Monday, February 4, 2008

Wonder and Style Boards

Here's an a assignment from my motion design class. The goal was to take an emotion and create a motion piece that included text from the dictionary definition. Blender was used for animation while After Effects where used for compositing and bloom effects. The song used is Illusion of Love (bipolar remix) by Darkhalo.


>> Watch this video streamed in HD (720p)

The main purpose of this motion design assignment was to create and use style boards. The process of creating a motion piece--after the design brief and writing is done--is to create the storyboards, key art, style boards, and then go into production. The storyboards are rough sketches showing the action of the animation, the approved concept art is refined into key art, and from there you create what are called style boards. These are still images that show what the final shot should look like. Style boards don't need as many panels as storyboarding does, but in the case of this assignment we did to get practice creating them.

This image shows what I came up with as the style boards for Wonder. At this point the rose is CG but everything else was photoshopped. My final animation needed to look like this, which actually wasn't that hard because all of the art assets were done: the rose and the aurora. It only took me an evening to animate and render the final shots. After that it was a couple of hours in the lab with After Effects to composite everything and add the bloom.

The great thing about doing style boards, aside from good production practice, is that it really gives the client a clear understanding of what the final will look like before production begins. If the final version doesn't waiver at all from the style boards the client will be happy because it was exactly what they were expecting. Also, seeing the style boards go from stills to motion is so magical that it often exceeds the client's expectations.

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