Experimenting with the scoop of the body today I decided to work on the arm swings a bit more. Instead of using them to support the body weight I opted them fora a lazy slacker walk similar to walk No.12. The main difference is in keeping a realistic bone structure, a push and drag of the back foot and pushing the chest forward. Additionally I wanted to have the arms floppy and a bit lazy so they have a full frame deal in the actions in the swing of the forward body momentum. This gives the character a light step appearance even though the push off frame is small with a lean forward.
Thursday, 29 August 2013
Going back to the simple walk cycles I wanted to add another layer to otherwise normal walk. I added a strong swing from left to right on the push off step, giving a body a pendulum swing forward.
In order for this walk to function I had to lower the low key frame adding an scooping in-between allowing the body to have momentum in order to swing backwards.
The foot is dragged across the floor in order to provide additional stability to such an action and the forward step is at an onward angle giving a drag gin power to the body at hand. The arms are used to balance the figure during the option and the head is loose with neck holding it anchored to the chest as the figures centre changes with the swing forward creating a sickle arc.
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
This time I wanted to concentrate on overall shapes of the body when doing a walk instead of individual movement. I started with a triangular body and the momentum would be built in within the geometric shape until it reaches trapezium only to become a triangle again. Once the shape looked like it was doing a walk I added the motion of legs filling in the negative shapes in order to retain geometrical and stylised walk cycle. Finally arms were added last as a counterbalance to the whole cycle. This walk style offers a lot for style and creation of momentum, however it does not have much opening for a bounce without loosing the geometric silhouette qualities.
Tuesday, 27 August 2013
Continuing with a short and compact body figure, today I worked on a dwarf walk cycle. Using a stereotype of a mountain jolly miner the body is a bit smother and less angular than the swagger of last week. The motion is of a character who is accustomed to walking on the incline, hence there is a slight back lean into the forward step. The arms are swinging upwards without a twist in the elbow and lightly relaxing before arcing downwards. Altogether this gives the figure a happier motion and adds enthusiasm in the walk.
Saturday, 24 August 2013
Today i integrated the simplicity of a straight forward movement with minimal adjustments in order to achieve more character. I used a stereotypical cartoon character shape with a over-sized head in order to work on the balance of the body and overall connection.
In order to achieve a self gratifying swagger in the character subtle movement of the hips and shoulders in contrasting direction was added, keeping the whole figure more volumetric. This hourglass movement add to the figures propulsion and a large head adds a further challenge of overall balance. In order to portray certainty in the character the step is wide with a forwards sink on the knee and the arms go to chin level, elbow leading.
Thursday, 22 August 2013
I wanted to revisit the serpentine walks, but this time concentrating more on the torso manoeuvring. The body is worked on a striking angle on the each step. To achieve this I created a line on which the head would be travelling. Then I worked out the body arrangement with the legs. The body is torqued on the lowest key frame sink. It then whips upwards on the push off, only to strike with the step forward. Once the balance is regained the same happens to the body. So the torso arc of action was drawn first, it was then combined with the leg step, then the torso was added on.
Finally the arms came as the latest stage, reinforcing the movement and adding stability to the figure. I wanted the force to be led with a spine whip forwards and to leave any shoulder swaying for the latter smaller adjustments once the arms are added in.
Wednesday, 21 August 2013
I tried something a bit different this time, concentrating on the representation of the movement. Using futurism and it's representation in the arts as a basis as well as the theory of 1930's blurring and zipping alongside 'long headed inbetweens'.
The walk is classical in it's simplicity and I've kept it plain. The interest arises with trying to represent more than one movement in each frame thus breaking with the barrier of single frame story. Similar would be happening in fast movement in pre war times when the practice of dry-brushing was included in this. It is somewhat similar to speed lines of comics and newspaper cartoons, a way of capturing the movement and giving an impression thereof using only one picture. Here I've kept the blur dry brushing to the legs alone for clarity. An interesting technique which could be utilised in future for a certain visual style.
Tuesday, 20 August 2013
Harking back to the fantastical elements of previous walk, I did another exercise with the dogman walk cycle. The elements of fawn and satyr are also included here and it was a consolidation exercise. The legs with 'long feet' structure create an impression of a tiptoe walk as paws grasp the ground below. I've added a little curl to the in the immediate frame in order to accent this further. The legs are placed forward as they go up first unlike most common bi-pedal walks where they just go forwards preventing the fall. The body is hunched forward with strong bend in the spine at the push off point. Arms are swinging side to side in a wide arc coming level with the eyes as the figure advances.
