claire almon

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia BTS Sketches

Hi guys! Haven’t brought you a post in awhile, for I’ve been busy, but I have one today. This is from the short that Floyd County Productions created for Sunny’s 100th episode “The Gang Saves The Day,” where they get caught up in a convenience store robbery, and each imagine in their heads how they would save the day. We had the great honor as a studio to work on the animated segment that is Charlie’s imagination, which is a strange rethinking of Disney’s “Up.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcIZZAi4j0Y (frame rate’s a little weird, but it still looks good : )

I was a part of the pre-production team on this project, with Chad Hurd as our art director. I helped out with the character’s turns for Charlie and the Waitress, as well as doing some layouts for the NUMEROUS rats we were to populate Charlie’s world with. I also was asked to oversee the assignments and manage the many illustrators we had working with us on the project, so that we finished on time and produced a lot of great drawings for the animators. I had a blast working on this project!

Here you can see the turnaround work for Charlie. The original designs were all done by Claire Almon, and when I joined, the first thing we needed was turns for our main characters. I started out with a line sketch first, and once that was done and approved, I did a colored version so that we knew where to put our shading when we build the character in Illustrator, mainly because we were working with no outlines.

Here is the same thing for the waitress. She just looks like she has more because she has a full turnaround, with “flips” as we call them. We have to consider things like when she’s facing screen right, what side is her hair parted on, and what does it look like, and vice versa. Charlie had it as well, for his shirt being asymmetrical, I’m just not sure why I didn’t draw it  :-P  We pretty much always do flips for any production we work on, but you can see most of the “flip” work done in Archer, for things like shirt buttons, jackets, crotch lines, etc.

I also did the turns for our rats as well. There were three rat designs, and we really just duplicated those three body types throughout.

So another thing I did for this project was some layout work. Layout is basically drawing a composition of the scene, before it goes into scene setups (where they import in all the characters and do the animation on the background with timing). We do this so the animators have a guide to follow, and the directors and producers have an idea of what the the final scene will look like. The planning on the front end helps with production in the back end.

As you can see…there were a lot of rats to deal with! I came up with an idea of making rat “clusters” as you can see in the sketches off to the side, where you can group some of them together, and duplicate throughout the scene. So all you would have to do is do the animation for the cluster of rats one time, and use it over and over again. Then they can put them all together when they comp the scene. It saves a lot of work!

So here are the three main final layouts for the rats. It took a long time placing them all in there, but I like to think my effort helped out a lot of people down the pipeline ;-)

I also just wanted to post some of the beautiful backgrounds the artists painted for this project. 

Well there you have it, a few more behind the scenes sketches from another project made by Floyd County Productions, and one I am super proud and lucky to work on!

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