So here's my animatic - I'd really appreciate any comments so that I can make improvements when I get to the 3D layout stage. Thanks :)
Friday, 2 December 2011
My story has changed once again. I was still not satisfied that the last version was simple enough for a short animation and so I revisited the narrative. I've stayed with the theme of an outsider finally being accepted and valued for his unusual qualities, but simplified the narrative enormously. The main character (the wooden man) remains, but his love interest has been swapped out for the character of a little boy, with whom he develops an unlikely friendship.
It's a sleepy Sunday afternoon in Edinburgh. The city's distinctive buildings cast long shadows in the winter sunshine.
The only person out on the streets is a small boy on his way home from a party. Clutching a balloon and a party bag he hopscotches along, avoiding the cracks in the pavement.
But suddenly a noise disturbs the peace. Footsteps echo along the empty street and, alarmed, the boy stops to listen.
However, the footsteps cease and the boy shrugs before continuing his meandering progress along the road.
As the boy sets off an outlandish figure detaches itself from the shadows and begins to follow. The boy is now absorbed in his game again and is oblivious to the creature on his trail until he turns a corner and suddenly finds himself face to face!
The creature is truly monstrous: he's made from wood instead of flesh and blood and towers over the boy like a tall tree. His hooded eyes are set deep in a cruel angular face and his fingers – made from pencils - are like claws reaching out to grab the boy.
The boy is startled: he recoils in fear and, in his shock, lets go of his treasured balloon. Overcome with his fright and loss the boy dissolves into anguished sobs as the balloon drifts away into the winter sky.
A few moments pass and we see that the balloon has become tangled in the branches of a nearby tree. From this viewpoint it becomes clear that not all is as if first seemed with the pair down below. The wooden man no longer looks scary – instead he is flustered and out of his depth, unsure how to comfort the crying boy in front of him. He reaches out tentatively to pat the boy's head but the boy recoils in terror from his strange claw-like hands. And then the man has an idea!
Reaching up with his pencil fingers he begins to draw and, where his fingers move, lines appear on the environment. As he works the boy stops crying and begins to watch. The wooden man finishes with a flourish: he has drawn a ladder and it remains upright for a moment before overbalancing and coming to rest against the trunk of the tree.
Delighted the boy scrambles up the ladder to retrieve his lost balloon whilst the wooden man holds the bottom steady. The new friends then make their way to the park where the wooden man puts his magic fingers to use once again; writing down the story of their adventure for the boy to read.