Character animation is an art. It is the art of giving
life to a character. Creating art requires talent and the
right tools for the job... Rainbow Studios can bring life
to whatever a project needs, from a stylized cartoon
character, to inhuman monsters or photorealistic people.
Members of Rainbow's character animation team focus on one
or more key disciplines such as keyframe animation, facial
animation and motion capture. Many projects require a
combination of these techniques and Rainbow's team is
adept at integrating them seamlessly.
Donner is much more than just another CG Cartoon. This is
a Christmas special which is rich in emotions and is
highlighted by amazing facial animation created with
"We started Donner in June of 2001 with ten
artists/animators and finished at the end of October of
2001." says Chris Baranowski, supervising animator at
Rainbow Studios. "We started animation in the beginning of
September so we completed the 22 minutes of animation in
about 8 weeks. We worked well into the night and weekends
not only to finish on time but to deliver the best show we
Creating the most compelling animation under tight budget
constraints is a fact of life for animation studios. The
animation solutions required to create a TV show must be
affordable and incur a minimum of operational overhead.
"It's extremely difficult to replicate in 3d the style and
flair that is attainable in 2d." explains Boyd Lake,
character animator at Rainbow Studios. "Morph-O-Matic was
essential to reaching the goals we set."
"We choose to use Morph-O-Matic mainly for the ability to
do progressive morphing, something 3ds max's morpher
lacks" says Chris Baranowski, supervising animator at
Rainbow Studios. "Without the ability to do progressive
morphing it would have been near impossible to achieve
what we set out to do on Donner."
Baranowski and his team used the progressive morphing
features in Morph-O-Matic for the challenging task of
creating cartoony and exaggerated deformations for the
characters facial animations. "Progressive Morphing was
essential to Donner because of the design of the
characters. Specifically the eyes of these characters are
huge and in the case of the reindeer, they sit on top of
the characters' heads. There is no decent way to pull an
eyelid around the eye for blinking without progressive
morphing. We also used progressive morphing for a few of
the extreme morphing controls, like the "oooo" target, for
example" says Lake.
"MOM is pretty straight forward, so there wasn't any
significant amount of time spent trying to learn how to
use it," says Baranowski. " Even setting up the
progressive targets is really straight forward."
Character facial animations in Donner have been
significantly improved using progressive morphing from
Morph-O-Matic as well as other unique features. "Some of
the simpler UI functions were nice like Key Selected
Channels, and Zero All Channels, as well as being able to
tear off the panel to maximize screen space." says
Baranowski.. "The tear-away animation controls panel was
also very helpful as we had many characters with multiple
morph control panels." concludes Lake.
From features that help a team to work faster together, to
powerful morphing features that enable great deformations
to be created, Di-O-Matic software is helping Rainbow
animators realize their wildest ideas. "MOM is helping us
do things we never could achieve otherwise" concludes Baranowski.
Morph-O-Matic is available at $249, for more
visit Morph-O-Matic's webpage or get the FREE trial
All images created by Rainbow
Courtesy & Copyright (c) 2001 TV Loonland AG