Though Silly Me came after I Am Chemistry, we wrote it as a prequel. Why not, you know? I handmade all the characters and the bulk of the set pieces, 3D-scanned them, and animated mostly with mocap. It was a challenge.
Started this one out, as always, with concept drawings. Knew we wanted a "Wind in the Willows" vibe, but pushed a little stranger, a little more fantasy. Didn't get to pull off all of it - maybe I'll draw from some of these down the line. Probably.
First made the armatures, than went to work on the beasts. Used this stuff called "Magi-Sculpt", which is awesome: it's a two part clay. Works like really high-end Bondo, I guess. Made these in my garage with the door open. Weather had just turned nice, had just moved in the house. Neighbors kept stopping by, saw all these animals with genitals, thought I was nuts. Well don't blame me man, I just work here.
Spraypainted the undercoat and painted all the rest by brush. Acrylics all the way. Really wanted the marks to show: it's difficult to mimic that in CGI. I mean, you can definitely fake it, but it's just a different feel when you're painting on real clay.
Couple stills from the video. Happy with how the paint came out. If I did it all in something like Substance Painter, you know, I could've theoretically done the same thing, but you know, it just wouldn't have happened the same way. Real paint makes it so free and messy. Which I wanted for this piece.
Here's Ryan suiting up Akela Jaffi in the mocap suit. There both super attractive, it's just a terrible photo I took. Akela choreographed and danced every character. Checkout that coincidental image over Ry's shoulder. Ha!
Here's a BTS of our work setup. We paralleled the performance capture in Unity so we could watch the sculptures move in real-time. Worked great.
Ryan scans one of the models while Abby DIT's.
Initial look dev for the constellations. Was a little too stylized, didn't work with the footage.
We originally planned to zoom into a book at the beginning of the video, like an old Disney movie or such. Marco Cousins did an incredible job fabricating the book. Unfortunately, the shoot didn't work out and it synced poorly with the video, so we scrapped it. So it goes. Still got the book, will make something cool with it.
Wrapped this up, dropped it in the world, and it did great. One of my favorites, actually. I like the kind of tumbling pace, and how it barely holds together. After this, I wrote a brief for a VR series, same look, called World of Terror. This strange, dark claymation planet is someplace I'd like to return to.