Monday, 19 August 2013
After thinking about the hip and shoulder relations on some of the feminine figures of last week I wanted to break this down into a bone and joint model. I've used a simple stick model, exaggerating the movement in order to observe the seesaw effect of the movement line. There is a double helix of movement at the hips and this is mirrored by a smaller one in the shoulders. I've kept the bones a bit bendier in order to account for the spine and musculature as well as the animated effect of movement. It all seems simple but is crucial to the understanding of the three dimensional movement of the body, creating a flow of kinetic energy.
Friday, 16 August 2013
Finishing of the week of feminine walks I went back to basics. To history and before. I decided to use the ancient fertility fetishes playfully nicknamed venus. The defining shape is that of a circle with large breast draping over a swollen stomach. The leg taper without feet and the arms taper of into tiny hands. The challenge here was getting the core gravity whilst having a figure that could move forward with all the restrictions on it's skeleton. There is a lot more wobble all around as fat is folding around the structure with the swing of the step. The step had tone small similar to the fatman from earlier finishing in line with the imaginary perpendicular of the subjects front. The legs would have to move leading with knees and quickly placing the foot in as the hips would be restricted with layers of fat and the weight on the ankle would be very large. The stomach restricts the legs going inward so the legs are in neutral line while shoulders and the chest are used to create momentum and propulsion with the bottom being a reactor to it. The push off is very small and the foot almost drags and digs into ground afterward.
Thursday, 15 August 2013
Continuing with the feminine walks, today I decided to go with the stereotypical femme-fatale walk. The high heeled shoes. this changes the walk of a human in a few profound ways. The figure is walking on tiptoes and as such the steps are relatively tight and leg and heel travel inwards. This is recognised as a feminine walk as men are more to walk with their feet travelling outwards resembling a sprawl in order to ground the heavier body. As the heel is raised this starts to resemble a quadrupedal walk and has similarities with satyr and dogman from earlier. The anomaly occurs by the support of the heel allowing the figure to distribute it's weight on this part of the foot. This as an effect of bending knees into a small lounge in order to minimise the strain on the low of the spine. Another interesting occurrence is the movement of the shoulders in order to balance out the chest in co-ordination with bends of the hip. I've kept the arms straight acting seining back and forth in order to give the walk more personality and concentrate on the legs. The head is looking side to side.
Wednesday, 14 August 2013
Though most of the figures up to now haven't been gender specific, I noticed that there is a leaning towards classic masculine representations. I wanted to counterbalance this with study of a idiosyncratic feminine elements in the walk cycle. There are small differences. One of the main ones is in the head position, the head is usually on a tighter eight loop and does not bob up and down as much. The movement here starts from the hip following a lazily placement of the shins and a crawl of the foot. There is still shoulder swing to counteract the walk but its has a delay and is not a lead. There is also more soft tissue in the breast which will affect the balance of the figure and it's lower back placement in the walk. I think I'll have to practise a few of these in order to understand the body movements.
Tuesday, 13 August 2013
Continuing with a fantasy themed figures I've tackled a satyr today. The bestial goat like locomotion of it's legs is in contrast to the humanoid top. Here I've got the figure doing a stride. It's leading with one leg primarily, whilst the other shoots forward and stabilises it quickly. As the character was so unnatural I still wanted to convey some sort of weight for it so a lop-sided movement seemed a good fit. Also I really wanted to understand the bends and squashes of a bestial leg, and to do both of them would have pushed my time limit. The arms are moving in a classic swing in with the step. The challenging parts of the physiognomy are the legs. Not only are the feet split into two sections, akin to deer, goats etc, but the hind legs are used for composition which change the dynamic greatly. These legs only evolved to work in fours, putting them on two changes the dynamic of the figure and forces the chest to lean back thrusting with the hips during the walk. The head follows general movement.
Monday, 12 August 2013
Continuing with the cold blooded today I've put my skills on a larger object. Wanting to capture a lizard like character with body properties of a croc. The figure is top heavy and this means that its chest will be concaving on push off in order to balance out a large head. It will be dragging itself forward with its foot lead first then follow it up with thighs and flutes for locomotion. Because the arms are large and knuckle draggers the figure will have a sway from side to side as it walks. Its knock will be adding to the balance as it walks adding to an illusion of wobble. I've rendered the figure in order to understand structure and muscle movements better.
Friday, 9 August 2013
To finish the week off. I've chosen a somewhat more complex and time-consuming walk. Still adding a bit more detail to the figure, in order to observe it's muscle movements I wanted this one to be darting forward like a snake. I started by sketching the first and final key. Afterwards I've animated the arc of movement which the figure would fulfil.
