Friday, March 16, 2007


My grant application to the Canada Council for the Arts was successful - so the ol' 'Hell Screen' project is back on track. However, the old 'tons of gigantic sets' plan is out. The current project has paid off - it's given me an education on the possibilities of digital compositing. So, here's the new plan:

The original plan, of 3 years + of toil and set building is out. So I ain't gonna do that - not interested in spending that much time.

I'll still be using armatures for the actual characters, as my 'The Third Night' cutout technique isn't very satisfactory for expressive movement. All animation will be done against a greenscreen. I'll be finding a way to do onion-skinning with live action footage, and so will be just 'tracing' movement. I'm pretty confident that this will work well, and will be super fast to do.

Big, full-scale sets are out - that was the major time and money snag with the original plan. Instead, I plan to make extensive composites with 'table top' sets - not even sets really. For example, i'll take a photo of some sticks against a green or white background, cut it up in photoshop, and then build up the image via extensive copying and pasting. Any actual 'sets' will be very basic, plain, and in a very small scale - basically raw material for photoshopping. I'll even do alot of the 'lighting' and texturing in photoshop.

Everything will be composited in AE - no actual camera tracking will take place. Moving flat layers around worked quite well for 'The Third Night'.

The original vision of the 3d Hell set is out; it'll be just photoshop layers in AE, and won't have such crazy tracking.

These revisions mean that the completion time frame for the project will be more in the neighborhood of a year and half, maybe even less considering how fast I did 'The Third Night'.

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