"Two Little Boys" Animated Scene

Backstory

After a long stalemate on the frontline, during a routine soldier rotation, enemy forces managed to make a break with an unexpected and devastating attack. Caught in this trap, the soldier spends the last seconds of his life with a fallen comrade.

About The Project

The animation was done during my class at Animschool, where we had to find an audio clip, come up with a story around it, and create an animation. I stumbled upon a scene in a film called “Trainspotting” in which one of the characters was singing the song you hear in my shot. I got curious and started searching for the original song and what it was about, turns out it was about two boys growing up wanting to be soldiers and where it led them in the end. As someone who has constant lingering worries about what the future might hold this song resonated with me and felt like a good opportunity to express that anxiety.

Maya was used for all the character animation you see in the shot.
After that, most of the LookDev and rendering was done in blender, excluding hand-painted textures which I did in Substance Painter.

Responsible for: Idea, Layout, Animation, LookDev, Textures, Costume Retopology, FX, grooming and rigging of horse’s mane.

Class Mentor: Scott Mcwhinnie
Character Rigs provided by Animschool and Dmitrii Kolpakov.

Audio taken from the Films: Trainspotting, all quiet on the western front, and various sourced sound effects.Song Credit - John Denver - Two Little Boys & The Strangest Dream (Live 1969)

About The Workflow

Some of the interesting tricks and workflows used in this shot were painterly normals and physical brush strokes in the background powered by geonodes. Both of these techniques were popularised recently by Blender Studio and the Blender YouTube community. I wanted to try it out and see where I could go with those techniques.
Some minor rigging like horse mane and extra controllers for the uniform was done and animated in blender for extra detail and polish. Plus Extra blend shape work on the uniform to sell the contact and interaction of the 2 characters.
Explosion FX was done in Embergen and exported as VDB.

Stills Gallery






some interactive breakdowns
the background was painted with grease pencil





Breakdown & BTS of the shot

46 Likes

A very touching scene and performed at a professional level. Congratulations.

4 Likes

Very nice piece of footage, looking forward to your sharing!

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Fear and horror, sadness and love - all in one small tragic frame. This is a very heartbreaking sight. And I want to believe in miracles and that everything will end well, or at least end. I like it. Good luck!

3 Likes

This is truly a very touching scene, made with great creative zeal. But it’s a shame that gun manufacturers are still trying to sell as much as possible and doing everything they can to create conflicts from which they get rich.

2 Likes

You’re on the featured row! :+1:

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Wow this is awesome!

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:partying_face: Cheers Bart!

Thank you :pray:

1 Like

WOW! This is an exceptional piece!

Well done.

2 Likes

I featured you on BlenderNation, have a great weekend!

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Powerful stuff!

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This is a truly amazing piece of animation and character acting!

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Thank you :heart:

This is so well made. Truely communicates the sense of dispair

2 Likes

brilliantly done, and so terribly appropriate right now

1 Like

Just now, my eye caught your profile picture, went to your profile page, turns out you are also a big fan of a Z emblem. The regime, you are such a staunch supporter of causes much worse than these scene could ever show and describe. Both to your side and the one you declared an enemy. I’d like to join you in believing in miracles and hope you’ll reconsider your stance :slight_smile:

Thank you, glad it communicates it’s intent.

Appreciate it, unfortunately it is.

1 Like