The animator I chose for this project is Ub Iwerks and I watched his shorts “Hell’s Bells” (1929), “Fiddlesticks” (1930), “Funny Face” (1933), “The Brave Tin Soldier” (1934), and “Jack Frost” (1934). Iwerks’ style influenced my animation through character design, character motion, the shot of the animation, and the way the character and inanimate object interact. In my character’s design, I tried to emulate the look of Iwerks’ characters; large, round eyes, gloved hands, and bulbous feet are seen on several of his characters, a specific example being Flip the Frog in “Funny Face.” As for the character motion, I drew from Iwerks’ use of the characters walking with a bounce in their step as seen in “Fiddlesticks” and “Funny Face.” The stars used to represent impact were inspired by the ones in the fight scenes of “Funny Face,” and the action lines used for surprise are influenced by the one’s seen in “The Brave Tin Soldier” when the tin soldier spots the other toys. I also used a wide shot for my scene, much like the one in “Jack Frost” in which the mother bear is trying to put her baby bear to bed. I pulled from Iwerks’ affinity for slapstick as well, most notable in “Hell’s Bells” as the demons are injured in several comical ways.
My first animation was particularly smooth when my character, Bandit the Raccoon, is whistling and the music notes are moving (frames 1-23) and then again when the rug falls on him (frames 41-50). This smoothness was achieved by moving the rug very slightly in every frame, the same going for the music notes as well as making them slightly smaller on the following frame. On the other hand, when the rug is folding up initially, the animation is not so smooth (frames 28-40); this can be remedied by applying the same technique of drawing the rug only moving slightly in each frame. Bandit’s face was particularly difficult to animate, as the shape of his face kept changing ever so slightly in each frame until he looked completely different. The way to fix this would be to compare the images of his face that are a few frames apart, checking to see if his face shape is consistent between them. In order to make Bandit seem surprised, I animated him to have slightly bulging eyes and to make an “O” shape with his mouth when shocked by the rug moving. He could seem more surprised with a more dramatic jaw drop and a stiffened body. The overall animation went rather well, and the animation is very easy to follow. The only difficulty I found was time consumption; I expected to have difficulty achieving the frame requirement but found this to not be a problem.
For my second animation, I did not change my character’s design to make him easier to animate; rather, I added a button to his overalls and colored in his shoes. I did make an improvement to the animation by paying closer attention to his face shape throughout the scene. I made the motion of the rug rising up smoother as well by moving it only slightly frame by frame instead of drastically as in the first one (frames 28- 40).