1004: Chicken house designs

For designing Chickenville I looked at both Chickenville and American suburbs-

I wanted the house to look uniform and rich so the difference between it and the fox’s house would be more obvious.

I drew some sketches-


I then designed some house like chicken coops-

I then placed the two in streets-

I decided I liked the blue roof version more.

I made a mock up of the estate-


I put trees around it so Mooch could live in a muddy area and I could easily draw the chickens tire swing.

Next I need to draw the house neater, create a neater environment to place both houses in, and create a design sheet for furniture that I’m going to focus a lot on in the boards.


1001: Animatic

After reviewing the animatic over the past week I realised what I wanted to change and set about making those edits.

I knew I wanted to change the timing of the end half and also add a drill close up and improve overall the posing and shots of the keys.

I started working on this, and to help I had a page of references-


Along with more puppy pictures to make sure the design was consistent-

After making all the adjustments I ended up with this as my animatic-

I really like it and think it’s a definite improvement over the previous version. I now need to start filling in keys and then continuing to sync it to my soundtrack.

1003: Turnarounds

I finalised both designs for Icarus and Amphitrite and created turnarounds for them both.

Here is Icarus-


I didn’t change their design that much, I finalised the dress and changed the body shape to be slightly wider so it would be easier to model. I think the hands are a bit small so I might need to redraw that. The lines on the face are to show shape and wont be part of the texture.


With Amphitrite I still need to finalise the design so I did a sketch page-


From this i made her design more curved and changed the colours of her dress to be more complimentary.

Here is the turnaround-


I found the side profile really difficult and I’m not sure if it’s 100% perfect but I think that’s something I can correct when modelling.

I love this design, particularly the face and how I finished the veil and hat.


1004: Fox House

I decided to start designing the outside of the house for the fox.

Here are the references I looked at. i decided to go for a shack/ swamp house theme, as well as looking at cartoon houses so I could simplify it properly.

I started a lot of sketches and focused on elements and shapes I liked

I really liked the too large roofs, decking, and the house being on stilts. After drawing the brown version with the extended roof I decided to work into that one-


I picked elements from a lot of my own drawings and the references and I think it looks good. I made the upper floor really small to fit with the cobbled together look and picked lots of different colours to make it look handmade.

He lives in a decrepit area so I added the stilts so i could make the environment really muddy or on a cliff.

Breakdown of house-

I kept everything simply and made sure it wouldn’t overlap so in the storyboard there would be a clear silhouette.

Next I need to design Chickenville and the surrounding houses. At the moment I’m looking at references like this-

1004: Fox Kitchen

In Production design we need to design the kitchen and outside area for the Toothless Fairy story boards.

I wanted the kitchen to be very small as the house is described as being run down, but also farm like to tie to the nature/animal theme. Here are my reference photos-

Sketches directly from references-


After making these seven I moved to Maya to make a 3D version as it gives me more freedom to change things quickly.

I had this design in my head that I really liked, particularly the table on the wall-


I ended up with this design but it went through different alterations that I didn’t screenshot-

I tried some sketches of it-

These weren’t too good so I decided to draw each wall individually-

I also listed what was on each wall so I don’t forget anything when boarding.

I did a floor plan-

I think from this point I’m going to design the outside of the house and the surrounding area and then create fully rendered version of all the environments that will be in the final piece.


I created an internal perspective drawing-


I really like it and drawing it was very useful for understanding the space in the scene. Now i really need to create individual design sheets for the different appliances and furniture.

1003: Icarus Animatic

I put my storyboard frames together in Premiere Pro and timed it to about 30 seconds.

I’m going to think about sound this weekend depending on how much modelling I decide to do.

I think the story flows quite well in this version.

1003: VFX Multi-pass rendering

How to multi-pass

Select Arnold renderer in Maya and create polygons

Turn on resolution gate, a directional light and a skydome

Add all shapes to another layer

(insert pic)

Use IPR render to see changes

Change exposure in light to a level that suits it.

Assign material to shapes-

Assign new material- Arnold- AI Standard- specular weight and roughness

make cylinder AI Utility through same method

material attributes-overlay mode- polywire



Select all objects- new layer with objects- name ao- right click- create new material override- ai ambient inclusion- override

See it in renderview

Srgb gamma to raw

Select everything, right click new layer with selected objects- name it shadows- click on plane- new material- AI shadow catcher

Shadow catcher attributes- enable transparency

Select plane- Arnold in attributes menu- opaque off

View alpha in render view

Select objects- render stats attributes- primary visibility off

All layers-

Delete sphere layer

Save project as anew project

Render- exr- single frame- options- render all layers- keep layers



Open in NukeX

Read in objects

Make a constant as the background

Set everything up like the graph-



Image should have layers and depth. Values for all layers can be adjusted to make it blend.



1001: Canyon redesign

After reviewing the animatic there are elements of the environment design I don’t like.

I think the biggest problem is the cave and the length of time it takes the characters to climb up before establishing the drills. To combat this I’m going to make the climbing segment shorter, and I also remade the cave into an arch-


I also made a map so I can keep the design consistent with perspective changes-


I later edited this and added more of the canyon from the start-


1004: Chicken and fox construction

In class we were told to make construction pages and turnarounds for both characters, and then put them in dynamic poses.

I made the characters in Maya to make the turnaround easier-


For the fox I wanted the body to be round to offset the long spiky limbs. I also wanted the head to be crescent shape so I ended up editing the side profile to show this. The foxes design is very stylised but I think the way I picked each element means the design doesn’t look unnatural.


I spent less time on the chicken as he is only in the final scene so the design doesn’t need to be as thought out. For this one I struggled with the head a lot so the Maya model was very helpful.

Poses- We were also set a task to draw the characters in dynamic poses.