It seems increasingly apparent to me that over the course of the past year or two, I’ve fallen into a rut where I haven’t made one single decent animation. I’m not talking about a tongue-in-cheek little short here and there if only to impress and entertain my sexy sexy friends, I’m talking about an animation with a semblance of a story, character, and well made animation. My last few entrances into the pen & tablet world of flash animation have just been either a short commercial for a game no one outside of my high school game design course would never see which was basically poorly drawn pictures with my sexy voice acting narrating exactly how fun it is to run hobos over in a car, or a small, poorly drawn and animated skit I made in 2 hours using basic special effects and a voice synthesizer.
What the fuck happened? I used to churn out a movie or two every goddamned month! It was easy for me. I’d begin animating without penning a script, just improvising my ass through the movie adding little voice clips here and there, grabbing sound effects from websites like flashkit.com and (the now selling out and making you pay for some reason) soundsnap.com, and putting in music from my favorite indie artist source, the Newgrounds Audio Portal. And it worked great for me! I had some misfires, some good movies, I had a short-running series of Pokemon-themed sprite movies (which were my best work), and I even helmed a collaborative project which earned me a Daily 5th Place trophy on Newgrounds.com. Animation was my life! It is in my blood (I have a cousin who works at Pixar)! And then it finally hit me.
I forgot how to animate.
Sounds completely fuckin’ stupid, I know, but I just can’t for the life of me remember how I animated my original 24 animations. I know they weren’t FBF (Frame By Frame; the conventional view of animation), so they must have been tweened (basically, I was a puppeteer). I remember animating my first movie that passed through newgrounds’s Blam/Save system, Bandit Killer, and how exhilarated I was when I pushed that Submit button.
Nowadays, whenever I try to make a movie, I’m using FBF and some tweening, and I can never finish anything. Look at what I’ve made in the past few months that I haven’t finished, and probably never will: Sleepless Night, Pen’s Coffee, Unliterate, and My Nameless Halloween Movie. It’s like I’m Jason Bourne, except that I’d probably lose in any given fight and that I’m not secretly good at what I used to do.
So, that’s my rant for now.