Sunday, December 9, 2012

Week 10: Personality Walk

Phew. Better late than never, right? It’s been a busy couple of weeks wrapping up the term here at Animation Mentor. It is so difficult to believe that 12 weeks have just --whoosh! -- flown by. Previously, two weeks were spent on a vanilla walk cycle: one with no personality. The next two weeks will focus on a walk with personality.

"No two characters walk the same" - Richard Williams

Now, a personality walk can take many, many different shapes. There is no right or wrong way. Go outside to a public place and people watch. The first thing you will notice is that every person walks differently from the next. Perhaps the next thing you’ll notice is the different in physicality. By that I mean, size, weight, gender, age, etc. From there, a difference in mental state will also affect the style of walk. Are they happy? Sad? Angry? Bored? Hyper? Lonely? Nervous? All of these factors play into a personality walk.

"Learn walks of all kinds, because walks are about the toughest thing to do right" - Ken Harris

With the assignment spanning the course of two weeks, it will undoubtedly be similar in nature to the vanilla walk. This first week was spent blocking the walk. Although only a side view was due for this week, I decided to go ahead and put in all of the translation and rotation attributes necessary for the entire walk. This helps give me a sense of exactly how the final walk with look. This week was also the point in which we added exaggeration. As it stands, the right amount of exaggeration can really help sell weight and push the personality of the character beyond what a traditional, run-of-the-mill walk cycle would.

For the assignment, I decided to try my hand at a jaunty, upbeat walk. Blocking the walk in was not extremely difficult because several of the positions were the same from the vanilla walk cycle, which is quite interesting. [Side note: typically, walks contain very similar contact and passing positions, no matter what the walk will ultimately look like. As one of the 9 Old Men stated: it’s all in the breakdowns. The breakdown poses are where the personality really comes through and can add that extra vitality and emotion.] We also had an exhausted pose to do.

Planning: Personality Walk

Blocking: Personality Walk

Sketchbook: Exhaustion

Sketchbook: Stu Pose

Hope you have a great week and happy animating!

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