AuthorTopic: Atalanta Animations  (Read 19938 times)

Offline Shrike

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #10 on: January 12, 2009, 10:34:00 pm
I love this character and animation, but there is, as I see it, one major problem.  She's supposed to be shooting an arrow, no?  That did not read at all until I looked at it for several minutes. Her colors blend in with the skin tones, and there should be some subtle movement after she steps.  Try some sub-pixeling.  Then, when she's ready to shoot the arrow, make it loads more obvious, get a nice big arrow, a large twang and rebound for the string, and have her right (Our left) arm do something besides release.  Then it will look soooo pixel delicious I'll be licking my screen.  Okay, that's creepy.  I won't, but you get it.  Hope I could help!

Toodles!
Shrike

Offline xhunterko

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #11 on: January 12, 2009, 11:54:40 pm
Okay, I cannot let this slip by without me saying anything. So here goes. I know how everyone is talking about where the arrows are coming from, the foot, or the historical aspect. What concerns me is the ehem, fluidity of the animation. Here's a very early crappy sprite that I did while working on an RPG battle system.



I'll have to squeeze a gif animation out of gimp in a little bit. Here's what I see in your animation. It is far too jaggy. I'm sure this is a wip though, and will be much better in the game/mockup. Still, bows, normally don't jerk like that. They either hold still, or if the animation is going for a more lively look, bend all the way. Take a look at some fire emblem sprites to see what I mean. The hair should also have a lot more movement to it. Jerking slightly forward first, then the opposite direction backward. Your new animation looks better, however. And there is nothing wrong with showing the arrow. Again, check out some Fire Emblem sprites for reference.

Other then that, I think your heading in the right direction. Just add a bit more shading, decide what your going to do with the bow, and see if your can't add that arrow. Heh, sorry if this sounds a bit harsh, coming from me of all people. Meh, what do I know, right? Anyways, keep at it, I want to see this finished. :)

(I'll try to get that in gif form sometime soon hopefully. Dang Gimp.)

Offline Dr D

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #12 on: January 13, 2009, 12:25:40 am
Her hair looks like it defies gravity. And I can't help but notice the flickering of the shadow on her leg.

Offline ndchristie

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #13 on: January 13, 2009, 12:32:14 am
oh boy, this has got some interesting issues ^_^

  • the bow is manipulated primarily by the shoulder axis - the bow arm barely moving in relation to the body.
  • the arrow is knocked with the bow aimed down, meaning the right shoulder is generally higher than the left.
  • the arrow can be lain overhand on with the bow horizontal, as per "yeoman" style, or threaded underhand with the bow remaining vertical, and IN FRONT OF the archer, as per tradition.  In either case, this is prior to lifting the bow and the arrow always is on the side of the bow closer to the body, and the bow is NEVER lowered behind the archer.


either method allows the archer to shoot with high speed and would not impede game mechanics.  the Lord of the Rings games provide a good example of legolas and the humans carrying, loading, and firing the bow very quickly in the yeoman style.

where this hiccups is when you try to mix styles.  In general, those firing yeoman style will have a quiver on their backs, as this allows a fluid draw over the shoulder overhand onto the bow.  Those firing in the traditional method will have a quiver mounted on the lower back or hip, or planted in the ground, allowing them to pick up an arrow and quickly thread it into the bow before them.

  • the right hand is always higher than the shoulder, allowing you, should you so desire, to kiss the arrow before shooting (a technique used for measuring form more than anything else).  Moreover it allows you to sight along the arrow comfortably.
  • feet have nothing to do with archery unless you are firing from a fixed position.  In this case, the stance should be sturdy, but not spread.  Wide stances offer little stability, allow the torso to pivot less controllably, and are generally unique to hollywood and toy soldiers.


I'd provide an edit but I have no time atm.  If the description isn't clear do let me know.
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Offline f3dot

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #14 on: January 13, 2009, 01:54:42 am
Allow me a little edit regarding the shooting technique, it still has too many errors (obvious after adarias' post)
but i couldnt help posting, so here goes:

Offline NaCl

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #15 on: January 13, 2009, 02:52:54 am
Hey everyone thanks for the crits and edits! I tried to integrate them (except nschristie, I'll get to you in a sec) in this edit. Some of them I didn't understand (can you clarify what you mean by jaggy?), some would require an entire remake (I initially though you shot the arrow on the opposite side of the bow as the hand, I'm not sure fixing this technical error would justify the work required).

Shrike, can you clarify what you mean by "Her colors blend in with the skin tones", and sub pixeling? Other then that good input, and thanks for the encouragement.



Ok, ndchristie, I want to clarify a few things you are talking about before implementing them. What you are suggesting is that after she shoots the bow, she grabs another arrow from the quiver, and to make it so that the right hand is above the shoulder? Then I suppose I would make another animation where with the bow raised, she grabsw the arrows from the quiver and loads it? I suppose I could have a single animation that does this, and just scrap the raising and loading animation. Are you also suggesting that i scrap the step forward?

Offline ndchristie

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #16 on: January 13, 2009, 05:39:24 am
you never knock and arrow with your bow raised.  it's Hollywood silliness.

what i'd suggest (you've got a lot of it but just for clarity) :

she begins with the bow aimed, arrow loaded.  Like you're current aiming pose only with the hand higher be be touching the cheek (i mean seriously you can bit your thumb without looking down).  Fires if she like,s whatever.  Or runs around, with the bow lowered either in front of her, horizontal, or in front of her, vertical, but either way pointed at the ground.  Theoretically you could keep her aiming while running but this is....well very few people can pull it off with anything but a short bow.

after firing, she drops the bow, either in front of her horizontally or in front of her vertically but either way pointing down.  IMMEDIATELY she grabs an arrow and either lays it on the horizontal bow or threads it through the vertical bow, which is STILL POINTED DOWN.

