The flash animation movie that I created is called “Bob’s First Rave“. It is a very simple story that revolves around a bored man named Bob who wants to spice up his Friday night. He decides to get out of the house and go to his first rave, but all does not go according to plan. I wanted to tell this mini-story mainly because I thought it was funny and gave me a chance to design a club scene.
The key characters were Bob and the DJ who is playing the music at the club. Reusable symbols that I created included trees, street lamps, windows in buildings, as well as the speakers in the club and sets of flashing lights. I tried to keep the colors muted in the beginning of the movie, before Bob gets to the nightclub. All the colors prior to the club are dark blues, bland yellows, and muted greens. This is to show how boring his life really is. However, after getting to the rave the colors are bright and vivid. Harsh reds, striking greens, and vibrant blues. This demonstrates how exciting night life is. Typefaces for the opening and closing credits were the same because I wanted a uniform beginning and ending. The only other typefaces were the club name and DJ name. I found a harsh/striking typeface for the club name “Kremlin” and the DJ title to make them stand apart from the otherwise bland world.
A new animation technique that I learned for this project was how to insert animated .gif files into my scenes. I wanted Bob to be watching TV in his house, and animating it by hand would not have been feasible. I find visual mediums to be the most helpful, so I started on YouTube and searched for Flash tutorials. I found a video by Alonzo Hosford called “Basics of Importing GIF graphics into Flash”. It explained the basics of importing .gif files and how to properly layer them into your movie. It only took me around a half hour to become comfortable enough to successfully complete this task.
I did have several frustrations on this project. Some were small, others large. A small frustration included the creating the scrolling timeline. At first I thought the entire background should be one layer that motion tweened. However, that doesn’t work. I ended up making several object layers for the background and combining multiple objects together into symbols. Then I motion tweened those individual symbols across the screen to give the illusion of movement. A major frustration was getting Bob’s legs to make a walking motion. No matter what I tried, I could not get the nested timeline to work and his legs to animate correctly. Several people tried to help me, including Kim and Randi, but nobody could figure it out. I ended up having to keep his legs stationary, but giving him roller blades to explain why he didn’t need to move his legs to get down the street.
I created almost every asset I used in the animation. The only outside artwork I used were the three .gif files and Bob’s roller blades. I used Google to find the .gifs by searching for the specific content I wanted and then filtering the results by “animated”. I found the roller skates by simply searching in Google images with the settings set to “transparent” so the background would not have to be removed.
The sound effects I tried to keep pretty simple. The only sounds I used were a door closing sound, nighttime crickets, roller skates, an explosion sound, and a dubstep track. I used them just because they were the only instances of sound that would exist in the clip. Nothing else was needed for the movie.
If I was going to do it all over again (and had a much longer timeframe) I would have tried to add a moving, dynamic crowd inside the nightclub. It would have given an extra depth to my animation, but in this case I simply didn’t have the time. All in all it was an interesting challenge learning Flash, but I think it was worth it. My animation might not be worthy of CartoonNetwork, but I’m proud of it.
Roller blade images from ClipArtHut.com (http://www.cliparthut.com/clip-arts/581/roller-skating-rink-clip-art-581432.png)
Explosion GIF, TV GIF, and laser light GIF were all from GIPHY.com (http://media.giphy.com/media/3TunTFDMgRRU4/giphy.gif)
The dubstep song is called “Borderline” by Tove Styrke. I downloaded it from Soundcloud. (https://soundcloud.com/djvanic/vanic-x-tove-styrke-borderline)
All the sound effects were downloaded from FreeSound.org, a free sound effect site. (https://www.freesound.org/browse/tags/sound-effects/)