Donnerstag, 15. Dezember 2011

Class 5 - Week 12 - Progress Reel

Hey guys,
week 12 is there again and my new progress reel is up.
I really learned a lot this class and can't wait to start a new shot. I still think that finding a good audio clip is even harder than animating it ;)
I wish all of you a new AM break and of course enjoy the holidays.
See you all in 2012 and take care everyone


Mittwoch, 14. Dezember 2011

Class 5 - Week 11

Hey Guys,

here a quick update of my shot from last week. Its the final submission but not finished at all. I will try to get some basic hair animation in there and also fix some other small things.
later this week I will upload my new progress reel from class 5.
Have an awesome week everyone and I hope you like the shot so far


Sonntag, 4. Dezember 2011

Class 5 - Week 10

Hey Everyone,

week 10 is over and here is my next polishing pass. I got some awesome feedback from a few friends on my shot. This helped me to push it more and more and I think it really worked out great. I learned so much the last week and can't wait to go pack to older shots and tweak the face there too.
Besides the face I added more movement to the male character. Next week I hope I have time to work on my side project again but we will see how much feedback I'm gonna get on this version of my shot.
Have an awesome week everyone and happy animating


Sonntag, 27. November 2011

Class 5 - Week 9


and to catch up with the posts, here my work from this week. It was a short week because I came home from the CTN conference on Wednesday night. It was an awesome trip, I met all the people I talked to in the last year nearly every day. It was great hanging out together and on Monday we had an fantastic trip to Disneyland. I think nearly one week later my voice is coming back form laughing so much. We will definitely do a trip like this again :-)
Back to the assignment. I tweaked the face animation on both characters more and hope that I add more life into the expressions. The upcoming week I will focus more on the fingers and hands and see if I can bring a bit more life and smoothness into them too. Hope you like it so far, happy animating

Cheers Matt

Class 5 - Week 8

here a quick update form week 8.
I tried to smooth things out and focused on the face animation on the female character.

Sonntag, 13. November 2011

Class 5 - Week 7

Hey Everyone,

here is the next update on my dialogue shot. The female character is now in splines, still rough though. Next is going to get the male character in spline and than refine and tweak it more. Also the last face pose is up.

Cheers Matt

Sonntag, 6. November 2011

Class 5 - Week 6

Hey Everyone,

week 6 is over. Its crazy how fast the time is running. Here my next update on my 2 person dialogue shot. Also the next face pose is up. Hope you like it and stay tuned for next week. Happy animating everyone

Cheers Matt

Sonntag, 30. Oktober 2011

Class 5 - Week 5

Hey Everyone,

here is my blocking pass for this week. I went a bit further than the layout and hope everything is working.
It's something totally different to animate something which has such small movements and gestures. Will be fun to refine it more and more next week. Until next week and happy animating

Cheers Matt

Montag, 24. Oktober 2011

Class 5 - Week 4

He everyone,

here a quick update from the last week. I had to decide for three audio clips for the next assignment. As easy as it sound, it was one of the hardest weeks I have ever had at AM. Finally I had three clips and I'm going for #1. I will definitely animate #3 after AM. The next face pose is also included.


Sonntag, 16. Oktober 2011

Class 5 - Week 3

Hey Everyone,
here is my final monologue shot. At least for now. I think until class 6 I will not open that shot again. After so many weeks of working on the same animation, I'm really looking forward to start something new in the next weeks. Upcoming week will be planning 3 shots for our dialogue shot. I'm still not sure which clips I'm gonna choose. Wish me luck to pick the right one :)


Samstag, 15. Oktober 2011

Progress Reel Class 4

Hey guys,
now that I finished my monologue shot from class 4, I thought I reupload my progress reel.
Here you can watch it as an QuickTime file. Hope you like the reel.

