This 20 second shot is for a documentary about alternative energy. The initial concept was for a 24/7 study of research teams, sort of like "Big Brother," but pointful, with experiments and such. The tragic thing about animation is how much of a time vacuum it is. The description of the project or this shot would barely fill a haiku. I should add, however, that this is a fairly benign project, extra energy means less pollution not more. Free water, affordable shelter, reversible environmental abuses, accessible instrumentality, protectable crops, etc. It is the kind of short film that should want to make itself, that you try to get out of the way of, rather than craft with effort.
In the animation, a crack appears which becomes this 3/4 slice of the earth, showing its mantle. There must be a dozen ways of doing this. The inventory star field was used. Although I skipped the cloud map for this version, I paint-boxed a high contrast reflectivity texture map for the ocean. I added a separate blue haze halo by paint box, though the mantle's glow was set in INSPIRE.
Do you want to animate some cartoon kids studying 5-dimensional math by having three dimensional objects transform into four and five dimensional versions? How about creating a catapult that launches satellites, or a balloon-based launch system like the one some students built to try to win the X-PRIZE?
For the same project I altered the "RC" toy helicopter to look a little more "legit," and animated it tooling around this higher-tech landscape. The rotors had to be simplified, the main cabin extended, a rudder added and some tail. Fortunately, there are often helicopters in the area. Animating a helicopter sure makes the animator look good.
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Copyright Scott Tygett c. 2001