Performance capture

Planning

My idea for the 30 second motion capture take is to feature a boxing fight. One character animated by motion capture, and the other key framed. Most likely in motion builder.

Before I start my story board, I need to know what normally happens in a standard round of the sport.

What happens in a boxing round?

Each person sits in their own corner of the ring preparing for the round.

Both boxers go to the centre of the ring

Both show fair play by hitting the opposition’s gloves.

As I am not a big follower of the sport I needed to know how the boxers move and what situations they get into whilst in the ring so that I am familiar with the motions and I can repeat the basics in my animation and in my motion capture as it is more than likely I will be in the motion capture acting out myself.

Stance

I found a good website that will teach me the basics:

http://www.expertboxing.com/boxing-basics/how-to-box/the-perfect-boxing-stance

Basic combos

For motion capture and animation I need to be able to perform and know about basic punches in boxing.

http://www.expertboxing.com/boxing-basics/how-to-box/7-basic-boxing-combinations

Knockouts

I need to know how the body reacts to that finishing punch that floors the opponent.

This link shows what kind of knockouts there are and also a top 10 video.

http://www.expertboxing.com/boxing-strategy/boxing-offense/10-best-knockouts-in-boxing

Motion capture planning. I was hoping to get some practise on the motion capture before having to do it properly for the assignment but with two failed attempts with the old cameras I will just have to plan and be ready for it.

Picture of the trying to work the blade system. We got as far as using the wand to show if the cameras were responsive. The cameras were picking up the points but it would not record due to an error so we had to leave it there.

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Second take – after the first failed attempt. We got as far as actually putting on the suit but whilst doing the range of motion, it would not pick up enough points. On average it would pick up 40 out the 53.

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Fellow student Chris trying on the mo cap suit.

Planning for blended motions

The examples of a blended motion we were given for our motion capture we a walk to a run to a sprint. We would have three different takes and blend them together so that they look seamless.

There will be a total of 3 takes resulting in 2 blends which can be seen below in the story board. Three frames represent one motion capture take.

Motion capture take 1:

The character will start by sitting (in the corner of the boxing ring) on a stool. He will then pick up a sports bottle from the floor and drink from it. I plan to use a parent/child constraint with the hand and the bottle so it can activated when he picks it up and disabled so it drops from his hand when he is finished with it. The character gets up and heads to the centre to meet his opponent doing little jumps and neck stretches on the way. The scene ends with the two characters meeting in the middle and hitting each other’s gloves in fair play.

BLEND- THIS TAKE ENDS WITH THE GLOVES HITTING DOWN TO THE OTHER GLOVES. (THIS IS ALSO AN INTERACTION WITH THE KEY FRAMED CHARACTER WHO WILL BE THE OTHER BOXER IN THIS ANIMATION.) THE NEXT TAKE WILL START WITH HIS HANDS BY HIS SIDE WALKING BACKWARDS

Motion capture take 2:

After the encounter in the middle, the character take a step back for the start of the round. He continues to dance his feet around and throwing a few short jab combos in preparation/warm up. The motion capture dodges a long jab from the key framed character and performs a short 2 hit combo, one to the chest and one to the side of the head. There will be two little interactions here.

BLEND – THIS TAKE ENDS WITH THE MOTION CAPTURE CHARACTER FULLY RIGHT ARM STRETCHED AFTER PUNCHING THE OTHER CHARACTER. THE NEXT TAKE WILL START AS THE CHARACTER PUSHES FORWARD TO PIN THE OPPONENT TO THE ROPES BY MOVING FORWARD AND THROWING ANOTHER PUNCH.

Motion capture take 3:

(The key framed character turns defensive as he grabs his opponent to stop the multiple punches coming his way.) This is the main interaction between the key frame and the motion capture as the two characters are interlocking. The character who is control pushes himself off the defenceless character ready to apply more damage when a wild swing comes his way and knocks him to the floor in one. The animation will end here. If I have time I might add a forth scene where the winner is declared. I will perform this take with motion capture and apply another blend if I have the time at the end. The reason being is that the animation ends just after 30 seconds (approx.) and that is the specified time on our assignment.

Things to consider:

The Fall- I will fall to the floor on the motion capture take but I was thinking it would be suitable to apply a rag doll affecter to the motion capture if my falling over acting skills are not up to scratch. It is always good to have more than enough ways to do something.

Hands –

Will I have to key frame the fists all of the way through the 30 second take?
Will I add gloves to the hands in the animation process, possibly as a parent/child constraint.

I will have to take the bigger surface area of the hands (with boxing gloves on) in the motion capture process.

Storyboard

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Timing between story board frames:

1. between 0-4 seconds,

2. 4-10,

3. 10-13,

4. 13 -18,

5. 18-20,

6. 20-22,

7. 22-27,

8.27-29,

9.29-30+.

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About philb15anim

studying computer animation and special effects at leeds met university
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