• Charlotte Grant

A new task - Bouncing Ball Animations

New blog post, yush! Okay, here goes! (I Still haven't decided on formal or informal, so you've got a kinda weird hybrid style I guess o-o)

Throughout the last two weeks we have been given a variety of tasks relating to making a ball bounce. The bouncing ball is a very good way to warm up with animation and helped me a lot when practicing timing. We were taught how to animate both on paper and on Autodesk's 3D software, Maya. I created both 'heavy' and 'light' ball animations using both these techniques.

Paper animation is typically done using a peg bar (a small strip of plastic which slots o

nto a light box, this has ridges in that fit onto paper, helping make sure you are keeping everything in the same place), Animation Paper (A thinner type of paper with holes punched along the bottom, to slot onto a peg bar), A light box (to help you see the drawing on the previous few pieces of paper) and finally a clutch pencil for drawing (a normal pencil could be used for this too, but I find a clutch pencil is more convinent due to there being no need to sharpen it).

After the main animation is done, using the peg bar and the animation paper on a light box, traditional animation needs to be captured before it can be made into a video. This can be done using a line tester (a camera suspended above a lit area) and a program to piece together the images captured. I used Stop Motion Pro for this process, playing both my animations at 25FPS and exporting them as a .WMV file.

As far as the animation itself goes, I found the light ball much easier to animate than the heavy ball. I enjoyed using the squash and stretch for the light ball and found that with the heavy ball (which would probably roll) it was incredibly difficult to maintain the shape of the ball (keeping it just an outline also) and make it seem like it was 'rolling' instead of just sliding along the floor. I think this task would've been much easier if I had some form of patterning on my heavy ball, such as a line around the middle or a star (I could show this rolling).

Below is my light, ball animation. I am quite pleased with the outcome of this one, I think I possibly however, may have used a little too much stretch and squash in some parts (particularly the opening fall of the ball as it is very noticable), could've done with giving it more of an arch on the first bounce and finally I think the last bounce went a little too much to the right, making my ball somewhat look like it had jumped itself, rather than it was reacting to physics.

Secondly my heavy ball, I am less pleased with this, mostly due to the 'rolling' as I mentioned above but I'm also not sure what has happened with the volume here (the ball seems to start off a little larger than it stretches in the first fall part). I'm not so sure about the physics of a heavy object and probably should've gone somewhere and watched things drop, so being honest, I'm not sure how well I have adheared to real life motion with this one, but I don't think it looks too out of place, so I'm going to hope I got this right xD

...annnnd this blog post has turned out to be crazy long o_O So I guess I'll post up and talk about my 3D stuff in a new post to avoid giving you all wall of text syndrome :3 So yee, until next post >:3