Monday, 28 October 2013

Environment Re-Visit

The feedback from our pitch made us rethink our choice of environment. We initially went with an outdoor setting in the forest to symbolize the "church" and Religion, being natural and pure. However, we were lead onto a more obvious choice as to set our scene.. In an actual Church.

This made sense for a number of reasons, to show the Religious element there isn't really a better way than to use the house of God, and the eaves of the church can be visually quite amazing, as the view from above looking down on the seats and the altar can be portrayed very well.

Before I start painting concepts, I put together this influence map ti help me visualize the style of a 15th Century style church with the huge stained glass windows and high ceilings.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Character Development

Here is our latest concept of our character for the group project. We decided as a group to combine our designs to improve our character concept, and focus more on the mechanics of the bird to see how it can transform. Here I re-worked on George's concept, changing the joints to spheres which allows the bird to swivel its wings and legs, making the ribs more rounder and softer and the colours more paler.

Friday, 18 October 2013

Narrative Character Concept 2

After having a conversation with Alan today, I was advised that the first concept character (Left) looked evil, and predator-like and that we needed a design that looked more friendly. We want to represent the bird as the birth of science, a discovery that was seen as unfamiliar to the people from the renaissance period- something new and beautiful.  Taking the advice we had got from our character design class, I've added more circular shapes to the character (right) making it more friendly and welcoming as opposed to triangular shapes which had made it look more dangerous and threatening.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Character Concept

Upon discussing the design of our character, we needed to make the bird look less intimidating and more friendlier, here is a rework of a thumbnail I did as a initial design - I attempted to make the bird more innocent making the body smaller, more flexible as opposed to rigid and I used softer colours

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Script - First Draft

This is our first draft of our script, it's very basic buts shows specifically what happens in each step.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Environment Influence Maps

Narrative: Anatomy Reasearch

Anatomy Research

Influence Maps - Mechanics and Birds

Mechanically we want to make the bird look reminiscent of Leonardo Da Vinci's Ornithopter. I looked at different cogs and mechanisms, the smaller versions, like the ones in watches were a good insight into how they would work in small scale, as the bird isn't going to be huge.   

When looking at birds, I mostly looked at the wings, and this is the most prominent part of the creature, it is the part they display in terms of mating and intimidation. The poses are very graceful and generally have a menacing nature.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Influential Videos


When finalising our idea based on the transformation of a mechanical bird in a natural environment, we started to look at videos which might help us visualise different scenes for our final animation. This video involves long takes, and slow paced camera movements which creates a dramatic effect.  We all thought these aspects could be a nice touch, as our intention is for the audience to be moved by our short animation.


We all liked the idea about how mechanics vs nature was represented in this animation, and also the use of the low angles and the swaying camera movements when the mechanical animals were running through the forest. We also liked the use of sound - the soft music and sound effects, it creates a more touching finalised short.


The ambient flow of the music is quite spacial which compliments the flow of the animation itself. We want to achieve a well rounded combination of the two which sets the tone of our story.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Research - Da Vinci's Inventions

Da Vinci based his flying machine on the structure of kites, and the wings of birds and bats. It is more evident that his used a bats wing, as it has a very similar bone structure (Fig. 1)

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

It is also evident that Da Vinci used kites as a inspiration, he used the idea of sporadic movement but with stability is the basis of his design, to be able to maneuver quickly but effortlessly.  

Da Vinci replicated the way the bat's wing is formed by using a light wood structure, most likely pine and covered it in raw silk. It was intended as a one man machine, that used all of the body parts of the pilot, merging the two together. The pilot pedaled with his feet, like a bicycle while using his arms as stabilizers. To steer, the pilot simply looked in the direction they wanted to go, the movement of the head triggered a collection of pulleys that turned the wing bar in a certain direction.

Fig. 3

Da Vinci was obsessed with pulleys and cogs, all of his inventions used them. He found them the easiest way to convert and transfer energy to separate mechanisms.

