The Warrior (Cycles) Animation Tests

I am working on a personal animation project and so far the journey has been posted in the focused critique section. Now I am working on the animation part and need you guys to give me some feedback on this part of the journey.

I have been reading “The Animator’s Survival Kit” - Richard Williams and have finally got my run cycle to this point and would like to know from you guys how I am doing. The first is without the background scenery and of course the second has the scenery.

Bravo!!! This is great! And what if adding a little bit of motion blur?

RIPP - thank you. How do you add motion blur in cycles?

Here is the first blocking pass of another scene. I know I need to slow down some of the movements but overall how does it look?

Here is some more work on the scene. I still have a lot to do and would appreciate any feedback.

not bad. Speed up the decapitation, mind your action – the shoulder leads the elbow leads the forarm leads the sword. Its very stiff right now.

That last one is a lot better, but the instantaneous movement from on the ground to behind the guys makes it look silly. I know it’s not easy, but it will make the scene easily 10X better if not more if you show him possibly rolling onto his hands and doing a handspring over their heads or something.

daren and Jonathan L - Thank you for your input.

Here is more work to the scene. I am trying to give the action at the end the slowed down effect but I don’t think it is working like I want it to.

I’m not sure why it is not playing it was uploaded to Vimeo a while ago. You can go to Vimeo and watch or use the link at the end of the previous videos on this page. “more scene work”

iking this is looking pretty cool. I think your running test looks like he is sliding a bit. Try putting a little more life into the run, it looks like it is just repeated on a path. Since you are studying animation, I highly advise you to compete in the 11-second club with a free rig.

Wherever you think you are with your animation skills, you will change your mind quickly once you start learning there. I think the 11-second club is better than going to school to learn animation.

looking pretty good so far. I’d say the decapitator needs some work. big thing is his hips aren’t moving as he’s bringin the sword accross for the death blows. the hips should be leading the entire movement. similar to a baseball player’s hips turning over or a golfer’s doing the same adding more torque and speed.

@3dmentia - I disagree. the best way to learn animation is to start buy learning the basics not by starting with a full body acting and body mechanics shot. 11 second club is full of entries where people don’t understand the basics.

The best place to get better at animation is animation school - because you pay a professional to look at your work and show you how to make it better, and explain the fundamentals.

@lking73 - As for you animation, It looks like you are still in the blocking stage for most of it. Your run cycle is OK but you could use more overlap in the torso and the arms are just ping ponging back and forth. Try to make the arms slow in/out of the change of direction. If you watch a movie where someone is running away like this you will see what the arms do.
And as for the sword swing you could try filming yourself acting this out - you will notice that your body will unwind (hips, then chest, shoulder and arm - just like artorious noted) while your head stays on the target. the timing is also all over the place (it’s extremely slow) I assume you are going for a slow motion action? But then the guy screen left turns at a super fast speed and goes slo-mo after that.

one thing that could be improved is the staging and at the moment most of it is obstructed by the foliage

anyway, keep working at it :slight_smile:

@3dementia - I have been self teaching myself animation using “The Animators Survival Kit” - Richard Williams, and various tutorials around the internet.I have looked at the 11Second club but it appears to be for more advanced or schooled animators.

@artorious - Thank you for the advice.

@waylow - You are correct that this is very much still in the blocking phase. I am trying to get the basic idea of how I want the action to happen and then fine tune it.

I have made a few changes to the scene (moved some of the trees, changed the sword action, other subtle things), and would like to know how it is looking now.