Animatic- the creation of

So this week (week 8) we had to transform our images from our story board into an animatic. First we had a look into animatics as I was unsure as to what they were. According to an animatic is as follows:

“a preliminary version of a film, produced by shooting successive sections of a storyboard and adding a soundtrack.”

Robert showed me this video on animatics from the movie “Recess:Schools Out” that really helped as it showed the process behind making a storyboard. As our character doesn’t really have coherent speech, we decided to add the soundtrack once we had created our storyboard. We realized that most of  the animatics we viewed were in black and white and decided to keep it that way, as it is just a rough plot of the background and the movement of characters. We looked at the following animatics from movies like ‘Big Hero 6’ and ‘Frozen-the Deleted Scenes’ to get the gist of how these things should flow.

The making of Recess- skip to 6.04mins to view the story board section. Video courtesy of kablamoid96.

Frozen – deleted scenes. Video courtesy of Rainbow Anna.

Big Hero 6 deleted scenes. Video courtesy of Tommi Vercetty

Due to Gianni not being comfortable with using a graphics tablet, we decided to go old style and redraw our in between frames by hand, using the video Disney released on how they make their cartoons.  (Michael would be proud). We traced over the backgrounds and then drew the action of the characters and elements accordingly,  such as Toast running from the house.

How Disney Cartoons are Made- Walt Disney. Video courtesy of puntadeleste.

We took it in turns drawing the things we felt most comfortable with, Hollie is great at animals so Toast’s posing was perfect, Robert and I did background and Beans and Gianni helped with the perspective. Gianni had the idea of modeling parts of our world in Maya, to help with the perspective. They looked pretty cool once finished actually (see them below). They really helped when drawing the storyboard out in a clearer view.

 We recorded our sound over the animatic once it was completed. Robert, Gianni and I recorded the sound effects together (after rehearsing a few times). We compiled the images and in between frames by taking pictures of them and then fixing the ratio to 16 by 9 on photoshop. Robert then added the images together in Adobe After Effects and with Movie Maker (we started with MM however it decided to cut scenes as our files were too large). We then spliced all the scenes together in iMovie and Gianni lined the sound files together to create the final thing.

We were afraid that because we missed out some of our backgrounds in the frames, our world’s paradox look would be lost. We also thought the transition stage from Beans’ outfit to the Cleopatra style outfit was a little unclear. To convey this better during our presentations we redrew some of the frames larger with a little detail to show more of the world’s atmosphere.

So now for our final video! If we ever had to go back and re-edit it I would try to make the transition from Caveman to Cleopatra a little clearer, Mike suggested even pausing the frame at the final outfit for effect.

Our final animatic.


Sound- The Animatic Continued.

So the next part for our animatic is the sound effects, something and Robert and I may have gotten over enthusiastic about (some sneaky classmate recorded us in our element as we did a run through of our neanderthal *cough cough Bethany cough cough*).

We didn’t want to create an actual voice for our caveman- more of a grunting and random noise in projection of the words he would say. Robert was perfect at doing this voice, and so we went from there.

There is a total of 6 scenes in our story, each scene shows the caveman getting more and more stressed as he fails to find his dog. We obviously wanted to reflect this in his voice as he shouts and is scared. Hollie pointed out he is the embodiment of the three characters (Yao, Ling and Chien-Po) from Disney’s ‘Mulan’.

Main basis for our Caveman’s personality. Video courtesy of Joana Neves

We did a lot of research into sound effects and how to create them  – David Filskov and other sound producers provided helpful insight into what we needed.

Scene one the sound effects that would be necessary or of possible use would be things such as; shaking of the dog food bag, the dog pant, the caveman walking. The shaking of the dog food bag we found we could use a bag of large nuts, with some paper inserts to amplify the sound. For the dog pant, we discussed either using Robert as the sound effect or recording someone’s dog and using it. The walking noise we wanted to make vocally for now, a simple one beat echoing his foot steps. Inspiration come from the scene in Family Guy in which Stewie follows fat people with a tuba. Only, we wanted to keep it more simplified.

Scene two shows Beans as he enters the forest, at the beginning while he looks up at the looming trees we either wanted to have a soundtrack with owls hooting or rolling thunder. To make the atmosphere scarier and more believable. Filskov advised that we try hooting through our hands for this owl sound effect (we need to find someone who can do this) and then for the thunder Gianni suggested a drum beat, building up at the shot zooms in on Beans. As he walks through the forest he voices his concern, tone more scared, low growls, either a dog or by one of us, alert him to danger. In the frame where his shot from above, looking up, the growl turns to a roar. The caveman then runs, shouting as the roaring sound is more muffled in the background.

Scene three also the reveal of the dragon scene. Beans starts, his voice still shouting in fear (Robert). When he stops he pants and puffs in effort (also Robert) before carrying on walking across the bridge, shouting for Toast. As he reaches the side of the bridge the growl is revealed as the dragon, as it is a Chinese dragon, a gong could perhaps go off, signalling the oriental feel. Once again our little Beans yells out in frustration and sadness, running towards the other end of the bridge. As he makes he way into the city (a mix of different architectures) we wanted to make it feel like a city vibe, possibly having faint sounds of car horns and zooming effects (space cars). This could be done with an electric keyboard or something similar

Scene four the city effects would be in full effect, zooming noises as our caveman passes through the vegas strip. As Beans walks passed the pyramid casino (Caesars palace of course) he will look up at the poster above depicting the image of a dog. A the shot zooms into the dogs head a fart noise will play.

Scene five as he progresses down the alley we will make it sound more alley like- Hollie does an excellent cat howl, we could break bottles or clink them to give that creepy atmosphere. As the caveman matches with the painting on the wall we will either have another fart noise or a xylophone/ chime sound to symbolise his merging to the painting. The actual background sound of this will change to reflect Egyptian music (examples below) possibly with each footstep or as he walks along. Once he reaches the Roman guard and Cowboy a wolf whistle will go off the signal the attraction. Now for my favourite piece of sound, the fighting scene. We found online that a wet cloth or punching raw meat gives this sound effect, with added drums to emphasis the brutality. We looked at the scene from Song of the South- Br’er Rabbit Runs Away (have a look at the video below from 5.51mins.)

Ancient Egyptian music examples. Video courtesy of Mădălina Dediu.

Br’er Rabbit Runs Away. Video courtesy of Aidan Ralph.

Scene six- the final scene is the return of Toast, so the tone turns from sad to happy. As the shot focuses on the night sky we were thinking of having like a bell music click, replicating the sound of twinkling stars. I really liked the song from Spirited Away   by Night Sky featuring NAK. The bells chiming would look just like those that sky would make. The sound effects that would be made by the Beans and Toast will be made by Robert and someone else.