About: This project, for now, lives as an outcome of a 4-week classroom workshop called Mixed Media Animation at Pearl Academy, New Delhi. With this reading, I intend to take you through my process of collecting & connecting dots.
Act #1: Defining the foundational dot.
After diving into the historical and philosophical facet of animation, I found this simple outlook — to animate is to give life (spirit), quite compelling. The thought of designing a playful illustration of this marked a start.
Act #2: Discovering the mythological tale of animation.
My searches for “which was the first-animation” whimsically brought me to the story of Pygmalion, a sculptor who made a statue representing his ideal of womanhood named Galatea. The roman goddess of love, Venus, after seeing him fall in love with it, brought the statue to life. You can read this here.
This discovery helped me later when I was looking for a subject for my animation.
Act #3: Experimenting with Kinect v1 sensor for interactivity.
Before the workshop started, leveraging Kinect for interactive work was drawing all my attention. I was following Dan Shiffman’s channel to learn and expand my interest in creative coding. During the workshop, one of the explorations with the sensor gave me another dot to connect.
Act #4: Ideating the mixed-media interaction.
This simple binary illustration of active and inactive boxes stimulated the next act for me, creating an illustration of animate and inanimate. An act of giving life to each box by the person who’s interacting.
Act #5: Creating a subject for animation.
The pleasant dots in these boxes needed a substitute and for this, Pygmalion’s sculpture influenced me to create a humanoid figure out of clay. Fortunately, being around designers led me to Aditi Sharma, her talent and kindness helped me materialize what we now call, Astroid.
Act #6: Putting the subject in motion.
After cropping out my hand (holding Astroid) from each shot, a 13-frame image sequence was produced. The stop-motion captured Astroid — a lifeless form that animates in your presence.
Act #7: Assembling the pieces together.
For the final step, I replaced each inactive box of the matrix with the first frame of the sequence and wrote a code to trigger the rest of the frames whenever a box became active.
We’ve reached the end, thank you. I hope you had a wonderful time reading this.