New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – Now I Can Breathe, I Think?

three months has brought our team to this moment, we present to you….A Bright Idea –

BUT WAIT, Micheal Bass had suggested we fixed the lighting in one area so we took this down then fixed one final part then…

BOOM, our final animation!

To be honest, from being broke away from my original team to being put into a team that had already rolled the ball down the street, i managed to catch up and hopefully helped along the way! I am so proud to have worked along side with Rebecca, Lorna, Cassie and Hollie, its been such a roller-coaster but im kinda glad its over for now so I can get my level back!

Here’s hoping full class of passes for this year folks!


New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – The Touch Ups Before Hand In

Conánn was not lying when he said the first year breaks you in some way shape or form, i feel I have broken mentally and its starting to flare some of my CFS symptoms up but nevertheless, the job must be completed for deadline. I only hope I’m being useful for my team~

Scene One Corrections –

This scene originally thought was meant to be pretty straight forward although i feel Cassie may had ran into a few problems along the way with the lighting which is totally understandable because lighting in any area is not an easy task unless you have done advanced photography in your life. Speaking of lighting problems we were experiencing some objects in the scene to be interacting with the light whenever this should not had been the case but just as things were going moderately bad, the camera decided to go on what Cassie and Lorna described as an Acid trip~

Thankfully we got this re-rendered on time~

This is much better i think yes!

Scene Two Corrections –

On this scene we decided to go with Lornas original idea on Lumen bumping into the lamp which i thought was a brilliant idea as it made more sense know what had cause that movement in the scene rather it stay still and make people think Lumen some how clipped through the object, Rebecca used the lamp model to create the animation shown in Lornas original story boards.

After that me and Rebecca went on to re create the curtain scene for the animation, it was very hard to replicate despite us only have to be a stepped animation but with me not being to familiar with the stepped animation for the time slider some parts needed edited on the graph editor~

For the eyes i was asked to redraw the eyes (several times) to look similar to lumen’s glasses which i  did get initally although the group felt my version was a tad messy so Rebecca had traced over my movement to get a crisp finish for the 2D animation

Here is the result of our 2D animating!

If you wish to see my version, check out the PhotoShop file.

Scene three Corrections –

This was by far the most straight forward scene to fix with only the lighting and the the hand animation screwing the light bulb, we did want to try something that was suggested by the lectures which Rebecca took upon herself to do. using the modelling kit on maya, beccaa had put indent on the bed where lumen would had been rest for most of her stay in hospital which in turn made the scene more believable in all honesty now that we look back on it.

Scene Four Corrections –

For scene four all i had to do was revise the new pose for Lumen then apply it to a poster, so it wasn’t too much hassle considering everything else was pretty straight forward with only a few lighting changes and Lumens hair being fuzzed up from being electrocuted!


New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – Feedback

Today we presented out animations, for the most part i thought we did well – emotions were running high in the class today which also made things, uncomfortable to say the least. Our group did pretty well and I am very proud of our efforts this far into the module, just a few more pushes and its all over…Eww.


Tutors Feedback –

Scene one:

  • It is not clear which light is broken
  • The pan should be parallel to the wall/ straight on them rather than angled

Scene two:

  • If we are doing a close up of the curtain, replicate the psycho scene
  • Have the camera the way it was originally intended within the animaic
  • Have her walk into more objects

Scene three:

  • Fix the light glow
  • Have her have a comedic electrocution of the hand rather than just removing the bulb
  • Have Lumin make all the objects she touches glow so then it makes sense, including the bed

Scene four:

  • Change the dialogue

When looking back on how we created this it did not go without its problems, if we did not have every render identical then some scenes would come out almost pitch black and we also had to attempt to be efficient by using two macs to render our animation to meet the presentation deadline but i think our render time was so long because of all the lights and textures imported into the scene! (Very big file)

New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – Typography And Nurse

Typography –

For the typography for the animation, Cassie had gotten her mother to write each of our names down on a piece of paper then I was given them to recreate in a neon style, i then went ahead to gather information on how I could do this.

