View Full Version : Having trouble coming up with ideas

07-23-2008, 12:24 PM
I'm at university at the moment and we've been asked to come up with a story which lasts a minute and animate it in lightwave. It seems like a very simple task but everything I think of just feels terrible and dull.

I never usually have problems with this but the pressure of meeting the deadline seems to cramp my creativity.

Does anyone else get horribly stuck for ideas when they feel under pressure and how do you get your head around it?

07-23-2008, 12:37 PM
Start looking through magazines or go through youtube about topics you like. Get inspiration from them. I do that when I'm at a loss myself. I keep a library of art images I find on the internet which helps too. Pick up on elements they use that you like and see what you can create from it. Not to copy, but inspire. :)

07-23-2008, 12:54 PM
It happens all the time.

One of the reasons we are called "professionals" is we develop ways to combat creative block. You will develop ways too.

One way is to get off the computer. Draw storyboards. Draw a mini-comic. Draw your friend/girlfriend/partner sitting on the couch. Draw something. Paint. Write. Write a short story about the first word you hear. Pick a word out of a dictionary, write it down. Write it in different ways. Draw the word. Draw the meaning of the word.

For animation, keep an idea simple, and JUST ANIMATE. Don't spend time on anything other than the animation and camera work. Then, go back and fill in the models, textures, details, background, and add interesting side animation.

I know, i know, easier said than done. But runners, before they run, will warm-up. Find a method that helps you warm up before you begin a project.

07-23-2008, 12:59 PM
think up a commercial for anything around the desk.
That helps me.

07-23-2008, 01:07 PM
Ah, It's a relief to get some perspective. That gives me a lot to be getting on with, thanks.

07-23-2008, 10:15 PM
60 sec, of mind blowing CG animation is anything but easy, I have spend working several months with a team of 8+ people on spots only 30 sec long.

The hard part is to pick a story that you can make work within the time you have and your set of skills. Keep it simple but slick, thats the main trick. Most people aim to high and fall on there noses.

Face the fact that you cant beat hollywood, they blow hundreds of thousands of dollars just on a single shot they have professional actors, sound composers, screen writers and so on.

Picture yourself more as a street performer who is spiting fire or doing break dance moves, don't try to be a Broadway musical with a big cast a orchestra and big decor!

In terms of story you ca go in many directions. Drama, Action, Romance, Comedy, Abstract ...
Pick something that you are familiar with, that reflects you taste and personality and tell its story in a way only you could. Or for kicks just mix things up like Action driven Comedy or Dysfunctional Romance.

Pick a story that works well told in CG. Pixar is a great example for that, like Toy Story's characters are all made off plastic as that is easy and convicting to do in CG. The media and aesthetic should serve the story and not the other way around.

All I can say at the end is welcome to the dysfunctional life of a CG artist where you date a computer, rarely go to bed before midnight, collect limited edition vinyl toys and have no social life what so ever.

Good luck with your project, and when you have it ready please post a link.