Mr Leon Taylor - Artist

My photo
Auckland, None, New Zealand
I am Mr Leon Taylor Artist/ Illustrator / Designer/ Character Animator / Musician . I work for myself as a freelance artist. I am open for commissions and collaborations, contact I post my creation process and experience here.!/mrleontaylor , ,

Mr Leon Taylor's - Blog Archive

Monday, 25 November 2013

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week Seven Part 2 of 2

LIGHTING: has been a very, very large learning curve. We wanted shadows and it to be believable that we are at the beach and a nice day. The problems we faced was consistency scene to scene and shot to shot. We needed to make it look the same. As some shoots are up shots, some are establishing shots. Jamie and I did several test renders before being 98% happy. Because there is always something you wish to change. Time being our only enemy. After an intense 2 days of lighting across all the three scenes.

RENDERING : Overall the rendering is going well and we left enough time to re-render scenes that may not meet the lighting requirements. Rendering takes time. But making sure it is set up 100% before you press that render button is crucial.

AFTER EFFECTS: After all the final scenes render out we will composite it in aftereffects and add our sand effect in the castle destroying scene. I am interested to see the final render. But keeping quietly confident.

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week Seven Part 1 of 2


PLAYBLASTS : We have been playblasting our scenes all of last week and making the tweaks up until today (TUESDAY 26/11/13). We have organised a "rush sessions" everyday to make sure, not only that we are animating well. But that all the animation is the same in style using "slow-in , slow-out" principals. A "rush session" is when we gather all the scenes and compile them together. This helps make sure "hook-ups" are reading well and the general positions of the characters from scene to scene.

TWEAKING : Animating is hard. So knowning where to tweak is even harder. I really feel great about animating. My foundation is strong and traditional. So I have been helping tweaking scenes to make sure my class mates know why we are adding or style of animation "slow-in, slow-out".

LIGHTING : Lighting each scene is curtail for the overall story. Lighting is a huge story telling part. Jamie and I are working on this scene by scene and doing test renders to make sure none are over exposed or hard to read a pose of a character.

Below is a test render with full lighting. This is a guide to all of our scenes.

We are now finishing lighting before moving on to rendering all the scenes.

Monday, 18 November 2013

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week six part 1 of 1

                                                            ANIMATION TIME!

This is the rough layout a scene Sc02- Shot02.

In this screen shot on the right is the camera shot that has been locked in place to it does not change. In the layout process the timing has been decided and locked as well to prevent people from adjusting it. But ultimately save time.

Below are screen shots of a few of the key frames of Tierone approaching his sister who is building a sand castle.


Now that the main keys of my first scene are complete. I have started applying and furthering traditional techniques in CGI animation.

Here we have some screen shots with render view to have a rough idea what the scenes will look like previous to post production. Lighting and after effects. I am super proud of what we have managed to achieve in such a small time. Even with all our varied skill levels.

We have a great deal of commitment in our group and focusing what we are best at. Just like a real production, which makes it even more exciting. I found learning in a group situation ideal for how I learn and I have learned.

The CGI process is very clear to me now and I can understand what is involved. Which was important for me to understand this year. What a year.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Mr Leon Taylor Facebook "LIKE" competition - WINNER.

Mr Leon Taylor Facebook "LIKE" competition - WINNER.

Amanda was the actual winner of my first ever Facebook comp. I wanted to reach 250 likes! I got there in record time. I am very humbled by this experience so far and only received very positive feedback. I am now over 300!

About the creation process.

Where I started? finding out what Shaneel likes. He likes metal, loves his family and is an all around hard working dude. So I wanted the perfect pose. Yes it is a neutral pose but it is still important. This is the process side by side my rough line work / construction then a cleaned up with version to be scanned in to Photoshop.

The happiness from people seeing themselves as a cartoon character is exciting and fun. I wish I had more time to do this for all my friends. But am super tied down to some commitments (all drawing based). CAN NOT WAIT TO SHARE all of the current work I am doing.

With the final version I put one of Slayers most popular albums as the background. Just because I can.

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week five part 2 of 2



We are so close to animation, just a little more focus and nit picking rigs and textures. Locking down the scene layouts with cameras. Its exciting. STARFISH will be a short film in 20 days.

Now that the character has been modelled it is time to move in to UV mapping / unwrapping. ready for texturing.

Here is Group one.

From Left to Right

Top : Esther , Jamie, Jaron and Sean
Bottom : Leon , Jono

We are on track and ready to animate MONDAY!

We are kinda excited.

Monday, 11 November 2013

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week five Part 1 of 2

We had a group meeting late on Thursday afternoon to plan for the week. This has helped us focus on what we need to complete before aiming to animate in week 6 and 7. Then rendering in week 8.

24 days - Then it is due. So we are on track for completion and always trying to beat deadline and exceed our expectations.

 Starting to work on the topology of the large starfish. I start with the eye getting the indent matching the turnaround model sheet.
When adding extra edge loops to adjust the face I make sure I have control on where the edge loops are heading and reshape to suit.

For this character his large frame is weighted in the belly area. So I have shaped the vertex to make the basic shape of the character.

Modelling the large starfish. It is important to keep his cartoony feel. Especially his face (eyes, eyebrow and mouth shape. He has some shaping to do, before he suits his scary presence.

 Now that the overall design has been modelled and approved. It is time to move on to UV mapping.

This is the last character in the group to be modelled and textured as my time has been spent finalising 2D parts in the group. Storyboarding  (deciding the layout and making sure the continuity is finalised)  and the animatic then designing the final character turnarounds.
Teeth and mouth shape finalised ready for UV Mapping and texturing.

 So far this is the fastest I have worked. completing the model in 4 - 5 hours.

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week four Part 2 of 2

WEEK 4: Part 2 of 2. Modelling the 'Dad Starfish'.

Turnaround model sheets ready for MAYA.

Above is MAYA, project set, images imported and ready to model.

Focussing on a strong shape with good topology.

I plan to finish the modelling on Monday finalising the face / inner mouth and bending parts. Then moving on to UV mapping early Tuesday. The Dad Starfish is .As a group we are going very well. We have updated the schedule and looking at finalising scenes and layouts mid to end of next week.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

ACNZ group project "STARFISH" - Term 4 week four Part 1 of 2

WEEK 4 : Finalising designs and confirmed sizes of characters to get proportion correct. Jamie has unwrapped the main character TIERONE ready for texturing. Esther is currently working on texturing the main character and nailing it. I am super happy with how it is shaping up. Below are the finalised designs for our characters.

Tierone 2D turn around (Leon) verses 3D modelled turnaround and unwrapped by (Jamie). Textured by Esther.


After completing the turnaround models. It is now my turn get stuck into modelling myself. I will be doing the adult starfish. This character is not in the film for long. But he is the punch line. So we have to get his scary presence across in the final moments.

I have now completed most of the 2D requirements. Finalising all characters and the animatic. It is now my turn to do some modelling in MAYA. I am responsible for 'Dad Starfish'.

Here we go...