Sonntag, 9. Oktober 2011

Class 5 - Week 2

Hey Everyone,

here is my more refined pass of facial animation. I also changed a few other things in the shot like the first camera position. Overall I think its working better now :)
We also had to do two face poses this week. So I hope you like the work and see you next week

Cheers Matt

Montag, 3. Oktober 2011

Class 5 - Week 1

Hey Everyone,

here is my first pass of lip sync and facial expression. Nothing has an offset yet. I also have to tweak the eye lids more this week. 
The new class started and my new Mentor is Michelle Meeker. Here you can check her work at imdb. I'm really looking forward to learn a lot from her and hope that class 5 will be a blast . Until next week

Cheers Matt

Freitag, 16. September 2011

Class 4 - Week 12 - Progress Reel

Hey Guys,

week 12 is nearly over, can't believe that class 4 is done. Only two classes left and only one new shot to come. I encoded my current progress reel which I will upload on my website after the monologue is finished in a few weeks. I will also post it here when its done. I already tried to set up some lights for the scene to make a simple rendering :)
During the break I will work on a personal project. Another monologue line where my goal is to animate out of one major pose. Hopefully I'll get the shot done for CTN but who knows how exhausting class 5 is going to be. 
I hope you like my work from class four and hope that you will stop by when the next term is going to start. Have a great week 

Cheers Matthias

Sonntag, 11. September 2011

Class 4 - Week 11

Hey Guys,

here is my final animation, for this week at least. I've got some awesome notes from my buddies at AM.
Hope you like the shot, I can't wait to add the facial animation in the next class. My Progress-Reel will be up next week.


Sonntag, 4. September 2011

Class 4 - Week 10

Hey Everyone,

here is my more refined shot from last week. I tweaked the hands and fingers more and also added more eye movements. 
Also the "surprised" hand pose is done for this week. 
Next week will be the last polishing week for the shot and than in a few weeks we will start to add some facial animation. Hope you like the shot

Cheers Matthias

Sonntag, 28. August 2011

Class 4 - Week 9

Hey Everyone,

this week I'll update my blog a bit earlier than the weeks before.
For the shot, I had to make a lot of changes. Maybe you wont see them but they are there :)
The biggest is that I switched from FK to IK arms. I had a few sections where I had really strange things going on with the rotations. I tried to smooth them out but it didn't really worked. So I deleted to keys on the arms and redid them which saved me a lot of time later on. I also changed a few pats timing wise. Next step is to make a few sections a bit more snappier and get a lot of details into the hands and fingers. 
The hand pose for this week was to show a relaxed hand. Its hard to get a clear silhouette on a hand like this because your fingers are starting to curl inwards and get closer to each other. This is what I came up with.
Next week will be a surprised hand pose which I have no idea for right now :)
Hope you like the shot and the pose. Until next week

Cheers Matthias

Dienstag, 23. August 2011

Class 4 - Week 8

Hey Everyone,

here my assignment from last week. I added a lot of keys and changed a few sections timing wise.
Next step is going to hit the spline button and clean a lot of curves :)
Last week we also had to upload a hand pose. The emotion of the pose was "angry". This week is going to be a "relaxed" hand. Still not sure what I'm going to do.
Hope you like both uploads until next week


Montag, 15. August 2011

Class 4 - Week 7

Hey Everyone,

here is my first bishop monologue blocking. It's really strange how different it is to have a character on one spot instead of letting him run around the screen. Its now a whole new challenge to find ways to show thoughts of the character and to not act things out with too much poses. I'm really looking forward to the next weeks of refining this shot and see how it will work without any facial animation on it. Hope you like that shot,  have an awesome week

Cheers Matthias

Sonntag, 14. August 2011

Class 4 - Week 6

Hey guys,

doing a bit of catching up here and posting the three audio clips I chose for the monologue assignment.
After thinking a lot of back and forth and some good notes from my mentor I decided to chose the "ball on chain" clip. Hope it will work out at the end.
In the next days I will upload the first blocking pass. Hope you stay tuned :)

Sonntag, 31. Juli 2011

Class 4 - Week 5

Hey guys,

here it is, the final Office-Guy animation. For this week last least :)
The last days I was searching for audio-clips and it is so hard to find the right lines. Hope I can decide which one I'm going to take. I also try to find a few more but don't really know where to look anymore...
So, here is the last Stewie-Clip for the next month. Now it's all about Bishop.


