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Equipment required: Lightbox, pencil, and paper.
that we have established the principles of key, breakdown,
in-between positions in an action, it is now possible to go further and began, and it's very tempting to think it
tackle something a little more advanced. The principle of the bouncing has been around since animation cliche to work with it here.
The core frames that comprise a bouncing ball action.
_--_ .... .....
\ \ I
\ \ I I I
Next we need to establish our key positions along the designated pa of action. In the illustration below they are numbers '1 : '1 : '19: '2 and '31 : any bouncing action. the main key positions . Ibe a the contact pain the ground and at the apex of the upward arc.. However,· we leave our key ball positions in the air and on the ground perfectty round. there would be no life or rubbery feel to the baII-it would merefy appear· a cut-oct shape moving up and down across the screen. . no life at all Consequen we
the age-old principles of squash and stretch..
However,there is no better exercise for covers all the major principles of anlmatfon-na key,breakdown, and in-between positionS; as slowing-in and slowing-out. weigh gra •and
Before we can discuss the actual bouncing of ascertain the weight and density of ball to soft, rubber bouncy ball will move n a , dnr-_t rubber ball. A ping-pong ball IIbounce n ball. It is all about weight. mass. and I borne in mind Withany anima ed-rubber ball challenge. You II find In of the varying types of boune ng ball ......_ here. Suffice t to say, Ie us assu bouncy, rubber ball. the .nd or yard.
rub"'" ball hitS
me solid g.... nd """
•squa ",:The h.ro'" the ground and the ve,oc"y the b _re • hitS me ground ",II define the a",ount of squash e ertTheto
d'stOrt In shape· ln othe r
the high'" the bOunce and the further the ball "ave', me more the squash d~!Ortlon .. m appea·· In con sid ve path of actK>n........ alreadY defined for oo"el • I .. ould sc
squash position ln ,he Iol.... ng figure """Id
Note, however, that the apex .. as they are not subject t positions of the ball In the fi are even being distorted0byan contact with • hard surface ~U y OClty. I
Ihebec ... "'-ymmng and end ' up . ( north) . po smons of our bounce.
do not d or th gro squash.
What is mea momentarilynt by this
at a zero
has run out. and yet the forces of gravity have not taken hold q Consequently. our rubber ball returns to its natural. CIr ular ha true. however. of its shape on the way up or the way down
If you freeze a movie sequence of a moving shape you will notrce that rt will actually appear as a blur. This is because at the regular film speed of 24 fps the shutter is not fast enough to capture a sharp image of the moving object. thus the motion blur it presents. In animation. specifically drawn 20 animation. it is not easy to emulate the blur look. Consequently. the animator has to distort, or ·stretch:the object to give the illusion of this fast-action blur. This is especially so with the action of our ball when it is on the way up and on the way down.
A ~lmulatM motion blur ~ect to emulate the real world appearance of a bali moving fa~t through space
The dropping-down and rising-up stretch effects on the ball. which are separated by the moment when it actually hits the ground.
Ifwe assume that our two up key positions on the ball are 1 and 21, and the down (squash) position is 11, then these charts clearly show that the ball will accelerate downward at the beginning and decelerate to the next up position at the end.
ground is pretty instantaneous when bounce back upward again is fast too, the bounce before it. Therefore, the ;miinirn;!1 (i.e., lessdrawings mean more
Note that no in-betweens are required during the "hit" positions-the stretched ball effectively squashes on the next frame then stretches up again on the frame immediately after that.
Consequently, we might now suggest the numbering and in-between charting of our boundng ball. See the following figures.
Based on our slowing-outlslowing-in charting. the two frames in and out of the hit position (11) are effectively breakdown drawings.
these draWIngs are separated out to the right to rna e the action clearer to see. In reality. they u d be closer together and overtapplIl(j.th the second baU positiOn on the left effectively located directly on t 0 the first squash posItlOII
The Bouncing Ball
lluee ler v ditterent ~.Ind)ot I all
ping f onq ball,
Itdnd,lru rubl cr ball
dnd ] cannonball They wrll ledrlv.lll bounce very differentlyl
In-Betweening the Bouncing Ball
Let us now return to our key and breakdown before we do the in-betweens. an are, so straightforward positions for the bouncing ball along its path of action. Here we have to take some things into consideration Cleary the bali's path of action is moving along from one position to another will not in-betweens
be accurate because this will give us angular peaks and troughs, as opposed to the smooth arcing action we are seeking.
Note the curved nature of the bouncing bali's path of action, caused by a combination of forward velocity and gravity.
o betwee ns is to first mark the ccentric Inmark the in-between o these e 0 and then 0 oil 0 My approach ~o handhng ithin each ba II drawmg ens as c harted. This WI give us 0n_betwe r of gravity woo ns for the I cente 0typOSltlO 10es f graVI ode In . center 0 0 ositionai gUi the folloWing p
In-Betweening the First Part of the Bounce
The next stage is to take a fresh sheet of animation paper and create our first slow-in in-between. For example, if I am gOing to create the breakdow~ drawing (9) between keys drawings 1 and 11, I will first mark the cen t e r point .. for the new drawing by placing it Over the curved path of action guide and lightly trace its center Position. 42
Agood tip to remember is that a movement always looks smoother if there is a slight overlap from position to position on each frame. Therefore, when creating each in-between, place the center point in a position where this overlap can occur wherever possible In order to achieve this it might be that each in-between is not exactly in the middle of the previous two, as indicated in the chart, however, you will still need to respect the slowing-out placement requirement regardless.
would then take drawings 1 and 9 and superimpose them center of gravity center of gravity on the lightbox, which should now be switched on. the centers of gravity are all lined up between the new drawing and other two, the new ball inbetween can now be more easily and accurately
Make sure the in-between is accurate and that the superimposed sheets do not shift out of line while you are drawing.
