Summer is almost over! But while some of you have been vacationing, I’ve been busy. Busy…on another animation!
Well, tell me about it.
This project is my second challenge animation against another animator.
Since Jade is the leader of Clan Nemesis, the setting will take place is the clan’s big ol’ castle fortress.
The story: Jade is proudly hosting a happy open gallery. Gildedguy breaks a rule and trouble ensues.
I’d say the theme of this animation is: stick it to the man!
If you’re not familiar with RHG battles, here’s an overview:
These animations require both artists to make a movie featuring their fighters battling each other. The fighters are essentially characters that the creators have made up. These fighters will usually have a specialty in a form of combat, with openly stated weaknesses as well. It’s up to the animators to come up with a fight animation where their character ought to win (but this doesn’t always happen).
Note that these animations are not jointed; We each animate our rendition of the full fight separately. Normally the challenges have a set time limit, such as a couple weeks or 1-2 months. Sometimes the agreed upon time limit is absurdly short. In which case, it’s a “speed battle”. At the end, both animations are released and the “better” one “wins”. I say “wins” because winning is not the primary goal. The real purpose is for fun and quality art.
This stick fight challenge system originated on FluidAnims, and has since migrated to the StickPage forums. They are known as Rock Hard Gladiator (RHG) battles.
Some RHGs have gotten very popular for their fighting styles and personalities. RHGs may reference other characters as well. I love the idea of animators using each others characters in their projects. For the viewer, it creates a very cool continuity between animations. And for the animators, it’s almost like collaborative world building.
So I decided it was Gildedguy’s turn to grab some glory!
My first battle was Gildedguy vs Fry, against the animator Hamen. Since that one was a “speed RHG”, we both had only 24 hours to finish. It was a very different experience to speed animate. I have been under tight time restrictions before (Clay’s Intro Animation, Go Ham Hamster), but never for my own personal projects.
There is a definite struggle between time and quality. Especially when it’s your own standards holding you back (or pushing you forward?).
What’s new about your current animation?
The difference this time is that I will not be spending only a single day to finish it. This time, I’ll be putting forth my full effort.
Instead of using a pure lazy/messy sketch style, I plan to go back to maximum quality.
If you watched the “Behind the Scenes” of Rhythm & Rockets, you saw that I had done the Animatic, Animation, and Coloring phases of production separately. It was efficient and consistent, but I got burnt out. I would be doing repetitive line work for weeks at a time, with just the same line color. The process didn’t let me “change it up”.
This time I’ll do Animation directly followed by Coloring and Background for every scene. It seems slower, but it’s a lot more fun.
Also, I’m putting a lot more effort into every motion of the characters.
In the past, I would be so bored animating certain scenes. Boring scenes like, “character glances at an object”.
I don’t want to animate that! Let me get to the dynamic stuff, like “character does a back flip into kick punch combo“.
But my animations aren’t just fight scenes. They’ve got highs and lows of action, and I have to enjoy drawing the lows.
So now I’m planning every “boring” scene like I’m choreographing an action scene. And it works! I’ve found out that with enough effort, the most mundane motions can turn out great.
The music for this animation is going to be Moving in the Dark.
I chose this song because it has very distinct tempo changes and a super energetic guitar solo.
How long have you been working on it?
Since the end of June, which makes it ~2 months of work so far. I’m about 25% done with the animation.
When will you fini-
Just assume the animation will never come out and we’ll all be happier.
But to be serious, I estimate a couple more months. I’m going to put less focus on deadlines this time and just have fun making it.