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Captain Zuloo

[old] Brick Flick Technique: Jumping

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After we pushed for it, we finally have a Brick Flick forum! Hooray! But what happened to the tutorials? Answer: I stopped making them. :look:

So without further ado, here is the newest Brick Flick tutorial:


Ok, so you know how to walk at 15 fps, but how do you do more tricky things like jumping? There are a few ways, but I'll show you my personal favourite as well as the most commonly used one.

Jumping with no Post-Production

This is the most common way to make minifigs jump because it requires no fancy programs that can edit images. This is a simple process that just makes use of raising the minifig up one plate per frame.

Our first image is of our minifigure on his own:

I apologise about the inconsistant lighting - poor weather outside and the lights have been changing levels of brightness for a few hours now.


Then we add a plate underneath him. The ground is green so I chose green plates so they would be as unnoticable as possible in the final film. The basic idea here is to try to make the plates the same colour as their background:


You'll also note that I'm moving the fig's arms up a little each frame to make him look more like he's jumping:


Continue this until your subject is at the desired height, then linger in the air a few frames before repeating the process in reverse.

Ok, well that was easy enough. It isn't that noticable, but if you really want a cool looking brickfilm, there is a little more advanced method of doing things. The downside is that you need fancy photo editing software with layers. I'll be using Adobe Photoshop CS2.

Jumping with Post-Production

So the first thing we do is take a picture of just the background without the subject:


Next, repeat the previous method, first with just the fig then with the increasing plates. This time you can use any colour for the plates. I'll be using yellow to demonstrate how effective this can be, although the colour is up to you. It doesn't matter, we'll be erasing it later.


Now start adding plates:




Same as last the last method, continue until your minifig reaches the desired height before lingering in the airl a little and bringing the fig back down.

Now that you have your animation, it's time to edit it in post production using your image software frame by frame.

Open the very first image you took of just the background up in one layer and the image you are editing in another layer. Ensure the background image is underneath:


Now, go to the top layer (the one with the minifig in it) and use the eraser tool to remove the plates under his legs.


Not a supurb quality image from me, but then, that's the incosistant lighting and I was in a bit of a hurry. So sorry about that, but you get the idea.

Which method is up to you - it depends on how much you are worried about small visual things like that. But anyway, now you know how to make minifigs jump! Be sure to share with us what you get out of this tutorial. :classic:

Best of luck everyone. :thumbup:

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Good stuff Capt Zuloo but I wasn't sure why you chewed the yellow plates? Ha ha Just kidding.

Can I add that for the jump to looked less weird, swing the arms up and into the jump frames and have them return after the landing.

Animation 101 would also suggest a little anticipation before the movement.

In the masking exercise while the updated frame is in your paint software also add a shadow underneath.

Mini figures maybe stiff but can still do all sorts of motion and I have an example.

In my 2nd brickfilm I had the main character dancing and at 0:33 he does a back flip.

YouTube HD

Edited by pe668

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