Skip to main content

Reddy, Super Bluey, and The Great Greensbury. I've got an idea...

One of my biggest stumbling blocks in moving forward with my own animation has been coming up with ideas that I can get excited about.

Even with using time saving animation software like CrazyTalk Animator 3 creating animated shorts is still a lot of work that you need to stay motivated for. As much as I want to earn a living from creating my own animated shorts, the higher priority is to enjoy creating them... you know, if you enjoy what you're doing you'll never work a day in your life - that kind of thing.

When I got back into creating animated shorts in 2008, after discovering GoAnimate, I was clearly having a lot of fun in the years before that site transitioned from allowing anyone to create animated stories to a business explainer video creation tool. I made somewhere around 180 animated shorts over the space of about 4 years - roughly 3 animations per month.



Most of my animations were either humorous shorts, sketch comedy, or sitcom like stories told in parts over several animated shorts. You can read about almost every one of them in this blog if you select the tag GoAnimate (those animations were part of the origin of this blog).

Rashy's plans for world
domination hit a snag.
One of the things I enjoyed most about creating those animations was carrying over characters from one story into the next, creating my own little TET animated universe.

That all started when I took Paul Dini's sock monkey characters, Super Rica and Rashy (licensed by GoAnimate at the time), and re-imagined Rashy as power hungry megalomaniac with visions of becoming 'The Boss of Everything'.

If you watch the first four animations in the playlist below you can see the evolution of Rashy, from the original stand alone short, through to him becoming a super villain when I mixed him with Underdog's world (another set of characters licensed by GoAnimate at the time). Note these animations are from 2008-2009 when dialogue was mostly done with speech balloons rather than voice actors on GoAnimate.



MIB with Obama and AKON.
From there Rashy went on to appear in my Men in Black parody staring AKON and Barack Obama as two MIB agents. As well as it's epic sequel MIB II.

All of these shorts had some of my best comedy writing and probably would have continued if GoAnimate hadn't decided to not renew the various licenses on the characters you could animate.


To Cut a Long Story Short...


Recently it occurred to me that I've had my own monkey characters, that I designed way back in the early 1990's. Lately I've taken to calling them 'color monkeys' because they're all the same kind of monkey but they can be either red, green, or blue.

The Great Greensbury, Super Bluey,
Kev, and Reddy.
I could easily reboot the fun I had with Super Rica and Rashy but with my own original characters.

So I did a slight redesign of my monkeys feet - because their original, impossibly big, human like, feet make them difficult to animate - and gave each one a name, kind of inspired by Paul Dini's characters; Reddy, Super Bluey, and the Great Greensbury (guess which name goes to which color of monkey).

I like the idea of them being owned by a Hollywood script writer, so rather than create someone kind of like Paul Dini's 'Dad' character I thought, why not just use Paul Dini's friend, writer/director, Kevin Smith as a base? I'm a huge fan of Kevin so why not?

Just to be clear, although the character's look and occupation is based on Kevin Smith, it's not actually meant to be Kevin Smith. Over time his personality will develop. I just don't see the point in trying to design a totally original character when creating a Kevin Smith like analogue will give me a base to build upon into something that's my own.

From these four characters I could easily build a world of my own characters (I have so many I've designed over the years) that I feel audiences would enjoy as much as the GoAnimate community enjoyed my work there (at the time I was one of the highest viewed GoAnimators on GoAnimate).

Transferring some of the ideas from those past animations into fresh new takes and stories really does sound fun to me. I feel, with this idea, I'm in a good place moving forward.

Comments

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Buy Gifts and Apparel featuring art by TET

Popular posts from this blog

Eric W. Schwartz: Cartoonist, Animator and Amiga Die Hard

American Cartoonist, Eric W. Schwartz, (whose unofficial Amiga Icon, Amy the Squirrel, is pictured on the July 92 edition of CU Amiga cover on the right) is my only real animation hero. Sure there are the big names like Disney, Chuck Jones, Tex Avery and even Preston Blair whose influences can all be seen in my own cartoons but Eric did what none of the others could. He showed that really great 2D computer animation was within my reach with little more than an Amiga Computer, a copy of Deluxe Paint and Moviesetter.

This was at a time when computer based animation was in its infancy (outside of computer game animation) and Flash was something that lights did.

There were many great Amiga artists but Eric was really the only one consistently making very funny, traditional style animations. His humor and drawing style is heavily influenced by classic Warner Brothers and Disney cartoons but he managed to build on this, creating something that was recognizably Eric's own style.

