Photoshop Animation Workshop and Idea Development

Workshop Outcomes

Today’s first Photoshop animation workshop with Paul went much better than I expected. I found it really easy to understand the process and was able to make a successful short animation fairly quickly.

I first made a silly sequence of a mouth and tongue moving to understand how timing and layering works.

After testing out the program I then used my reference material to create a short sequence, using hands and face of the baby in the story; I found working from a reference much easier than imagining up a sequence, as with my static illustrations. Though there is still a lot of work to be done in improving the digital line quality, and variation in line weight or tone, I’m really pleased with how my first try turned out.

Both of these videos used 10 fps, but I think I’m going to use 12 fps in my next animation as it would be interesting to see if I can make the movements a bit smoother and slightly less jerky. I’m also interested to try out different tonal qualities and textures to see how they transfer to moving image.

Idea Development and Tutor Feedback

My rough idea for my project was received really well by my tutor so I’m feeling much more confident about my abilities for concept and execution. The latter animation reflects my inky, drawn illustration ‘style’ which has elevated my practice to another platform – as asked of me in the unit brief.

I was recommended to consider the two layers of my focus story:

  1. The story as it happened as told through the poem.
  2. The reaction to hearing the story told for the first time many years later.

Something important to consider when working from a written piece of text, like with the previous two units, is to not just illustrate the words literally. I must ensure I use illustration – in this case moving illustration – to depict greater meaning and show what is not shown within the text. I will consider showing both moments of the event and my family’s reactions to the telling of it, (e.g. mother’s shock, sweat running off forehead, father’s reaction to seeing the ‘two small fists’).

I will aim to create lots of about 2-3 second animations, for which I could create one per day for 30 days, for example. This will leave me with lots of different options of successful and less successful animations; I can discard those which failed and piece together those that work well, like a montage, to play alongside the spoken text. The possible montage nature of the outcome means I don’t need to make a storyboard for the sequence, but I will use my sketchbook to draw out ideas for moments to animate.

I must make sure I mention the audio aspect of the outcome in my Learning Agreement, as well as ask a technician for recording equipment whilst my sister is over, as I intend to make use of her young, childish voice for the poem reading, (17th-19th March).

One of the most important things to remember in this project is experimentation. I must make use of the time before Learning Agreement submission to try out different ideas and visual techniques.


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