Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Simulation is like awesome icing

It's a hard line to walk.

You kind of want no one to notice hair/cloth/fur work in an animated movie. Unlike great animation, great simulations should go by unnoticed. It's supposed to add to an animated figure, not detract from it.

Meanwhile, you kind of want people to notice it. I saw Shrek 2 when I was 17 or so and I was amazed when Charming took off his helmet and did his hair flip. It was so beautiful to me. Or the hair work in Advent Children. Phenomenal. Even people who don't know a thing about animation or simulation comment on how well Tifa and Sephiroth's hair looks and moves in that movie.

I guess character simulation is a lot like icing on a cake. Plain cake is good. Cake with icing is awesome. When you eat cake with icing though, people usually don't comment on how great the icing is, just how good the cake is. If the icing is bad, people say the cake is bad.

It might be a little strange, but when a group of people watches a shot I've worked on, and no one comments on the hair or cloth at all, I take it as a compliment.


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