Animation Evaluation

To evaluate my animation, I asked people a series of questions based on genre, target audience, mood, sound, what they liked and didn’t like, and whether certain elements fitted. These are the questions I asked, and the evaluation of each response to each question.

  • What genre did you feel the animation was?

The first response to this question was that they felt the genre was romance. This is because they felt that the poem was romantic and soft, using female pronouns and delicate imagery which the person associated with romance. Romance is often associated with femininity so this makes sense. Another response was that they felt the genre was drama. The reasoning was because they felt that the poem was deep and meaningful. This is valid, as the poem used focuses on the elements of nature and that we must look after it. The genre I decided to go for with my animation was drama, because it allows for a wide range of content and allows me to create mood within the product.

  • What age group do you think the animation was aimed at?

The options I gave for this question were: toddlers, young children 5-7, and older children 7-11. Responses said that they felt the target audience was older children aged 7-11. This response was based on the fact that the poem used literature techniques that would be suited to older children, such as the use of imagery and metaphors. I wanted to aim it at older children for the purpose of inspiring kids to look after the environment.

  • What mood(s) would you use to describe the animation?

The options I gave for this question were: happy, sad, peaceful and soft. The first response chose that the animation was peaceful and soft, and the second response was that the animation was soft. This was the mood that I originally wanted to create – I wanted it to be wholesome and pleasant to watch and also listen to. The soft and peacefulness coincide with this vibe, meaning that this is a positive result. This response also means that the animation was easy watching which also suggests that it is suitable to the target audience.

  • Did you think that the poem used fitted the animation, and was it effective? Why?

The responses for this question agreed that the poem fitted with the animation because ‘the lyrics matched with the imagery’ and ‘the poem reflected the visuals well’. These responses suggested that the poem worked with the animation because ‘The poem seemed to be about looking after the earth and animals in it so they fitted very well with each other’. This is a very good response because it means that the purpose of the animation (which was to entertain but also educate about the environment) translated and was recognised by the audience. It means that the poem made the product cohesive which is a good success.

  • Did you think that the sound effect fitted the animation, or was it distracting? Why?

The responses given for this question were positive – one response was ‘Yes, there was a good use of ambience sound and it was not at all distracting.’, and the other response was that ‘I thought the sound effects were subtle but you could clearly hear them. They fitted with the forest visuals and poem theme’. These responses show that the audio had the effect that I intended it to create – it shows that they added to the ambient atmosphere of the animation, making it a more interesting product to watch. In addition to this the responses have shown that the sounds weren’t overpowering or distracting from the poem – it was subtle but effective. 

  •  Was there anything you didn’t like about the animation? Could it have been improved?

The responses given for this question were ‘It could have used a bit more shot diversity.’ and also that ‘I feel the butterfly could have flapped its wings and fluttered faster around the elephant. It would also have been nice if the trees and grass moved. The only thing that could have been improved would be the little white edges that were still visible’. These responses were valid – there animation used only one type of shot, so if I were to recreate this animation I would include more shot diversity such as close ups or high angles to make the visuals more stimulating. In addition to this the second response is valid because more movement from the different elements of the animation would have added realism and diversity. Also, if I were to recreate I would erase the white patches in the visuals to make the overall visual look more professional.

  • Was there anything you did like about the animation?

For this question, the responses given were that ‘The elephant was cute, along with the orange sky and the butterflies.’ and also that they ‘Liked the deep thought behind the whole animation. It was thought provoking. The visuals were warm and desert/forest like and I liked the slow movement of the elephant. The poem itself was also thought provoking’. These responses show that I succeeded in creating the drama I was aiming to create – I wanted the animation to be something that would provoke thought towards looking after the environment and the responses show that this carried across. I wanted the visuals to be warm and pleasant to watch, and I also wanted the characters such as the elephant to be cute. I am glad that this was well received and overall I think that the animation was a success.

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Production Diary

In this document I will be going through the decisions and influences I made throughout the production of our music video.

