Dog Friendship is the Best Kind of Friendship

The title of the movie is SkippyI really enjoy dogs, so I knew I wanted to tell a story involving them. I also love Disney stories and the magic of believing to achieve. I actually wasn’t going to make my statue dog come to life in the original plot; it was going to be more solemn. Thinking about it with my brother when he came to visit, though, I didn’t want the dog, named “Doug” to be friendless in the end, so I changed the ending.

I wanted to show a theme with pathetic fallacy and color schemes. For example, during a sad part of the music, it was raining and Doug  (the main character) brought a baseball to Skippy, hoping to win his friendship. In other scenes, I had the color schemes bright, even at night, so show Doug’s happy spirit. When looking at other details such as fonts, I tried to pick one to go on my makeshift tombstone. That took a very long time to figure out, but after going to dafont.com and looking at the options, I decided on a horror themed font. The end credits were a very fun font that didn’t show up on Wednesday, so I was very disappointed. All other details such as cartoon detail came together naturally as I went on, mostly because I created my own backgrounds.

The key characters in my animation were my two dogs. One was an “actual” dog named Doug (not specified in the animation until the end credits), and the other was a statue named Skippy. I reused Doug multiple times, and I did use a lot more symbols at first, but a lot ruined my animation, so I decided to get rid of them. I reused my grave and dog statue throughout the whole animation for obvious reasons.

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To make my animation unique, I wanted to incorporate some sort of fading technique to show time had passed. I wasn’t sure how to do it, but I remembered on an assignment with Lynda, Anastasia McCune went over changing symbols to perform different things. She showed how to use the Alpha tool and a motion tween to make a symbol look like it was fading. I used that by drawing a big black rectangle, making it a motion tween, and setting the alpha to 0 then 100.

I encountered a lot of issues during this project. Most of the issues were about the symbols glitching into other frames and getting my other motion tweens to work properly. Also, in a scene where Doug cries over his friend not appreciating the gift he’s given him, my hand slipped and I moved the thought bubbles. That mistake took part of the background with it and caused a lot of frustration. To be honest, issues like that really got to me at some points while working on the project. I shouldn’t have let them, but I can be a perfectionist at times, and I was not proud of my work.

screen-shot-2016-10-13-at-8-33-33-pm

I feel like for all of these issues, I had to work around them. I added colored blocks where the background was ripped away with the thought bubbles, removed the symbols and added shapes that I created using the polygon tool, and used a lot of circles of the same color as Doug to cover a lot of mistakes.

I tracked down most images through google. Like I said before, I had to remove the star images and use the shape took for polygons, and I created the base for the grave, but for all the other images, I googled. The number one star was Doug of course, and I found him on ClipArtBest.com. The other dog, Skippy, I found through google as well, on pd4pic.com. The smaller details like the sun were found on clipart’s website, again, through google.
If I could go back and change anything, I would probably want to draw my own characters. I’m so far from an artist, but I would like to work on that and try to improve. I may take an art class in the future and remake this animation. My original animation idea was to draw everything and animate my drawings, but after the first sketch, I realized that would take too long. In the end, I don’t have any unanswered questions about Adobe Animate CC. That being said, I am not a big fan of it, nor do I think I will ever fully be a big fan of Adobe Animate CC. I have not been exposed to other animation programs, but this one doesn’t encourage me to want to make animations. Overall, the actual animation was a very fun process and I would love to edit it and make it smoother than before.

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