Frame by Frame: Multiple Movements

This week I needed to animate a series of frames with multiple moving parts happening at once. So far in this project, the subject of the frame is usually stationary while the background moves, or the only movement is light. These elements tend to be a lot quicker to animate because they only require a couple frames switching back and forth or only one layer than needs to be changed. In this scene, I need to keep track of the light (where it reflects, how it moves), water (how it interacts with the hand), shadow (in the mirror), and the hand itself moving (distance, color, etc.). With so many moving parts I’ve found its almost necessary to finish a scene like this all in one go, as even with well labelled layers its hard to keep track of everything that needs to change from one frame to the next. This is definitely a hurtle I’ll continue running into as my animation gets more complex, but for now this is a great way to get used to all the types of movements I need to consider in each scene.

Here is the progress of this scene so far!


Thi Mai is a junior majoring in biology, health & society. They love making digital art and comics, and want to start expanding into animation. This semester, they are working towards completing an animated short film. Check out "Frame by Frame" every Sunday night for progress updates and reflection on the process! You can find more of their work on their Tumblr blog:

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