Final Short Film- To the Moon

Our principle behind our animation is emotion, we want to create an ambiguous sense to the entire narrative because it is to do with death (something we all know very little about as a first person experience). From this we want the audience left kind of confused with the whole animation, to get a slight grasp of what the character wants, but in turn as the audience we don’t really know who the character is and what his past life has led. All we know is that he and the narrative, is coming to an end, and we as the creators showing that, want it to be a beautiful end.

The animation isn’t meant to feed you answers or emotion, you’re meant to look for it. We as a team didn’t want to create an easy feeding narrative as we know through beauty, through in depth research and planning out the set design, we could achieve a sense of emotion. We want the audience to know an emotion is meant to be felt, but that emotion isn’t predetermined, it is up to them to chose. We don’t want to force it.We just want them to feel something.

The aim we hope to achieve is that the audience is left uncertain of what has actually happened, and we hope that they would want to watch it again to try and figure it out. We haven’t quite polished off this idea yet. But after this we hope to work over summer to try and achieve something that is visually stunning, that is emotionally stirring, that is nostalgic in some sense, that shows there is comfort in endings and an atmosphere of loneliness. But for now, this is what we have created.

Response to feedback

We got a lot of feedback from this animation. This one we were not really happy with at all. The tutors let us know that the narrative still seemed a bit loose, which we also thought. Alot of the feedback they said we completely agreed with, but we found it hard to take loads of feedback and still create a piece that was original to us.

We had to include more shots of the growth
Reduce the number of shots
Change the camera at the end to have the movement of the camera to effect the shot prior to the one it is on already
To give more of a peaceful feel to it
To take out the stills
To match up the mountain shots so the flowed better together

We had a few things on top of this that we wanted to do as a team, so it was a busy time on the couple weeks between this and out most recent piece.

Mixing 2D and 3D


Screenshot 2016-04-09 23.36.12
My first tests were just for fun, and were in really simple formats! They turned out quite nice, but nothing what I wanted. I was kind of in a rough spot at this point, so everything I was doing wasn’t all that great. So I was happy that something was at least being made even if it wasn’t that helpful.

concept landscape6

concept landscape2


Getting there


Getting to something a little more finished and a little more successful.! We wanted there to  feature very little plants, lots of vast land and rocky features. So these concepts were with these ideas in mind, but also we wanted a magical feeling and surreal aspect to it all like grounds that glow.


Texturing tests

Screenshot 2016-04-13 20.09.29

I tested out editing certain textures I had already made and mixed with patterns adapted from Ryans designs that I drew. After that I then put them together and layered them onto simple rock shapes, I thought it gave an interesting look. These textures gave a more artsy feel to the simple things in the set, which is something we wanted to hold in the set.

After this I tested different textures out on other rocks! I thought these textures gave a simple design and composition a little something extra. They don’t particularly look like real rocks, but it’s subtly letting in the surreal to the real like theme we seem to be going with.

Screenshot 2016-04-13 20.41.04 (1)

I also tried giving a simple set a few textures, but I did a very quick test with awful lighting and I didn’t apply the textures the best way I could have. But I thought the grassy look of the texture on the ground was kind of successful!

Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 21.59.52

But overall this was not the visual look I imagined for our animation. So I wasn’t feeling extremely passionate while I created these pieces, my team seemed to like the rockas alot though.

Gianni and I then sat together and quickly tested out what a transparent layer on top of a solid object might look like. This was something that I wanted to try out from early concepts time. This too was also a really quick test, so I don’t have the best image that I could have but here’s the test.

Screenshot 2016-04-16 02.18.59

This idea came from my early concept of ghost rocks from this bad drawing I did! But it was fun to do and I think this is something we would like to try out more!


Environmental and concept design

The concepts started from experimentation. Through the designs of the sets I wanted to experiment with perspective through them, certain things could frame the moon to look as though that the moon is closer than it is.  Or to create a whole surreal landscape to accentuate the moon. I wanted to create the set to  look flat so as the moon always looked in reach.


I used inks to do a lot of concepts as I thought it gave a nice mystical atmosphere to the  simplistic set design. The strong use of black for the foreground allowed for a sense of depth, but gave a 2D sense which is something we all decided for.
The inks gave a more illuminating feel to the sky  which drew the eye to the moon, and hopefully that would make the audience know that the moon is meant to be the primary focus of the character.



Gianni then thought it might be good to work together on concept designs as it seemed to work out well when we were doing character designs and I drew ou skeletons for him to draw from, so he did the same for me. He tried to open my mind to drawing less flat and giving more depth and perspective to my concepts. He sketched out perspective lines, and showed me how to use these lines with horizon lines. From that he drew in elements to each drawing. like a piece of land in the foreground and then a small piece of land in the background. After he finished drawing I loved what he came up with, so I only work on top of them a little to clean up the lines and finish them off with coloured inks.  (image below)


These pages of my sketchbooks were my favourite concepts as they all looked from the same world. I also liked the colour scheme as an art piece, but I didn’t know if the imagery created with my ink and my drawings would translate well into our animation.

Throughout when I was drawing concepts I thought the choice of camera the thought of design could all create an illusion, create a false sense of hope for the audience and the character. To make it look that the moon is closer and bigger than is rather is.