Storytelling is Important in Animation: “Superman’s Day Off”

I like to draw, and I like to play around with video editing. So, says I, “why not try to tell a story with pictures in some kind of video format?”

Great idea, me, thinks I. So, off I skip to my laptop to create the video you see here.

Unlike my previous animated short (and I mean SHORT), this one required a storyboard and some actual ideas–rather than making a scene.  This needed to have a beginning middle and end, all in under a minute.  I wanted it to be a funny telling of what Superman does when he has a day off–or, if he just doesn’t feel like being a hero every once in awhile.

Oh, and the voice at the end?  I know, not very Superman-ish.  That would be my voice.

Bottom line is,  just MAKE IT! Screw it if you don’t think it’s perfect–that’s for everyone else to decide.  You are just the maker, and all you can do is provide a glimpse of the weird things that happen in your brain.

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Make an Animated Cartoon Movie

Now, I’m not even going to say that this really qualifies as a real animated movie, but it is short and shouldn’t eat up too much of your time.

Back, when I used to be a substitute teacher, in between dodging spitballs and pushing ‘Play’ on the DVD player (this is what many teachers leave for substitutes to do), I’d sometimes grab a ballpoint pen and doodle on my notebook paper.

Well, I started drawing a scene of a little boy riding his bike down what I think would be a very lovely country road in Provence, France.  Do I know anything about France?  Nope.  Not really.  But, despite this, I’m convinced this picture is taking place in the French countryside.

Okay, so I’m done with school for the day and I’m back home playing around with animation on my computer, and I pulled this drawing out of my bag and took a photo of it.  In Photoshop, I cloned the boy completely out of the picture (so I’d have a clean background to work with).  Then, I made about three versions of the boy with his feet at different stages of pedaling the bike.

With these different photos, I went into Flash and then into Sony Vegas and made the boy slowly scale smaller, to represent him riding away, and I changed each frame of this feet going up and down on the pedals. Add a few sound effects, and voila!  French kid riding a bike.

Hope you can see that it doesn’t take much to make a simple picture you draw into a short animated movie.

Have fun and make something!

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