BAC Blender Animation Challenge


I took a longer time period off from doing the BAC and since nobody picked up where I left off I’m willing to try it once more.

But before I get into it I would like to get information about improving the whole thing. So here it goes (again :wink: ) what do you think needs to be done to get the BAC going?

Allow use of any rig, people doing this in their spare time will have to spend less time learning a new setup. Have a list of recommended rigs that work in current version of Blender (probably will be a short one).

Have an audio track, music, sound, dialogue, or all.

I often wonder, when having freedom to do anything, if that actually stifles some people. Having some specific criteria, ex. include a complete walk cycle, or make it asymmetric- having more art direction would be a good idea, it will give artists something tangible to chew on.

There’s nothing wrong with it as is. You just need to pimp it out to more people. As set up now, it is an excellent way for new people to get an easy intro to animation but how many of them know that? You need the forum to give you your own ad just like the commercial ads scattered among the posts.

Also make it clear that the resources from each competition are free to keep and play with. Show some links to cheesy as well as outstanding past entries so people see it’s for every level of skill.

And most of all, PIMP IT.

Some random thoughts about the bac:

I think with the transition from 2.49 to 2.5 pleasing everyone in an animation challange has been a little tough. With more people moving to 2.5 it may be a little easier now (especially after 2.6 comes out.) Lately there has just been to many people on different versions (2.49, 2.5 official beta, latest 2.5 from graphicall, …) And typically what works in one doesn’t work in the others.

The rules could be lightened up a little. If someone wants to spend there time adding textures, lighting, simulations, and environments let them (e.g. light the guy on fire as he does his walk cycle.) And be able to do so without having to upload the file for everyone else. The contest is about learning blender as well as learning animation.
The bac should have its own catergory under contests like the weekend challenge has. After all animation is one of blenders strong points.

How about a prize? Several people are creating blender dvds. Seems to me it would be a great opportunity for them to do some advertising at a target audience. I’m really surprised they aren’t hounding you about this.

It’s the nature of contests to have more contestants at times than at others. Don’t let the lack of participants get ya down. They’ll come and go. The important thing is the contest exists for those that want to use it as a learning tool. I know I learned a lot entering it. Animating a character waving his hand is one thing, animating a character doing something meaningfull for 10+ seconds is a whole other story. Animating is hard and you don’t realize it until you partisipate in something like the bac. I gained a whole new respect for professional animators. But maybe it’s this level of difficulty that contributes to the lack of participants (looked a lot easier until I actully started trying to doing it… :wink:

Lots of cool characters to use in the bac these days (when their not broke because of api changes.)

Well, that’s random thoughts by me.

Good luck,


I pretty much agree with everyone.

There is nothing wrong with BAC as it is now, however it is not very attractive to participate having to learn a rig, or you may dislike the rig’s performance, these things turn off many of us. Reasons? Well, lack of time, no motivation, wanting to work with your own rigs, etc etc.

We have discussed this many many…many times, most have said: Let us use any rig ! But the circle starts over, the same rules, the same rigs, etc etc. Results? Let’s be honest, two years by now and there is no participation…isn’t it an accurate sign that no one is interested as it is now? Is there any problem in trying at least ONE TIME using any rig, any pro, unleash your mind?

Musk, what do you have to loose with giving it a try? We have had from 1 to zero participants in recent contests, what could be worse than that?

I totally understand the politics behind BAC, same rigs, same animation, everyone has the same opportunity then it equals to easy and fear judgment. but…hello, it is not working !

Let the beginner put some sticks together and do his animation, let the sculptor to model his Alien, at the end people aren’t stupid at the moment of judgment, if the stick character moves better than the sculpted Gozilla, I bet the stick man would win. Probably we will also get more participation from the audience, comments like maybe: Gozilla is a much better design but the stick man is better animated. Or your lighting is great but your animation needs work…etc etc, come on let’s try it !

If there is no prize, no payment, no rewards, then don’t kill the only motivation that could make us do the Animation: Inspiration.

Beside all of the above, the free rigs will be still available for those who love Pantin, etc etc.

I’m new here and haven’t participated in any BAC (although followed some).

Nevertheless I think giving participant’s more freedom isn’t a bad idea, I mean, 11 second club does it and works really well! I mean, if it’s made with Blender, then everything works!

You could still provide a scene for the people who prefer to just animate.

Only problem would be being certain that the animation was done with Blender and no other application… maybe provide a .blend?

Ok I read so far here are a couple of things to add.

Why are there no prices? Well I do not have the money to give away prices as I have a family to support and my budget is very tight as it is. Up to now I didn’t find the time to find any sponsors but maybe somebody else could arrange something. If you do get in contact with me.

About the free rig. Before I did the bac the bac was an open animation contest and guess what there was no participation. That is the reason why we changed the rule for the contest to only allow a restricted set within a restricted scenario. At first we had lots of participants but over time it became less and less.

We probably need something in the middle. Less strict rules but more guidance for beginning animators.

I’m not sure, but maybe a prize could be something next to the avatar (like other forums have). And more exposure would be good. I mean like in the “front page” to have the challenge and the video of the last winner. EDIT: ok, so I checked and there’s no “front page” any more…a pity, the “changing header” was always an inspiring and fun stuff to see.

I personally like the idea of learning new rigs (more industry like?).

I’ll try to enter in the next BAC!


I agree with aljo that there has been some difficulty with many users using different versions, but hopefully that isn’t so much the case anymore. Like (jay) said, having a specific scene, theme, and/or rig may be beneficial anyone who just wants to start animating, but it could be left open to interpretation also. If someone wants to use a specific rig, then that should be accomodated. I’ve never done a BAC before, but I really want to work on my animation skills this summer. One idea that might generate more interest is to have the winner of one competition host the next. There are other Blender forums that could be used for announcing a new competition, and maybe there would be renewed interest (possibly some people would have more time during the summer). Whatever is decided, I would really like for this to continue. I will even organize it myself if it would get things going. I just need someone to say go.

  1. A sticky thread with a library of possible rigs to use, like they have over at 11secondclub.

  2. Some kind of incentive to join the competition ‘pick the next topic/ sound track etc’

I can’t remember how it worked, but having a sound track, it could be spoken words from a film, or just some music which everyone must animate to, I think constraining the topic is good as it keeps people focused, but opening the methods of animating allows for creative freedom within that area, so even allowing someone to post an animation using grease pencil, it’s animation after all. I think the only limits should be to use Blender for the animation. There could be recommended rigs though.