So once you have your Animatic the next step is to record your dialogue.
Generally you will always record the characters’ dialogue first before starting any character animation. The way people talk and the speed they deliver their words is very closely linked to the emotions contained in them. The last thing you want to do is inhibit your actors by making them stick to timings that don’t fit with what they are saying. You will always get better results if you allow them to deliver the lines as they feel best and then animate your characters to those timings. Rather than animate your characters first and then try to sync up the dialogue after. It will give your animation natural timing, pace and structure, which will be much easier to work with.
Even though my Foxes film has very little dialogue in it, I still wanted to get the final voice recording locked down. There are a number of grunts and laughs that need to be well placed and the animation will need to follow these. It’s very important to lock your dialogue down before you start animating as any lines that change later on will have to be re-animated.
So with the dialogue in place for timings and the layouts for the backgrounds, it is a matter of going in and starting to animate each shot fully. The 2nd Pass Animatic is all about developing the animation. There will be many iterations of this stage as more and more is added. It’s the main part of production and clearly takes the most time. I have been working on this film on and off for the past few months, slowly adding in shot by shot when I’ve had a break in work.
However, I decided to share this version as it shows almost all of the final character animation in place. The parts still left to do are clearly still visible as storyboard cut outs. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I still need to develop the final backgrounds by adding in more detail. As well as this, I plan to animate a few of the 3D elements such as the dustbin falling over. The final thing will be to ‘dress the sets’ by adding in extra elements such plants, garden furniture and discarded drinks cans. These will make the environment feel more real and lived in.
Hopefully the next time I post I will have a finished film to show you!