OMD! Gauntlet Crazy Smear Frames

By chaz on November 1, 2011, 1:27 pm in animation, Orcs Must Die! Gauntlet, production diary

I broke out some of my smear/multiple drawings and squash and stretch drawings from my Orcs Must Die! Gauntlet animation. Smear and multiple drawings are typically used when your character needs to cover a really large distance over a really short amount of time. Much like what motion blur does in live action video footage. The camera stretches, smears and blurs the action if something is moving really quickly.

I use multiple drawings usually if only the limbs are moving big distances but the body isn’t. Multiple drawings are also a great way to convey, in one or two frames, the spacing and arc of the limb; allowing for a more accurate interpretation of the movement. I’ll use smear drawings more if the entire character is moving very quickly; if I want the sense of a fast motion without the actual direct understanding of how the character got there (which means for me that the movement and distance traveled is so unrealistic, I’ll use a smear drawing to convey the character’s movement from the start and stop spots.) Of course, none of this means you can’t use smear drawings instead of multiple whenever you want or vice versa; use the method that gives you the desired effect that you’re looking for in your animation, or whatever appeals to you more. Anything or everything I’ve said could be completely wrong, this is just how I understand it, and utilized it in my own work.

I must say, smear and multiple drawings are really fun to draw!

Click on the images to see the sequence of smear/multiple drawings. And don’t forget to see this stuff in action and view the Orcs Must Die! Gauntlet animation. Also, feel free to comment if you have any questions about my process. Enjoy!