Thursday, December 13, 2018

2018 Reel

My Reel for 2018 so far. There are a few projects I am still waiting for portfolio release so I will constantly be updating this. Sorry it is not public at the moment, please contact me for password if you want to see it.

Tina T. Hsu 2018 Reel from Tina T. Hsu on Vimeo.

Reel Breakdown
0:00 - 0:08 Armature fabrication, animation.
0:10 - 0:33 Storyboard, Animation direction, Rough and Cleanup Animation for all characters/effect.
0:33 - 0:34 Animation tie-down, cleanup and paint.
0:34 - 0:37 Animation cleanup and paint.
0:37 - 0:41 Storyboard, character design, 2D animation and color
0:41 - 0:45 Everything visual
0:46 - 0:48 Character/effect animation, cleanup and color.
0:48 - 0:51 Everything visual besides BG coloring.
0:51 - 0:55 Everything visual except for ship design and effect texture painting.
0:55 - 1:06 Everything visual
1:06 - 1:15 Rough/cleanup animation, color(water color painting)
1:15 - 1:19 Stop motion animation of all physical object and hand model
1:10 - 1:22 Stop motion animation of stage and model houses and prop
1:22 - 1:33 Character stop motion animation
1:33 - 1:37 Sign, sugar skull, right half of background character animation
1:37 - 1:50 Processed 3D printed character faces for Laika Entertainment
1:50 - 1:52 smoke and flag effect animation
1:52 - 2:03 Character and object animation

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

The Shivering Truth: Season 1

About a year after we shot the pilot, I was lucking enough to get called back to work on Season 1 of The Shivering Truth from April to July 2018. Now that Season 1 has started airing, I will be posting and updating photos, videos and reel as more material becomes available. For the mean time, here are all the videos/episodes I can find. I hope you enjoy them!

Some pretty amazing things were made despite the budget and time constraint. You can see me animating Bennie on the house set, and the nipple hand dance in the animation section. Some of my set photos from Sargent's ep2 monologue and ep3's hospital sets are also featured.

I am posting episodes on the Adult Swim website in the next section. You may need to have an account with them if you want to watch it on their website. I will update the links once they become available

Episode 1: The Nurple Rainbow
I animates some comedy club extras, and some office workers typing.
Episode 2: The Magmafying Past
I animated Sargent's side of his and private's inner dialogue, parts of private's monologue, bits of decapitated Sargent and spirit Sargent bursting out of bed. Sargent going from holding in to pretty cry and then ugly cry was perhaps my favorite shot in this episode.
Episode 3: Ogled Inklings
I animated most of the wide shots of Neil and the nurse in the hospital wide set. Closeup of Nurse was animated by another animator.
Episode 4: Constadeath
I animated most of Bennie, the house and the god hand on the wide outdoor set that is part of the BTS.
Episode 5: Tow and Shell
My involvement in this episode is pretty minor. I helped setup the rabbit falling shot and animated some rabbits falling loops that may or may not have been used.
Episode 6: Fowl Flow
I animated mostly the big guy in this episode. Starting from the closeup of him smiling, to the infamous nipple dance then the rotting corpse sequence. The dance sequence was quite intense because there were motion control involved, and he was constantly moving. Animating the rotting corpse was also something I did not have experience with, and I only get one shot. It was a foam face on top of a solid skull, so for part of the animation I was stuffing clay under the skin layer to raise the skin before it burst. In hindsight, I wish I went slower with the initial color change phase, but morphing is harder to plan than action for me. I was stationed on the outdoor wide set toward the end so I did a few exterior wide shots of big guy as well.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

The Shivering Truth Pilot - Chaos Beknownst

In 2017 Spring, I animated on the pilot of the Shivering Truth for Adult Swim.
This project was under cover for a long time, and we finally got the green light to release our portfolio material. I will update with photos and cut a reel for this once I get all the pieces, but in the mean time, here is the full episode.

The Shivering Truth Pilot - Chaos Beknownst

It was the first TV show I worked on, and there is something special about it. It was a very fast-paced, intense, and sometimes chaotic job (especially toward the end), but I got to work with some of the most talented people in the field and animate some really strange thing. I killed two critters and animated three attempt suicides on the pilot. At one point some of the crew started calling me the murderer. I still remember how nervous I was having to put a knife through a tiny (and super adorable) rat puppet that you can see in the BTS photos because I get one shot and the puppet is forever destroyed.

This was also the project when I started a work journal because things shift around constantly and there was more information than I can hold in my brain. I am glad I did since it is a really good habit to have and the journal has been extremely helpful when I needed to dig up old information regarding past projects.

The full season will go live on December 9th 2018, so check it out if you get a chance and I will be posting more footage once the information is released to me.

Here are some BTS photos from the pilot I was able to dig up from my super old ipad.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

CREA (Canada Real Estate Association) Campaign

In March 2018 I animated on a few miniature disaster films at Bent Image lab for CREA (Canada Real Estate Association). The whole campaign is based on store bought miniature models with some really cleverly engineered practical effects. There was even a celebrity goose on set one day!

