Meet “The Imposter”

Animators don’t usually build the characters we animate, but at The Weber State Campus Store I had the chance to step outside my comfort zone and create this monster! Check Back here soon to see some animation we’ll be using for entertaining marketing videos. Working at Weber State has actually been a dream come true in some ways. Due to an awesome work environment with incredible leadership, what began as a temporary, part-time graphic design job quickly became so much more. There are other developments I can’t share yet, but expect some fun content!

So how is an animated character created?

Well, once I found a sketch I liked (with feedback from the talented Jessie Kate Patterson & Lauren Chaikin ), I created model sheets (T-poses as shown below, pushing the design as far as I could in the time alotted), modeled the character in Maya, textured the model with UV mapping and Photoshop, laid out the controls and bones (and weight maps), and navigated the “Hypershade Forest” putting everything together to program the functionality. MORE INFO

Through this crazy process, I’ve been saying that building a character is like being an artist, engineer, and programmer all wrapped up in one. I don’t know if I’ll build another character like this, but I believe it has made me a better animator. And now here is the first pose of my second humble attempt at a feature quality rig:

Of course, he still needs some work and I am sure there will be kinks to be worked out during the animation process, but I couldn’t wait to share him. If there are any out there desiring information beyond this basic overview, I’ve compiled a list of the great resources I used during this process. Feel free to comment with any observations or questions!

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DreamWorks & Summer Arts

My brain is still processing the amazing, fully scholarshipped adventure I just had. Collaborating with DreamWorks Head of Animation, Rex Grignon was a dream...