Wednesday, March 4, 2009

From Concept to Creation...

So two weeks have gone by and production has soldiered on. All asset production is coming to a close while at the same time animators are still burning the midnight oil. I'd like to take a moment to thank all the faculty and other students that have helped us get this far. This film is starting to come together in better ways than I ever could've imagined.

For the moment, however, deadlines are approaching and at times like these the team needs to be kept on a strict leash!


Now, onto the dailies!

Today's collection of shots contains some things old and some things new. First off is the actual opening shot of the film. Please ignore the slightly confusing placeholder texture on the wall poster. In the final cut, a spectacularly glorious poster of Jaguar will be in its stead.

Next, we have the cat introduction scene again, this time with the addition of some Jaguar reaction shots (affectionately referred to as "man face" shots by the team.) This little sequence is interesting because it afforded us the first look at the two main characters truely interacting with each other.

Finally, the trophy breaking sequence. I chose to include this series of shots as it demonstrates practically every stage of our workflow, from animatic to CG blocking to 2d plate animation.

Shani Vargo takes a break from drawing cats.

Switching gears from the present, here's some pieces from the past. Specifically, some of the storyboards that started it all. It is amazing to look back and see how the film has evolved from concept to creation. Even in the first pages of the boards, one can see how much was cut in order to stream line the film.

As seen in the dailies above, the opening shot involves a pan down to an injured and deflated Jaguar.

In the original sequence, Jaguar went on a kind of mental journey, looking over the artifacts of his past glory. In the final cut, however, these shots were dropped in favor of a much leaner transition from the establishing shot to Jaguar's noticing of a nearby fluttering newspaper.

The third page reveals yet another cut shot. The rear shot of the cat (4 panels in) was cut both for streamlining purposes and clarity of visual direction. The over the shoulder framing of the cat contributed to an unwanted ominous and foreboding feeling that (while it might have worked in the original context of the story) seemed awkward directly following the already establishing "reveal" shots directly preceding it.

Hopefully, over the course of this blog we will be able to post more of the boards and reveal some of the more dramatic cuts that had to be made for the greater good.

Bobby Miller works on some newspaper clippings

In the next few posts, we will be featuring some of the final assets that make up Jaguar's world, and of course, more dailies.

As a final note, please check out the Links section to the right, which has been updated with several team members blogs and personal portfolio sites. They are all great artists and have each contributed valuable time and effort into this massive project. See ya later!

Clint Donaldson - Director

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