New MA blog

Hi folks, I will most likely stop posting on this blog, but for people interested in my MA in animation and my work please feel free to follow my new blog: 


Client Project: Progress before the deadline

It’s embarrassing that my last blog post was over a month ago. I was quiet busy with my research project and writing my research document, which consumed over two weeks of my time and my client project suffered because of it. My model is finished, or at least I think it is. Can’t say that I am 100% happy with it, but it’s ok. We can see that the face still doesn’t look as good as it should, I tried relaxing some of those edges but it won’t go away. I think it’s because of some mistake that I did at the beginning of modeling the head, that went unnoticed. Right now I’m UV unwrapping and adding materials to it. I also have two animatics done, they were made few weeks ago, but I didn’t get a chance to post it here. So when I’m done with blendshapes and rigging I will know what expressions I will animate and when will they be in the ident. I’m most likely to use number 1 as my main version. Some renders and videos below:



1 2 3 face face2 face3

Client Project: New head model

I had problem with 5-sided faces which I couldn’t fix, so my only option was to start it all over again. It took me longer than I excepted, it was over a week, and it’s still not finished. It needs some polishing, because right now it looks a bit creepy and terrifying. I’m looking to get some feedback on it from my tutor and peers so I can finally finish it. Also I’ve started preparing my animatic and hopefully I will get it done by tomorrow.



new_face_model_ear new_face_model_ear2 new_face_model_ear3 new_face_model_smoothed new_face_model_smoothed2

Research Project: Artefacts 3 & 4

Even that my second artefact wasn’t a success I’ve still got a lot of useful feedback so I’ve decided to move on to my next experiment. That’s why my artefact 3 focuses on hips and shoulders movement, which could sound weird as my research focuses on facial animation and facial expressions. However last time it was pointed out to me that if they aren’t done right, the animation on the face won’t look right either. I tried to imitate breathing and I’ve changed the first pose so now it looks more natural. There’s also a prop in his right hand, which before wasn’t really animated, but now, with a mug in that hand it looks much more better. Right now the character looks much more alive and believable.



In my fourth artefact I’ve focused on eye darts. When I was researching this I’ve learnt that they don’t really move smoothly, but it’s rather a series of jerky movements. They’re also suppose to show character thinking and his inner monologue. To better understand it I’ve looked at some references, such as this video:


I’m not really convinced if that was a successful experiment. Even that I feel I know what eye darts are and how are they supposed to be used I’m really sure if they work in my artefact. It might be the fact that there wasn’t a lot of eye darts movement in the original video and it could actually work in a different kind of story. That’s why I am looking forward for a feedback from my peers tomorrow.


I’ve also found this interesting video about blinking that I might use for my fifth, and probably last artefact.

As we can see his making a point that a character that blinks a lot looks weak or hesitant while a character that’s not blinking seems to be stronger, confided, tougher. He also mentions it in this interview, where he also points out that Hugh Grant, who mostly plays in comedies and is considered to be a funny actor blinks a lot.


Research Project: Basic Blink and Eye Dart Tutorial

I was looking into animating eye darts and their general use in animation and I found this cool tutorial which is going to be useful for my research project.

Few things that I learnt and/or found interesting and I want to use in my next artefacts:

  • Pixar offsets one eye from the other. They do one blink offset than the next one with the eyes blinking at the same time.
  • Chris’ preferences: On faster, double blink he does them together, but on slower blinks, more expression driven he offsets them. On turns of the head he opens the eye which leads the move first.
  • Eye darts – eyes don’t move smoothly, it’s a series of jerky movements rather than floating across.
  • Look at something, look away, then look back

Client Project: Modelling the head and a face

I’ve started on Friday, and today I spent most of the day on modelling his mouth, nose and ears. Not really satisfied with how little I’ve got done. So far I’ve got this:

ear face halfoftheface


I really need to finish it as fast as possible, ideally it should be tomorrow. There’s still a lot to do, but I’m getting there. Also I think I can finally say that I prefer working in Maya than in 3ds Max. Ideally by the end of this week I should have at least few poses and expressions done.

Client Project: Character modelling so far

I finally started modelling my character this week. The goal is to finish it by tomorrow, but I don’t know if it’s still doable… Right now I’ve got his torso, an arm and a hand with fingers done. Goal for today would be to finish his legs and start modelling his head and a face. Few renders I did last night:

hand hand2 handtop toros_and_hand torso_hand_top



Edit: Few more:

body legs

Client Project: Few drawings with my character ideas

Few drawings I did recently with ideas for my character and few renders of the environment.

drawings2drawings1 drawings3 drawings4




cinema cinema2



Monsters University Progression Reel

Research Project: Artefact 2

In my research I’m trying to learn more about facial animation and facial expressions in animation. Last time I was trying to focus on blinking. I’ve got a lot of good and useful feedback so in my second artefact I wanted to use it and improve my work. That’s why I’ve used the same scene but slightly different audio clip and started working on it again.