Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

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Shanty Baba
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Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

Post by Shanty Baba » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:23 pm

I have been toying on and off for a few years ( well more off...always other priorities) with this concept of animation.
Something that is both quick and easy and at the same time offering a convincing storytelling device.
I have tried to replicate Victorian Toy/Paper Theatre shows as animation.
I perform these live (Sherlock Holmes in the Cornish Horror and Robin Hood). The puppetry is very simple and yet very enagaging at the same time.
Previous tests, not posted online, have involved using Crazytalk for lip synced moving faces.
What do you think?

I struggled with Moho being very slow on my PC...taking 10 seconds for a keyframe to appear on the timeline was the norm, crashing when reordering layers etc but I ploughed on.
Krampus' animation is not the best...but I can live with it.

Any ideas on how to reduce the simmering effects that camera movement produces on some of the scenery, i.e. the proscenium at the start of the video?
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Re: Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

Post by slowtiger » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:40 pm

What a charming idea!

I don't think this needs lip sync. Acting with the body is enough, and is more close to puppeteering anyway.
I definitely like that I can see the halftone screen points in closeup!

Things I'd change if this were my project (so it's just personal taste):
- Get a deeper point of view, so the floor is (almost) not visible.
- Get rid of those reflections, they don't add anything (and are wrong perspective anyway).
- Make the playing rods from etchings or woodcuts as well.
- Put more contrast in the lighting: stage center always should be he brightest part, everything off center is darker, proscenium is darkest. Characters brighter than BG, especially in closeups.
- Design choices: maybe have visible joints? with needles or rivets? maybe use shadows?

The flickering in the beginning stems from horizontal lines clashing with horizontal rows of pixels. It gets stronger the more these two have the same size, like 1 px thick black line onto 1 pixel row. What is your project's dimensions? I recommend HDTV (1920 x 1080), and take care that lines of images are at least 2 px thick. Other tricks:
- less contrast (overall dark elements)
- avoid artwork with lines at 0° and 90°
- don't do slow pans, but fast zooms.
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Re: Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

Post by jahnocli » Sat Dec 01, 2018 2:25 pm

Nice idea. I agree about the interference patterns and lip sync. Well done!
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
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Re: Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

Post by mdmodeler » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:25 pm

I love this idea. I tried for a similar look in animating my husband's artwork (see below) where I used paper texture and metal pins for the joints.
I wish I had thought about using rods. That's a nice touch. Great job!!

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Re: Bah Bloody Humbug - A Toy/Paper Theatre Animation

Post by chucky » Wed Dec 05, 2018 7:24 am

Great suggestions for an engaging piece.
I liked the minor variation on jinglebells, really does the trick.

Watch the distortions on the face, another join would be good for the head.
Sequential offender.
my latest animations
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