Category: Life Drawing

Drawing for Features Storyboarding ANM 372 Week 1: Life Drawing

Hello good webizens! Today I am showcasing my second storyboarding class, Animation 372: Storyboarding for Feature Animation. That’s right, this semester I am taking not one, but two storyboard classes. I am exceedingly pleased with this semester. As a storyboard major, I am finally taking the courses most interesting to me: STORYBOARDING. For FILM no less. Although both of my courses have to deal with storyboarding for feature animation, I am learning some different things in each one. And each of my excellent professors has their own unique way of teaching.

Disney, ILM and Pixar artist Tamara Lusher-Stocker teaches this course. Her filmography includes The Lion King, Home on the Range, Dinosaur, Treasure Planet, and Escape from Planet Earth.

On our first day of class she introduced herself, then the five of us (that’s right, only five students – stellar! Personal attention!) discussed our goals. Everyone in our class is a storyboard major and three of us will soon graduate, so we will be able to showcase our thesis project during the class.

For our first class, we discussed some of the similarities and differences between boarding for TV, live action and feature animation.

TV Animation

As everyone who has ever watched the credits of an animated program knows, most TV animation is not actually animated in the states. For this reason, storyboard artists must be extremely precise. The boards are often used by overseas animators as key frames for their animation, so accuracy is a must.

Live Action

Live action boards serve as a blue print for complicated shots. You want to make sure that the angle of that explosion looks just right before the truck drives under the bridge you’re going to blow up. The point is to give the director exactly what they’re looking for, to draw realistic characters, and often arrows are shown to where the action is going (although I hear this is starting to go away since most everything is put into an animatic now).

Feature Animation

You’re creating the entire film with boards and making a story reel, or animatic, that will show exactly how the movie will be played. No arrows here.

Most importantly one should draw loose and communicate quickly. There’s no time to noodle boards to make them beautiful. You’ll be drawing way to many of them to get attached to any one in particular.

Like in Kristen’s class, we also discussed Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey (seriously, read this book. It explains A LOT and you’ll find how many of your favorite films use the formula pretty accurately). We also discussed stereotypes, empathy, acting, and the importance of using a strong silhouette.

We practiced modeling and drawing each other in preparation for our homework.

Here are my drawings of my classmates:

Classmate 1 Classmate 2

Classmate 3

Next we watched interesting clips from The Incredibles and Monsters Inc. in order to get a better sense of character design and structure. Then we tried our hand at drawing our own crazy creatures.

Trying out different ideas, I thought of the idea of something cute and squat with glasses.
Trying out different ideas, I thought of the idea of something cute and squat with glasses.
Working off the original idea, I made my monster girl a little bigger and made her into a workout junkie.
Working off the original idea, I made my monster girl a little bigger and made her into a workout junkie.
Expanding on the theme, I made her even taller, and decided that she enjoyed swimming.
Expanding on the theme, I made her even taller, and decided that she enjoyed swimming.
My last sketch, I gave her a 50s retro swim suit and gave her the lifelong ambition of being on the swim team -- in spite of her flaming hair.
My last sketch, I gave her a 50s retro swim suit and gave her the lifelong ambition of being on the swim team — in spite of her flaming hair.

Finally, we took our last model and were encouraged to tell a story with the character, making the model into some type of creature.
Here are my three processes:

The Original Sketch with a little newt added for fun.
The Original Sketch with a little newt added for fun.
I turned the character into a witch and moved the newt so that he became an unfortunate prince floating in the air.
I turned the character into a witch and moved the newt so that he became an unfortunate prince floating in the air.
A cleaned up version of sketch two with a little more detail.
A cleaned up version of sketch two with a little more detail.

For our first homework assignment, Tamara instructed us to draw three life drawings of a single person from life, five drawings of them participating in an activity, three head studies, and one drawing of them on the phone. She encouraged us to pick someone fascinating, as our first storyboard will revolve around this character.
You’ll see who I chose in Week 2.

Bon Nuit!

San Francisco Zoo Sketches

I LOVE the zoo. Of course you know this devoted blog followers. Here are even more animals for your viewing amusement. I particularly like the anteater, my favorite animal at the zoo.

Anteater
Anteater
Hippo taking a swim
Hippo taking a swim
Polar Bear and Penguin Pals
Polar Bear and Penguin Pals
Ostrich Studies 1
Ostrich Studies 1
Ostrich Studies 2
Ostrich Studies 2
Ostrich Studies 3
Ostrich Studies 3
Rhino enjoying lunch
Rhino enjoying lunch

Rhino Studies 1

Life on the BART Sketches

I enjoy drawing people on BART. However, people on BART, look up from your phone once in a while. We are permanently attached to our phones. Phone zombies if you will.

Woman holding onto strap
Woman holding onto strap
Woman checking her phone
Woman checking her phone
Guy holding onto BART with bike
Guy holding onto BART with bike
Woman checking her phone
Woman checking her phone
Woman on the Platform
Woman on the Platform
Guy with bike 3
Guy with bike 3
Guy with bike 2
Guy with bike 2
Guy with Bike 1
This guy was cool. He looked like a bike messenger on a mission.
Man checking phone 2
Man checking phone 2
Woman checking her phone
Woman checking her phone
Man checking his phone
Man checking his phone
Woman listening to music
One of my favorite drawings – I love how effortless she looks.
Woman sitting checking her phone
Woman sitting checking her phone

Walt Disney Family Museum Cute Farm Animal Drawings

Saturday I went to the Walt Disney Family Museum and drew some of the cutest farm animals ever. Love animals.

The Walt Disney Family Museum
The Walt Disney Family Museum
2 Goats
2 Goats
Pony
Pony
Goat and Pony
Goat and Pony
Sheep and Chicken
Sheep and Chicken

This pig was adorable. I love the pig.

Sheep and Bunny
Sheep and Bunny
Bunny and Pig Studies
Bunny and Pig Studies
Sheep and Chicken Studies
Sheep and Chicken Studies
Sheep and Bunny Studies
Sheep and Bunny Studies
Bunny and Duck Studies
Bunny and Duck Studies
Guy photographing the animals
Guy photographing the animals
Now this woman was amazing. She had a bright blue hat, a Dorothy of Oz dress, purple tights and motorcycle boots. Cool Cool Cool. You'll see her again in a future post.
Now this woman was amazing. She had a bright blue hat, a Dorothy of Oz dress, purple tights and motorcycle boots. Cool Cool Cool. You’ll see her again in a future post.
Cool Woman with Hat 2
Cool Woman with Hat 2
Cool Woman with Hat 3
Cool Woman with Hat 3
The real deal
The real deal

The Goat

The Sheep
The Sheep