Sunday, April 05, 2009

Traumas Animations: Mosquito Bites

For the next week or two, I'll be posting a few of the short animations I created at FableVision for the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. I posted production frames earlier in the year showing how I'd been using ArtRage for background painting (here and here). Now's your chance to see them in motion!


The title of the activity is "Top 10 Traumas on the Trail," a touch-screen kiosk in the museum aimed at making people aware of the physical harm you might encounter while hiking. The larger theme of the new permanent exhibit, Expedition Health, examines the biology of the human body while encouraging healthy living. This poor kid has ten things horribly wrong with him. The home screen invites the user to touch regions of pain, which are highlighted in red and pulsing. In the attract loop, the kid just stands there teetering back and forth in a painful trance. It's priceless :)

The first animation I'm featuring is called Mosquito Bites. Each short uses a bit of narrative and metaphor to explain how your body is coping with the trauma. Not to mention a dose of humor.

(hop over to my blog if you're in Google Reader to view the embedded animation)

Mosquito Bites

Watch in full resolution.

I handled the storyboarding, layout, and design, with the help of the fabulous Allie Biondi on animation. The activity was written and produced by Naomi Greenfield. As mentioned, the backgrounds were painted in ArtRage with a bit of compositing in Photoshop. It was incredibly fun to work on. I hope the kiddies love it!

If you live in the Denver area, I encourage you to visit the museum, as Expedition Health opened this weekend! You can find out everything you need to know about it here. It sounds like an amazing experience for all ages—so popular that you might even need a reservation!

6 comments:

Jason Curtis said...

Hilarious! I love the little characters Bob.

Wow, this sounds like such a fun assignment. It demonstrates how wonderful animation can be as a tool to both educate and amuse.

Wonderful stuff, thanks for sharing.

Edward said...

Hi Bob,
this is lovely and very inspiring.
By the way will you be posting any more flash tutorials. Your ones on drawing and colouring were very informative.
Love to see a tutorial on creating a simple walk cycle.
cheers
Ed

Louise Smythe said...

How cool! Even as a non-kid I'm totally loving this! Really fun use of communicating all that science-y stuff. :)

Bob Flynn said...

Thanks, gang. More to come, so check back this week.
The best part of these is that we were allowed to use humor to teach, which is especially powerful with kids.

On upcoming Flash tutorials, I'm planning on doing one for how to set up a file for lipsync, and yes...potentially a little walk cycle demo. Though I'm no pro—there plenty of books on the subject. I hope to get to those in a month or so.

Edward said...

many thanks Bob,
looking forward to the lip-sync tutorial. Two books i found useful was "how to cheat in Flash"
and "Animation from Pencils to Pixels: Classical Techniques for the Digital Animator"
cheers
Ed

spyl said...

Oh! I remember you working on these characters. They turned out great:) So cute and informative-