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My first lip synch animation

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My first lip synch animation

Hey everyone. I followed a tutorial from Jason Osipa's book "Stop Staring" on lip synching the phrase "What am I saying here?" This is the first attempt I've made at lip synching and I wanted to know what you guys think. I added the squash and stretch on the face, the facial expressions and all of the acting on my own. I don't like how fast the head moves. I acted out the phrase and wanted to get the head movements to match when he says certain parts of the phrase, but it's so fast >_<. I also dont like how fast his hands move in the first five frames. In Maya it didn't go this fast. I wanted him to be in his first pose by the time he's finished saying "what", but the playblast file makes him move too fast. Does anyone know how to slow down the playblast thing in Maya? I had the scale in the playblast menu set to 1, since I figured 0.5 would make it go even faster...

Anyway, any and all critiques and comments are more than welcome. :D

MightyMew1's picture
"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

I put my "critical eye" on and watched this a few times, here's my 2 cents. The lip-sync itself looks good, I think that's a successful part. To reiterate what Graphite said, I think the arms are too busy. The movements after the phrase is said really don't fit with anything, they are a bit distracting. I would try just crossing his arms the whole time and just use some head movement, maybe a small weight shift, play around with some different things. Plus you are "mirroring" in the arms, a general no-no. I know it's just an exercise, but maybe try less lead out and more lead in, maybe make it appear like he is listening to someone off-stage for a few seconds first.


Thanks Johnny! I shall take your suggestion and edit the animation with what you said in mind. I guess I have a problem with overanimating. I'll post another up-date when it's ready.

I'm glad the sync looks good. At first I had followed a book and it looked terrible. I went back and redid it without the book's help and this is what you see now. :D Ender and another guy helped me with it also.

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

I don't know if this is reiterating, but when you hit the points you do it's very sharp movements. Not saying be subtle or anything, because he has a snappy appearance, wiry-like that is. But soften the blow, so to speak, as you come to a stop (like a moving hold I guess). Perhaps change the camera angle if you're doing another video so the staging focuses on him, and maybe even moreso just on him..."saying" least that's how -he'd- have you stage it, because of his question haha


Angelfire isn't allowing the link.

I could have sworn I responded to this yesterday. >_< Oh well. Scattered, could you explain what you said in your last post please, especially about the camera angle thing?

Please forgive me for not posting revsions immediatly, guys. I'm working on the animation session at and it's due on the 20th, so I'm kinda busy with that. I won't forget about this lip sync exercise though. :)

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

my appologies

I'm so sorry about that guys. I'm proud to announce that I have left angelfire forever. Now I can post links to my animation and actually have the links work! :D Anyway, anyone who's still intrested can view my lip synch here. It's the one entitled "What Am I Saying In Here?" :D

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

Miles Davis said on playing music to the effect that the notes one doesn't play is just as important as the notes one does.
The movements that we restrain ourselves from doing are just as important as those we should animate.
Your guy is overanimated. With the sound off it's a great dance move. What he is saying is too fast and short for what he is doing.
Remember too, you will always animate what the character is thinking, not what it is saying. It sounds as if he doesn't know what he is supposed to be doing. His expression can be phrased in a simple puzzled look, his body could express into a tense regis Philbin type shrug. That's not to say it is simply moving into a hold.
ALso as a lip-synch exercise you may want to consider a close up or medium shot.
I don't know much about 3D but remember the mouth expresses, with all other facial features, alot even though it is a lip synch excercise.
It may help to think of it as an acting excercise rather than the misnomer of lip-synch.


Thanks for the response Graphiteman! I've toned down the action with the head and with the arms.

Here's the facial animation:

Here's the full view of the animation:

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane

Awwww, c'mon guys, I really need some critiques with this. I need to know what I've done wrong, and some suggestions on fixing it. Now that I look at it again, I really dislike the actual lip sync, but I followed the book directly on that...:confused:

"Animation isn't about how well you draw, but how much to believe." -Glen Keane