Animation Contest: Cute animals playing tennis or volleyball


Animation Proposal: Cute Animals Playing Tennis or Volleyball:

In this animation proposal the idea is to show two animals such as an elephant and a seal (cartoon type characters) playing tennis or volleyball. If tennis was too difficult to execute volleyball would be similar except without a racket and using a larger ball with a slightly higher net. If animating both an elephant and a seal was two difficult to execute the animation could be two seals playing volleyball.

Assuming tennis, the 20 carousel segments would be a small tennis court. Depending on timing limitations the ball would cross the net in both directions either once or twice (i.e., both animals would get either one or two swings depending on whether there was time to fit two swings in without making the play too fast). If there was time for two swings, one character would do a forehand followed by a backhand swing. The characters would be cute and show facial expressions. The character at the periphery would be large such as an elephant or hippo. The character nearer the center would be small such as a duck or seal. The smaller animal could use his head, feet, or tail instead of a racket (i.e., like a soccer player). In preparation for and during execution of each swing each character would reposition their body (i.e., moving closer or farther from the net as appropriate). Also in repositioning their body, in addition to getting ready to swing (i.e., elephant moving his racket back or seal repositioning his tail) depending on timing constraints each character could incorporate a “tennis ready” movement incorporating a cute dance step. The tennis ball would be slightly oversize to make it easy to see. To give the impression of speed and to make it easier to see it could be modeled as a streak as it left the racket and crossed the net (i.e., an ellipse or “comet tail”) . Like the fish animation this one has three zones: 1) near animal, 2) ball crossing the net, 3) far animal. One of the things that made the fish animation interesting in addition to the animation multiplexing was how time was manipulated - instead of showing all motion as continuous the swimming fish paused before gulping the fish in front. In this tennis animation there would be similar opportunities to manipulate time (i.e. apparently slowing down he animation at key moments to show facial expression before speeding it up again).

Please forgive the crude drawing below. Instead of trying to draw an elephant I just drew a stick figure showing racket position. A variant of this proposal would be to have a person playing an animal in which case the stick figure would be the person.

Animation to two people playing tennis in an endless loop to give an example of what I’m going for:


Examples of elephants playing tennis:


Example of a seals with a playing with a ball:


Example of seals playing volleyball:


I’ve got some other animation ideas I’ll write up in the next few days if I have time.

Thanks for considering my animation proposal!


Note: I just realized 4-Mation spins clockwise. Since my carousel was drawn assuming rotation was counter clockwise it needs to be flipped as shown below:


Hi Jerry, it’s a great idea for an animation loop, unfortunately there’s one main practical problem for implementing on 4-Mation.

We need to keep the animation frame rate at around 24fps or higher, otherwise the strobe rate starts to become hard to watch. Ideally animations should target the maximum of 33fps, since this is brighter and the strobes are the least intrusive.

Your example gif of two guys playing is a great place to start. It’s just 11 frames, but it’s also running very slow - it’s 1.65 seconds long. A 20 frame equivalent on 4-Mation would have more frames, but would be a lot faster. At 24fps, one revolution would take about 0.8s - so the animation would be twice as fast, and even faster still at 33fps.

At this stage with the entries we already have - to go on the shortlist will require a multiplexed concept.