A good tip to remefT)Der IS mat a movement alwa) s loo\s srrOC;he[" there is a slig to. Er 3p 'roiT' D~S l en to
on on each :-ar-ie -"c-e:c;-c
:'Qnt ,.. 3 rJsrt.:) ......
(rea~ng eac...."'-:e:ll,e~~ :: ::c:':
em on the pegs (now with d place th hree drawings an drawings to make sure the action separate the t now roll the Then, ttl so yOU can the lightbOX 0
samething between 1 and 9. Finally, create 2 (I added an extra in-between here and IIDO'lInn it should still be shot on two's), 'lI1At'illll'··" ..... first slow-in sequence to the l,tmlUilraVllrtncI50n pegs to se if all the
!UI(d(llwn drawing comin a nice snappy bounce. position we created in "·8f'1OIA it away from the hit ~1IIl-IIIUl: be quite so elongated in distortion) has been redu ed
The Bouncing Ball
Note that the lenqth 01 the sueuh coming out not a; long as the 11Ietlh cornmg m 01 the ~ey lin posmon
The rest of the in-betweens should be created in exactly the same way as you produce them in the first part of the bounce-that is, first establish the breakdown position and then create the in-betweens in accordance with the chart requirements. As with the first half of the aC\101' you will first need to accurately superimpose each drawing over each other, center of gravity lined up with center of gravity, before you create the required in-between drawing.
You will, of course, have size, stretch, and shape of the you create it. You also have to ....... ,......... to be projected up and along. I do the ground beneath the ball. This gives a 45
Distorting Mass and Volume
Rememberwhen applying squash and stretch to any object, charact this caseball,you can only distort the shape in accordance with that inherent volume and mass.As mentioned before, a solid metal cannc hardly distort, whereasa very soft, rubber ball will distort significantly its masswill enable it to do so.The volume of objects do not change wh you apply squashand stretch to their shape. An acutely squashed or st ball cannot increaseor decrease its volume just because it is changing Therefore,when you apply distortion to a shape, make sure that its SIZ and volume remain plausible in the shape you choose to make it. in ct's II will
ched vpe. ass,
The Bouncing Ball
The Descending Bounce
With the entire bounce complete you should flip all the drawings to see if all is working and flowing well. The complete first part of the action should look like the following figure.
Note how the added shadow really does give a sense of contact when the ball hits the ground.
tl (II') I"~something that puts many animators off from ustng [his approac Top pegs IIIPP'"9 ro 109 > , deflve d fro m draw'Ing with top pegs more than compensates for the me drd pff ' huge benellts
perfect the artl
In this particular case,you need to look out for specific things as yOJ f drawings. Does the ball follow a nice smooth, arced path of action? Dc.. of the drawings jump out of place during the sequence? Is the ball act, slowing into the top position and then accelerating out of it. It will be hd for you to test the impactofthe hit position on the ground until you ha another bounce complete, but look out for its effectiveness when you d However,this flipping test for now, with the drawing you have, will sho If you are on the right track. If there are errors, fix them immediately, If then you are ready to move on.
our y d
Ripping Isextremely useful b it d comeswhen "0 ut oesn't entirely match the real test, VI T U seeyour animation playi I I monitor: However. ~ ng n rea time on a real scr er make a I~stcheck ~n ::~llng through all the effort of shooting you r any errorsthat will upse: ng on the pegs, to make sure you haven't m Checkthat the ball in_be:;u when you view your first pencil test on the together asthe ball rises ag:n~~come wider apart as they descend an approach you have adopted In. 5 will ensure that the slowinq ou slo 5 working. 48
e en, ser
Remember, the closer the drawings, the slower the action. Consequently, this action downward will accelerate as it goes
loWthe action appears when shot at S ' ...-c:tanding 0f hOwfast oryOUthat some thIngs work perfectly VvI you an u nU""" rates, an d a IsOshow 'd we will eventually demonstrate to e I 'ffe t frame dl ....n.sas opposed to 0 ne'S,That sal • ren , especially wIth fast. large-move action on ,..._ best way to go. 5, yOUthat one's is the k to produce. of course, r " althoUgh It IStwlice the wo If hen yoU view your first pencil test, Is it e Anyway,be honest w ith yours d7w it J'erky.or are there one or two draVvin " Is u antICIpate . 95 really moving as yo . y compared with the rest of the action? If f place and Jump k and fix the problem b e f ore moving on If ' that seem out 0 b . Iy eedtOgo ac ' so. you definIte ~ ou have passed your first test and are ready to go not_cOn9ratulat~Ons-y I (IfyOUcan't decide whether or not the action is . on to the next assignment. h nest-speaking fnen db'or etter still, an ani mat' • , fi hoW it to an 0 Ion working ne, S • 'fthe ball is really bouncing correctly,) professional. to ascertalO I
. T Th A imator's Workbook. New York: Watson-Guptill, 1988, pp, -'4-75, White..T A en'arion from Pencils to Pixels: ClasslCQit: ec h'mques & Digita' . tot WhIte•. nun Animators. Boston: Focal Press, 2006. pp, 332-348.
One of the great Disney intern challenges was for them to create a bo flour sack sequence. Essentially, with the background supplied (you" permission to photocoPY the background layout from the following download it from www.deslctop«ademy.com). you need to create a t sequence using the flour sack character in the following to enlarge your photocoPY you're working larger than figure. (D ,
before animating [strongly recommend the background size printed in this bOOK
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