In terms of filming, I played a role in directing, filming, and acting. In our groups we rotated roles so that we all had a chance to play each part. Examples of my directing (in chronological order) are:

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This is a shot I directed, directing Katie (acting) to switch from holding the rose in front of the moon on projector to holding it in her teeth horizontally. I decided this because I thought that the dark silhouette of the rose against the brightness of the moon would be an effective way to display the contrasting colours. By using a silhouette technique it fits in with the gothic style that we were trying to achieve. The position of the rose between teeth can also be viewed as romantic as it is something that can be associated with dance, enhancing the gothic theme. I decided on a close up shot in order to show the detail of the rose. We had to be careful of the projection of the bottom of the screen which showed up, so to resolve the error we zoomed the camera in and tilted it further up.

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Another example of my directing was for this shot sequence – in the end result music video I wanted to cut together shots of all of us in different parts of the same frame, so that when it was put together it would look as though we were apparating in and out of location. I directed both Katie and Harry to stand far away from the camera, and then move closer to a mid frame, and then to a close up. By using jump cuts in between these shots we end up with the apparating illusion. This directing went well as the idea was clear and precise, and also because Harry and Katie acted really well. In addition to this it went well because the frame we decided on included depth of field, with the rocks in the foreground and the bay in the background.

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In addition to this, another example of my directing was through this shot. In this shot I directed Harry to walk close up to the camera so that the whole frame would be consumed by the dark colour of his jacket. Because the shot finished with nothing but blackness we decided it would be a good shot to create because it would make for a good final shot for the video. The dramatic element of Harry’s acting was successful as it created the mysterious vibe we were aiming to achieve. The one trouble with this shot that we had was that the bottom of the projector screen reflected on Harry, however this was resolved when I directed that the camera should be tilted upward so that the reflection was not in shot.

Examples of my filming are:

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For this shot I decided to choose a mid shot, with Harry to the left of the frame. I decided on a mid shot so that the majority of the gravestone would be in shot – I wanted to include this so that the film captured the whole creepy vibe. I also wanted to frame it so that Harry would be to the left, so that there would be a variety of different positions of people, rather than we are all centre frame. This is also effective because it means we get to see the gravestone as well as the actor.

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In this shot I decided to go for a close up that was centred slightly to the right. I decided to do this because the sunlight allowed for a gradient of light – with the light shining the brightest on the right with Harry’s hair, and with the darkest elements on the left with Harry’s eye shadowed. I also decided that it should be a close up so that the can see the detail and expression on his face. The shot went well because the light had the right effect.

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For this shot I decided to go for a long shot, that would be centred to the right. I set the camera so that Harry would be to the very right of the frame, so that the shots we collected would have diversity of position. In addition to this I framed Harry to the right so that the camera could capture the waves rolling in and away from the rocks which would add dramatic effect to the sequence. If the shot was centre frame we wouldn’t be able to see the waves rolling in properly. I also set the camera so that Harry was in the middle and the top and bottom of the frame were equal distance.

An example of my acting is:

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In this scene I was directed to be graceful and use my arms to create graceful and sultry motions, similar to the movements of a witch commanding the elements. I had no previous acting experience so we made do with the shared ideas that we had.

For the next stage of production we edited the footage together for the final video. Harry and I decided to edit one final video together, because we decided that it would be easier as we could share ideas and share a balanced amount of editing responsibility.

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This is one example of my editing. In this sequence I decided to montage two separate shots of myself sitting on an overhanging rock at Oldway Mansion. I razored both shots into two so that there were 4 sections of film. I placed them alternately so that the high angle shot came first, then the low angle shot, then back to the high angle and then to the low angle shot once again. I decided to do this as it was more stimulating to watch rather than two longer shots of film. I also decided to fit the shots to the lyrics – I used the first shot for the lyrics ‘you got that’, the second shot for ‘medicine I need’, the third shot for ‘dope, shoot it up’, and the fourth shot for ‘straight to the heart, please’. This turned out well because it matched the rhythm.

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This is my second example of editing. I wanted to use this shot when the higher element of the instrumental section dropped, so that Harry would turn around on cue. The original footage was too slow for this to work so I used the speed/duration feature to make the footage fast enough to create the desired effect. This turned out well and the edit matched the beat very well which I was pleased with.

 

Sound Evaluation

  • How did you come about with the idea for your sounds?

I came up with the idea for a poem to go with my animation because it was mentioned as an idea by my teacher in class. The plan for my animation was already to create something to do with animals so it felt appropriate to use a matching poem in my animation.