I've…

Review: CrazyTalk Animator 3 vs Moho Studio Pro 12

Reallusion's CrazyTalk Animator 3 or Smith Micro's Moho Studio Pro 12. Which of these 2D animation applications is right for you?

Regular readers of this blog will know I'm a strong supporter, and fairly proficient user of CrazyTalk Animator since version 1. It's a great piece of software for producing 2D animations from purchased content quickly and, with version 3, is easier than ever to create animations from your own art.

Lesser known is that I first purchased Moho Studio Pro 12 (then known as Anime Studio Pro 9) back in October of 2012 and have been upgrading it to the latest version ever since because I believed in it as an application for creating great 2D animation to TV quality standard. As such, it's a much more complex application than CTA3 that I only got around to learning properly late last year. I'm still in the process of blogging my progress.

Despite this I feel I've learned enough of Moho to compare it to CTA3 to help you determine which …

Review: Reallusion's CrazyTalk Animator 3 - Taking a Step Back to Move Forward

CrazyTalk Animator 3's bold claim is 'The One-for-all 2D Animation'. Does it deliver? Could it be your 'go to' 2D animation tool of choice? Before I explore those questions I feel a bit of backstory is necessary.

I've been using Reallusion's CrazyTalk Animator since its original incarnation that promised quick and easy, 2D animation creation. An idea that was relative depending on what kind of animation you wanted to do. Since my focus has largely been on original character animation my experience with CTA is relative to that.

If you wanted to create animated characters from your original artwork, quick and easy didn't really describe the time and effort involved. There was a lot of preparation and considerable time spent rigging its G1 characters.

Voice All Your Own Animated Characters with Voice Changer

Voice Changer by AVSoft is real time voice manipulation software that can be used for a wide range of purposes including (according to their website); Voice-over and voice dubbing for audio/video clips, presentations, narrations, voice messages, voice mails, E-greeting cards, broadcasting, etc.; mimic the voice of any person, create animal sounds, change/replace/remove voices in songs, videos,etc.

I bought it for the specific purpose of changing my own voice, to extend my vocal range, for voicing characters in my own animations.
I was fortunate enough to get this software at a significant discount that made it difficult to refuse, given that I'd never tried it, or even heard of it before. I'm not sure if I would have bought it at the full price given that much of what it can do (for my needs) can also be done with the freeware audio program, Audacity.
Voice Changer is relatively easy to install and set up. Once installed simply change you default microphone to the installed AV…

Quickly Create a CrazyTalk Animator G3 Character From Original Art

Creating a character rig from original art can seem like a daunting task in CrazyTalk Animator 3. Especially if, all you really want to do is put together a quick animation with characters you may never even use again.

Here's how to rig a CrazyTalk Animator 3, G3 human character, with the fewest components, whilst still being compatible with G3 character motions, and having a face capable of lip syncing and character expressions.

You should be able to do this in under an hour - assuming you have your artwork ready to go.

Learning Moho Pro 12 (Anime Studio Pro) - Part 1, Introduction

This week Smith Micro released the latest version of it's animation software, Moho Pro 12, which is actually the latest, completely revised and updated version of Anime Studio Pro 11 with a new name, kind of. As I understand it Anime Studio used to be called Moho in the beginning and this is a return to the original name.

I firmly believe in this software as a professional animation tool, as evidenced by the fact I've kept upgrading every time they release a new version, despite never having the time to even scratch the surface learning how to use it properly.

Animate Your Artwork with CrazyTalk 8 (Pipeline)

If you're the kind of artist who likes to create characters, specifically focusing on faces, and you would like to see your creations come alive through animation, Reallusion's CrazyTalk 8 application provides an easy to learn solution.

What is CrazyTalk 8?
CrazyTalk 8 (not to be confused with Reallusion's CrazyTalk Animator 3) is designed specifically to create 'talking head' style animation.

Impressively it can be used to animate both 2D and 3D based characters. The 2D heads it creates are actually semi 3D 'relief map' style heads that have some ability to move up, down, and side to side. The full 3D heads it creates are properly formed heads but they still have a limited turning range (you can't turn them more than about 45 degrees in any direction).

For the purpose of this tutorial I'll be focussing on my 2D painting of a cow, that I created back in 2003, with no intention of ever animating it, or turning it into a 2D animated scene.

I'll b…