The deadly bandits – Animating the dead.

Animation, Film, Illustration, Photoshop

For film class we were asked to create a short (about 40 seconds long) video in After Effects of an anthropomorphic band performing a tune in 2.5D space. The video should contain some camera movement through a layered world of our own creation. Teaming up for this one was easy.

Amanda Nilsson and myself (Bad Apple Films) hooked up with Leon Remstedt and Daniel Sj√∂berg (Woodland Films) and spent a good minute on agreeing that something must be dead, and something must die. The story pretty much wrote itself. We knew we wanted a concept similar to Disney’s The Skeleton Dance (1929), and we knew we would have to come up with a grim way to abruptly end the song after about 30 seconds.

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Kevin MacLeod’s “One-eyed maestro” is 1:58 long – we needed it to be about 0:40. Easy fix.

Since we went with animal skulls instead of heads we had to pick animals with skulls that differ from each other. Que a cow, vulture and a crocodile. Amanda, Daniel and me animated a musician each while Leon animated the background. After a few days we met up and put the whole composition together over two days and added camera movement and sound effects.

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Original drafts and sketches for “Rojaz”, “Nevada” and “Diego” with their instruments.

Even though the animation tends to get a bit stiff when animating cut-out’s, it does add a quirky charm to your video. And if you haven’t played around with the built-in camera in After Effects i strongly recommend you try it out. It’s actually less complicated than one might think. Thanks for watching!

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