I was only involved as a stop motion animator on this campaign, but I got to blow away a house tumble weed style, shave a nice neighborhood, build a freeway and turn it into a parking lot and so on. I also animated a live human being for the first time! In the freeway spot I had to pose everything and shoot a clean pass, and then ask my set dresser/hand model, Matt Lask, to come in frame and gently hold onto the shaver and shoot another pass.

Since some of the spots were live action/stop motion hybrid, this was the first time I had to shoot the animations on 4K RED cameras instead of DSLR. This meant I was shooting mini movies clip for each frame and the editor had to go into my clips and extract single frames and then stitch it together for animation, but it also meant we did not have to switch cameras mid shot.

CREA - Residential - Directors Selects from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.

Here is the link to the full campaign with BTS and credit on Bent's website

Some BTS photos from my Ipad

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Honda: Dream Commute

From February to end of March 2018, I worked on the Honda: Dream Commute campaign for North Cal Honda also at Bent Image Lab.

The project was very mixed media in that it was a 2D + 3D animation/Live action people + puppet in one melting pot kind of spot. I was involved with character design, storyboard(everything except first establishing shot) and all the 2D bird animation. Since I have only boarded for 2D projects up to this point, it was the first time I saw my boards turn into 3D animation. It was also the first time I saw my storyboards on a (not very) big board for live action shoots. I also had to animate semi blindly while waiting for the live action plate to arrive, which took quite a bit of retrofitting when the plates finally did arrive.

Honda - Dream Commute from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.

Here is the animatic I and Jesse Mcmanus did. I boarded (or at least roughed out) everything in the spot besides the opening shot. Jesse was responsible for the opening shot, building designs and also cleaning up some of my rough boards. We boarded the majority of it in two days, and then revised for a few more days according to client notes.

Honda Dream Commute Animatic from Tina T. Hsu on Vimeo.

Here is the link to full credits/BTS on Bent's website

Some of the design work I did for this spot.
The Blue Bird I got to animate. I took the chosen concept sketch by Jesse and retooled it for final model for animation.

Some unused dog puppet concept sketches

Some cloud concept sketches that turned into 3D characters

Here are some BTS photos from my Ipad.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Dairy Farmers of Canada - A Glass for Santa

Christmas season starts a lot earlier for commercial studios and animators. Around late September to Halloween, I was working on a Christmas commercial for Dairy Farmers of Canada at Bent Image Lab (Agency: DDB Toronto).

I animated about half of the spot. The puppets and sets were all made of felt (with armature and under-structure, of cource). It was the first time I animated felt and real milk with very fancy motion controlled camera moves, which definitely added a layer of complexity. We tried to hide the rigs as much as possible, and since there was a lot of object interaction with the puppets, many things were just pinned downed instead of rigged. This mean I was constantly getting stabbed by needles while animating. It was also really funny how the music took over everyone's brain and you could hear everyone singing/humming/whistling the tunes toward end of the project. It was a really fun project to work on and I hope more projects like this happens in the future.

Dairy Farmers Of Canada - Merry Christmas from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.

Here is the link to full credits/BTS photos and look development via Bent Image Lab

Some additional BTS photos I took with my very old Ipad on set.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Estée Lauder - Ballerina

I worked as a cleanup&paint artist on an Estée Lauder's holiday ad campaign recently at HouseSpecial. I had been in talk with them for a really long time, and finally timing worked out this time. I did the animation tie-down/paint for 030(full body spin, the shot the thumbnail is from), and painted 040(full body spin/dance) and the second half of 080(last animated shot, goes from dance to wipe transition). It was a really short schedule and I did all the work mentioned above within an eight day span.

Estée Lauder - Ballerina from HouseSpecial on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

We Bare Bears x Nintendo Switch Game Promos

For the last three months I have been drawing bears...a lot of them. I worked between May and August 2017 at Bent Image Lab as an animation director/lead on two spots for We Bare Bears X Nintendo Switch games, Arms and Splatoon 2. This is the third project I worked on in 2017, but the first one to go live so I am really excited. Most of the commercials I worked on so far are for online campaigns, so it is new to have something that plays directly on Cartoon Network.

I did the rough animation for this spot and handed it over to JD for cleanup/color and comp.
We Bare Bears - Nintendo Arms from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.

I storyboarded/animated/cleaned up (so basically all the character line work) on this spot.

Here is the full BTS/Credit on the Bent's Website.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

2016 Laika Reel - Kubo and the Two Strings

I worked at Laika for about a year between February 2015 to February 2016 and they finally released my portfolio materials! I worked in the (Oscar winning) Rapid Prototyping Department as a Rapid Prototyping Quality Assurance for Laika's 4th film, Kubo and the Two Strings. I was responsible for bringing 3D printed faces and objects from the printer to camera ready. I usually tell people that we are sort of like make up artists for puppets. I think the work here is about 1/10 of the shots I have touched one way or another.

Tina T. Hsu 2016 Laika reel from Tina T. Hsu on Vimeo.