It was then a case of adding in the key frames, following this arc, and a single lot of in-betweens. Once I had a nice arch with the spine, as I wanted for this to be a walk the final part had to be done from a push off frame. The sliding foot darts forward and the body folds in creating the moment of the 'bite' before going back to the main key on each side. I wanted to give the motion a bit of a sway as well. To represent a snake swaying side to side before striking.
So I've added two additional accents either side one going right and other left respective to the figure's viewpoint. An arm would have to be used balancing this out as the movement is originating from the hips along a shoulder arc. I could emphasise this further by stacking more frames around each side to create something more ominous in future. A fun though complex exercise.
Thursday, 8 August 2013
I concentrated upon a specific part of a walk today. The point when the foot hits the floor. The figure is stomping in a aggressive intimidating way. Around the contact key there are four additional in-betweens in order to exaggerate the actual stomp. The foot up, leading with knee happens very quickly leaving no in-betweens, just a snap. The heel is on the floor on the next frame as the legs are in the scissor position. It is at this point that the character crouches/lounges into a low shape. In order to understand how different muscle groups are affected at each point I made this figure relatively muscled.
This way I can see what needs to contract and expand in order to propel it upwards before the next stomp. Each time the figure goes down the elbows follow suit, only to snap with the wrist in a downward motion at an accent frame creating the counterbalance to the high knee.
Wednesday, 7 August 2013
After having a lot of fun figuring the physics of the canine lupus legs supporting a hominoid torso I wanted to try out some more body shapes. this time I stayed more grounded in reality and added wight to the character. Fat people move differently than skinny and bony, tall differently than short etc. For this figure I started in the mid push-off instead of the usual key of lower grounded pass. I wanted the figure to have elegance in it's walk and a bit of a swing in the step. The character places the foot forward with a short step carefully and to portray this the head is pointed at the ground. The arms are swinging but more in around the body creating centrifugal motion allowing the character to propel forward quickly. On the downside pass all the weight drops down especially around the stomach and bum area as the figure is primarily pear shaped. On the push-off the head is clearly pointed in the way the fat goes.
Tuesday, 6 August 2013
This time I wanted to move away from human realism of bipedal figures and try to achieve something more fantastical. Not quite a satyr (though I may do that later) this character is based on one of my dogmen from 10'000 characters project.
The lower half is that of a canine while the top is relatively humanoid with some ape qualities. I did a purposeful walk with this figure, trying to keep it simple as the physics of 'tiptoe walk' would add another joint to be manipulated. On the pass position it's knee is almost touching the ground as a consequence. Shoulders and top back add a sway in order to balance the large body being held with small paws. The arms shoot forward parallel to the head, eye level giving it an impression of drag through the air. I think a walk on (short) stilts would be similar. A good and interesting exercise with potential for future exploration.
Monday, 5 August 2013
Similar to the last walk, this character is assuming the duck pose with his posterior. There is more gaiety as the figure is more of a jogger/walker and air punches are light with the body swinging with each one.
The knees are raised higher in order to give a lighter feel and the the arms lead from the elbow twisting in the waist to follow in the shoulder on the accented keys. In order to give a double bounce 'happy' feel the mid key is lowered, when the figure would be ordinarily hitting the high peak of the walk wave. The circular locomotion of the foot with a floppy front add to this propulsion.
Friday, 2 August 2013
Today I've gone for a classic pugilist. I wanted to reign in the looseness of last few days and enforce a classic walk with some tightness.
I've kept the buttock to the back, as the figure is advancing primarily with it's chest. The guard is down and the hands are swaying with the movement. The forward motion is coming from the hips and extending through the knees which are flipping forwards and allowing the feet to pull the figure onwards. Elbows are perpendicular to the ground and the head is only mildly rotating forwards. The figure is walking like a duck.
Thursday, 1 August 2013
Having a break from the Sakuga studies after some full immersion. A lot of the techniques would require longer study and would be breaking my limitation and the aim of this objective for walking, though I think that in future I may do some Sakuga based weekend projects for my portfolio. I wanted to have a play with what I learnt so far. My understanding the walk cycle has grown. I found the Sakuga treatment of the animation frame rate very interesting as they frequently work on a limited animation. Also I wanted to utilise some traditional techniques here. Having started with a plain stroll I added the stickiness of one foot which would snap and break only to extend further before coming down with some force. There are a few things which I needed to do for this to work. Firstly I had to add more inbetweens to the central key in order to emphasise the re-composition of the wight in the figure.
On the stick key, arms and body would have to be positioned so they struggle against the gravity, providing adequate tension.
With leg extension the same happens as torso hunches balancing the long leg and assuming kick like stance.
The break is added before this in order to accent the snap out movement with toes first leading like a ballerina.
The head is kept at a minimal movement corresponding with the body.