Learn how to create a realistic neon text effect. In this Photoshop tutorial we will be focusing on. Adding a brick wall background. Then darkening it up to make it look as if it was night. Then applying a neon font. Creating a neon glow to the font. Then we’ll be working with blending options to bring out the glow. We will also create a cord to give it a more realistic look and feel.


Hi, subscribe & stay updated with the latest Photoshop tutorials.
Subscribe here:

Our social network. Stay updated!

Audio Provided By:

Get up to 20% off Photoshop + Lightroom! Only $7.99 p/month:

Photoshop CC tutorial showing how to make a custom neon sign using your own text.

Brick Wall background:

Freestyle Script FONT:

Subscribe to Blue Lightning TV!:




Can we get 250 likes!? 😀 Thanks!

I just wanted to get a video out for you guys and this is a pretty nice effect so hope it helps you out!

PSD –…

Texture Download –…
Font –…

If this helped you out please like, comment and subscribe, they really help!

-What video should I make next? Let me know!





Out of the three videos i watched i personally liked the first one on my list, it was beyond the most comprehensible out of the three, Cassie was also determined that i followed that tutorial also so i went with her judgement and followed it. I had then bumped into the problem that my version of Photoshop did not have the filters required to make the font but thankfully Cassie had lent me her Mac Book to use so the job could be done.


The Nurse –

For the nurse i needed to create a silhouette of a female figure, initially the file i had she did not have her clothing added in or hair but here is a file of her so you can play about and see the individual layers used to puppet her in After Effects.

– Download Link –

Become a puppet master by learning how to use the Puppet Tool in Adobe After Effects! The Puppet tool allows you to add joints and animations to bring live to any static image!

To follow along with the tutorial, you can download the cutout image of me right here:…

I have a detailed written version of this tutorial available on my website so go check that out:…

The Puppet Tool in Adobe After Effects provides you with 3 separate controls to animate your static image with ease:

1. The Puppet Pin Tool
The Puppet Pin tool allows you to place pins on your image to define where joints on your character will be. These are best placed on actual joints like elbows, knees and other parts of the body that can rotate.

You can then control click these pins and record your manual animations directly in the timeline window.

2. The Puppet Starch Tool
By default, any animation from the Puppet Pin tool will be applied by deforming a mesh overlayed onto your image. This mesh is very flexible by default which can lead to your character having a very ‘rubbery’ animation where everything bends and twists. This might not always be what you want and you can use the Puppet Starch Tool to define which areas of your ‘puppet’ are inflexible.

Simply spray the areas of your image that you want to keep stiff and the puppet tool will do the rest. Try to avoid making large areas completely stiff as there needs to be some room for the animations to occur.

3. The Puppet Overlap Tool
When working with complex character animations you often have parts of the character overlapping, e.g. the hands overlapping the body during a walk animation. You can paint depth information onto your character with the Puppet Overlap Tool. This information tells After Effects in which order to render the parts of the mesh in case of an overlap.

The Puppet Tool (and its 3 components) are a fantastic tool to bring images to live directly in Adobe After Effects and I hope you will have fun with it and experiment!

You can follow me here:

Video and Music – Copyright © 2014 SurfacedStudio

This is the tutorial used to animate the Nurse on After Effects!


New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – Scene changes Before Presenting

We need to change some thing, we need to make the scene more apparent in the animation which will need more camera pans with smooth movements so the character can be established better within the shot, we also need to work on the lighting more (Cassie had said she will take it and would not need any help but we are here for her if she needs it), the set up of the room will need changed, perhaps elongated with more beds and a window maybe. We did some doodling on the whiteboards to get across what needs to be done within the next coming weeks.


I was assigned with fixing the general shape and objects within the room, I started of with hiding every single object in the scene until the shell of the room was viable, I then grabbed the left end of the room and stretched it out by using verts mode. Once the room was at a decent size, i duplicated the beds, curtains and reels along with the I.V’s ect and made then all sit in other positions, that way the room would not be symmetrical as this ward is being used by patients so naturally it will be out of shape a little~

I then added a window in the room just to experiment how it would look being able to see the outside world from the camera shots, if it were not to work then we could always just change the camera position to either hide the window or keep a file that has no window.

shot showing length
Window and moon!

