Pre-production is the planning stage before actually doing anything on an animation project. It usually involves character concepts, story board, initial ideas & script. All these are steps that are taken in before any actual animation commences.
The first step is to produce an idea, it is the concept which helps set what exactly your animation is about. This process could days, weeks or months, but it solely depends on how quickly an idea is refined and polished. Afterwards a script will need to be written in order to put an idea on paper. A script will help with conveying what the whole motion of the idea is going towards as well as help in getting to the next step of pre-production, creating character concepts.
Concept of Dr Bloom from the show, “Rick and Morty”, Retrieved from: the link
Character concepts are the what the your characters in your idea will look like. It usually involves multiple redesigns before an artist decides on the official look of a character. This can seen for a character concept design from the above picture, “Dr Bloom”who can be seen to go through multiple different designs. After this is done the next step is to storyboard your idea with your official concepts of your characters and how they interact in the scenes.
Story board from “Rick and Morty”
Eventually a story board is needed, this usually means putting the words of the script into a visual medium. A story board’s purpose is to lay out what exactly is going to happen when the animating commences. It allows others to give an idea of what camera angles the scene is going to set as, and what is going on in said scene. Afterwards music is added, at times voices when needed, in order to see how the scene plays out. This is called an animatic. Along with this comes creating the model to be used and tweaking an faults that are found in the storyboard early on as to avoid mistakes from happening later on the production series. This is also a required step in order to set up a base for a project.
3d modelling is basically creating an item in a program made entirely out of polygons, they are three corners meshed together that resemble triangles. There are usually two kind of models that are often used but Polygon modelling is the most common to be applied in games, animations and films.
There are many different components to a polygon model these are; faces, edges & vertices. Faces are the surface of the model that contribute to how it looks, edges are the lines that connect to the corners, also known as vertices, that forms the shapes of the model, like the one above. The more polygons on a character the more high quality the finishing result will be. Even in certain sections of this models, for the example the face, there are more polygons as their are more details in that part. To put it in one sentence; 3d models are essentially unique structured shapes that are made from polygons. Texture and shaders are also an important component to the look of a model. However this will discussed in the next blog.
Wideopenspace.co.uk. (2017). What is Pre-production? : 4Talent : MOVE IT Animation Tutorial. [online] Available at: http://www.wideopenspace.co.uk/animation-tutorial/pre-production.html [Accessed 9 Mar. 2017].
Storyofanimation.blogspot.com.au. (2017). Pre-Production. [online] Available at: http://storyofanimation.blogspot.com.au/p/concept-art.html [Accessed 9 Mar. 2017].
Gossman, R. (2017). The Animation Production Process. [online] Available at: http://nir3d.com/handouts/Handouts%20History%20of%20Animation%20-%20(DIG1022)/Ani_Prod_Process.pdf [Accessed 9 Mar. 2017].
Slick, J. (2017). How Are 3D Models Prepared for Animation?. [online] Lifewire. Available at: https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-rigging-2095 [Accessed 5 Mar. 2017].