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    The Minor Project

    Morrigan

    Touchstone Submission

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    IntroductionsThe spark behind this project came from exploringCeltic mythologies. Settling on the interestingGoddess named Morrigan.

    Morrigan, according to the mythology was an Irish,Celtic Goddess of battle and strife. She was well

    known for her shape shifting ability, most notably

    turning into a crow. In her various stories sheappeared as a single woman, or as one of three

    Goddesses involved in the battlefield.

    Morrigan was known for her ability to foretell the

    outcome of battles. But she was also known forinterfering, occasionally, but only indirectly. She

    would shape shift, taking the form of the crow to

    either encourage allies, or terrify enemies.

    There is also mention of her transforming into adeath omen. An old washer woman by a ford,

    washing the bloodied uniform of a doomed soldier.

    The etymology of the name Morrigan, can bedivided into Mor which translates as Nightmareand -rigan meaning Queen. However, scholars

    agree that her Celtic name translates as the

    Phantom Queen

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    The ProjectAnd initial influences

    The aim of this project is to create an

    animated short story revolving around

    the character of Morrigan.

    I decided to write her into a tragic lovestory. Being a Goddess of battle and

    strife it probably makes relationships

    difficult and her duties as a WarriorGoddess an eternally lonely experience.

    I took interest in her shape shifting

    abilities. Influenced by some of the

    forms she is said to have taken. I tookthe liberty of projecting her as a young

    beautiful woman, an old hag and most

    importantly a crow.

    The design influences for the storyrevolve around paper cutouts and

    silhouettes for a striking but classical

    storytelling aesthetic. Utilizing a

    combination of 3D and 2D.

    I hope to use subtle colours like a sepia

    tone, but for some of the more potent

    and striking imagery, a bolder colour.

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    StoryboardFirst draft

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    Character

    Design

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    Environment

    Design

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    My initial designs were inspired by Celtic patterns and knots. This asset was intended to be the more

    complicated in aesthetics and the characters simpler, so as to stand out. Playing on the theme of pop up

    story books, dioramas and paper cutouts, I felt I could create an environment consisting of literal layersand simple subdued colours. And the Celtic theme presented in texture form.

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    Having struggled with this approach to my environment design I have decided to take a different approach and

    instead create the environment with the same Jewelry elements used in my character design.

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    Environment DesignIn terms of the design and physically creating my

    environments I find I am more drawn towards

    using a paper cutout route. A lot of layering can beachieved with room to animate within a 3D space,

    using interspersed 3D and 2D elements.

    Thinking in terms of transitions I like the idea of

    taking a paper theatre approach, or a carousel (orboth) in order to achieve the transitions from

    scene to scene. I have attempted to exemplify this

    in a short clip using Autodesk Maya.

    Environment Animation Test

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    Pre-

    ProductionModelling and Skinning

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    Character Orthographics Morrigan

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    Character Orthographics The Hag

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    Character Orthographics The Warrior

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    Modelling The Warrior

    Modelling these characters

    requires a fair amount of

    compromise. The 2Ddesigns may not

    necessarily resolve

    themselves in 3D (As

    becomes more obvious

    when building Morrigan)

    On the left there are two

    versions of the hand, onewhere I incorporated

    fingers but a second one inthe shape of the mitten

    which is the final design,

    truer to my original

    concepts. There was also

    an adjustment to the beltarea and removal of line

    work there, to makeeventual skinning and

    animation much easier.

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    Modelling Young Morrigan

    Modelling Morrigan

    became complicated when

    trying to create the hair.The designs in 2D, though

    appealing were slightly

    unfeasible in 3D which led

    to the changes in the

    model seen left.

    This model is currently a

    work in progress. Withoutthe linework

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    Textured Model

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    Skinning The Warrior

    Again, due to his design, the Warriors rig will be quite different to previously made ones. In order to get a

    softer bend in the arms I will be incorporating Ribbon spines used for squash and stretch. On the left you

    can see the skeleton and some of the earlier skinning stills. The success of the skinning can be seen in theWarrior Skinning Tests video.

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    Anticipated Outcome

    By the end of the Minor Project I hope to have completed...

    A revised script

    A second draft animatic hybrid. (An animatic crossed with Pre-visualization in Autodesk Maya)

    portraying the revised script. With a voice over artist

    Final character designs

    Two Character models. At least one should be fully textured, skinned and rigged. To be presented as

    rendered character turn-arounds

    Developed Environment Designs

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    Touchstone Submission