Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

Wow, looking good! The sets are amazing!
Did you use a jello like substance for the water? mini/confused

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https://i.imgur.com/4yAZqaf.png
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"Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31b

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

Is it saran wrap?

God bless and brickfilm on!

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

This film is looking epic. However, I'm inclined to wonder how you'd handle a short film. Have you thought about trying THAC? Or the Easter contest, where the time max was 30 seconds. Yeah, there's totally time for a 798-shot script. Or...uh...Anyway, congratulations for keeping up the flow of fantastic shots! Your BTS shots of the carriages were really great, and well-built, but I'm not exactly clear on how many there are. You could reuse wagons during the shot, but how big will the royal entourage be? Also, will you be using Da Vinci again? It was put to very good use in Isolation, and I'm curious to know if you'll be sticking with that, or trying out something new. Also, even though the previous shots were visually amazing, the reshot pictures look even more spectacular. After you (crossed fingers) get the project done, you should make a deleted scenes video! I remember TwickABrick did it for their masterpiece The Front, and it was a lot of fun to watch. Bringing that film up, they also used modular pieces for the trench scenes, so that's definitely a great technique, and probably decreases the set difficulties significantly. It's really wonderful how much depth you have to your sets, and I think this production log's pictures will really make us appreciate it this much more. As for the water, hooo boy. Me and my good friend Patrick of Blockhead Productions are in the middle of a brickfilm project, and we used saran wrap for water, but it doesn't look quite like that. Maybe 2x4 studios is right, with some kind of jello-ish thing? Anyway, it looks a lot like the real thing, so kudos for that. Does the battle happen at the cemetary, or in the forest surrounding it, or on the road? In all the shots you've posted so far, I haven't seen any orcs or soldiers in the background, just Ilaine. About the set of the road, don't worry, it doesn't look too much like a desert, and it definitely makes sense that you decided to go for more tan for the more widely used parts of the forest. To be honest, the part that makes me think most of a desert-y atmosphere are the stalks of wheat, but maybe that's just because I grew up in Kansas mini/wink . Is the big stone structure next to the road some sort of memorial, or gravestone? Whatever it is, it's definitely well-built. On that side of the road, is it a field, or just a small clearing in front of the forest? A very small nitpick I had was that yes, you do have the perfect amount of dark tan, brown, and green colors on the set, but the majority of brown and green pieces are just kind of spread around in tiny clumps, giving it a slightly unnatural look. It might look better if you tried to integrate some brown and green plates into the actual terrain itself, instead of dumping them ontop, but the set looks amazing regardless. Also, this might just be a trick of the light, but when I looked closely, I thought I saw some maroon red pieces dotted about sparingly on the landscape. It's good to have lots of pieces around, but I think in this case, the color detracts from the surroundings. No biggie though. One last question I had was if there were any scenes that happen outside the forest, in other parts of Rikland, either before or after the forest travel, like in the castle, or wherever the entourage is going. Just wondering. I also very much agree that walking is much more difficult to animate than dialogue, but some one walking and talking is the most difficult by far. The modular terrain add-ons look good as well, rather simple, but that makes sense, as they're just there to enlarge the set, and you won't see them super clearly. Also, can I ask why there's a C-clamp attached to your table? Is the table really unstable, or is there something else? Oh, and one more thought that just occured to me was what is the reason for a great whacking cemetary in the middle of the forest? I mean, I guess it could just be a good place to bury people, and the forest does look kind of peaceful (perfect for a huge bloody orc battle), but maybe there could be an abandoned church next to it, or something, or have some guards talk a little bit about the backstory. Yeah, but overall, it's still looking spectacular, and I'm still loving every update. So now I'm just going to say, Wow. Thanks. Keep up the stellar work, God Bless and Good Luck,

Sincerely,

Puskov

God bless and brickfilm on!

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

Hey, man I'm worried I'm doing too many nitpicks. I'm sorry if that's offensive, and please feel free to tell me if it's a problem.

God bless and brickfilm on!

