Sunday, May 11, 2008

Building a Cheetah

WHEW! I tried to pump this one out in about a half hour. Eez alright. I've started a new personal project that for the time being I'm calling 'Building a Cheetah'. As I've said before this blog and really all my work is about learning and exploring, so my intent with this is to create a life-like Cheetah. The plan is to start off doing anatomical studies/illustrations, which I've already done, then I'll start doing concept sketches of the cheetah and its habitat, such as above. Finally I plan to do a walk and run cycle in Maya. It'll probably include some tests in Flash. I'm even considering doing a sculpture in plasticine. So I'll be using traditional drawing, painting, Flash, Painter, Photoshop, Maya, After Effects, and perhaps clay to accomplish this project. This whole idea jumped into my head after acquiring Maya recently, which I haven't touched really since school. I wanted to learn it better, so suddenly the idea came to me "I want to do a cheetah run cycle", and I could see it all so clearly. I love animals and I love art and animation, so Voila! I think the whole project is going to take some time...months perhaps up to a year, depending on how often I can get to it and achieve the look I want. So like in school I plan to start by knowing the Cheetah inside and out. I've read about 7 different books on them now, along with internet research, and have really learned a lot. It's amazing to me in studying their anatomy how identical it is to ours. Basically all the same skeletal and muscle features as us.
As an additive to all this I need to give a quick mention as to how awesome my fiance Sarah is. Knowing I was starting this project, as an early birthday gift at the end of the month we going to a wildlife preserve up in the wine country where they have Cheetahs! We're going on a safari tour and have two private tours with the giraffes and cheetahs. I'm beside myself with anticipation and excitement for this, although you couldn't tell with my emotionless, robotic expression ;)

p.s. I'll try to keep throwing out some Flash cartoons too in between all this. YEEHAA!

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