Module Reflection

The pace of these assignments is a lot faster than last year, I feel more capable to deal with the challenges whilst still feeling I could do so much more. My team seemed to jump straight into the modelling project which was great, once we had our idea and narrative down we quickly started making our assets. I enjoyed the Harem setting it’s not like anything I would have attempted before and it brought up a lot of opportunities to model a large variety of objects from pillows to lantern chandeliers. I feel as a team we all worked well in tandem with each other, bouncing around ideas and trying to solve the issue we were running into, there’s still so much I see that we can do with it if time weren’t a factor.

We also had the walk cycle and body mechanic, I’m quite interested in animating I had fun with it last year in our short animation and for me this assignment has been about learning how to create a good workflow, I found it easy to get lost in key frames and movements but towards the end I started to grasp more how to streamline what movements I was making and how to tweak the keyframes I had instead of adding more. I understand that I need to improve my process of creating so in the future I can add the extra detailing and finish things to own desired standards.


Walk Cycle and Body Mechanic

Jill Rig Character walk cycle

This is my walk cycle based of the end sequence of FlipFlappers.

Looking back I think it wasn’t as great as an idea to animate them walking forwards instead of in a single spot, it made it slightly more difficult to get some of the repeated movements. I think to the movement and timing worked out pretty well, I could have used some more exaggerated poses but I didn’t want to stretch the Rig so much, I think it would just end up looking uncanny. Though I do feel I could add more of  a bouncy swing to the movement if I had more time .

Jack Rig Body Mechanic-Sword Play

I broke this action down into four parts, the step back, the lunge, kick and pose at the end, this helped to concentrate one movement at rather than blocking out the entire motion because each came with a shift in the direction of movement and weight.

The diagonal movement cause some issues with figuring out how to place his feet and what direction their facing, I was finding that my Rig was twisting and distorting a lot once I looked at it from a different direction. I had to think about the arches of movement with the kick and how the rest of the body would act to counteract that, which I feel I’ve accomplished or he doesn’t look like he’s about to fall over at any point.

One thing looking back I would have done was change the rigs on the hands to IK instead of FK, the arm movement was mainly fast sweeping motions which I feel I could made them hit harder and stick better with an IK control. For this I simply constrained the sword onto the hand control.

Overall this project was really interesting, it could be a bit tedious at time watching the movements over and over trying to figure out what needed changed, though the end result is satisfying to see and I feel like I need to improve my workflow for animating better, but I feel I’ve a better understanding of how to work with key frames and when to place or remove inbetween’s.

Body Mechanic Update

More Progress for my Body Mechanic.

I have the entire mechanic roughly animated out, although now I’m seeing a lot of things I need to tweak about it. You can see with this first video that the placement of the kick is way off, he sort of twists back on himself which I’m sure would only make him fall over.

I know my timing is off, this is was because I was blocking out all my key frame first, so I have been focusing more on the placement of the Rig than the timing of the movement. I think it’s a good basic structure that I can now work off, I need to find a way to make the sword/arm movements stick so it seems like they’re hitting off another person sword.

Update on Body Mechanic

I’ve broken down my reference video into several movements, this is my progress so far on the first one.

I’m actually finding it a bit frustrating to place the right foot, I feel like I’m moving it backward enough but then when my character moves forward again it looks too stretched. I can see that the man in my reference video does this, I’ve been tweaking how far he steps back and the angle of his foot placement but I just haven’t quite figured it out yet.

Body Mechanic

When debating what I would animate for the Body mechanic half of this assignment I knew I wanted to branch out from runs and jumps. I had the idea of possibly having my character doing some martial art style fighting, though when I was searching from possible resources and references I suddenly thought of changing it to a sword fight. I liked this idea a lot better and I know that there are official sword fighting competitions held across the world so surely I could find something I could animate.

I eventually came across this channel Dreynschlag which teaches Historical European Martial Arts. Their channel has a variety of swordplay attacks and moves and breaks them down, this was perfect and exactly what I needed.

I started searching through there videos, the movements are very quick and precise but there wasn’t much actual body movement to them so they weren’t particularly suitable. Although they did have this “Kick to the Groin” which suits our task better, hopefully I’ll be able to animate both characters playing off each other but I have a sneaking suspicion I’m already taking on too much to do with the time i have and also to finish my other projects.

Walk cycle Practice

I’ve been working a lot recently on my walk cycle, I think I’m still going to try and animate a character walk but I wanted to practice with a standard walk first.


This is what I have so far I’ve been using some of the resources that I’ve mentioned before like the male walk reference video from ‘endlesreference’. I feel like I’ve spent quite a bit of time on this already and am anxious to move onto the Character walk I have planned, though I found this immensely helpful to just learn about how to properly move the Rig and getting feedback on some movement issues I’ve been having.


Starting to Walk

Every character needs a walk cycle and a walk cycle can tell you a lot about a character. But first you need to know some of the basics, this means we need to know how to break down a walk cycle into it’s most basic parts.

walkacyle_basic_referencewalkcycle-25 frmes

These are from the “The Animators Survival kit” by Richard Williams which goes further into depth about how to animate a walk cycle.

You can see that he simplifies it down into to 5 key poses to create a full walk cycle. I tried to recreate these with my Rig but these poses can be quite exaggerated and don’t create a realistic looking walk cycle, but they are something that  I’ve tried to keep in mind. He also writes about how he animates walk cycles on 16’s which would make it easier to divide up for each of your poses so you’re working on even numbers. Though when I did this the walk cycle was far too fast, Alec then told me that most walk cycle would take about 30 frames for a normal walk.

These are some helpful tutorials that I looked at to get started, particularly the Maya walk cycle as most tutorials are 2d it was good to see how to transfer the process over to 3d.

I’m only concentrating on the legs for now and this is only the rough leg movement, I need to add more bend to the feet and move the torso, I think this will stop the legs look like they’re locking.


Animation Strategies Walk Cycle

One of the first tasks of this semester is animating a walk cycle. To do this though we obviously need a character to animate. Alec has provided everyone in the class with a copy of the Jack and Jill rigs created by Joe Daniels, these are great looking characters with nice appeal and the rigs aren’t very hard to figure out and move quite fluidly. It may be worth purchasing the other rigs as well so I can practice more animation with a wider range of characters, but for now I’ll see how I can handle animating Jack and Jill.

(Rigs!, 2017)

On his blog Joe has more information about all the controls of his rigs,

For Thursday we just had to get used to posing the rigs

A standard action pose but it was good to practice creating tension in a character like they’re about to pounce.

A break dancing pose, I wanted to see if I could believably portray weight


Messing around a bit, a character in free fall preparing to land.

this pose was sort of awkward with the male model twisting in a difficult way, I’m not too sure what he was trying to do with his left arm, this is more a snapshot of action but I don’t think it quite has that flow, but it was very fun to place together.



Rigs!, N. (2017). New Rigs!. [online] Available at: [Accessed 29 Sep. 2017].

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