sunnuntai 16. kesäkuuta 2013

Thoughts on "The Dive Game"

So... I finally finished my second "real" PMV, with all kinds of fancy custom animations. It took quite a lot of work, and I feel like I want to get my thoughts about it written out, so this blog thingie is probably the best place to write about it.

If you haven't seen it, you probably should check it out here, since this piece of text will be based on it.

So... It all got started when there was an announcement for another Helsinki meetup over here in Finland. It took place on the 15th of June, and I decided that it would be awesome to showcase a PMV over there. I thought about showing my previous PMV, "Assertive Fluttershy - Boo Hoo (Silva Hound Remix)", but I felt like showing such an old video somehow wasn't "right"... Thus, I began making another PMV, with a deadline so that it would make it to the meetup.

Before I started making it, I was in the process of making a PMV for the contest at Bronycon, but I was already halfway done with it, so there wasn't a real rush to finish it. This meant that I would have time to make another one before finishing that one. The point of that PMV was to make something with precision, so that basically everything was planned out before on paper. This enabled me to create elements which would have been very difficult to create without a plan. I learned  A LOT while making stuff for that project, and used some of the knowledge with this project.

My initial plan for "The Dive Game" was to create a simplistic PMV with elements that would work together as well as possible. I wanted clear colors, contrast, and specific movement. Also, after remembering Feedsy's "Dork" video, I wanted to try to create something that wasn't overly populated by ponies, but instead, use cutie marks. The point with this was that the viewer wouldn't be viewing a 100% pony video, but a motion graphics video, which was inspired and dedicated to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. This could also open up the magical world of ponies to non-bronies, since the video is enjoyable even though it does have ponies in it (I did link it to a chat that includes my friends, and they reacted positively, which made me feel even better about the final result).

Choosing the music wasn't as difficult as I had predicted. I wanted to find a song that wasn't too known, because YouTube could have blocked it in one or more countries, which is something I didn't want to happen. As I was working on another video, I stumbled upon Alex S.'s album, and started listening to it. After a while I fell in love with "The Dive Game", and realized that it could work as a PMV. Working with dubstep was quite hard, and looking back at it, I think I'll try to evade dubstep for various reasons - at least for now.

After deciding the music, it was time to decide what the PMV would focus on. I immediately thought of Rainbow Dash, which proved to be a good choice given the style of music. Also, like everyone knows, she's the best pony. No question about it. Since RD is one of the mane 6, I knew that a lot of material straight from the show did exist of her, and thus I decided to only use material from the show, and a cutie mark vector. This way I was sure that no one would be upset with me using their art.

Like I said, I didn't want to fill the video up with ponies, but still be related strongly to them. Most of the colors I used were different shades of blue, and the colors of the rainbow. This also loosely linked the PMV with Rainbow Dash, which was something I was striving towards.

I made the video in Adobe After Effects, sometimes rendering parts of it and putting it together in Sony Vegas so I could see the work I had done come together. The hardest part of making the video was coming up with all the ideas for different scenes. I also did some experimentation with different stuff, some of them worked better than the others. I'll probably be making some adjustments to my workflow in the future, but that'll be something I need to think about.

Overall I do like the final product. It did turn out to be a bit short, and some parts felt like they were out of place, but I didn't have the time to change them. PMVs - and MLP in general - have taught me more than I could have ever imagined. And I'm still learning more and more every day, which is absolutely amazing.

I'm extremely happy with how people have reacted to the video, I can't thank the brony community enough for what they have done to my life. Making videos has always been an interest of mine, but being able to link it with My Little Pony is absolutely amazing. Without the community, nothing like this would have ever happened.

Thank you bronies, and everyone else who support me, you're all amazing.

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