motion captured

You know, I originally thought that if in my wildest of dreams, Alter actually made Sorey and Mikleo figures, I’d want them in kickass fighting poses, like what they did for Fate T. Harlaown or Black Heart. I thought that would be the best use of their amazing ability to capture the motion in a scene in still vinyl.

But no. They had a better idea instead and came out with this really simple scene of the two of them sitting on the ruined stones of some ancient civilization, Sorey with the Celestial Record in hand, wind gently blowing through their capes, while they give each other the fondest and most beautiful smiles I’ve ever seen on one of their figures.

And I am completely blown away by it, because just like how I thought Zestiria would be the game that could never exist, these two figures with that expression of pure love on their faces is something I thought I’d never get. Just the way they captured the motion of the wind with their capes and the feathers on Sorey’s cloak and earrings, the way the capes are just flowing … like shit, that’s the kind of motion I try to capture with words in my fics and pray I succeed with. And seeing them side by side basically looking at each other like that, excuse me while I jump off a cliff and into a massive ocean of feels because damn I can feel the love coming right off of both of them.

Saying this now, when the pictures of the painted prototypes come out, I’m pretty sure my reaction tags will be nothing but wheezing and incoherent screaming because I can’t remember the last time I was this excited over the release of a set of figures.

HOWDY HO YA’LL IT IS TIME FOR ANOTHER ROUND OF ‘LISTEN TO VAL BECAUSE I HAVE IMPORTANT SHIT TO TELL YOU’ BEAUTY AND THE BEAST LIVE ACTION VERSION

  • the costume designs in this movie    I    c a n n o t      b e l i e v e
  • the set design too, holy shit
  • this beast ain’t gonna take your shakespeare bullshit here take the whole fuckin’ library and then you come talk to me about romances this is unbelievable
  • I don’t give a fuck I will fight everybody about Le Fou
  • I’ll punch a wasp I don’t give a fuck
  • Belle can sing ya’ll— like I don’t know if the design firm behind the trailers just autotuned the fuck out of the audio they were given but she sounds great
  • okay I’m sorry I work in the CGI field and half of this movie was just me freaking out about the rendering of the beast’s fur and his expressions, they did so great, holy shit, ugh, I was so impressed I’m fucking mad about it
  • seriously dan stevens was physically in this movie for maybe three minutes and the rest of it was face/motion capture and he just shines throughout the whole goddamn thing
  • belle whacks multiple people with sticks, it was good times
  • HER YELLOW DRESS WAS SO AMAZING YA’LL YOU HAD YOUR DOUBTS BUT I AM TELLING YOU THAT SHIT WAS GORGEOUS
  • Le Fou, again, I’mma fight people
  • adlkjflkjdg I DON’T WANT TO GET TOO SPOILERY BUT THE GROWL????? THE G R O W L???????
  • AUDRA MCDONALD????? WHY YOU GOTTA GO SO HARD??????
  • Stanley Tucci was in this movie? Like holy fuck?
  • Gaston????? Like holy shit????? He wasn’t so bad in the beginning but as the movie went on he just got creepier and creepier and creepier?????
  • Is it just me or were there a shit ton of interracial couples in this movie? I counted at least five, I think? I KNOW THAT IS SUCH A LOW BAR TO SET BUT I WAS HAPPY TO SEE IT IN A HUGE ASS DISNEY FILM
  • FUCKING LE FOU’S LINE IN KILL THE BEAST ‘Marching off to battle, yet I fear the wrong monsters have been released’
  • LIKE WHAT THE FUCK?????
  • WHY YOU GOTTA MAKE ME FEEL FOR A MINOR CHARACTER LIKE THIS, DISNEY
  • “some of them are in greek.”
  • “was— was that a joke? are you joking now?”
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Say what you want about the animation, but they did add a lot of little cute details in the romances. 

instagram

Diversity Win! These Men Are Wearing Motion-Capture Suits So Someone Who Knows How To Do Special Effects Can Turn Them Into Women Of Color

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Black History Day 3: Cab Calloway.

