Bortal (aka Ball Portal) — Stop-Motion Animation

My partner Rebecca (above) and I teamed up to make this stop motion animation. A big thanks to her for the great posture and posing.

It may look short, but it took a ton of creativity and effort just to get this shot. We certainly learned a few things along the way:

  1. Pixelation required A LOT of physical space. To fit the length and height of an entire person in a frame was no easy task. We originally started with a camera on a ~8 foot tall tripod. This was not nearly high enough. We ended up clamping our camera to a beam from the ceiling. While setting up was not fun at all, taking the shots and moving things around the scene was very fun.
  2. Patience is key. You have to take a lot of shots. Always more than you think you need. You can always delete but never fabricate these shots.
  3. Really inspect the shots! Holy cow, there is my hat in some shots, my feet, a pair of scissors and other ‘easter egg’ items that I missed in inspection before moving to the next frame. Once you move on, it is almost impossible to replicate these shots.
  4. Secondary action does wonders. Some of the best parts of the animation are when Rebecca’s legs, torso, and head move in natural looking ways, even when she is not the focus of the frame.

Looking forward to not doing this version of stop motion again for a while ?

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