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

Pritchard Studios wrote:

Wow! That set looks fantastic, and the printed background is a creative, and very nice looking, touch.
I'm impressed.

Thank you! I'm hardly the first one to use printed backgrounds like these, but I've grown to use them more and more frequently I find. Makes it so much easier to set up a shot, and you'll avoid any post production headaches too!

2x4 studios wrote:

Wow, looking good! The sets are amazing!
Did you use a jello like substance for the water? mini/confused

Puskov wrote:

Is it saran wrap?

2x4 studios is closest! It's actually hair gel. I found a video of a guy on youtube who used it, so I decided to try it for myself. It can be a bit pricey, but I managed to find a really cheap brand where I could get 250ml for only 3 dollars, so bought a bunch of those. The brand is Swedish though, so I doubt you'll find it abroad, but you can probably find something similar for the same price!

Puskov wrote:

This film is looking epic. However, I'm inclined to wonder how you'd handle a short film...

I have considered entering THAC and such, but I think I'm mostly interested in slightly bigger projects at the moment. I find they offer me more freedom with writing and composing, but in the future? Who knows! I did enter the Lego Ideas Blacksmith contest which had a 30sec max length, but didn't qualify for any price in the end. A good learning experience though for sure, so entering similar smaller contests is definitely a possibility.

I will indeed be using Da Vinci Resolve again for editing, mainly because it's free, but now that I have learned to use it editing should be even more effective this time around. I considered making a BTS video for Isolation, but never really found the inspiration for it (and I'm also unsure how interesting the final video would even be), but yeah! I'll consider doing one for this film for sure.

I'm glad you like the sets and the water! The battle does not in fact take place on the current set I'm animating on, so this one will only be used for the first half of the film. I'll build another set for the location where the battle takes place, a ruined abbey where the entourage makes camp for the night. Ilaine is introduced alone in the first scene, hence why you haven't seen any soldiers so far! They are all introduced later. There are no scenes in Rikland though, mostly to keep the running time down. Instead, the film starts as the entourage has already travelled most of the way. So Scene 1 is in the forest, Scene 2-5 on the "Road Set", Scene 6 on various locations as the entourage travels, and then the rest of the scenes at the ruined abbey.

Yeah, I did mostly just spread out the brown and green pieces on the ground, which doesn't really look particularly realistic up close. However, those parts of the set will always be in the background and out of focus, so I decided to spread them out just so that they look good in the background. I find that using bigger chunks of brown or green could be a bit distracting, and clash/blend a bit too much with the horses and wagons in the case of the brown. So I used the smaller pieces more like "seasoning", if you will, rather than proper ingredients mini/lol I don't think there's any maroon red pieces in there though, so it's probably just the light/picture (I only use my phone for the bts shots, so the camera isn't the best). The big stone structure doesn't really have a purpose haha... I mostly just felt like building something ruined to make the set a bit more interesting. But I'm leaning towards it being a sort of "way stone", perhaps marking the road between the two kingdoms. So I could build similar ones at different stages of ruiniation etc for when the entourage is travelling. And yes, it is indeed supposed to be some sort of field there!

I use the C-clamp for holding the set locked to the table when I animate, so I just keep it attached to the table when I'm not using it.

I see your point about the cemetary in the middle of the forest, but I honestly don't really have a good explanation for it! I set the first scene there because I thought it fit the tone of the film and to work as good forshadowing for Ilaine's character arc etc, but I agree that it's somewhat weird to have it by itself out in the forest. In my mind I picture it having been abandoned for centuries, maybe as an "overflow" for another already full one, although that doesn't really explain why it's by itself I guess... So yeah, no good answer here I'm afraid haha!

And I absolutely LOVE reading your comments Puskov, and I'd be happy to answer anything you throw my way, so by all means keep them coming! It's definitely not a problem, I'm only flattered you took the time to give such an in depth comment again. So thank you!

-

Update time!

