Friday, 10 June 2011


This is the dialogue I will be animating the scene to:

So I now need to listen to it....................and listen to it..............and listen to it.................and listen to it! To get to the heart of the matter and really start to understand what's going on with a random piece of dialogue like this I listen to it literally hundreds of times. I find it useful to put it on my iPod and sit quietly or even go for a walk. Anything really to get the ideas flowing. Like I mentioned in the last post, I start asking questions and really try and grasp the emotions and intent behind the spoken words, the subtext. I know it sounds really obvious, but when we speak, if taken at face value, our words only communicate a very small amount of the thought and emotion that drives them. So I use this repetitive loop to try and understand the characters, empathise and associate with them. 

Okay, let's get into it.

- You stole it..................I've 
- I thought you put it there?
- Why would I put it there?
- Kindness?
- Kindness? 
- You stole it. He stole it. 

After listening to this over and over I realised that as the second character starts delivering his line the first character hasn't actually finished talking. It sounds to me like he's going to say, ' You stole it.......I've been looking for this' before he gets interrupted and can only get the 'I've' out. This helped me to bring a starting point and I began to build the scene around the premise that the first character is getting something back that he once owned and treasures very much. I can also hear some rustling on the track which I may incorporate.  

Sometimes I might just sketch out a diagram like this to help feel the energy and phrasing.  The speed and energy of the first characters reactions make him a high energy, aggressive character to me in contrast to the second guy who seems kind, a little insecure and naive. This reading will support broad animation which I aim to make entertaining and fun. With that I'm on my way.........


  1. I'm enjoying reading these; very helpful!
    I'm working on a scene with this month's sound clip from 11 Second Club, maybe not for submission, but at least for practice.
    I take that you might cover this in future posts, but, I've got the main acting planned out (as in the body expressions in the main bits of the dialog) but am finding it hard to figure what to do with the inbetweens of that..
    And that's one gorgeous and adorable baby! C:

  2. Thanks, glad they are helping. I will be certainly covering that topic in detail in the coming weeks, as I get deeper into the scene. It can be tricky as there are many things to consider when breaking a scene down after you have your storytelling drawings/ golden poses. But for the minute it may help you to think that the golden poses are WHAT'S going on in the scene (ie. the story) and the breakdowns are the drawings that show HOW it moves. How the character moves comes down to their personality and intentions. Also when in the breakdown process I am thinking about arcs, overlaps etc. to help show appropriate weight, gravity and speed. Not sure how much help this is, but I'm hoping it will be a lot clearer when I get to posting that stage!