Caricaturist, Illustrator, CrazyTalk Animator and Content Developer
Q: Tell us a bit about your work in caricatures, illustrations and now animations.
I do a lot of caricature work and have built up an enormous portfolio of cartoon illustrations, as all my work is hand-drawn and then colored using software. So I have every sketch and doodle I have ever created.
Though my main focus has always been illustration, my secret passion is animation. With a constant busy workload I was never able to invest the time required to produce traditional cell animation. When I discovered CrazyTalk Animator, it allowed me to create animations using my own artwork, and made the process fast and smooth, while still producing the same quality as traditional hand-drawn cell animation.
Q: As an artist is there a reason why you chose to use CrazyTalk Animator? Did it take you long to learn the ropes with it?
The first thing that grabbed my attention with CrazyTalk Animator was the fact that it was able to produce the look of the old cartoons I watched on TV as a kid. It allows me to get the same feel of those cartoons without having to painstakingly draw every frame. The simple key framing and tweening system along with the flexibility of the character joints and available motion packs means I can animate a character running across the screen with one button. That allows me to focus on the performance of my characters instead of the boring frame by frame work.
But the thing that impressed me most when I first discovered CrazyTalk Animator was that not only could you animate the characters, but the incredible flexibility of animating the camera movements and the three dimensional look you could create with two dimensional illustrations. That's what really sells an animation and makes it more polished. The ability to push the camera through the scene as if it were a live action movie set.
The learning curve with CrazyTalk Animator was really just a matter of watching the online tutorials and then trying out each function for myself to see what results I could get. You can read all the instruction manuals you can get your hands on, but nothing beats the "hands on" approach. Click a button. See what it does. I was able to create my first short animation using the included content within an hour or so. From then on, it was just a matter of learning the finer details.
Q: You really hit the ground running. It's been less than a month since you joined the Reallusion marketplace as a content developer and you already have tons of content in your store. What motivated you to offer your content?
I have been drawing cartoons since I was old enough to hold a crayon. The only job I ever wanted was to be a cartoonist. I have been lucky enough to make my living as cartoonist now for over twenty years, and my catalogue of work is enormous and constantly growing. Almost everything I have is made up of individual cartoon items. A chair, a tree, a medieval dungeon (yes, I get some weird requests). As a customer of Reallusion and user of CrazyTalk Animator, I used a lot of my own illustrations in my animations. And I thought now is a good time to release that content in to the marketplace and see what other animators can do with it. I'd love to see some of my artwork featured in someone else's work.
Q: You have several content packs with full scenes and highly detailed props. Some of your props have beautiful textures inside. Is this the reason why you chose to offer them in PNG format?
When I started with CrazyTalk Animator I only used vector props. I love vector props because of their minimalist look. But the work I do is at the opposite end of the spectrum. My illustrations tend to be very detailed with a big emphasis on texture, to create a three dimensional feel to each scene. So PNG files work best for me. I tried converting my artwork to vector format, but I ended up losing about 80% of the detail. I know a lot of people are skeptical about PNG props because they don't enlarge as well. So I got around this problem by drawing my props so large that they should only ever need to be reduced. Each individual prop is usually about 100x200mm in size and 250-300dpi, with a clean edge and transparent background.
I also try to make sure that the majority of my props have the same perspective, so each is interchangeable in to any scene. And I made sure that several of my props are available for free download so animators can try them out for themselves. After all, who doesn't like a freebie?
Q: We have seen some of your funny animations on YouTube. Your Jimmy the Superhero character looks exquisite. Can CrazyTalk Animator users look forward to any awesome characters by Garry Pye?
Jimmy was my first attempt at creating a complete character and I was pleasantly surprised at how easy the process was. I love short, funny animations and the idea of a little boy who wants to be a superhero, but constantly injures himself in a variety of unexpected, funny ways, appealed to me.
At the moment my main focus is on creating professional quality props and scenes for animators, and to create a catalogue large enough to suit any theme. In fact, I would love to hear from animators with requests for future props and scenes. But character creation most definitely appeals to me and there have always been several characters I would like to see in the marketplace. The beauty of CrazyTalk Animator is that there literally is no end to what can be created.
To See more of Garry Pye's work and videos, visit >>
Garry's company: http://www.graphicawards.com.au/
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/graphicawards
Content store in the RL marketplace: http://city.reallusion.com/store/garrypye