15 Second Animation – HOP!

After our presentation Conánn told us to go back to the drawing board. I really liked Sinead’s idea of the snow flakes melting but then the more i though the more I realised having things that melt is hard to animate in 3D.

To be honest everything for the past two weeks were sort of a blare. It all happened so quick, I honestly can’t believe we produced what we have. It was so stressful.

We decided to go with a more simpler idea which would be easier to create in the time we had.
So our story line is as follows;

  • 1st space hopper falls in to frame
  • Bounces on the spot
  • 2nd space hopper falls in to frame
  • Both space hoppers bounce together
  • They collide together in mid-air
  • There is an explosion 
  • A smaller space hoppers bounce around the frame
  • one bounces out of shot 

It was decided that we would try and keep things realistic scale wise so it was agreed that the big space hoppers would be 75cm and the smaller ones 25cm.

A few details about space hopers.

  • A space hopper  is a rubber ball (similar to an exercise ball) with handles which allow you to sit on it without falling off. The user can hop around on the toy, using the elastic properties of the ball to move forward
  • The term “space hopper” is more common in the UK
  • The space hopper is a heavy rubber balloon about 60–70 centimetres (24–28 in) in diameter, with two rubber handles protruding from the top. A valve at the top allows the balloon to be inflated by a bike pump or car-tire pump
  • A child can sit on top, holding the two handles, and bounce up and down until the balloon leaves the ground
  • By leaning, the driver can make the balloon bounce in a particular direction. In practical terms, this is a very inefficient form of locomotion, but its simplicity, ease of use, low cost and cheerful appearance appeal to children
  • Space hoppers were introduced to the UK in 1969
  • The space hopper was invented by Aquilino Cosani of Ledragomma, an Italian company that manufactured toy rubber balls. He patented the idea in Italy in 1968, and in the United States in 1971. Cosani called the toy “Pon-Pon”


To animate this we had to pay particular attention to squash and stretch to help me with this I read the book ‘The Illusion of Life’ it covers all that needs to be done to create a good animation and it really helped me with my squash and stretch as you can see in my testers on my other post ’15 Second Animation – Maya Work/Testers’ (link below) https://cliodhnadoherty.wordpress.com/2016/05/11/15-second-animation-maya-worktesters/
My squash and stretched improve immensely after studying the book.

When I googled white room, Asylums appeared however this wasn’t the look we were going for. Although I did like the idea of the padded walls to give the room some texture.

I had the job of designing the faces and then placing them on our models of our space hoppers. At first this sounded like a easy enough job, but I soon realised that wasn’t the case. After consulting with Alec he showed me this tutorial which helped me a lot
(link below)

However I soon ran into many difficulties. Once I figured out how to get the faces on to the models I realised the faces were on the wrong side of the model. This really frustrated me, even UV Editing wouldn’t but the face on the correct side, so I messaged Alec. He explained that I had them on the wrong axis. After he explained this it was easy enough fixed but was just tedious. Even though our space hoppers had been coloured when ever I transferred the faces on they all turned white. For me this caused massive confusion and i had no idea how to fix this. But again after a quick chat with Alec he advised me to upload the face under defuse instead of image. There it didn’t show up all white instead both the colour and the face was there. The more I used Hypershade the more it took out of my computer, it kept lagging an shutting itself down, not saving correctly. It also led to it not being on the final render because of so many complications.

I also doubled the amount of baby space hopers in the second scene as I thought that it didn’t quite give the impact it was suppose to with the few it had started of with.

I also got the job doing the typography, I had a clear idea in my head what they should look like it so I ran with it. My idea was to mould the letters of our names out of the bouncy ball.  When hand drawn they looked good but once I drew them digitally the effect wasn’t quite the same. I chose the same idea for the title, it turned out a lot better though!

For my credit ideas, I tried to make each one of  us into space hoppers but they just ended up looking weird. I then went on a different approach, a more simpler ones which are below among the photos.

We then decided to put our signatures in the credits on the space hoppers.

Hope you all are looking forward to see the final product. It has been a rollercoaster!





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