Clay was not my forte prior to this project. I had created one stop-motion animation using clay but creating a dinosaur is not the same as creating figures that are supposed to represent people. I knew that I was hoping to create Tim Burton esque figures, but beyond that I didn’t know how I was going to complete that.
I naturally turned to looking at other claymation films and characters. Wallace & Gromit, the classic Christmas tales, and even Gumby came to mind. I tried to find other resources and stumbled upon the video below, which is done by Isabela Dos Santos, who did the Robot Ballet video I posted before.
I found a blog (http://michaelsanimationblog.blogspot.co.uk/) that actually inspired me a great deal. He developed a character for an animation: “Alienated!” And he created a post about the character construction (http://michaelsanimationblog.blogspot.co.uk/2011/03/alienated-character-construction.html). Although it was not made out of clay, the construction methods made me think. I really liked that he simply created several mouths to animate the emotions that the character would have. I found another source that suggested something similar:
I don’t think I’m going to go through the effort to make a mouth for every sound, especially since my characters won’t actually talk. But the idea behind it made sense to me so I have created my characters without mouths. I also didn’t add pupils to the characters, which makes them slightly creepy right now. I knew that I was going to want my characters to look in various directions and the easiest way to do that is leave the pupils off till I actually create movement.