Sunday, December 13, 2009

Something fun

Over at a computer tech site I read, they're running a contest where you use screen captures to make a comic explaining how the new DirectX 11 technology will effect you using your favorite game characters. I took it a bit further and drew in the characters to get them situated how I want. So I've come up with this. Voting is over at you need to register to rate the entries.

Oh, and go see Princess and the Frog if you have not already. Help bring back traditional animation.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Getting back into it

After about 3 or 4 years since my last time doing any life drawing, I have returned to taking a life drawing class at the Animation Guild with Karl Gnass. Here are are few select ones from the last several weeks. They're 5-15 minute poses and the loose brown one at the bottom was a 2 minute pose and is actually my favorite one.

It's been far too long for me to be away from doing any life drawing like this. Although I now approach it with a better understanding of form from my time animating, and find some areas much improved over my old stuff. Much of the time now I'm just struggling with the charcoal and crayon which feel foreign to me now and my lines and shadow tones end up all wonky.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Return to Traditional

Accountant 2D Dialog from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Well the Squirrely rig was fun to mess around with in Maya for a couple of weeks, and I still may use him again in some other things, but I wanted to get a traditionally animated dialog scene on my reel. So enters this Buddy Hackett dialog from It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World and my new little accountant character. So here's the first full pass at it, now for some tweaks and fixes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Squirrely run cycle - complete

Squirrely Run - Complete from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Here's my final run cycle with the Squirrely rig. I'll be going back in and adding a blink to add a little bit of life to the cycle and touch up some stuff here and there before placing it in my demo reel, but this for the most part is everything.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Squirrely Run Cycle - WIP Part 2

Squirrely Run Cycle - WIP 2nd Pass from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Here's my 2nd pass, now on 1s. I disabled the tail for now as I'm working from the body's core outward. Added quite a bit more weight to the run and delayed the upper torso during the passing position, as well as further delaying the shoulders and head. This makes it much more organic and you can feel the contact better. Still need to adjust the legs a little to get the push-off of the feet, and then it's off to all the little extra details like ears, hands, toes, tail, and then facial.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Squirrely Run Cycle - WIP

Squirrely Run Cycle - WIP from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Here's a work-in-progress playblast of a run cycle I've been doing in Maya. I initially started off animating it straight ahead, similar to how I approached the sack hop and soccer kid runs in 2D. It worked pretty well, just took some adjustments after. This was on 2's, now I'm inbetweening it on 1's while making changes and tweaks to it like delaying the individual parts more, fixing the tail so it actually works, and other such things. Stay tuned for more updates on this one.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Comic Con Books

I made it out to Comic Con this Sunday, and picked up a few books. I wanted more but it was difficult getting around to it all in one day while sticking together as a group in the crowds. My biggest disappointment was forgetting to pick up Torch Tiger.

I finally picked up the FLCL groundworks book after all these years of putting it off.

I dropped by Stuart Ng to check out the French books, so I picked up the Skydoll process/sketch book and discovered the amazing Spirit et Fantasio, number 48 in which the title translates to "The man who didn't want to die." I wish these would be translated, I guess only one was back in 95 and is out of print. It has some awesome and expressive drawings and is an extremely fun cartoony adventure. I also happened across Guarnido's book, at Stuart Ng, had to get it, Blacksad Vol 1 and 2 constantly blow me away with their amazing watercolors and drawings when I dust them off from time to time.

Rounding out the list are the only domestically published books I bought. The always amazing Chris Sander's sketchbook now at number 3 and Jose Lopez's 4:00am complete with a full page sketch of the Mariachi Samurai.

Each year the quantity dwindles due to the growing level of print quality, and the increasing presence of expensive imported books.

Small update

Hey guys, just updated my links list to include my fellow CN crew, well those who had sites or blogs I was able to find using Google. Check them out, it's a really talented crew.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

It's been too long

It's amazing how fast time between posts seems to go, so I figured I need to update with something. So here are a few sketches of an idea I've been kicking around for awhile, it's a re-imagining of Robin Hood during the the early years of the gun in France (pre-musketeers so probably the 16th century). The Robin character may look familiar, he's made a few appearances on the blog way back in various incarnations.
Robin, found out at the age of 8 he's a descendant of the legendary Robin Hood decided to take on the mantle of the outlaw to once again help his fellow man. A bit of a fool, but a highly agile one. This would be Little John, the gruff blacksmith with a heart of gold. Won't even attempt to make one of those crude guns the run-of-the-mill blacksmiths have been going nuts over. Gerard, a distant relative of some rich lord who believes he's a hero of the people but is really an unlikeable pompous nitwit, and always trying to show up Robin and mostly failing.

I've started working on a new action series at Cartoon Network as a production assistant, and some of the prop guys introduced us to Google Sketchup. So after hours while waiting for Miyuki to get off work, I created this tudor-style inn to go along with the Robin Hood theme. Cool program, I suggest everyone try it out, especially since the basic version is free. If I end up using this for anything I'll draw over it and make it more organic and stylized before taking it to color, still a nice start though I think.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dialog test update

Emotional Dialog Animation Stepped Keyes with breakdowns from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Here is the current state of my dialog test, animating it a little bit here and there during the week and spending a few more hours on weekends. The blink/eyes and mouth are just place holders so it will read for the time being. We'll see where it goes from here. Feel free to leave me any constructive criticism on it in the comments.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

3D Animated dialog

Emotional dialog animation stepped keys from Matt Long on Vimeo.

Here is my first blocking pass of a 3D dialog I started working on, the dialog is "Are you trying to say you're jilting me?" Right now it's just stepped keys of the main poses with generic mouth shapes and expressions to convey the idea. I'm still changing the timing pretty much each time I view it after a long break, like making it have more contrast from beginning to end. It's still not quite there. I'm generally pretty happy with the phrasing, but need to break up the poses so it's more natural looking and ready for the overlapping animation when I add breakdowns. It sure does take a lot more tweaking than hand drawn 2D to not make CG look lifeless.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Sorry for disappearing!

It's been a while since I've updated, sorry to anybody who reads this and the 2 people who follow my blog currently (I feel honored to have repeat readers). I was in Japan for the new year and after that got lazy with the blog. So now I'm back in full force and will try update it at least once a week.

I just started as a production assistant for Transformers Animated at Cartoon Network for the next two months, no longer will I be working in recording as a part-time employee. Becoming a full-time employee though means I will not be able to spend my Monday and Friday afternoons with Mike and the crew at July Films. I'll miss my time there, I know there's so much more for me to learn and everyone was so talented and nice to be around. I hope to drop by from time to time to say hi and get feedback on my animation.

I'm currently working on a couple of things, one is too early to share, but here is a more up to date (but still old) version of Princess and Tiger getting excited.

Princess and Tiger animation from Matt Long on Vimeo.