Here is the full BTS video for better understanding of the process.

I appear in 5:15 - 5:18 sanding the 200% Kubo's for his one tear moment, and 5:25 - 5:32 probably painting someone's teeth to add gloss to them.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

El Jimador - Day of the Dead Spots

Another recent commercial project I did for Bent were three 15 sec spots for Tequila Brand El Jimador's Day of the dead commercials.

Although I have worked at Laika, this was my first paid gig as a stop motion animator, and it was a project that had to be pulled together extremely quickly. We started animating before all the puppets were complete (I believe the puppet fab team made about 10-11? puppets in about 2 weeks. All with wire armature). I animated for about 1.5 weeks alongside two other animators and completed about one shot each day, which was about 2.5 - 4.5 second per day. I animated mostly on the wide bar set and the green screen set, and spent a day on the down shooter for the sign. What usually happened was I would animate a shot and wait for the stage to be set up for the next shot, and set up for first frame for the following day. Or I will finish a shot by the end of the day, and the following day starts with stage setup and I don't get launched till later in the afternoon. Besides a few re-shoots for continuity reasons or client notes, almost everything was animated and approved in one take, which pretty much never happens when I animate for myself.

It was really nice to work with sets/puppets made by other people since I always dread a little about not having tools/space and how long it takes to fabricate everything myself before I can animate. This was also the first time I had to control up to 4 puppets at once, and that was a lot to keep track of. Having to wait around for sets/puppets to be ready/approvals from many people before I can start was also strange for someone who came from 2D where I usually just sit and draw all day.

Overall it was a super fun experience and I learned a lot for sure and here are the end products! Enjoy!

El Jimador. Drink from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.
I animated the crowds and in the end shot, which is the same for all three spots. I animated the sigh drop, sugar skull and the right half of the crowd.

El Jimador. ID from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.
I animated the opening shot, the cheer before the end shot, the foreground/background crowds, and the end shot as described in the first one.

El Jimador. Wallet from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.

I animated the skeleton cheer and the white guy in the cheer before then end shot, crowds and the end shot as described above.

Cap & Kith Spots

I recently worked on a few 2D animated spots at Bent Image Lab for an AD campaign for collaboration of New York street wear brand Kith and Cap'n Crunch and I thought I would share them here. It was a quirky and super fun project to work on, and also the first time I went completely paperless for 2D animation.

Capn Kith - Kith Ahoy from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.
I animated all the characters and effect, cleaned and colored all the characters and got help with cleanup and texture painting on effect animation, I also did most of the compositing. The effect animation probably took more time than the characters.

Capn Kith - Kings Of Their Castles from Bent Image Lab on Vimeo.
For the 60 sec spot I only animated the staircase fist bump and the cereal falling in the shot right before (00:38-00:41). The staircase fist bump shot went by really quickly but I got to design it from scratch and poured a lot of heart and soul into it.

I also did an Interview with Bent Design Lab about my process on this project if you are curious enough to read about it. Enjoy!

Monday, February 29, 2016

Made a Second Ball and Socket Armature

After making the first ball&socket armature and animating him, I started making a second one who is a smaller lady. I made her because making the first one was such an amazing learning experience, I became curious about what more I can learn and improve. I also figured a second armature would be useful if I wanted to animate interactions.

Since I made the first armature mostly out of brass and ran into some strength/tension issues, I approached the machine shop and expressed interest in machining my own steel joints. The head of machine shop was very generous and taught me everything I needed to know to make my own double ball joints from scratch. I didn't have a lot of time since my contract with Laika was ending, but I managed to finish her my last week there. I also managed to update his knee joints with some leftover joints. If I had time I would have updated his chest block, shoulders, elbows, ankles and probably made him his own set of steel joints, but I ran out of time for now. Maybe in the future.

Design sketches, joint fabrication process, some extra joints and screwed up test pieces, and his emergency knee surgery.
The armatures and some balance/strength tests. She probably weighs less than half of what he weighs.

And I animated her doing a little dance sequence.
dance_test from Tina T. Hsu on Vimeo.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Made a Ball and Socket Armature

Learned to make a ball and socket armature from scratch after work.
The design is based on Nathan Flynn's armature with some adjustments.

This was quite an eye opening experience. I drilled my own steel balls for the first time in my life for example. Metal working has always been something fascinating but far away until I started working at Laika, which meant access to tools and brilliant coworkers who I can learn from. It was quite a learning process but I had a lot of fun making it, and I am definitely trying some design adjustments on the next one.


And I tried animating a walk on 1s. There were some quirkiness in the armature but it works for the most part. The nice thing about building it myself is that I already know all the kinks and weird in him.

Walk Test from Tina T. Hsu on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Mushroom Hunting WIP

A new story about a mushroom picking mission after a nuclear accident.
I am still working on this and will be adding or taking things out as I work :p

Monday, October 20, 2014

Moments and Location Sketches on Steroids

some moment boards , and some location sketches on steroids: I find a location and sketch it , and try to capture a moment or put some kind of story into the scene.