Production is slowly trudging along. I'm falling a bit behind on my animating schedule, but I'm trying my best to get back on track. I'm almost done with Scene 2, which contains more than 40 shots by itself, so I guess that's something though! This equals to about 5% of all the shots, and about 7.5% of the estimated runtime having been completed.

Some samples:
https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/51105543048_be15aa67f7_k.jpg

https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/51105640101_1d449d3268_k.jpg

The framing, aspect ratio and colour correction will of course be slightly different in the final product, but it should give you some idea of what I'm going for! That's basically it for now, so not the most interesting update I'll admit. I'll hopefully have a few cooler/impressive shots to show off next time though, so I'll see you then!

Cheers!

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

SurfSmurf778 wrote:

2x4 studios is closest! It's actually hair gel. I found a video of a guy on youtube who used it, so I decided to try it for myself. It can be a bit pricey, but I managed to find a really cheap brand where I could get 250ml for only 3 dollars, so bought a bunch of those. The brand is Swedish though, so I doubt you'll find it abroad, but you can probably find something similar for the same price!

Interesting! I'd never thought of that!

And those frames look great! Can't wait to see the final film.

Also, how do you color grade? I have been playing around with color correction in the last month but can't really find any really good tutorials. I would love to know how to grade my footage well. I'm using shotcut, which has a lot of color grading tools. I just don't really know how to do it. I have graded a few shots, and they look better but it takes a lot of time. Any tips? (also, I'm colorblind)

Last edited by 2x4 studios (April 10, 2021 (07:45am))

----------------------in production---------------------
https://i.imgur.com/4yAZqaf.png
----------------------------------------------------------
"Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31b

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

2x4 studios wrote:

Also, how do you color grade? I have been playing around with color correction in the last month but can't really find any really good tutorials. I would love to know how to grade my footage well. I'm using shotcut, which has a lot of color grading tools. I just don't really know how to do it. I have graded a few shots, and they look better but it takes a lot of time. Any tips? (also, I'm colorblind)

I do it all in Da Vinci Resolve, which has a good built in grading tool. There's a free version of it, so I highly recommend you check that out! I looked up some tutorials for grading in Da Vinci before I started, and then mostly just followed their instructions. At least for white balance and such. But in general I guess I first focused on getting just one shot of the scene graded to my satisfaction, making sure the colours popped nicely etc, and then copied all the settings to the other shots and tweaked them slightly so they matched in brightness, saturation etc. I'm not sure if that's the correct way to do it, but it sped things up a bit for me at least. Grading takes quite a while no matter what though, so there's probably no easy way around that.

Hopefully that somewhat helps!

Re: Once Upon a Kingdom - Production Log

SurfSmurf778 wrote:
2x4 studios wrote:

Also, how do you color grade? I have been playing around with color correction in the last month but can't really find any really good tutorials. I would love to know how to grade my footage well. I'm using shotcut, which has a lot of color grading tools. I just don't really know how to do it. I have graded a few shots, and they look better but it takes a lot of time. Any tips? (also, I'm colorblind)

I do it all in Da Vinci Resolve, which has a good built in grading tool. There's a free version of it, so I highly recommend you check that out! I looked up some tutorials for grading in Da Vinci before I started, and then mostly just followed their instructions. At least for white balance and such. But in general I guess I first focused on getting just one shot of the scene graded to my satisfaction, making sure the colours popped nicely etc, and then copied all the settings to the other shots and tweaked them slightly so they matched in brightness, saturation etc. I'm not sure if that's the correct way to do it, but it sped things up a bit for me at least. Grading takes quite a while no matter what though, so there's probably no easy way around that.

Hopefully that somewhat helps!

Thanks! I have wanted to get Da vinci but I don't like having to enter all that personal info. I suppose I could just keyboard mash it mini/tongue . Another thing is I don't have a very powerful computer, so I'm not sure if Da vinci will even run well. But the only way to find out is to try! And I do like the idea of copying the grade for each shot of the scene and then tweaking it. Thanks!

----------------------in production---------------------
https://i.imgur.com/4yAZqaf.png
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"Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31b