The goal of this university project was to create a dynamic fontset including a showcase and a tutorial clip of how to use it as well as creating a poster.
By filming mealworms I wanted to display natural movement that comes from living beings - or several in this matter.
With this project I overcame my own fears. As worms are not my favorite animal I learned how to work with them. It is important to note that no animal was harmed.
1. Idea generation - wanting to display natural movement I did research and created mindmaps. My first idea was the nervous system. A perfect illustration of biological processes is dependent on perfect animation skills - perfect easy ease. A different idea that inspired me was the one I realized as final result. I saw it as a chance to overcome my own boundaries.
2. Prototyping - but how to realise this idea? I got mealworms and prototyped in my bathtub, which was a secure space.
3. Final production - having a plan of how to conduct the shooting in the greenscreen studio of the HAWK, I planned two days of filming. In total I generated 350 GB of data due to 4k resolution. I also practiced patience.
4. Post production - first I was looking at the footage and noting which movements could represent which letter. I would then go on and key the part of the clips that were needed. Sadly the contrast was not strong enough so I had to mask the worms manually - frame by frame. One item took me about 4 hours.
5. Storyboarding - Having the items all keyed I continued with the creation of a storyboard for the showcase.
6. Creation of showcase, tutorial clip & poster - The last step was marked by the implementation of the items into After Effects and editing the overall clips.
Shortly before I started filming I checked the contrast and believed it to be fine. Turns out - it wasn't. The reason why I couldn't key the mealworms but had to mask them frame by frame. Therefore it is very important to check more often if the settings are still correct. Could have saved me a lot of time. ;)
2. Overcoming boundaries is worth it
I am very happy with the final result and glad I did this. In the beginning it felt like a crazy idea that I would never pursue...but why not? Never try, never know. And who knows - you might end up making friends on the way.