Animate a 4 Pose Walk Cycle based on Your Simple Character: Using the character you explored in the Simple Character Pose Sheet assignment, you will build a 4 pose walk cycle again, only this time it will be based on the specific anatomy of an original character. If you feel the personality of your character requires something something beyond the basic walk cycle, feel free to explore variations based on this week's reading in Animation Survival Kit: Walk Cycle Variations.




1. Draw Background: Place a background drawing with a single line to represent your groundplane. You're ready to begin animating.


2. Five Initial Poses (red line): With the red pencil draw 4 poses (5 drawings) to animate the first stride. Notice that the first and last drawings are the same Contact pose only reversed. Shade in the far arm and leg. Follow the steps we learned in class:


Contact pose (1): Heel to Toe contact sets the attitude of the walk.

Contact pose (5): Trace and reverse the arms and legs.

Passing Pose (3): Start with the planted foot. Maybe this is where you have some fun with it (see image below)

Down Pose (2): Draw the Down Pose between C-1 and P-3. Always start with the planted foot, bend the leg and make sure the head drops.

Up Pose (4): Draw the Up Pose between P-3 and C-5. Push up with the ball of the foot which raises the head. Extent the far knee forward.


Consider playing with the Passing pose to introduce variationto your character's walk. Click image to enlarge.



3. Test Shoot Walk Cycle: Shoot on 1's in Dragonframe and play back @ 6 fps. Only shoot Drawings 1 through 4 and loop the playback. Watch to make sure your arms are swinging consistently and you're getting a nice head bob. If you like what you see you are ready for the next step. If not, make your changes now before moving on.




1. Refine Drawings: Use a sharpened blue pencil to draw over each red drawing to clarify your lines (if your red lines are dark you can push them back with a kneaded eraser). Use this pass to make sure your feet are contacting the ground plane and your hands and feet hold their shape. Work in the same order you drew your red pass in. Start with the Contact poses, Passing, Down, then Up.

2. Trace-off the second stride: Use the red pencil to lightly trace off the Down, Passing and Up drawings to complete the second stride (dawings D-6, P-7, and U-8 respectively).

3. Flip Orientaion: Now, use the blue pencil to flip your character's orientation so the far arms and legs become near (and near, far) turning the torso and hips accordingly.




1. Trace-Off or Clean-up Final Line: Depending on how you want your final line work you can either draw over your blue lines with graphite to clean up the existing drawings or you can trace each drawing onto a clean page. Either way at the end of this pass you should be pleased with the final line-work.

2. Renumber your drawings: At this point I like to renumber my drawings using only odd numbers (1,3,5,7,up through 15).




1. Inbetween Drawings: In this step we will smooth out your animation by adding a drawing between each pose. This is called "inbetweening". Place two consecutive poses over each other on your light box. Put down a clean sheet of bond and draw your character "inbetween". These will be your even drawings making 16 drawings in all. The last drawing (#16) will be an inbetween of #15 and #1.

Start with the feet and then hands. You may want to lightly spot the position of the hands and feet with a red line before commiting to a final line. Trace-off shapes when neccessary and try to maintain the basic form of your character and try to keep your lines clean.

2. Shoot Finished Walk Cycle @ 12fps: You are now ready to shoot all 16 drawings in Dragonframe. Now that we have more drawings we can set the playback to loop to 12fps for smoother animation.

Arms should pendulum nicely, feet should contact the ground and head should bob gently. If you like what you see copy all 16 frames and paste them 5 times for a total 96 frames. Export movie, name and submit to @DROPBOX.




Principles of Animation that apply directly this assignment:









































Stephan Leeper/Central Michigan University/2019