Friday, March 5, 2010

Richard Baneham - director of animation on Avatar

Speaking of Animation (which is fast becoming a really strong resource) just put up a podcast with Richard Baneham. Really interesting stuff. He talks about the old Disney approach of having a character lead, so that the character stays consistent through the film, and likens that to mocap the actor is the lead artist to give everyone the reference of who the character is. He makes the point that you should not worry about labels but use every tool to tell the best story. It's a very strong point, personally I think mocap reduces the animator's potential for creative input (course I haven't done it so what do I know) but he's right, telling an engaging story is the only thing that matters in the end.

understanding the relationship from frame to frame. whether that's spatial releationship within the space of a frame, or muscle to muscle relationship. It might look like Zoe in the last frame, but that doesn't get you fuck all, it's how you get there.

back in the 2d there was a huge diversity in the types of animators there were guys who could draw the shit out of it things, great illustrators. They could always hide behind great drawings. But I always found they were not necessarily the guys who could touch the audience best. There were guys whose draftsman skills where not that tight, but they understood how to connect with an audience, and for me I'll take one of those animators everyday.

That's the key. Whether you can tell the story in a manner that connects with the audience. And that's your 1st job as an animator When you sit down at a desk, your job is not to move shit around, your job is to tell a story. Within each shot within each character, within each motion, how do you communicate best what's going on at that particular time, if you always keep that at the forefront of your mind, you'll do fine.

2D vs 3d vs Mo-cap, who gives a rats ass, how do you tell a fucking story. Why limit yourself. as artists before you sit down and start a scene what tools are available to you make the best possible shot and put up on screen to connect with the audience. If you do that before every production everything will be better for it.

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