I started this term focusing on refining my animatic all the more to help scale back whilst maintaining flow and concept. As this is the final term to finish this project, the pressure of that was helpful in accepting changes and feeling the urgency of scaling back the film to a doable state.
I had a lot of trouble with the animatic throughout the last term and in this current process of getting it finalised. I think this has been down to nervousness about getting it right and organising my many ideas as to how to show it. Last term it had been through many iterations, but none of them quite different enough. There were sequences I had grown attached to and I spent far too long avoiding taking them out. Once we switched into term 3 however, I suddenly became a lot more open to the idea of changing all I could to be able to complete this project.
Close up shots
In the new version, I was able to show a lot more emotional connection through the use of close-ups, this was a key aspect my previous animatics were missing and it is so important in getting the correct sense of the film across as it is so defined by emotion and the internal struggle as well as the external. This will also give me the opportunity to try character animation, a thing I have always been interested in but never tried before.
Taking out Complex and Unnecessary shots
A series of complex and unnecessary shots were a few timelapse sequences that were originally placed to display the passage of time, an attempt to show the scale of the project at hand. Cutting these out removed the need to create the additional environments and the frames of the character needed for the time-lapse effect.
Experimenting with new shots
For a long time, I have been debating the best ways to show a bit more context to the situation the character is in. It had been a common thing to come up when showing the animatic to others so I experimented with displaying the urgency of this character’s plight with a classic To Do List. I added a few things that made it seem like this character had been putting this task off for a while but it had finally become time to attempt it. Along with this I also added a quick check of a watch to try and convey the stress this character had and how long he is worried about this process taking.
However, when putting this in the animatic it was a bit too much to take in all at once. Instead, it became clear that the close-ups and emotions conveyed through them could be enough to show what was needed. By having these scenes it slowed down to process, taking longer to get to the action. Simplifying this and having the urgency and turmoil this character was facing speak for itself, saying more with less, was both a more tasteful way of showing this and helped save time in production.
Scaling back on environments and planning with a shot list
Additionally, I have been able to scale back the number of environments and planning this out with the shot list has been very helpful! Assigning the environments to each different scene and detailing which other assets need creating has been important in this final animatic development. I have also assigned each shot with a number and short description which helped to discuss the sequence order with others.
The edits I have made, particularly to take out scenes and focus more on close-ups and the story’s conclusion, have really helped the film flow so much better. For a long time, the story had multiple dips in the flow. This was to try and display the ebbs and flows of gaining and losing motivation in a project, but it was ultimately trying to add too much into such a short space of time. By having one dip, a singular ‘point of no return’, it allows for that one moment to mean so much more and for the imagery of this nightmare moment to be pushed a little more radically, therefore making the payoff all the more satisfying.
The Current Animatic: