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Spline Doctors

There's a new animation blog called Spline Doctors, written by six Pixar animators.

Two entries caught my fancy: this one on attacking tigers - how wonderfully geeky to look at that from an animation point of view - and this one on hand poses.

Hand poses can be one of the most important tools that the animator has to communicate attitude. They also can be some of the most difficult to master. If that weren't enough, computer animation allows for ugly hand poses never before possible in hand drawn animation.

I was wondering about faces recently - what if you picked only the 'good looking' facial angles, picked the one you needed for the current 3D orientation and made some kind of transition between them? Using morphing or custom code? Might work well for a cartoony style... How would that look I wonder? Same goes for hands perhaps, although they move around in space more. With a face, just rotating around the up axis can suffice, in terms of how the camera looks at it.

(Did that make sense at all? I haven't had coffee yet.)

The other thing those hands reminded me of is Fumito Ueda saying the hand animations in Ico took the most time. And Ico took four years to make... Which reminds me, I should go play Shadow of the Colossus.

After my coffee.

(Via Cartoon Brew.)