I didn’t have time to make a comic yesterday, which means I failed my weekly social media commitment. Truth be told I ran out of time. I work graveyard shift Wednesday through Saturday and fell asleep straight when I arrived home.
The above still is the east parking lot to the hospital. I thought it would be interesting to breakdown why this animated episode has taken me so long.
Each and every creation takes time – obviously. But I believe in this undertaking because the process will become more efficient in the future.
Lets start with the background. It was designed together and exported as 6 separate layers. The layers are placed together in order of dominant perspective. The layers are as follows:
- 1.)Front streetlight
- 2.) Brick Wall
- 3.) Rear Wall
- 4.) Rear street lights
- 5.) Pavement
- 6.) Street, shops, and skyline
Most photography programs interpret layer order as dominance. For instance, if you have two boxes of the same size, one green and one blue, the layer on top will be the only one that is seen. Place the blue layer on top and you will see a blue box.
Now we move on to the other images. We have background characters and vehicles. These were also designed and exported as PNGs. These PNGs are placed among the background layers before the scene is rendered. For instance, I can see from the image above that the background characters were likely placed on top of every scenery layer. The vehicles vary. If I wanted to have a car moving behind the rear wall, I would simply place it between the rear wall and the street and shop layer. As long as it appears above the street & shop layer, but below the wall layer, I can make it appear to move behind the wall and on the street.
By keeping images separate I am able to reuse the same assets in different scenes. If I need a sidewalk and street in a new background I can simply drag and drop the isolated layer into a new scene. The same goes for the background characters.
Because of my strong belief that efficiency will improve with my asset library I have devoted more time to this episode than I am otherwise comfortable with. When I know an asset is being designed with the intent of reproduction, I spend extra time to design it in order to meet all future requirements. That means each 2d image includes a front, side, and rear profile. For each vehicle I also have a bright, illuminated layer specific for activated brakelights. Each character has a minimum of a front and rear profile. The main characters also have a left and right profile.
Hope this was informative in some way and you find joy in your day.