Animation Tests

Some animation test that I completed, using the T-Rex model Amy modelled and rigged.


Tail up:

There is a slightly strange deformation at the bottom of the T-Rex’s spine when the tail is raised passed a certain point. This can easily be corrected by altering the amount of rotation on the tail.

Tail swish:

There is a nice side to side movement of the tail, I can’t see any problems with it, so pretty pleased.


This is the T-Rex opening and closing his mouth from a few angles, there is no unnatural deformation, however there is a hard line where his mouth stems from.





I quite like this head movement, having the T-Rex appear somewhat timid as he looks around.




We were wondering the best way to pan into the scene with dinosaurs, as the Titles have to appear on the way in.

I tried to have the camera pan across the landscape but it seemed to move too quickly, so I had it pan down, and I didn’t like it.

Now we have the camera panning down, but instead of translating on the y-axis it, rotates on the x-axis.

Scene 01 Test 01 (pan across):

Scene 01 Test 02 (pan across):

Scene 01 Test 03 (pan down):

Scene 01 Test 04 (pan down):

Scene 01 Test 05 (rotating pan down) :



Testing the flag deforming along the sine wave. I detaches from the flag pole.


Testing the movement of the flag, when it appears form behind the bush. I think it needs to be less smooth.


Trying to make the lifting of the flag less smooth, and more imperfect, as it is supposedly lifted by the T-Rex.


This is me trying to have the flagpole rotate from side to side as if it is being swung. Matthew pointed out that the rectangular shape of the flag looked too perfect, so I changed it to a triangle and slightly off white. The movement of the flagpole from side to side seems a little to slow though.


I increased the speed of rotation of the flagpole from side to side, I think it may be a little too fast now. Also, the flag is still detaching from the flagpole.


Happy medium. I think the flag still detaches at some points, but that is easily rectified.

Scene 07


I think that the flag is a little small for the scene so I will scale it up.


So this is scene 7 with the characters in the correct position, although I will need to scale the bushes up in order to conceal the T-Rex’s head more, also, our group thinks that it is rather comical having it unable to properly conceal itself due to its size.

Floundering Flag

I was  speaking to my granda about our animation and about the idea of the T-Rex flying a little white flag to symbolise it’s surrender, and he thought it was pretty good. So, I went about trying to make it.

Initially I was going to use nCloth. Everything had appeared to work perfectly well, it was acting like silk and crumpling nicely with the gravity, then I tried to move it.

I still don’t know what I was doing wrong, maybe it was just a bad day to use Maya, but it would not move. Anytime that I tried to move both the flag and the flag pole, only the pole would move. I tried to find out how to fix this and it said about parenting the flag to the pole before adding cloth and then another one said about trying to parent the nucleus of the cloth to the pole, so I was confused and decided to try and find another way.

Initially I started adding joints into since we had just had the lecture on joints, then I figured that I was making this far more complicated than it needed to be. Amy then suggested using a lattice to deform it and I was about to when I clicked onto the deformers tab and saw the wave deformer tool.


I applied that to the flag and ended up with a nice wave, then I played about with the amplitude until I got an proportionate displacement for the size of flag. I then went to animate this by changing the different translate values before realising, that again, I was making this more complicated than it needed to be. So instead of doing that, I simply switched between 0.1 and -0.1 in the amplitude and keyed that at regular intervals to get a good looking movement on the flag.

Then came the fun of animating the swing of the flag. I started off with it rising up unrealistically smoothly from the ground, so then I added a little bit of a stutter I suppose to the movement, making it more clumsy and befitting of our T-Rex character. Once I was satisfied with that, I then had to do the side to side wave. The rotation of the flag pole was fine to do, but the flag itself seemed to detach and pass through the pole for some reason so I had to key the translate values once I had imported into the correct position on the landscape.

Upon Matthew’s suggestion I changed the shape of the flag as the perfect rectangular shape looked rather odd, I had tried to make it look ragged but it didn’t react realistically so I settled for making it off-white and to triangular.

"Ragged Attempt"
“Ragged Attempt”
"Final Result"
“Final Result”


ArtFusion Media School. (2012). How to Create A 3D Waving Flag with Autodesk Maya. Available: Last accessed 26th Apr 2015.

