Malum is done

So my first animated short is done and that means first year is over and done with. This semester went by so quickly, the semester had it’s up’s and its down’s. The amount of things that I’ve learned from from this project was great. Many mistakes were made but they were apart of the learning process. A few things that I thought might help me in the future would be to work on my time management skills and my planning. These two parts of working in a team project are probably the most important. There was times when things didn’t work or things were rushed due to a lack of planing. This caused more stress than needed, hopefully I can sort this for next year. The project itself was great to work on, it being so different from anyone else’s made the work seem more enjoyable and more fun to design. There were some miscommunications while being in the project but in the end the outcome was something that we all made together and each of our inputs can be seen. The project itself would not of been the same if the group had of been different. I was happy with this as my first animation.

So here it is, Malum…

Link to the music is below.

A general breakdown of the animation and the processes that went into the project,


Most of the concepts that went into the preproduction of Malum were mainly of a graphic style, the team agreed on a more visual based animation rather than a narrative base. Me and Caitilin are more graphic based while Eoin and Dervla are skilled at drawing. The combined mix of our work helped create the concepts that got us to the final outcome.


When it came to modelling many references were made and the elements from the concepts were used in the 3d designs. Modelling ended up being more enjoyable that expected. The gears and the mechanical device  were really interesting to make and the research proved interesting. In the beginning I looked a few tutorials but once I got the idea experimenting with the different shapes and sizes of the gears helped create the shape and details for the mechanical device.


When it came to texturing I was able to go into some research on colour palettes and textures. The red colour originally came from an idea on adding a  rusted look but we decided to have a greyscale or a black acid wash metal. Before the final hand in it was to shinny so we changed the texture and turned down the reflectivity. Some of the digital work that was done before were used as textures. we wanted the animation to be contrasting in terms of of the colours at the start and at the end. When we had the final presentation  Yuanyuan mentioned about showing a more clearer story. A way to do that was from the colours, light to dark, warm to cool. This helped the flow of the narrative.

Sound Design

When it came to sound design it was only really when we had the two weeks of feedback that we realised that sound was the main factor in our animation. Originally the sound was made then put on top of the animation but after speaking to Conánn after the final presentation he made it apparent how important sound was, this made us rethink the sound and re design in. We ended making more of a piece of music rather than sound to accompany the animation.


The animating was mainly based of the sound in the redo of the project. Animating became much easier with this as guide for timing and and rotations. The gears were mainly animated to switch between clockwise and anti clockwise. This was to simulate the idea of a broken chain or a glitch.


When it came to lighting we looked at a couple ideas for how the scene should be lit and what colours  we wanted if any. Red ended up being the choice for colour inside the apple, well because it’s an apple. The warm colours of the red lights contrasted with the cool blue colours on the tree and the scene behind it. In the apple the lights are animated with a strobe idea, this was to add some distortion to the model again adding to the broken mechanic theme. When it then came to rendering adjusting and fixing lights took up a good bit of time. Checking shadows, colour grades and just general looks wise to make sure the renders came out the way we wanted. Lighting is an area where I would like to develop in.



Finally when we sat down to edit after rendering we had the music as a template for where clips should go and what the timings would be. Originally we had a lot of cut scenes which were told to get rid of. This then made use the music to help with the transitions. Cut scenes ended up being the main transition we used. Some experimenting came into play when used the glitch. This was too tie in the music and the animation together.


Then finally some stills of from’Malum’.


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