Cassie had worked ont he light set up with a longer room now she had to consider the other light sources that have now been added I.E, more lamps and moon. I feel she got the setting right although its sad we could not solve the lingering problem that one of the lamps direction light was not cooperating with us in the slightest and ended just setting the scene off baldy, as for camera work i believe it has improved the more we had to redo it and it has certainly paid off. With a longer ward we have opened more possibilities to adding credits to the beds or walls though that is up to debate whether everyone would like that or not (The didn’t)

Cassie had mentioned how she would like to edit the curtain and chair falling scene like this scene from Hot Fuzz, i feel like this would work perfectly as the amount that is going on with object falling over would need some fast camera cuts and zooms to identify what is going on though you can see from this test below

My chair animation and Rebeccas curtain~

Cassies test on Lumen unscrewing the light

Lumen being caught by yet to be edited in nurse!


New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – The Curtain And Poster

Due to my car letting me down and the gear box going in it, me and Hollie could not attend the meet up at Rebecca’s house to do curtain experimentation although they kept me posted and shown me the notes to said experiments.

From what we discussed on facebook it is apparent we are now going with the inspired scene from the icon horror film “psycho” shower curtain scene of a woman being murdered abruptly in the middle of a clean.

To think this scared the living day lights out of people at one point in time.

Rebecca had found a really good video on the breakdown of events in the scene from the composition, rule of thirds and camera set up along with music to see what made this visual so worthy even in todays time!

Highlighting different aspects of cinematography and editing of one of the most famous example of flash-cuts and excellent camera work. It emerges a very different style from Hitchcock’s one: rumors (never confirmed) said that the scene was directed by Saul Bass. He just storyboarded it but his modernist influence is evident.

Lorenzo Gerbi

When i met up with the group again the following day it was apparent Lorna was bumping into problems with her curtain tests so i was assigned to help her out whilst the others did their parts for the animation, at first it was rather fidgety trying to get the character to position at the correct place to drop the curtain over her but in the end we got there, the next problem was that the curtain was not making it to Lumen so we have to extend the time-slider to more frames so as the planes would drop on her on time and enough so that she could be engulfed. *I never noticed that Lorna had make a blooper reel of some of the biggest fails so i updated this section so it could also be in my blog!

I felt good that i had a basic understanding of the Ncloth function on Maya as Lorna was experiencing some trouble with it, we sat together tweaking the settings such as dampness of the planes so as it would stick to Lumen but still have that fabric like effect that a curtain should have but a digress, we could not get the feeling of a thin paper curtain like you would see in a hospital ward so we reached out for Alecs help, he pulled us through and we got it in the end but hey, look more experiments!

Once we got the curtain sorted Lorna went ahead to do the pose to pose sections of the animation that consist of Lumen falling over whilst entangling herself in the curtain sheet, i would now go on to do my part of the little things in the room such as the poster Cassie and Rebecca wanted so i will now leave Lorna to it unless she needs any help~

Poster Visual Research –

I wanted to take in key posed i felt that would be used in the poster and what better way to get those solid poses? By getting Rebecca to post for the camera of course!


Cassie had mentioned to think of Lumen as the guy infront then my poster being the lady in the back of this reference picture, so the next question is, what pose is Lumen in?

Very awkward looking I see, we had agreed that the poster will be something of a health and safety poster enforcing the health and safety of washing hands, so i needed to have a look into some posters before creating my version for the scene~

I really like how alot of these poster straight up just tell the people who read their designs to wash their hands, honestly i dont know why people use restrooms without washing after, ewww, i think for my design that i will go with the enforcing wash your hands rather than the generic please wash you hands bull.


Heres my design for the scene, i decided to go away with the “wash you hands” in the end and instead go toward a hand sanitizer as those are commonly seen in a ward and not a sink, so i just thought it would make more sense to use a sanitizer instead and to my relieve the group had agreed on this.

They wondered if i could make the person in the poster seem more Conánn so i did an alternative….


