Saturday, April 9, 2011

Intro to Acting - The Second Shot, The Mexican


Hehe, It's tough looking back at these shots.  I was definitely feeling the pain at this point and even thought about retaking Class 4 because I was so disappointed in my work.  Well, I'm forging ahead and looking back, learning from my mistakes.  My advice would be to take your time with AM.  If, for whatever reason, you feel burnt out, you don't have to push through it.  The best thing I did was take 6 months off.  Sure, I miss the people I started with, but my life was pretty hectic the last little bit.  AM waited and my brain and animation will be better for it!

Anyway, here's the first dialogue shot I did.  I took a line from The Mexican (2001 - Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts).  I love the movie and this scene was actually great to do since Julia Roberts was sitting in a bathroom stall the entire time.  I never saw her act the lines out so I had no preconceived ideas about what she should do.  Sadly, I just did a lot of arm swinging!  Here's my blocking pass...

Have you seen my dead body?

Yeeeeah, so there you have it.  The issue going on here is there's a ton of presenting of the dead body in the trunk.  It's like "Look... a dead body.  By the way, did you see this dead body?  Yeah, that dead body over there."  Nothing is subtle and all the character does is swing her arms to show you the body!

Jumping ahead, here's the final shot without lip sync (which wasn't part of Class 4).  Paul gave me great ideas to chop down the presenting stuff but it still does nothing for me.

Better, but definite polishing issues...

So, yeah, there's issues with the polishing.  Spacing issues, the turnaround and back, etc.  The cool thing is, I can really see it now.  Again, after a 6 month break and feeling refreshed, I would love to go back and redo this shot.  There's a good chance I'll do that in Class 6 since I came up with a really great idea while on "vacation". 

Here's my advice to anyone doing a shot.  Ask yourself "So what?".  Seriously.  Plan out your shot, look at it and ask yourself why your character would be acting that way.  For example, with this shot I made... 
  • What's this woman doing with a dead body in a car?
  • Who's she talking to?
  • How did the body get there and why is she involved?
  • Why is she so annoyed at the person off screen?
  • What's she planning on doing now that she's in this predicament?

The point I'm making is all these things will lead to what she needs to do, before, during and after your shot.  After asking myself all these questions (and more), I figured this chick is not exactly on the "straight and narrow", she needs to dispose of this body ASAP so she doesn't get in trouble and the person she's with is obviously incapable of doing the job right... so she needs to do it herself!  So, why not have her digging the grave while ripping in to the person off camera?  Just a hint at what I hope to do with this... :D

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