignment: Choose a real of fictional character to make a tea set out of - focus on form. I chose V from V for Vendetta.
5th assignment: Make a burning house interior - focus on space.

As for texture we never got to have the assignment because of time pressure, and colour is such a big field that we will have a week with it at some point in the spring. You can see Lawrence's work here: http://www.lawrencemarvit.com

In week 45 we had storyboard with Uri for two days. Divided into four man groups we should storyboard "How the Elephant got its long nose." I concentrated on the meeting with the snake and the battle with the crocodile. My idea was to make a comical contrast between a scary environment and alot of build up tension contra the young elephants lack of understanding of the impending danger. We had one afternoon, evening and morning to plan things, make mastershots, thumbnails and the final storyboard, so I didn't get around to make the fight with the crocodile given my focus on the building tension. The mastershots for the two sequences:

The storyboard is as follows (they should be read in the order of a comic):

As I realised that I was not going to finish the board I decided to make the two most interesting thumbs from the battle (which should have been the other half of the board), so the last to pictures have alot going on before, between and after.

V for Vendetta is owned by DC Comics (sadly not by Alan Moore himself)