Hello everyone, This post is to probe interest and gather advice for starting an animation (possibly several) following in the vein of Super Mario Bros. Z. This will not be a crossover.
Background: I have been a fan of the show for about a year now and have been watching the animations, viewing the pictures, and reading the fanfics of the brilliant community for the majority of that time. I recently watched Double Rainboom and Grant Beaudette's animation analyses. I was surprised to find that Double Rainboom also did a tutorial for the puppet animators when they were looking for people to work on the project and watched all 6 of the videos.
I was hooked.
I spent the last two days watching those tutorials over and over, getting a copy of Flash CS6 (yay student), and even finding out where I can get the Animator's Survival Kit as recommended by many people. Now I want to do an animation of my own. True to my nature, it's probably a bit bigger than I can chew.
While watching the guides and analyses, I have also been doing animation the wrong way: doing rough rough storyboarding then animating that. This has the strange side effect of a somewhat timed (if terribly drawn) storyboard. This is already 1/3 of the way done for the first episode.
I am not an artist by trade. I have never worked with animation before. I am eager to learn how.
Main Idea: The animation is meant to be in a side-scroller video game style. The story will not be a crossover. It will be more like several fanfics where the Mane 6 delve into a mind to fix an Alicorn (a bit of Inception in there as well). Direction for each episode will be much like Super Mario Bros. Z or a Megaman X stage with dialog added. First episode will likely pay homage to the intro level to Megaman X3. Camera will mostly follow Twilight Sparkle's experience through the adventure. Will likely follow the formula [stage Episode] -> [boss Episode] -> [Filler Episode if needed] -> [Repeat].
Variation will occur further down the line of course. If my full idea pans out and work can consistently be done, the full story will take more than 6 episodes.
First episode will shoot to be under 2 minutes long. This is obviously very long for a first project, so it will likely be interspersed with animation tests and the like. Longer episodes will likely be under 4 minutes barring long and easily animated dialog sections. I am not looking to animate dialog beyond facial expressions (see style comments).
A more in depth summary of the story could be provided if interest is present.
Questions to the Community:
- Are You Interested? Would you watch this?
- Would you recommend using puppets or sprite animation? Sprite animation would fit in with the style, but I am concerned with the number of extra drawings I will need.
- Knowing where I am (very very new to everything), how would you suggest I work my way up to the first episode?
- Are there members of the community who have experience running group projects? Would you recommend gathering a group? How have you done so in the past?
- Sound effects is a long ways off, but how do you go about finding appropriate effects?
- Several visual effects (magic) seem to be easier to work with in other programs like After Effects. Should I invest or learn the hard way first?
- Currently, I am doing rough animation with a mouse. I do not have the budget for a tablet or cintiq. Do members find themselves more efficient using these tools? Should I start saving?