Friday, 4 February 2011

Three Lessons

There's a saying that goes something like this:

"You can't polish a turd."

And do you know what? It's completely spot on! I spent absolutely ages trying to polish a movement yesterday morning. I spent much longer trying to get it working than I normally would have on a movement. I suppose it's quite difficult because my brain naturally wants to find solutions and work things out.

But no. Instead, after I noticed how long I had spent sitting there, getting absolutely nowhere...I...I deleted the whole movement! Which brings me to lesson number two:

"Don't fall in love with your work."

In my case it was specifically a bunch of poses. Literally within a minute after deleting what I'd been rattling my brain over for what could have been 15 minutes I nailed the movement within 60 seconds.

Later that day I reached a part during splining the scene where things got particularly messy and couldn't really be saved without looking rubbish. My solution? DELETE IT! And it worked. I deleted the whole movement and quickly reworked it. Because I'd spent so long trying to shape my bad blocking I knew exactly what I wanted.

I've always been very fond of my poses and decisions. Today I've realised just how damaging that can be and love the new method I've adopted. It's pretty reckless but it's worked two times out of two today. Maybe even more times than that in the short space of time I've spent splining this one little 145 frame shot.

It was kind of an "AHA!" moment where those two quotes made perfect sense...and held hands...and ran off into the sunset...they had quote babies.


I have just realised that there is a third lesson to add to all this. Here it is:

"Learn from your mistakes."

Very important! Don't be afraid to make mistakes and if you do, take the opportunity to learn from them.

Happy Animating folks!


Jonimations said...

I still remember when my college tutor dispensed the "turd" advice to me. But even today I was trying to fix something for ages, when just doing it over again was the more efficient way. Lots to learn in this biz!

Bryn Richards said...

Definitely. I think sometimes we get too caught up in trying to fix something that's broken to notice it's beyond repair and needs to go. Hopefully as we move on as animators we'll become more aware of the times when we need to destroy our broken work :P