To paraphrase Francesca Woodman: What happened is I used to play the pianotake photographs... Then at one point I no longer needed to translate the notes; they went directly into my hands. When I started again, I could not play. I could not play by instinct. This is me getting back to the place where it can be fun again.
It's a somewhat shitty animation, but hey, it's the first try. I ended up with some extra bones in the pelvic area in order to have someplace to constrain the rotation. I also wish there were an easy way to mirror a skeleton the way there is in Maya. Positioning and posing the bones is a pain.
The good news: flash has inverse kinematics! Yay! The bad news: it's like catching a cat in a sack. It almost seems like Maya would be easier. Trying to animate graphics that I've exported from Illustrator is making me tear my hair out. Half the time the bones don't attach and rigging just becomes an unnecessary nightmare. Come on adobe...
I got Sketchbook in a bonus pack with maya and decided to install it. Whoa, it is really cool. I have to say, whatever problems autodesk software has they do a really good job with their UI. I sometimes find Photoshop and Illustrator to be menu-hotkey-dropdown-clicking hell, but Sketchbook is kind of a joy to use. It's also not fulfilling exactly the same purpose but be that as it may, I really appreciate having so much available right at the pen tip. I find the layers list somewhat clunky, but other than that, it seems very nice!
Apparently I am very hard on them. Last night I realized, to my horror, that I had worn the tip off the stylus and was in real danger of scratching the tablet pretty badly. Luckily I found some tips about taping a piece of paper over the tablet to both protect the surface and also provide some friction when drawing. I think that was the basic problem --the was no tactile feedback and so I just kept pressing and pressing. I'm trying a spring-loaded tip now.