Cab Calloway was groundbreaking as one of the first African-American musicians to be prominently featured on film. His work with the “Betty Boop” cartoons (as seen above) was legendary because it was basically the grandfather of what we know now as motion capture animation. They recorded Cab singing and dancing (dancing which included an early version of the moonwalk so take that Michael Jackson) and they TRACED HIS MOVEMENTS FRAME BY FRAME to translate them into the character he was playing. None of that unitard covered in ping-pong balls mess. Painstaking frame by frame tracing to capture his motions. You can watch full length versions of the Betty Boop cartoons featuring Cab Calloway pretty easily. I think they’re all on YouTube and they’re in the public domain so they’re easy to find and download. The names of the cartoon shorts are “Minnie the Moocher”, “Snow White ”, and “The Old Man of the Mountain”.
So go watch them now and appreciate a hard-working black musician who pioneered the jazz genre and was a key player in animation advancement.

anonymous asked:

What's your take on the whole Mass Effect Andromeda animation debacle?

I’m back, I’m jet lagged, and people are being stupid on the internet. Whee.

Off the top of my head, here are a few thoughts on the matter:

#1. It is never ever EVER ok to harass somebody personally

This whole thing about a bunch of people harassing that former EA employee is horrible and should never have happened. It is never ok to go after somebody personally for what they may or may not have done in a professional capacity. There is no justification for it. Ever. If there’s a problem with the product, everybody shoulders the blame - that includes the publisher, dev team, marketing team, everybody. Even if there was one person who worked on one feature completely solo, that person still had a boss, who had a boss, who had a boss. There are so many people involved and so many moving parts that you really can’t blame any one person except the executive producer in charge of the entire project. The person in question is most assuredly not that executive producer.

#2. People comparing ME:A to the Witcher 3 are oversimplifying

There’s a meme floating around about how the Witcher 3 was created by a couple of Slavs as if it was done by a couple of dudes in a garage somewhere, compared to ME:A, which had a huge team from EA. That’s incredibly shortsighted and utterly ridiculous. The Witcher 3 cost over $80 million to develop, which is probably a bigger budget than ME:A had. CDPR had an internal team of 240 full-time professional devs and another 1200+ contractors working on it. The Witcher 3 is “indie” in the way that Star Citizen is “indie” - they didn’t work with a separate billion-dollar publisher because they had enough money to fund the project already. 

#3. From what I’ve seen, Mass Effect Andromeda has animation issues in general

From the cursory footage I’ve seen (I haven’t played the game yet since I’ve been out of the country), it looks like there’s a bunch of problems, most of which aren’t related to the facial animations at all. The characters have that weird slightly hunched-over broad-elbowed walk similar to how they walked in Dragon Age: Inquisition, and there’s something about how the elbows don’t quite sit right to me while the characters are idling. I also spotted a character in a T-pose in one clip which was a rather clear bug. The facial animation probably stands out most because players spend a lot of time in cinematic conversations, and that features the faces quite prominently. 

#4. Bioware is certainly aware of the issues

From what I’ve heard, there were team members who raised the warning flags internally as well, but the decision was ultimately above their pay grades. It’s really hard to say why they decided what they did without knowing the full context, and that isn’t likely to happen. The scope of the new Mass Effect game is different than before - this is the first game of the series on Frostbite, with a new lead studio helming development (Bioware Montreal), and with new team leadership (after the departure of Casey Hudson, Mass Effect’s former executive producer). There’s a lot of moving parts where things could have broken down during development, and we’ll likely never know. They’ll never share that information publicly… nor should they. Bioware the studio shoulders the blame for it, just like Bioware the studio owns any praise they get. 

Animation issues are often some of the hardest and most expensive problems to fix. Building animation rigs (skeletons) takes a lot of resources. Utilizing those rigs to build animations takes a lot of resources, even when you’re using motion capture data. Building animation systems to blend, layer and play those animations under the correct circumstances take a lot of time. Animation is one of the most expensive types of content to create - that’s why so many games reuse so much of their animation data. That said, Bioware also developed and released the extended ending to the last Mass Effect game for free in response to the fan backlash about the ending, so who knows? 


Got a burning question you want answered?

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HIDEO: [During the first motion capture work] we talked about how he’d stand or where he should be stationed, but Mads-san was already too cool, even though we just started. He verged from my direction sometimes and I thought “maybe we should re-do that?”, but when I checked the footage through the frame they were so good I OK’d it anyway.

MADS:
It’s always the thing. We will have to do what the director tells us, but sometimes we also do something else. And then we can work together and create something completely different.

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One of the megastars of this year’s Festival of Speed was gymkhana-master Ken Block. Ken brought the one-off ‘Hoonicorn’ Mustang to the hill, and although it was his first time at Goodwood he didn’t hold back, dispersing rubber all the way up the run. He seemed to be on a special mission to kill the tyres at the top staging area, which is where I caught up with him. Awesome car, and genuinely cool guy!