Over the course of the past few months I have been working on a number of parts towards my final visual storytelling idea. This includes: Environment art, Developed and final character art, Beat Boards and re-making those same beat boards and a start on the animation with the bird flying through the sky.
So to start I have further developed my character designs, as looking back at the previous final designs the character seemed too simple for a robot and I wanted to expand the visual appeal of the robot having a almost human personality. So by looking at the previous designs I did a number of sketches to expand the ideas of the previous design into a more appealing final character. I have redesigned both characters, allowing me to further explore the character design applying some different shapes and details into the design, not to make it more complex but to help visually show a clear difference between both of the characters and their personalities. I now have final character designs including model sheets and expressions sheets to help provide reference for the characters when I start animating.
I have also drawn out some more sketches for the bird character, getting some more developed ideas for the bird, to make it look identifiable as a character. Although this character is just a ordinary bird, I wanted to give that futuristic looking bird shape, as in making the bird seem similar to everyday birds, but have some features that show a sense of evolution. By looking on Pinterest I have started looking at multiple bird references to help me get a idea of the size and wingspan of the bird, allowing me to get those basic details for the character design and later on the animation.
In terms of beat boards I had previously made a large selection of beat boards for my storyline, however after getting feedback from steve I realised that a lot of the beatboards had a similar looking shot or the character was centred in the frame. Therefore after some consideration I went back through the beat boards and redesigned all of the shots in the beatboards to have a more variety of shots, compared to the standard long shot or close up. So I used shots like Extreme close up, Dutch angle, Over the shoulder, Cut in and Pan to help show the variety from a visual perspective of how the characters can be represented to the target audience in the scene. By looking at the beat boards I went over a lot of them in blue animation pencil to help show the next frame in a shot on a single beat board or have all the keyframes for a bouncing ball, to help make things easier when I animate the shots. I have also added direction arrows for the camera and characters to provide visual reference for me for where the characters will go.
Furthermore I have indeed started animating a shot, which is the bird flying through the clouds on its way to the junkyard (before it flies over the junkyard) allowing me to start on one of the more complex animation scenes. Because I have never animated a bird flapping before I thought it would be best to start with the harder shots first, allowing me to concentrate on the more detailed animations. I have blocked out the key poses of the body and wings using circles and lines to help show the key positions of where the wings will flap in the scene. My next target is to animate the bird flapping using the youtube reference I found to help get the natural wing movements when the bird flies.