BOOM….*drops mic

New Narratives – 30 Second Animation – Lighting And Ambient Occlusion

Since i did not work on the lighting, here is the appropriate blog to read on the progress that Lorna has written.

Moving on to the lighting issue,

We needed a way to convey the showing of objects in the dark, we discussed how x-ray vision could be implicated but i thought it would be weird for a skeleton to be doing its business around a ward~

We then looking into night vision, a very scary but inspiring source would be Outlast, a survival horror game that the player controls helpless Miles Upshur, a reporter with a night vision camera that needs to find a way to escape from the tormenting asylum full of crazed individuals.

In the remote mountains of Colorado, horrors wait inside Mount Massive Asylum. A long-abandoned home for the mentally ill, recently re-opened by the “research and charity” branch of the transnational Murkoff Corporation, has been operating in strict secrecy… until now.

Acting on a tip from an inside source, independent journalist Miles Upshur breaks into the facility, and what he discovers walks a terrifying line being science and religion, nature and something else entirely. Once inside, his only hope of escape lies with the terrible truth at the heart of Mount Massive.

As Waylon Park, the whistleblower who emailed Miles Upshur, you’ll witness psycho killers and asylum security face off as all hell truly breaks loose. Survive, and you may just have a chance to expose the terrible secrets at the heart of Mount Massive and unmask the true face of the Murkoff Corporation for all the world to see.

I think the Outlast franchise is perfect for the lighting of the objects when the room is pitch dark although i think we are going to go with the style of another indie horror game called Lurking, a game that is somewhat like a sonar radar but for every vibration that is made in the level a ripple on the ground is generate that can attract unwanted company! Here is a video walk through of my favourite YouTuber, Markiplier.

they’re watching you from the darkness…
they’re listening to you from the silence…
they will find you… -Markiplier

A YouTuber by the name of Will Rose was mucking around with his camera experimenting with the thermal effects on his camera, i felt this was a great find by the group and i think we will be going with this sort of style for the animation as it is very much achievable at this point because if we cannot make the effect on Maya then all we have to do is upload to after effects then apply a layer effect over the rendered scene to make this style.

It is also used in the police to catch people who have maybe out run a car or on foot officer, usually its common to see these in the TV shows were the helicopters fly over the radius area the criminal has disappeared then spotted by the air police and taken down by a on foot officer with a hound, pretty cool no?

Ambient Occlusion –

What is it?

Ambient occlusion allows you to simulate the soft shadows that occur in the cracks and crevices of your 3D objects when indirect lighting is cast out onto your scene. The soft shadows that are created from ambient occlusion can help to define the separation between objects in your scene and add another level of realism to your render. –Digital Tutors 

It is more commonly seen in video games and half of the time we don’t know it!

How Is It Done?

Using the instructables website to look into how the Ambien Occlusion is done i tried to follow this tutorial although I could not get anywhere as I like to see the exact process that is used when learning how to do that exact technique.

I decided to use this video by Jofftech on YouTube to do my Ambient Occlusion, this proofed alot easier on me as I could follow exactly what to do to make the render work for me, when I achieved the right setting for the occlusion I had shown my team mates, they seemly liked it at first though once given feedback from one of the lecture we decided that it needed some extra tweaking because we felt it had too much noise (grain) and that needed to look smoother, here are the test results on a chair and our character model!


Ambient Occlusion on my chair animation for the scene.


When I look back to character design week when Hollie produced that beautiful piece of work of Lumen in a 3D spin view, I wanted to do a angular reference sheet of Lumen in her rendered state, I personally feel this gives the character more of a professional appeal compared to her in a poly view with no sort of Occlusion added, also makes her that bit more polished for others observing her.

Sound Update –

Lorna and Cassie have been working their butts off to get the sound to be better quality for the next presentation, i had offered to lend a hand but they seemed perfectly happy working on that between each other so i decided to work toward my next task which was the poster that will appear in a shot with Lumen a the end of the short.

You can revise out sound below!

Metronomes put me in a trance like state oddly… is that weird?

If you wish to read more into the sound of our project, check our this blog post!