While I realize that the best way for me to publish this exercise is to actually miss the “Last day of the month, midnight my time” deadline, and post it unfinished, I was a little too eager to try out Toon Boom Harmony. I was also too hyped up from the last Live Show and couldn’t stop generating really bad ideas, so I just had to get it over with, fast.
Usual link for buggy phone viewing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxiCfA178gM
I wanted to make up a really silly holiday, and somehow include a song-and-dance number in there somewhere.
I started off with “Wake Your Neighbour Early” Day, and it was too crazy for my current skill set. There was too much dancing, singing, camera movements and backup dancers.
For whatever sick reason, I decided to stay with the singing theme, and even though I failed at writing anything I wasn’t horribly embarassed to post online where someone might accidentally hear it, playing around in Soundtrap I ended up with a slightly eerie tune and effects, which inspired my second major idea: Miss Your Deadline Day (Something I thought I might do if I didn’t pick an idea soon). I suspect I stuck with that one in the end because as I was recording, I had my daughter on my lap (she got bored with wrecking my art supplies on the bed) and she ended up participating in the process. I really liked the effect, and it reminded me of one of my first attempts at stop-motion back in animation school a forever ago. A second sketchy day later I solidified the concept, got rid of most of my singing, leaving only a mumbly chant and Eli’s commentary.
I used my mom’s visit that weekend to watch tutorials and figure out how to use the basic Toon Boom Harmony tools. And in the next few days I poked away at it some more, as I got more and more sick. Headaches, sore throat, runny nose.. I’m currently enjoying all of these lovely symptoms, and desperately hoping I don’t get my toddler sick as well.
I set out wanting to learn the very basics and I think I can now check that little box off. I’m getting used to the keybinds, and while there are at least a gazillion things for me to discover there, one that I really need to figure out fast is how to best manage numerous shots, while still being able play and view all of them, without having them all in one very very layered file. If that is even an option.
As for future animation exercises, I think I should refrain from singing, as fun as it might be for both my cats and my neighbours. My next battle entry should include some actual animation, as in proper movement, incorporating at least some of the 12 principles. Keeping the character consistent might also be a thing in the future (there’s a great helping tool for that in Harmony!).
Special thanks go out to a very special MonochromeMoose who made this possible for me.