Painful New Steps
The books are flying, the flag is waving, Paris is now a city! This project has been long and difficult. How will that flag wave? How will those books flying properly? And how, oh how, will I ever get the episode to play, stop, pause and scrub the way I want?? All these burning questions I tried to avoid because of un-tread water.
I am not a talented programmer or a skilled animator, these are things I am working on slowly and painfully. I’m so happy with the way the flag turned out, a pseudo stop motion animation. I drew 20 different flags to get the flag to curl in the wind, placing a new image every 5 or so frames in flash. For this file, the pace is set to 24 frames per second, so by placing them frames apart, the flag will move more slowly than if I placed them right next to each other, frame to frame. With 20 flag images, the whole animation would have gone the full cycle in less than a second.
I thought I had to do another stop motion for the books, which I unsuccessfully tried. 15 new drawings of one book flap into the trash. Then, I went ahead and adjusted what I already had, pushing the motion further and making the book flap all the way down instead of stopping halfway. A million times better—at least my sister isn’t laughing at it anymore.
The longest, most painful thing was the programming of the episode player. Like I said, I’m not a skilled programmer, so I was consulting a flash book and the world wide web for the right kind of mp3 player. Hours and hours later, about 10 sound flash files in the can, I got this one working. Unfortunately, the compression settings are still a bit of a problem and the sound is not as crisp as we want yet; so hopefully we’ll figure that out today so we can post this thing! Also, check out the new music notes on the home page to stop and start the music.