Ok so the first problem I had was that my characters needed to inhabit the same space while not being anything similar in composition or style. Initially I thought that it would be as simple as one live action character and one photoshop drawn character. So that's what I did, however at this late stage in the game I still don't think they look quite right and It really didm't turn out that simple.
My next problem came when I tried to animate the shadow using the puppet pin tool on after effects, which typically gives this great warping appearance that worked perfectly on my text shadow earlier but it really didn't work as well on the real thing because I couldn't actually apply a mask to create the pins on a transparent image like the shadow mostly was. Following this I knew I had some options;
- To draw him out frame by frame in photoshop and just attempt to get the same shifting effect I wanted.
- Create a small mostly opaque background to stop the layer being transparent and try the pin tool again.
- Or rearrange the scenes so that I could still use the pin tool.
I immediately avoided the last idea as I really didn't want to not have my characters on the screen at the same time as each other because that would entirely defeat the point of two characters and a setting. I didn't really want to try the second either because I was 100% sure that it would either not work or it would change the light balance at certain points of the film that would be difficult and time consuming to re adjust.
So I opted for mostly option one and a little bit of option two (as I had one scene where this would apply without trouble.) However the problem now seems that these two options don't merge together very well. I've watched it back 100 times now and I'm still not sure that I like the part where I use the pin tool as against the parts where I just hand draw it. It's a shame really because that was the original plan and due to it's mostly impractical nature, the only place I actually used it looks wrong now. So I'm going to show it to a few people and see what they think before I remove just to check I'm not being to harsh with my editing decisions.
In addition to this I had one major problem with my stop motion animation. He was to heavy to stand on just one leg. Which meant I had to remove a part of the script where he kicked something and gave himself a fright and lead to him seeing his own shadow as a threat. I pretty much improvised on the spot for this one and I'm still hoping the entire film made sense in the end. But in actuality because it's inside this child's head I don't know how much logic you can apply to a child's imagination to make it make sense. Also I'm not sure it needs explained until the end. So that's how I got around that one.
My biggest concern at the moment is that the whole thing doesn't actually make any sense. I'm still worried about the big reveal not being pushed enough but that's another thing I'll ask some people tomorrow when I see them and hope I can fix all the problems by the end of the week. As that's all the time I have for this.
I still don't have music as well. I'm really hoping I can get Andy's help or someone else's because it's a very small piece and not all of it needs music and really it need not be complicated as it just needs to change tension levels with the character. That's all I need and hopefully I can get someone to help me out...
All in all at this point I'm still a bit stressed.