THEN she goes back to aiming stance.  So the loading animation does not interfere with the first shot fired.

what this involves : the frames where the bow is behind her need to go.  this can be done by simply redrawing the bow in the same position in front of her, as per tradition, or in front of her horizontally, as per yeoman.  I suggest the former.  raise her hand to where it let go of the arrow (as you never move your hand immediately after firing for fear of moving too early and throwing the shot).  then, if you've got traditional, drop the hand to a hip quiver, draw the arrow straight back, then thrust it through the bow, with her arm on the outside of the string but the inside of the wood, then pull back to knock and finally raise/draw/aim.  if you've got yeoman, which requires a new loading frame (complete redraw), reach over the shoulder from firing position and swing it overhand onto the bow, pull back to knock and finally draw/raise/aim.
A mistake is a mistake.
The same mistake twice is a bad habit.
The same mistake three or more times is a motif.

Offline Shrike

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #17 on: January 13, 2009, 02:10:07 pm
Hey everyone thanks for the crits and edits! I tried to integrate them (except nschristie, I'll get to you in a sec) in this edit. Some of them I didn't understand (can you clarify what you mean by jaggy?), some would require an entire remake (I initially though you shot the arrow on the opposite side of the bow as the hand, I'm not sure fixing this technical error would justify the work required).

Shrike, can you clarify what you mean by "Her colors blend in with the skin tones", and sub pixeling? Other then that good input, and thanks for the encouragement.



Ok, ndchristie, I want to clarify a few things you are talking about before implementing them. What you are suggesting is that after she shoots the bow, she grabs another arrow from the quiver, and to make it so that the right hand is above the shoulder? Then I suppose I would make another animation where with the bow raised, she grabsw the arrows from the quiver and loads it? I suppose I could have a single animation that does this, and just scrap the raising and loading animation. Are you also suggesting that i scrap the step forward?

Ahaha, well done.  Much better.  This is great, the rebound is perfect.  (Almost, I'll get to that.)  :D
What I meant about the skin tones, I wasn't really thinking clearly and it came out wrong.  Most of the color on this sprite is white or very light colored.  I would think about adding some black thingies to her, the make it more contrastful.  The only reason this is a concern is because the hand that's pulling back the arrow doesn't stand out from her chest.  This isn't really a big problem, because if you're playing as this character in a game you're looking at it the whole time and you've gotten used to it, and clarity isn't super import if it's something like this.  Maybe add a black or dark green wristband to her arrow-wrist?  It was just a nitpick, really.  Not that important.  Only thing about the clothing for me is the line of skin showing between the skirt thing and the top.  I would get rid of it, or make it larger.  The first would be better, because it the space was bigger it would make her look sexy as opposed to godly.  The only important problem I would say about the colors is the hair, make it brown.  I think that would ad the needed contrast.

About subpixeling:
Subpixeling is a technique that I'm not good at, really, but is super-useful for this kind of thing.  If you were to anti-alias this character, the colors you use would use for that you'd use for subpixeling.

What you do is you anti-alias an inbetween frame on the outside, so it blends in better with the next- and previous- frames.  This works on the inside as well.  But, as this is a WIP and you're trying to get the mechanics down right (Which I know nothing about- I've shot a bow once in my life and failed miserably), the animation is purposefully rough, until it's finished.  Only thing you could use this on now is the string, for the rebound, as opposed to dithering which sort of sticks out.  Take a mid color between the bckrd (Or the bckrd color as it would be in the game) and the string color and add at bit of a blur-ish-thing.  I can't expand on this now, and I'll try and get an example out later.  Also, if one of the pixel gods need to correct my horrible explanation of subpixeling, that would be great. 

So, recap:
Make the hair brown.
Maybe add some darker elements to other parts of her body.
Get rid of the skin line on her waist, or make it bigger.
try subpixeling on the bowstring, if you feel up to it.  Might want to wait until someone corrects me, unless I've miraculously gotten it right.

EDIT: I just noticed something odd going on with the foot she steps with.  She picks up her heel and then it goes flat-foot immediately.  Make it a bit more gradual, with the heel hitting first and then it goes down.  Just a thought.

Good work, really really good.
Shrike
« Last Edit: January 13, 2009, 02:14:31 pm by Shrike »

Offline TrevoriuS

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #18 on: January 13, 2009, 03:37:20 pm
Foot has been majorily improbed, but I though of something else. When shooting a bow, you look straight through the arrow. The arm holding the bow is stretched and held in front of the face, the hand wielding the arrow is stuck against the cheek. This way oyu see the end of the arrow, and you can change position of the left arm to see nothing of it's tip. That makes you certain of the fact that the arrow is shooting straight forewards, and after that all you need to do is use your hips to turn and angle your torso until the target matches the dot that you are seeing as the arrow. So in this image, the bow is held too low, and so is the arrow. Take note of the fact that the elbow will rise to become the highest point of the arm in the by me described position.

Offline dock

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Re: Atalanta Animations

Reply #19 on: January 13, 2009, 04:30:45 pm

The Fire Emblem games get around the arrow loading by giving the archers a low hanging quiver.
Alternatively you could have her grab a new arrow after firing, and carrying it ready to load. 

Is her quiver facing the correct way for her hand? Do archers reach from the near or far shoulder when loading from a shoulder quiver? (I don't know!)

I also really think this girl could do with wider hips, and maybe a longer skirt (to have more shape and movement). It doesn't need to be sexed up, just a little bit more like a female body shape.