Hermes, M. (2014). Maya tutorial : How to create and animate a flag with nCloth in Maya. Available: Last accessed 26th Apr 2015.

TheCGBros. (2011). Maya nCloth Dynamics Tutorial: Creating A Tattered Pirate Flag (Intermediate Level). Available: Last accessed 26th Apr 2015.

Wong, T. (2013). Moving nCloth with Model. Available: Last accessed 26th Apr 2015.


Updated Animatics

2D by Amy:

Amy created this 2D animatic for a few weeks ago, which was pretty awesome.

2D by Me and Amy:

Having received feedback from the last presentation, I created another animatic and then asked Amy to put it together in Premiere because I got lost. She then put it on dropbox for our group to see and sent me a link to a tutorial on how to solve the problem I had.

3D by Me:

We needed a 3D animatic pretty urgently, so I sat down last night once I got home and quickly made this. You can tell at which point I got fed up because I could even manage to arch the stones as they flew at the T-Rex.

Two heads are better than one

I have way to many head puns.

It is not yet finished; eyes, ears and nostrils need to be put in along with the shape adjust somewhat, but nearly there.

This time I decided to start with a sphere for the head, so that I didn’t make (one of) the same mistakes as last time and forget to have the head come back in. I then deleted the bottom of the sphere and extruded the edged to create the neck.

After that, I started on the face. I deleted some of the faces on the sphere and created the eyes, also flattening the forehead. I worked down, creating the mouth and nose with the create polygon tool and join up to the rest of the face. Working out from the neck to create the chin.

Once I was satisfied with the shape of the lower part of the face, I went back and deleted the top of the sphere and moved the vertices so that it followed the correct topology, then extruded the edges so that I could seal the head off. I used one of the topographical models from as a guide for where my edge loops should go.

Really, aside from modelling the eyes and ears, I really just need to tweak it.

The cheeks should come out a little more and the right side of the face should go more to the left, but so far so good, I haven’t had any nasty deformations as of yet, so as long as I keep my head it should be good.


Ryan took over creating the landscape when my Mac started playing up and he created this.

899617_10206440062740017_293617588_o 11169053_10206440053619789_1291869225_n

I said about creating the mountains for it and came up with these as the result.

I downloaded a greyscale image of a mountain range from above and increased the contrast in Photoshop before saving it as a .png in SourceImages. Then in Maya created a plane, (in surfaces) opened sculpt geometry tool, selected pull mode and then imported the map onto the plane creating a quick mountain range which i scaled up and then pulled some vertices higher.

Ryan put his landscape onto Dropbox for us to access and since our story involves stones getting thrown into a river I looked into adding water to it.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 17.13.36
First attempt
Preferred Version
Preferred Version

These are the settings I used on the Ocean shader, in case I forget.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 17.24.00 Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 17.24.37

Making Head(way)

I decided to try and get my head model out of the way so that I could focus all my efforts on the animation.

Things started off okay, I had my reference images and I had my Mac working again, then I started modelling using the tutorial mentioned in a previous post.

I think this is where I made my initial mistake. I believe I used too many vertices and created a modelled too detailed to start with, rather than layering the detail. Still, I persevered, and ended up with a decent starting point with the nose, mouth and eye modelled. However, I began to wonder why the eye was black and realised that the faces were backwards- weird but okay- I fixed that.

Then I noticed that the outline that I originally created was deformed, again strange but I eventually ended up deleting it and rebuilding it. I probably should of stopped and started again, but no I went on thinking I could correct whatever was wrong.

I ignored how the model had weird bulges in its head, assured that I would simply adjust them when I sealed the head- big mistake.

It is only now after a solid 25 hours of work that I realised just why the face had little black bits on the face when I smoothed it- I thought it was the edge loops but I accidentally had it on smooth with X-Ray and discovered stacks of little triangle just waiting to be discovered to destroy any of my remaining sanity.

Over 10,000 of the little so and sos were there. I decided it wasn’t worth my eyes falling out and rolling away to sit and delete them, so I’ve started again! (Also, the fact that I forgot the neck goes in again and not just straight back didn’t help).