My first venture into 2D animation

Ok so i’ve finally bitten the bullet and decided to get back into blogging. Coincidently this also ties in with the creation of my first animation so it seemed right to talk you through the process (complete with headaches) of creating a fairly large animation with very little previous experience to a three week deadline. I can do this right?

The animation I will be creating is for our new Major / Minor programme at work, with 65 course combinations it’s pretty complex! It’s worth noting the program I’ll be using is Adobe After Effects CS6.

Day 1 technically started yesterday, my colleague and content writer in the team (an expert in words!) has kindly produced a script for the animation so my first port of call was sketching out some storyboard ideas. Because I’m fantastic at getting distracted I fleshed out the first 6 scenes before deciding to jump straight in and see how possible this is. I made the decision to keep it fairly simple and focus on text with secondary icons. I managed to get about 7 seconds of the first title screen created yesterday which I thought was a pretty good start. The biggest challenge I came across was creating a mask that stayed locked to one position so I could scroll text through without the whole mask moving. Thanks to the power of the internet I found the best way of doing this – a track matte. Very simple to use… except when wanting to change the font colour underneath. Head meet desk moment!

Screenshot to show intro slide!


Day 2 (today) and I started by cleaning up the tired mess I left at the end of the day yesterday. Had a few issues with miscellaneous keypoints appearing where they shouldn’t. Finally found the offending points and removed them. Pleased to say it’s working quite smoothly now. Currently working through scene two (scene one was the title slide) which shows the available Major and Minor courses. It’s a bit wordy at the moment but may be able to tidy this a little. The basic idea behind scene 2 is to replicate a computer screen. A mouse on screen will pick one major course from column A and a minor subject from column B. Screenshot below for clarity!


My next challenge today is to animate the mouse movement and clicks to look real. I have the movement figured already but the click could be more difficult!

More soon.


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