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Hey everyone, this is a community group for students of Animation Basics in AM. Please feel free to share your thoughts and notes from each week's Q&A and assignment, so we can give each other feed-backs to help us advance our animation.

You are also welcome to share any material that can be a good reference for class, such as video links, articles and books.

If we want to set up our own student Q&A session on Google Hangout for each week, we can discuss and arrange the time by posting here.

If I missed anything of "What should be done in this group", please share your advice.

Let's all have fun learning and creating animation :)

Joseph (Jui-Chieh Hsu)

*Note from Stephanie from AM :
Just make sure you're not just chit chatting and really focusing on your animation! It's ok to have time for fun, but if your schedule is really tight try to make sure you guys stay on track and help each other out.

Another downside is that your group is all relatively new and beginners, so you may not yet catch advanced issues. (<---that's when our mentor Scott comes in.)

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Hey guys, the semester is coming to an end, and the character walk is our last assignment, let's all have a good finale.

[Reminder from Scott]
=Personality > Emotion
=Think of the detail of the char : Age/sex/weight,etc
=Do not do style such as : Drunk/sneaky/hopping/toddler

Do take your time to plan out the walk, film a lot of reference, and we will see you again in next week's Q&A. :)

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Hey guys, hope everyone is having fun so far, we are now 2/3 of the semester, and walk cycle will be the last two big assignments.

So here are the aims Scott wants us to have:

- Have the straight leg pose to start out as the 1st frame (that is, the contact pose, as the ones in the picture)
- Make sure the leg are leaning a bit forward in the "pass pos", don't be completely vertical straight up.
- Watch out for negative spaces in poses.
- Watch out for the arc of the heel movement.
- Remember hip rotations ; forward foot side is always lower, opposite when it is going backward.
- Key every poses so it doesn't go weird in stepped key.

Help and reference:
- Graph Editor -> Curves -> Pre Infinity/Post Infinity ->Cycle with offset

Animator's Survival Kit has the a giant section of full detailed walk cycle instructions from P70 - P175, if the lecture video and AM resource is not enough for you :)

Happy animating guys, please upload your assignment early and post in the comment under the week 8 video news in AM, and try to reach out as much as possible :)

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Hi guys, it's week 6, time to play with squash and stretch and be creative :) Don't forget to push your pendulum animation more extreme to test out the best way to demonstrate it.

Show -> Playblast : Here you can adjust what you want to render out in playblast, so you don't have to turn off the ctrls and etc in your view window.

Keith Lango :

Book : Character Animation Crash Couse by Eric Goldberg

>try to finish the animation within 100F - 120F
>do the ball first then the tail
>hold 10F - 15F in the beginning of the shot
>always make the jump higher for the tail to have space to overlap

Please try to submit your animation few days earlier in AM site for feed-backs, it's the best way we can help each other. :)

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It's week 5, almost half way of the semester, did anyone apply for peer buddy? I just received message from Ben Boyle and Anna Wydro as my peer buddy, if you like to have feedback from them for the assignment, please feel free to add them in your buddy list and send them a message.

Assignment tips and instruction from Scott:

>AMP Navi->Assets->Set->backdrops->Photo_studio _backdrop (press 7 to display the effects)
>Renderer->View point 2.0(setting)>screen-space ambient Occlusion (to adjust shadows)
>Renderer>View point 2.0(setting)>Anti-Aliasing
>Channel Box>display->layers(you can click on the "V" to make the pendulum disappear)
>Scale hotkey "R" also works in graph editor, and it should be very handy when you are layering animation the pendulum.
>Just make the platform go top left > a bit lower in the middle -> top right, and the movement is around 60F, the movement of the pendulum is more focused.

Tips from Ben Boyle:

+ have a nice change of speed in the block
+ mak0e sure you can see the block and balls on the background (grey on grey is hard to see)
+the pendulum is not alive (probably, unless it's magic) so the pendulum moves when it is pulled. When you are checking your own work (and your peers!) make sure the pendulum doesn't speed up or slow down on its own. A common mistake is that the pendulum slows down and starts to swing before the block stops - if the block stops the pendulum will keep moving at the same speed until it reaches the end of its chain and is pulled back.

Hope these info will be helpful. If anyone knows how Backdrops Asset works (Scott turned on quiet a few background), please share. Have fun animating :)

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Hello guys, how's the weather at your place? Here in Asia is kind of freezing :)

Just putting down few reminds of what Scott wants to see in the assignment of light/heavy ball.

>put the heavy ball on the top right.
>put the light ball on the top left.
>only build a ground plane and a sphere for the background, don't play too much with lightening.
>keep both ball with same color/texture.
>both ball should not be touching each other or crossing each other.

[Maya feature that might help you in animating]
>hold "i" and middle mouse to insert a key in graph editor.
>Animate->Motion Path.(need to turn on "locator" in display section)
>render->viewpoint 2.0
>view->display normalize.(in graph editor)

[Reference Link]

Here is a trick I found ; if you have problem figuring out the timing of the bounce, use the timer in your cellphone or watch to record the bounces in the video, because it's hard to catch the rhythm when we are not musician. Hope this Helps.

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Hi guys, are you excited that we finally get to animate in Maya? :) The link is an amazing bouncing ball reel from AM site, just sharing with you guys that making a ball bounce can be pretty awesome too.

Here are Scott's reminders for the assignment in Q&A, if I miss anything please correct me :

- turn on resolution gate, safe action and vertical (under view->camera setting)
- turn on auto-key (the key sign on the bottom right of Maya)
- use translate X for right to left/left to right movement in graph editor(apparently it's X from shot_cam view)
- set overall frame to 120F~150F
- ball moves faster downward, moves slower upward
- hold shift to move keys in graph editor on grids
- watch out the arcs in Translate Y in graph editor.

Have fun animating, Yeah~~ :D

if you want to read more about the assignment:

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Hi guys, everyone having fun animating? It's funny that all my friends told me the left pose is "excitement" and right is "happy/cheerful", so I guess there is a cliche for these two poses after all.

I also find that there is a bit of math in the bouncing ball- pretty much the length of bouncing height and time in the air reduced by half through each bounce, well, close enough when I count frame by frame from my video reference.

You can also try adjusting the height of the previous frame before landing higher than the next frame after landing, this mimic the gravity on the ball a bit I think.

Wish you all have fun and have a good weekend,


Anyone got the Link for Today's Q/A ?
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