We’ve partnered up with Moho (formerly Anime Studio) enthusiast, artist and educator, McCoy Buck to bring you a new blog series called 'Back to Basics for Animation'. This blog series will feature a variety of different animation tips for beginner animators. Hope you enjoy, now let the animating begin!
Now that you have developed your character using our helpful guidelines in ‘Back to Basics for Animation #1: Character Conception’, and planned out your animation with our tips in 'Back to Basics for Animation #2: Developing a Storyboard', it is time to add audio and create an animatic!
You might be asking yourself, what is an animatic? Simply put, an animatic is an "animated" storyboard. Since you have already completed your storyboard it is now time to give it some life!
One of the first things to consider after creating your storyboard is if your animation will include audio. Will it have dialogue, if so, who will be your voice over artist? Will you want music in the background, sound effects etc.? It is good to have all of these recorded and ready to go. This will help you plan the timing of your animation.
Note: The animatic will help you get an idea of how you want your animation's timing, obviously it won’t be perfect. The perfecting comes during the animation stage.
Using Moho to create your animatic.
The great thing about Moho is, it really can be used as an all in one animation tool during production. Later you can take it into After Effects or Premiere or another preferred software and do the editing, compositing, and final renders for the post production.
For our example with our character 'Blue', I gathered various sounds from YouTube of goofy dog noises, (breathing, howling etc.) and I will use those to help me plan out the timing of my animatic.
First, lets take all of the images from our storyboard and sound files and import them into Moho. Your Layers should look something like this more or less (see screenshot below). Here, I have all of my layers of images and sounds that I want to use.
Next, I'll take the images (from top to bottom) and turn on my layer visibility for all of the layers. As I go through each key pose I will turn off the first layer revealing the second, turn the second layer off revealing the third, and so on. You will want to space the key poses according to the dialogue/sound that you have created. Now, I am going to take the sounds of the dog noises that I edited in Audacity (sound editing software) and place them according to the key poses that are being shown.
Now that I have taken and placed all of my key poses and sounds I have a short animatic of the first scene of 'Blue' jumping. Next, I'll go through the key poses in my timeline and mark/block out each key pose, camera movement, etc. and give it a description. Doing this allows you to know what actions are happening when you go through and start animating your character and scene.
That’s it for creating an animatic!