Two months ago, me and a couple of friends decided to start a little animation group (the Feedbaktor Animus) where we meet together once a week to talk about animation and show us our personal work. During our first meeting, me and two others decided to start a bouncing ball exercise, as the Animation Mentor student would do it.
So here's the exercise I did which is (actually) the second Bouncing Ball I did in my life (you can see the first one at the end of the video) :
First I had searched a couple Bouncing Ball animations from Animation Mentor to get inspiration for the scene and placement of the obstacle course.
Then I did a planning. It certainly helped, even if the final animation is quite different.
The critiques I’ve got :
I’ve got a few critiques from different people (which I tried to address) about the speed of certain action, spacing, rotation of the ball, squash & stretch, etcetera. But in my opinion one of the most interesting critics I’ve got was about the actual shape of a Bouncing Ball and how it can limit you with certain actions.
The critique was about the moment where my ball screams (as Roger Rabbit) and tries to put itself into the air with his “feet” (as Yoshi would do) before not succeeding and falling into the sprite. Most of the people were confuse by this action. Why? Because as someone points me out, depending on the shape of the character, you can’t make it do everything you want.
You could not make a bouncing ball fly if you didn’t add wings to it. As with my animation, I could not really make it push with his feet into the air since it doesn’t have any feet!
The morale of this? Certain shape works (or don’t works) better with certain actions.
- Because if his rigid rectangle shape, the Whomp King (yea, that's his name !) will move on the two bottom corners representing his feet.
- As for a Bouncing Ball, it will move by bouncing around.
- As for a Flour Sac, it could combine the two since it has the shape of a rectangle and the flexibility of a ball.