Sonntag, 24. Juli 2011

Class 4 - Week 4

Hey Everyone,

here another update of my Office Guy shot. Went into splines and added a tie and some more paper. Next week is another week of polishing. After that we have to upload some audio clips for our first monologue. Really looking forward to get Bishop. Until next time, have a great week :)


Montag, 18. Juli 2011

Class 4 - Week 3

Hey Guys,

quick update on my office guy shot. I added a lot of breakdowns and also refined the paper animation more. The next pass will be going into spline and than clean the curves one by one.
Hope you guys check my shot next week again :)
Thanks for reading / watching


Sonntag, 10. Juli 2011

Class 4 - Week 2

Hey Everyone,

first week of blocking is over. Overall I'm not 100% happy with my shot but I hope this will change during the next pass of blocking plus. I have to try to get more panic out of the character at the end. We will see how this works out :)
Yesterday we had the Saturday-Make-Up Session with Kenny Roy. He talked a bit about the way you approach a lip-synch shot. It was really interesting to hear his work flow on that topic. 
Besides blocking I'm trying to narrow down audio clips for the next shot. The frame limit is giving me a hard time, my favorite ones are 20-25 frames to long. Maybe I find a way to shorten them a bit.
Ok than, here is my first pass of blocking. Hope the idea is getting through clear and stay tuned for the next pass


Samstag, 2. Juli 2011

Class 4 - Week 1

Hey Everyone,

after a nice week off from any animation related work AM opened his doors again. Honestly after being kind of lazy for a few days I was recharged and ready to do some new animations. 
OK than, Class 4 has started and this term its about acting. The first assignment we have will be with the Stewie character and than we get bishop to animate our first monologue / dialogue shot.
My new Mentor is Dana Boadway, and you can check her reel here and here. And further more, here you can see on which projects she worked on. What is really nice about this term is the my Q&A time is on Tuesday at 8pm (German time). So for a change I don't have to stay up until 3am in the morning, which I'm still going to do to get my work done :)
So for my first assignment for this class I planed out something like this

Hope that Dana is ok with my idea and than the blocking will start next week. Can't wait to set the first keys :)

Have a great on and until next time

Cheers Matthias

Donnerstag, 16. Juni 2011

Class 3 - Week 12 - Progress Reel

Hey Guys,

now its kind of official, Class 3 is over. The three month felt like 3 weeks. It's so awesome to see all the animations by my classmates and see there animjam or single shots come together. 
The next class is going to introduction to acting. I'm really looking forward to use the bishop rig in the middle of the term. The next week will be all about searching dialogues and refining some ideas I have for my first acting shot.
I put together my progress reel which you can see below. Here is also a Quick time file with a better quality. Hope you like it 

Cheers Matthias

Sonntag, 12. Juni 2011

Class 3 - Week 11

Hey Guys,
week 11 is almost over and this was the last week of working on our shot. I didn't changed that much so I had a lot of time searching for some dialogue lines. I listened to a lot of movie and TV series quotes the last days and its really hard to find something good. I still have a few weeks left before I have to decide which one I'm going to take. Today I will try to come up with more ideas for my first acting shot. Again, the hardest part with ideas is to avoid the ones you saw a lot of times and don't use cliches too much. 
Next week I will upload my new progress reel, so stay tuned :)


Sonntag, 5. Juni 2011

Class 3 - Week 10

Hey Everyone,

this week was about polishing. My mentor didn't had any changes on my shot so I could move on and switched over to spline. After the first clean up of the curve a hit the play button. As always the nice snappiness from the blocking was kind of lost. So starting on the hip and the feet I tried to get the weight back into the character. After that step I tweaked the spine, head, arms and so on. After getting a lot of great feedback I added a lot of small overlaps to the fingers and the toes. I'm really happy that I forced myself to animate something more cartoony.
For this shot I'm thinking about rendering it with some motion-blur. I made a quick test which you can see below. I will turn down the motion-blur for the final rendering. Hope you like it and until next time

