Tiger animation

Tiger Animation

After I animated the dog in the first half of the year, I coudn’t imagine to animate something much more difficult, which will be more complex and which will need more patience and longer observation. Animation which will not be based on a fews keyframes. As I want to have powerfull portfolio, I’ve chosen one of the hardest references, at the begining I would’ve liked to show that there are two tigers, but I’ve animated the tiger which is focused on the camera the most.

During creation I listened to my lecturer carefully. I perceived every sentence and wondered how to translate it into my work. Most of all I took in the idea that when something goes up, something else has to go down and work with the center of gravity, from this all the fluency and realism are derived.

First try wasn’t succesfull. It failed somewhere in the 37th frame. I found out I totally broke the model when I lost the tiger middle green circle with a naive idea that I wouldn’t need anymore. So I tried it again.

Second try was much better but failed on wrongly use of the front and back of the tiger. I moved with them as I liked it, and it just broke the model again. I experienced that some parts can be only moved, some parts can be only rotated and some of them can be moved and rotated as well. Also it was neccesary to change orientation of the pivot to the object, not to the world.

I still can’t believe how big distances strides are between each steps and jumps of the tiger. Many times I had to rework entire animations to get him on the right spot, at this point main mistakes revealed themselves which I resolved by moving some joinst or by rotating some bones to repair them.

I have experienced that an animator is kind of a modeler of movement. The fact that the object moves does not mean that it has character. It is therefore necessary to pay attention to the strong positions and firm body shape. The tiger also needs to follow the graceful, light footpad movement. It is important to move the tail, which helps in jumping, but also express the tiger mood.

Every move completes the overall impression. Each position adds more realism and credibility to the animation. Unlike classic non-computer animation, there is a need to create as few keyframes as possible, ideally for each limb and element separately. I can’t imagine that similar animations arise on the spot, and then they move in computer games with a script.

As far as working in Maya is concerned – I simply fell in love with the program. Sometimes it crashes, but I can’t help but admire such a complex model,  I also learned to back up and store my work regularly. Not once have I lost my work, but on the other hand I could always do it better when I know how to do it. The work is very intuitive, I would compare it to working with a puppet. Since it was necessary to create exactly what is on the video, not to create a complicated story or plot, I worked very comfortably. Without much difficulty I finished the animation.