Script Ideas - 'Rebirth'

Monday, 7 October 2013

Renaissance: Character Ideas

Here I've drawn out couple of ideas visualizing how the character could look. I wanted the bird to be mechanic whilst still keeping to the time period that was given to us.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Final Plot Idea

After much consideration and much discussion, we have finally come up with an idea that encapsulates the idea of the birth and rise of science during the Renaissance Period.

The scene starts in a nest in a tree and we see an egg ready to hatch. the egg hatches and a baby bird emerges but is wooden and mechanical, reminiscent of Leonardo Da Vinci's inventions. The bird then progresses in size and more mechanical parts grow and form onto the bird and then it runs along a branch and flies off, as it flies off the camera follows it upwards towards then sun, where the camera fixates and zooms in, the sun being the final lamp.

Failed Plot Ideas

Renaissance Story Ideas
Basic Plot:

Plot 01:
Leonardo Da Vinci sets out to “build” the Vitruvian man, based on his painting and workings out by Vitruvis (c. 100 BC). He follows a checklist acquiring different body parts from different people, in a fit of rage. The rage is triggered by two things, he has a breakdown while drawing the Vitruvian man and takes his glasses off, and his eyes go “hazy”. The same emotion is then mirrored in the music which goes from calm to silence with a distinct heartbeat throughout. We then see him with an axe covered in blood with a few body parts on a table with the checklist next to them, with “items” ticked off, he also has his glasses back on. He then goes back to re-working on the Vitruvian man painting where he once again loses his mind and goes on another killing spree, this time we see all of the body parts on the table, checklist complete. There is a cut to a silhouette of the Vitruvian man, made in a Frankenstein-like way, when policemen come in to arrest him. His glasses fall off as we pan up to see the finished figure, as a shine of light emanates from behind, fading out to white.

Plot 02:
A darkened figure is hurrying around a workshop drawing and fixing together a sculpture; we see montages of papers being strewn across the room, tools, a pedestal, chains, and body parts. We are then shown some images of unwanted parts thrown onto a pile. People’s faces are shown in horror, implied murders, axe shown, no actual death is filmed. We then see him finishing the sculpture, but it is shielded from view, he is then arrested and dragged out of the workshop as the camera pans to the Vitruvian man, revealing the fact that the man is Leonardo Da Vinci. However we see the shadow of another person in view, as light emits from behind the Vitruvian Man

Plot 03:
When people used to drink whisky, they would use lead cups. The effect of the lead would sometimes knock the person out for days, and if found, doctors could not tell whether they were passed out, or dead so they would rest the body on the family table and hold a “wake” hoping the person would come around.

A man drinks so much he gets put into this state, and when his family put him on the table hoping he wakes, we see inside his mind as a drug trip is taking place until he finally wakes.
The ancients regarded lead as the father of all metals, but the deity they associated with the substance was Saturn, the ghoulish titan who devoured his own young. The very word "saturnine," in its most specific meaning, applies to an individual whose temperament has become uniformly gloomy, cynical, and taciturn as the results of lead intoxication.

Plot 04:

A Scientist is trying to figure out a cure for the smallpox disease in his workshop. He goes to the church to get permission to cut up bodies to find out how the virus kills, but he is denied access to them. As he leaves he is infected by someone with the disease, but is unaware. He then goes back to his workshop and starts to scratch and realizes he is infected, the will to live urges him to hurry up and find a cure, he works and works and manages to find the cure, but dies in his workshop before he can show his cure to the world. To stop the disease spreading, he is cremated and the final lamp is the flame from his body.

Plot 05:
Pedro awakes from his bed and is seen walking from his bed to the door. He attempts to put his hand on the knob however his hand falls straight through, he does it again but this time he falls straight through the door. He goes back to his room and realises his body is still laying bed, and makes him and the audience realise that he is having an out of body experience.

Pedro is seen slouching on a chair fed up. He is facing his coffin where his body lays. He notices the maid sneak in through the door and lift the top of the coffin upwards. He watches her while she sobs, and kisses his lips. The camera now focuses on his physical body in the coffin, when the maid finishes kissing him the maid looks down and notices he has an erection.