Freitag, 3. Juni 2011

Class 3 - Week 9

Hey Guys,
taking a small break from polishing my shot and thought why not update my blog. 
Here is my Blocking Plus progress for the Army guy who is opening the gate from last week. As I wrote in the post before, it's tough for me to find the right poses and breakdowns. This week I didn't had so much time to work on my shot as I wanted to. So the only way getting everything done is stop writing and go back to work ^^
Hope you like the shot so far, until next time

Sonntag, 22. Mai 2011

Class 3 - Week 8

This week is going to be cartoony :)
This was the first time I really tried to do something cartoony and push the poses and the timing as much as I could. It was really hard to not fall back into my "normal" animation style. I tried to change my work-flow for that assignment which made things not easier. I first added all the key poses without really paying attention to the transition form one pose to another. That mend that I had to change those poses while I was adding the breakdowns. Kind of working against yourself. The first blocking pass was a bit cartoony in the beginning, than realistic and cartoony again. So after deleting a lot of keys an starting the middle part over again I'm quite happy with the result. I had a lot of help form the Ventrilo Brain-Club :)
Ok than, let's see what my Mentor is going to say about that and I really hope that blocking plus and polishing wont kick me at the end with all those translations in the spine.
As always, I hope you like it

Dienstag, 17. Mai 2011

Class 3 - Week 7

Hey Guys,

this will be a short post. Week 8 just begun and it's already the last assingment for class 3. I will try to make a really cartoony animation this time and hope I get it right. Its tough for me to figure out how to push the poses and movements more to get them more snappy.
Here is my final animation for the parkour shot. I will make a few changes my mentor suggested and you will see the shot on my progress reel in a few weeks.
Hope you enjoy the short clip

Sonntag, 8. Mai 2011

Class 3 - Week 6

Hey Everyone,

here is my refined blocking from my parkour shot. I added a lot of inbetweens and tracked arcs and made sure that the overlaps of the head and arms and the rest of the body are working. 
For the next week I have to plan my next shot and that is already the last shot for class 3. Still not really sure what I'm going to do, so brainstorming will be a big topic for me during the next week.
Hope you like the shot 


Montag, 2. Mai 2011

Class 3 - Week 5

Hey Guys,
week 6 already started so class 3 is half way through. This week I will go to the FMX conference and meet a lot of AM'ler. This will be awesome and I'm looking really forward to it. 
I had some troubles figuring out the staging for my last shot. fitting all the movements into one static camera is not so easy, specially when you still want to see your character :)
I hope that I don’t have to make to much changes and that I can catch up with my work for this week at the weekend. Hope you like the shot 

Cheers Matthias

Dienstag, 26. April 2011

Class 3 - week 4

To catch up with the posts, here my final submission of my Fireman assignment. 
The next one is going to be a parkour shot, hope I don’t run into to many gimbal locks.

Class 3 - Week 3

Hey Everyone,
time has gotten short lately so here is a quick post of my refining from week 3.

Freitag, 15. April 2011

Class 3 - Week 2

Oh boy, time is passing so fast I totally forgot to update my little blog here.
So a few things have changed since week 1. I swapped my Q&A Time and now Dimos Vrysellas is my Mentor. For more info’s you can check his website
As always, here is my blocking from week 2. I will be a challenge to animate the ax and switching it during the animation because I needed two different setup's for it. This week I try to update the blog a bit earlier. Hope you like it and have fun watching it :) 

