|Original Cool Froyd Painting.|
Acrylic on Canvas 2009
Nothing too complex. I picture him as a kind of animated cat vlogger giving his views on any subject you can imagine in short 1 or 2 minute episodes.
The following blog post documents my journey so far of turning a painting into an animation. I'm not going to go through every step in detail. This is just an overview of the process.
|Fitting the character skeleton.|
I didn't have to be too careful with this first pass of creating the character because the entire image of Froyd will be replaced later due Froyd not being a standard humanoid style character. As I said this was just to define the skeleton.
|Dissected body parts.|
However CTA has some pretty reasonable pixel editing/paint tools of its own so I decided to do that kind of work back in the CTA's Actor Composer.
I did create the shadow in Serif Draw. All of the body parts were re-imported back into CTA individually as PNG files.
All characters in CTA are made up of sprites, whether they be PNG images or SWF vector images. The character trees are identical too. You just add in the body parts you need or take out those you don't. For example most human characters don't have a tail but there's room in their character trees for a tail with up to nine segments (See image below - click to enlarge).
|Although Froyd only has one tail sprite notice|
the character tree lower right has room for
a more flexible tail.
|Froyd's semi 3D |
'morph based' head.
A morph based head gives your character's head a semi three dimensional quality that enables it to turn the head partially in every direction. It also adds in pre-made eyeballs and mouth interiors and allows the eyes and mouth to be animated without needing to draw anything.
It does this through the placement of points of a wire frame mask which you can manually fit to the character's face. You then go through and select different style of eyes and mouth interiors from very human looking to complete cartoon style.
Morph based heads can only be created from bitmap images and not flash, vector based images.
|Face Fitting a morph based head.|
You can see the final scene set up in CTA below in 3D view. This view is used mainly to show the depth relationship between objects and isn't a view that you can record as part of a completed animation.
|Completed Cool Froyd Character and set.|