Overview of the walk cycle

A free video tutorial from Jaysen Batchelor
Illustrator & Designer
Rating: 4.6 out of 5Instructor rating
12 courses
785,695 students
Overview of the walk cycle

Lecture description

In this lecture you will learn what animation is and all the components that make up a simple animated walk cycle. 

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The Ultimate 2D Game Character Design & Animation Course

Learn how to design and animate a character in Photoshop that can stand up as professional work

05:22:20 of on-demand video • Updated November 2016

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English [Auto]
All right, you guys, let's talk about animation, so what is animation? Animation is a series of frames, still shots of motion. So when you're watching a movie and you pause it, you'll see that you can skip forward frame by frame or backwards, frame by frame. Each one of those frames are that still shot of a motion. So when somebody is walking, you'll see here there's all these different frames that go into a character walking. Now, this is a very simplified version of a walk cycle, and this is what we're going to be creating for our character. So we're going to go over it now. So the first frame is just our character standing there. We've already created this frame. The next frame is going to be the contact frame. Contact frame is where the feet are both touching the ground and they're spread apart. The next frame is going to be the passing frame, what the passing frame is when both legs come back to about center and they're passing each other to switch sides, the next frame will be another contact frame. And as you can see, it's just like our first contact frame. The only differences is the legs have switched positions. So now this leg is going to be on the front side. And this leg is going to be in the back. Then once they've done that second contact frame, they're going to switch back to a passing frame with the legs will pass back by each other so that they can get back to this position. Now, if you start to get confused with which way the lake should be crisscrossing, you can go ahead and use your fingers as a little walking person, make sure they're pointing in the same direction as your character and use those as reference and pretend like they're just walking. You'll also notice that the arms change a little bit. Now, since your character is holding a spear, he's not going to do a full swinging back motion with his arm, but his arms are going to move. So you'll see here he is holding the spear and it's going to come down a little bit in this frame. This arm is in the next frame. His arm is going to come up a little bit and in the next frame, it's going to go all the way up. And then when it comes back to the crossing frame, it's going to go back to mid level. And then when the animation starts all the way back over at this frame, his arm will come back down and it will just go through this over and over again until the character stops walking. Now, you may be thinking this is going to be really hard to recreate your character in all these different poses. There are simple ways to do this, such as cutting off parts of the body and switching their sides, rotating them with the transform tool. So it's basically just going to be repositioning parts of the body. That's mostly what this animation process is going to be. There is going to be a little bit of drawing and recreation of some of the body parts. So your assignment is to download this image from the resources on this lecture and bring it into Photoshop. And what I want you guys to do is I want you to redraw all of these poses and draw them at least three times each. Do this three times and you'll be pretty set to go ahead and start animating your character. If you don't have a tablet to draw in Photoshop, you can go ahead and just draw these poses with paper and pencil. If you try to draw your poses and something doesn't look right about them, go ahead and post them in the Q&A section of the course and you can ask for help. And me or another student can help you and point out some of the things that you might be doing wrong. All right. I hope to see you in the next lecture, and I can't wait to get animating.