Sonntag, 3. April 2011

Class 3 - Week 1

First week of class 3 is almost over.
On Friday morning I had my first Q&A with my new Mentor Dave Vallone. He talked a bit about his career and about projects he worked on. Currently he is working at  and here you can see his imdb profile.
I'M really looking forward to learn a lot from him and understand the body mechanics more and more.
For this class I chose the Anim Jam. Its choosing an overall theme for the three assignments. I brainstormed some ideas with the AM Brain-Club on Ventrilo. It is awesome to through on small idea into the round and than everybody helps to refine it more and more until its growing from one assignment idea into a whole Anim Jam. At the end it was hard to figure out which takes could work together the best and still fit into the frame limit of each shot.
My basic idea is that Stewie wants to become a fireman and has to pass a few tests. One of them is opening a door with an axe. He tries really hard, but will he succeed? We will see it in three moth I guess :)
Cruising around the campus and see the other ideas of students is great. There are so many creative ideas like customizing Stewie in a monkey or a cat. Can't wait to see all those animations when they are finished. That's it for now, next week the blocking-madness will start so stay tuned.

Donnerstag, 24. März 2011

Class 2 - Week 12 - Progress Reel

The last 3 month went by really quickly and this is what I made during this time. My new progress reel is done and I hope you like the shots in it. Here is also a quicktime version if want to watch it this way.
Now I'm really looking forward to class 3 which starts on Monday.

Class 2 - Week 11

Here is my assignment from week 11. There is not much of a different to the one before. Just a few little timing things and that the character is turning a bit later around after stopping his run.

Dienstag, 15. März 2011

Class 2 - Week 10

Hey Guys, here is my first pass of polishing. Only 1 week left to work on the shot and than class 2 is over. Totally looking forward to class 3 and the last days I tried to come up with an idea for the next class. I still try to figure out a way to get some body mechanics which I want to try out animating and a small story into on idea. 
Anyways, this week is the second pass of polishing. I hope you like it and stay tuned for the next progress reel in a few weeks :)

Sonntag, 6. März 2011

Class 2 - Week 9

Here is my refined progress of my cowboy shot. The biggest different is, that I decided to cut out the beginning. I refined the whole shot today and 2 hours ago I thought: why not cut out the first part, its kind of distracting. So I did it and its looking better I think. 
As I wrote in the post before, FK arms are a pain when going into refining. I tried to add a lot of keys this time before switching into spline mode. After cleaning up the curves and adjusting them I found myself adding a lot of keys again to get the arms the way I wanted them to be. 
I hope I can get this shot to look more fluent and smoother next week. 
For this last assignment we have two weeks of polishing, and after realizing how many curves are in the fingers alone to polish, we definitely need this time.
hope you like how it turned out this week

Class 2 - Week 8

Just a bit of catching up to do with posting my work. This on is the blocking for my new shot. I decided to go with the "quick reverse direction" assignment. Blocking out this shot was a tough one and believe me, it wont get easier in splining :)
I had a hard time figuring out the way he is stopping and turning around. It is the first shot I'm using FK arms. It nice to block out your poses and you get some great arcs but overall I think its a pain when refining your pose and repose the arms each time you change the spine.
Hope you like it

Mittwoch, 23. Februar 2011

Class 2 - Week 7

Hello Everyone, this week I'll keep it short. The week is really busy for me. I finally found a part time job were I will be doing some furniture modeling. Its not animation related but still 3D :)  I have to get used to work with 3D Max again but I think in a few weeks I have will have refresh my memory with this software. So to get my blocking for this week done I have to get a lot of work done in the next days. 
Here is my nearly final version of my drunken stumble animation, hope you like it

Dienstag, 15. Februar 2011

Class 2 - Week 6

Some people might call it week 6, I will call it the week of re-re-re-re-re-blocking.
The first days of the week I was mostly busy re-blocking my shot and trying different ideas. this included changing the beginning, the end and some things in the middle. After having some different ideas blocked out I couldn't decide with which one I should go. 
I finally decided to go with the one I felt I could finish in the next week with the luxury of getting some sleep  :)
On Friday I changed again the beginning and re-blocked it. So I had 2 days to go into splining. Even if the result is not the best, I learned a lot and hope I can incorporate that into the next assignment.
Today I feel film some reference and if everything works out and my idea will not change, the last thing I can say is howdy ;)

