Saturday, 5 May 2012

Dying dog scene

I have just finished animating the scene in which Alex approaches her dog and strokes the dog, before the dog dies.  The animation of the dog here is very minimal as the dog is unwell and slowly dying.  One of the requirements of this scene was for the dog to fade away as she dies; I created this effect simply by keyframing the transparency of the lambert that contained the dog's texture.

For the POV walk, we were originally keyframing the rotation of the camera in order to create a bounce and the feeling of a handheld camera shot, but it looked terrible, so we settled with a smooth zooming in shot instead.  The only way we could really produce a convincing handheld shot with CGI is if we had technology much like The Third Floor use for their pre-visualisation.

There is now a close-up shot of Alex, which conveys the transition to a sad, worried expression, when she realises something is wrong.  It was my idea to include this camera shot as I felt that it would allow the audience to make a connection with her when she realises, and eventually we realise that the dog is dying.

This shot then ends with a walk cycle in which Alex walks away from the dying dog and into the piano room of shot 8.  I had to make sure that her right foot is forward and her left foot is back for the final pose of this shot, to match with the first pose of shot 8.  Here is a playblast of the finished Dying dog scene.

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