Finishing all of the rough animation sequences in toon boom I decided to apply the animation to the 3d environment in Maya. However in the attempt to make this combination successful I researched a tutorial on how to export Maya files into toon boom harmony. However due to the various plug ins needed I thought it would be best to try the opposite way around. So going into my environment in Maya I added a transparent texture to a plane allowing me to make a sort of image plane for the toon boom files. But because of the amount of meshes and textures already in the model I think Maya reached it’s breaking point as the file kept crashing when I tried to add another image plane.
Therefore I had to think of another way to combine the two animation softwares. The only way I thought I could apply these two together was to export the toon boom files as PNG4 using the render nodes option allowing me to have a transparent background. Then using Maya I would render each of the scenes using a camera view with the mental ray render. Then having all the frames and files needed for my animation I simply added them into premiere pro to overlay each of the video files together. The main issue I encountered with the production was the time it took to render out the Maya files with mental ray. Because of the lighting in mental ray the targa files took a lot longer to render completely than I thought.
But as you can see above I managed to add all the scenes that I had animated and rendered from Maya into one short film. Unfortunately due to my lack of time management I was only able to animate the rough animation sequences for one scene per robot character, with some bird scenes introducing the scene. Looking through this animation I can see that there is some slight issues with seeing the rough animations over the Maya model because they are transparent. However to make it more noticeable to the audience that the characters are there, I added some effect in premiere pro to make them stand out. The main effect I used was colour correction, allowing me to brighten or darken the colour of the character animation. So by using the colour correction sliders I was able to make the blue lines become more noticeable from the backgrounds that they were on. For this reason I tried to place the characters on the flattest parts of the junk piles allowing the audience to see the character clearly without having to try and find the character. I do think next time I should try to improve the Maya textures because they are very stretched out making them very unappealing to look at as they look like they have just been put onto the model without any refinement.
Overall this animation came out quite well, considering there was a lot missing that I had originally planned on making. The character animation looks appealing as the flow of the movement is there. The issue I have though is that I should of added some colour to the characters in order to make it more obvious to the target audience. Furthermore I could of removed the lines of the smaller robots head, allowing the audience to see the character’s facial expressions more clearly. So majority of this animation looks unfinished which is kind of is, but the parts I have been able to make have actually been very successful and go well with the environment. For next time I will defiantly consider rendering the animation in Maya further before the deadline, as leaving the rendering till the last day is not the best option because it takes a lot of time. Furthermore I should consider in future to make my animation ideas a little more possible to complete, as making a animation that should be animating in a group, to animate yourself is not the best option. Overall this animation has come out quite nicely and I like how the animation that I have made goes well with the environment model.