AuthorTopic: Dog Animation  (Read 619 times)

Offline TwistedHawk

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Dog Animation

on: August 18, 2018, 12:33:44 am
Hello everyone! It's a pleasure to be here, and I'm looking forward to being more active on this site!

I'm building a game where you play as a melting snowman, and would love your feedback on this dog animation. The idea is that the dog will go after your arms and take them from you.

Offline eishiya

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Re: Dog Animation

Reply #1 on: August 18, 2018, 12:43:44 am
When dogs run or jump, their left and right legs are out of sync, so we should be able to see all four legs. You may find this set of refs useful. More generally, looking at images and videos of dogs (particularly similar breeds to what you're aiming for) should help you. What makes dogs look like dogs? Exaggerate that (or don't, if you want something realistic).

Offline Kiana

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Re: Dog Animation

Reply #2 on: August 18, 2018, 02:48:05 am
First off, welcome! ;D

I agree with eishiya, and I’d like to add that YouTube has a built in slow motion feature that makes it a lot easier to analyze reference videos. You can also skip frame by frame, I think you use the “.” and “,” keys but I’m not completely sure (if all else fails, just pause and unpause really fast with spacebar or the mouse).

Aside from eishiya’s point about the legs, your animation would benefit from incorporating secondary motion. Secondary motion (or secondary action) typically refers to the motion of things that trail the “main” action. For example, clothing, hair, an animal ears/tails. The secondary motion will follow the path of the moving thing it’s attached to, but it will lag a few frames behind. So if the dog’s head is down, its ears and tail might be up, and vice versa. It’s probably easier to understand if you see it visually, so here is a handout I found with pictures relevant to your drawing.

Large image, please click here!

Notice the “wave” motion - this motion is being caused by the fact that the dog moves up and down vertically as it runs. This is also an animation principle called the “wave principle”. You can practice it most easily with pencil and paper if you’d like to try it out. This is one of the first exercises they teach you in animation school, and it’s a great one, because it can be applied to lots of things.

Another large image. Click!

If you want to learn more about animation principles in depth, a great book is The Animator’s Survival Kit by Richard Williams (lots of great examples used in virtually every animation class). Or you can just ask for clarification/explanations about stuff here on Pixelation, it’s definitely a lot to take in, and easier to learn if someone helps you work through it. Four-legged run cycles are one of the hardest things to do, but you have a decent start here and your game idea is very charming! :)
« Last Edit: August 18, 2018, 02:49:48 am by Kiana »
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