Tuesday, March 13, 2007

More MEAT... less CUTE...

After watching my critique for 409 work, I'm compelled to make some progress. I've spent too much time on the third character. At the moment I can sense my passion for animation being domesticated. It's stifling, and yet, hopeful. I want to put every ounce of energy into every character, simply because I can. However, these days, it's the subtlety that sells, and lately I'm an overactor in a crowd of real people. Identifying that helps my ability to improve.

The running joke among animators is that animators are lazy. They like simplicity, they don't want visuals that are too complex. If that's true, I'm in a lot of trouble. I've always liked visuals that are complex. I like being surrounded by busy-ness. I love detail. So how can I channel that into a love for subtle detail?

My shots that people are complimenting the most have virtually no change in facials. How disappointing, for an overactor! Has anyone ever thrown a lasso around Jim Carrey's neck, or Will Ferrell, and said, "Whoa, Nelly, why don't you keep that same expression on your face through the whole shot?" On the other hand, look at their careers and how they've grown since they've tamed their own fleeting ambitions to always be eye-catching and sporadic. I still need to see Stranger Than Fiction, but for Mr. Carrey, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind? Truman Show? These are a couple of my favorite movies. Isn't that fascinating.

(I don't know how many hands I actually have, but) On the other hand, again, I don't know how many times I watched The Mask growing up, or Bruce Almighty, or Liar Liar... I definitely love those for the crazy Jim Carrey.

I think the point is, I need to show both sides of the coin. A lot of people can show crazy play acting. A good pantomime can get you hired, after all. But good serious role-playing will more than likely sustain your career. I don't necessarily mean SERIOUS acting, but I mean serious ACTING. In other words, living through a character shouldn't be the ultimate goal (which it has always been, for me): letting your character live is the goal. Letting it tell its own story in its own way is the way to rendering it a relatable being.

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