Thursday, 8 March 2018

Premise/Research, Idea, Aims

As I have done some more research and clarified a little bit more different aspects of my premise and where I am going with this project, I thought that I might do this summary/update post. My concept and idea for this project is to explore and find people with sentimental attachment to the tattoos they are wearing to find out about their stories behind the designs on their skin. I am going to interview them and probably use excerpts from the recorded interviews as a voice over for the final animaiton. I am going to use a combination of 3D and 2D animation to allow the ink from the 3D modelled characters to 'come to live' in 3D space. I am also considering using photos or real life footage in the final documentary. 

Stories (so far)


'All these tattoos on me, that’s my past. It’s where I’ve been. My past is my past. That’s the same as it is with everyone. There’s just more literal evidence of it written all over me.'

-Scott Campbell

'there’s a sense of narrative to it all. With tattooing, my job is literally to take a person’s story or emotional situation and figure out a way to summarize and illustrate it in a picture, symbol or phrase.'

-Scott Campbell

'Tattoos have become a means of communication and expression, as they commemorate one’s own story and passions externally.'

-Illona Bodker for Milennial

'They’re a visual diary of everything that I’ve done, moments in my life that I’ve wanted to mark down.'

-Grace Neutral for the Refinery 29 interview

Visual Aims and References, Art Style

When it comes to character design, I'm still not sure if I am going to create characters based entirely on the interviewed people (for instance the video below) or if I'm going to model one universal body shape and bring all the focus on the animated tattoo stories. 

Possible Techniques

I really like the look of painting/drawing in 3D space that can be done with Virtual Reality equipment and using softwears like Tilt Brush. Since I don't have access to the VR equipment or softwear, I am going to test out different techniques and possibilities how to achieve this effect or look by using 2D and 3D programs that I have access to.


  • 3D painitng in photoshop (to draw the designs on the character's skin)
  • line drawing (and rendering) in Unity 3D
  • animating nPartices in Maya on a motion path
  • animating mesh in Maya on motion path
  • nFluids in Maya emitting from a mesh
  • experiments with After Effects: light following a path, stroke effect and motion path
  • particle system in Unity 3D
  • draw system in Unity 3D
  • Computer Assisted Animation of Line (used for Disney's 'Papperman')
  • rendered out 3D environment and/or characters. then paint over in Adobe Animate (or other flash softwear)


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