Today’s behind the scenes look at TektonTV will look at what may seem a simple matter – getting a character to walk. Since I’m not a honed professional at cartooning, one of my challenges was how to animate a character without changing the appearance of parts of the character that would not move. Pros can usually redraw the same character closely. My hand is too unsteady to manage that. So I had to come up with a different technique.
The end result picture is this. I have Elisha in the middle of a walk. All I want to move are his arms and legs – but I want the rest, his body and head, to stay the same. My solution to this problem is sort of like the idea that to carve a statue, you get a big rock and carve off anything that doesn’t look like the statue. The second drawing shows what I do to accomplish this:
This Vedic manifestation, a mutant Elisha, has both sets of arm and leg movements I want. So to make the two stages in Elisha’s walk, I have two copies of this single drawing, and in each one I delete/erase what I don’t want. That way, his head and body remain the same in both.
One extra thing I learned of late, by the way…I now keep nearly all of these things as gif files (with transparent backgrounds). Never know when they might be useful again.