Sonntag, 6. Februar 2011

Class 2 - Week 5

This week is all about drunken guys. I can say that I never watched so many drunken people in my life then in this week. 
I chose the drunken stumble assignment and had to get some reference for that. 
First I tried to act drunk and record it. After nearly 2 hours of "acting" I ended with nothing. All takes had more of an acting drunk than this being drunk feeling. I started to watch a lot of youtube videos and found some good references. I tried to work with them but I couldn't get the animation the way I wanted it to be. 
The solution for me was, to start from scratch and build my animation pose after pose. 
This went surprisingly well and with a lot of feedback the story was becoming better.
The only part were I was not sure about was the ending. I had one ending were the character slips on a wet spot and than would fall down. The other one was that he would fall over his own feet. Asking a few people about their opinion I got a mix of answers back. I also asked in three Q&A's about the ending and got always different answers. So I decided to go with the shorter ending which for me has a better rhythm for the animation. I hope my mentor will see it the same way :)
So here is the blocking, have fun 

Donnerstag, 3. Februar 2011

Class 2 - Week 4

Last week I was polishing my Captain Ballie shot and added some notes from my mentor. It was really the first time for me that I really tracked every body part to check the arcs and refine every curve in the animation. I think the shot turned out nice and I hope you still like it :)

This week we began a new assignment. First I chose the assignment "Walk in a heavy windstorm". I planned my shot out, got my 3D set ready and made a basic blocking to see if everything is fitting in the time limit.
So on Monday I started with the blocking and worked the whole day on it. Well, at the end of an long day animating it turned out that there was to much happening in my shot. The character would have been moving around way to much to really see everything happening. At least for the short amount of time I had.
After deciding to choose another assignment I picked the drunken stumble. I have to say that searching for reference of drunken people is kind of funny. I watched a lot of reference and than come up with an idea. I tried to film some reference of my own but it didn’t looked right. It was more of an controlled loosing balance than a stumble. 
Anyway, right now I am working on my blocking and I hope you will check it out later this week or beginning next week.
Cheers :)

Samstag, 22. Januar 2011

Class 2 Week 3 - Progress

This week is going to be about moving from blocked into linear or spline mode. We had to get our shot from last week into blocking plus. So this means no stepped mode and setting up the timing, spacing, overlaps and so on.
After I was quite sure that I've set all breakdowns and In-betweens I needed I selected all helpers in my scene and switched into linear. After making the first playblast I was kind of shocked about the result but who isn't? ;)
So I started to clean every curve very roughly to get the basic feeling of the animation as it was shown in the blocking. After this step the fun part began. Breaking up the movements so they wont hit every key pose on the same frame. Also getting rid of the even spacing in the movements. The next step was to concentrate on the arcs of every body part. I tried to make sure that everything wasn’t moving in a straight line. After a lot of hours tweaking the curves and going back and forth on some parts I started to tweak the knee pops and adjusted the stretch on the legs as needed. 
An with a lot of feedback and great comments of my AM fellers the animation looks now like this

I hope to get some more comments during the weekend to change the last things here and there for now. So I hope you like the animation. Thanks for reading and see you soon :)

Mittwoch, 12. Januar 2011

New Class, New Mentor, New assignments

So quite a long time I haven't posted anything because there was noting to post.
The new Class started last week and had our first Q&A with our new Mentor Anthea Kerou.
She worked on some great movies like Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Planet 51, Bolt and is working right now on Transformers 3. Here you can check her awesome demo reel

The first assignment for the new class was to get some reference video for the shot we want to animate.
I chose to do the big step with Ballie. To make things a bit more challenging I let Ballie step from a boat onto a pier. I planed out everything for a frame limit of about 120-140 frames.
After my Mentor saw my planning, she told me to add some kind of ending to the animation. For her it seemed more like an assignment ending ;)
So with the help of some classmates we figured out some possible endings for the shot. The next day I started to block out an ending with was kind of an combination of some of our ideas.
This is my current work progress.

*Update* - This is my latest progress and I call it final for this week

After today's Q&A I will know if there is going on to much or not, so stay tuned for next week when it goes into blocking plus.