For the sound effects in the background, I came up with this when realising that it would be appropriate to add savannah sounds in order to create ambience and that it would also add depth to the animation.

  • How did you plan and prepare for the creation of your sounds?

To prepare for the creation of my sounds I found the appropriate poem I wanted to use. I then booked out a TASCAM from the equipment facility at the college and asked the class for a volunteer as to who would be happy to recite it. We then went to a spare classroom that I had already spotted as empty and recorded the audio.

To prepare for converting the savannah sounds I checked through a number of different YouTube converters until I found one that was secure and appropriate to use. I then sifted through a number of clips of savannah sounds until I found a clip that matched the vibe I wanted to create.

  • Did you think about the target audience whilst planning and creating your sounds (link this to your animation?)

I thought that the audio would be appropriate for the target audience as there is a lot of visual imagery in the poem that would be imaginative and creative for the target audience, which is young children approx. 6-10 years old.

  • What intentions did you have for sound at the beginning and does the final product resemble what you had imagined?

The intentions I originally had for the audio were that it would be wholesome and that the audio would be soft, and not too harsh or sharp. The final product does resemble what I imagined, because I have managed to achieve a soft sounding audio that is pleasant to the ear.

The sound effects resemble the intentions I had for them in the beginning because it adds the atmosphere and depth to the product that I was aiming to achieve. The sound effects are subtle enough to not distract from the poem, but present enough to add effect.

  • Are your sounds and soundtrack fit for purpose?

Yes my audio is fit for purpose, because it creates the wholesome and atmospheric vibe that I intended to create. It is also informative, which meets the purpose of the audio which is to inform but entertain the listener. It informs the listener because it teaches them about looking after the planet, and it entertains because the imagery used is creative. The savannah sounds also contribute to the entertainment element of the purpose.

  • What changes did you make whilst creating the sounds and why?

The changes I made to the audio of the poem recital was editing out the gaps in between the lines, so that the whole poem fit down into the 30 seconds duration of the animation. I had to do this carefully so that it flowed naturally. I also edited out complete lines of the poem so that it fit to the time scale.

With the savannah sounds, I cut out 30 seconds from the longer clip that I felt suited the animation best. I had to be specific with this so that the sounds started and ended naturally.

  • What difficulties did you have when creating your sounds and how did you overcome them?

The difficulty was that it was hard to edit the audio precisely in Adobe Premiere because the amount of audio was small, meaning it was difficult to edit it precisely. I overcame this by extending the bar so that I could see the timeline of footage close up, allowing for a more precise edit.

  • If you had another opportunity to do this again, what would you change or what would you do differently?

If I had to do this again differently, I would add different audio features such as an elephant sound and the sound of trees rustling, in order to add depth to the audio experience. It would add more of an atmospheric vibe and fulfil the entertainment purpose.

Audio Pre-Production

Voice Over

In my animation there will be voiceover audio. I will record a classmate reciting the poem and overlap the audio with my animation.

Sound Effects/sourcing music

For sound effects, I will be including the ambience of the savannah in the background to make the animation atmospheric. To obtain this audio I will find an appropriate clip on YouTube, and covert it to MP3 using a conversion website.

Treatment

Project title: Make The Earth Your Companion – Animation Unit

Genre: Drama/Animation

Target Audience – Young children, 6-10

Duration – 30 seconds

Synopsis: The poem used for my audio assignment is a poem about nature and how we must look after it and treat it as our equal. I chose this poem because I wanted to create a wholesome vibe with my animation and the audio backs this up.

Locations

The location I will be obtaining the savannah sounds is a college classroom, likely to be 2.008. When I record a classmate reciting a poem I will use a spare empty classroom. The acoustics in the classrooms at college are appropriate for what I am trying to achieve so that is why I chose this location.

Production schedule

Production Day 1:

Date: 11/05/18

Location: College classroom, level 2

What was produced this day: Poem recital audio

Production Day 2: 

Date: 18/05/18

Location: College classroom, 2.008

What was produced this day: Conversion of savannah sounds in YouTube

Equipment list

  • MAC computer, for audio upload
  • Adobe Premiere, for audio editing and mixing
  • SD card, for recording audio down to
  • TASCAM, the device used to record audio
  • Microphone, to capture audio
  • Headphones, to listen to audio through

Audio Material:

Raw audio of poem recital:

 

Meeting Notes

Meeting 1

Date- 02/05/2018

Location- Class room (3.059)

Member present- Anne-Marie, Harry, Katie

Apologies-Nobody

Item 1-Music song and video idea:

A witch, Gothic themed with distorted shots. Inspired by The Craft, using lots of shots that are distorted and surrealistic, such as candles, crystals, dances, roses burning, witch traditions. We will be using all people in the group as actors.

Song- Gods and Monsters by Lana Del Rey

Item 2 Team roles responsibilities:

Harry- Risk assessment, Call sheet

Anne-Marie- Equipment list, Filming schedule

Katie- Location site survey, production schedule

Meeting 2

Date- 02/05/2018, 03/05/2018

Location- Class room (3.059), Classroom (2.143 A)

Member present- Anne-Marie, Harry, Katie

Apologies-Nobody, Harry

Item 1-Music song and video idea:

A witch, gothic themed with distorted shots. Inspired by the Craft, using lots of shots that are distorted and surrealistic. Such as candles, crystals, dances, roses burning, witch traditions. Using all people in the group as actors.

Song- Gods and Monsters by Lana Del Rey

Site survey and Equipment list have been completed, however we need to bring up if call sheet and risk assessment have been completed. We need to discuss on filming day if people are free for 09/05/18.

Item 2 Team roles responsibilities:

Harry- Risk assessment, Call sheet

Anne-Marie- Equipment list, Filming schedule

Katie- Location site survey, production schedule

Meeting 3

Date: 04/05/18

Location: 2.008

Members: Anne-Marie, Harry, Katie

Apologies: None

Item 1: We finished our pre production and made sure we all had access to each piece of work for our blogs. We planned that we would film on next week, starting on Wednesday at Fairy Cove.

Meeting 4

 

Date: 09/05/18

Location: Fairy Cove

Members present: Harry, Katie, Anne-Marie

Apologies: None

Item 1: Began filming at Fairy Cove – filmed shots of each other but we were not happy with them because they reflected that we were unprepared. The SD cards were faulty and we were struggling to adjust the tripod. We decided to quit filming and prepare ourselves better so that next time we filmed that it would go smoothly. Next time we go filming we will make sure that we understand how the equipment works and plan out each shot so that we understand what we are filming that day.

Meeting 5:

Date: 10/05/18

Location: College filming studio, animal care unit

Members: Katie, Harry. Anne-Marie

Apologies: None

Item 1: Filming in the college studio – we used the projector for images such as fire, snow, graveyards etc. and filmed profiles of ourselves in front of it. It turned out well because we were prepared and had creative ideas to share.

Item 2: Filming at the animal care unit – we wanted to film the goats as this is Gothic. We were inspired by the American Horror Story opening for Coven which features goats a a symbol in witchcraft. We managed to get plenty of film there of the goats and various other features. We also filmed ourselves standing in an archway which we can super cut.

Item 3: We realised that we couldn’t film the next day due to other complications such as presentations for our other unit. We then arranged to film on the 17th and 23rd of May.

Meeting 6:

Date: 17/05/18

Location: Fairy Cove

Members: Harry, Katie, Anne-Marie

Apologies: None

Item 1: We filmed at Fairy Cove and the footage turned out much better than before. We crossed a lot of shots of our shot list and gained a substantial amount of footage that will be the bulk of our music video. We each took a part in filming, directing and acting. However we spent a lot of time trying to make a bonfire so next time we will be better prepared and not spend so much time on small details.

Meeting 7: 

Date: 23/05/18

Location: Oldway Mansion

Members: Harry, Anne-Marie

Apologies: Katie

Item 1: We filmed more shots at Oldway Mansion, in which both Harry and Anne-Marie directed, filmed and acted. The footage turned out very well and we got a large amount of filming done. We were very pleased so we decided that it was our last day or filming.

Meeting 8: 

Date: 06/06/18

Location: College room

Members: Harry, Anne-Marie

Apologies: Katie

Item 1: We regrouped and organised what we had completed and made note of what still needs to be done, which is editing the footage together. We arranged to spend as much spare lesson time to be editing. We also began our production diaries.