I'll be teaching a few sessions at D25's Tech Academy on August 16th about using Keynote software on a Mac to make creative projects. I decided to put everything attendees need to work through the ideas I want to share in the session with examples, directions, and resources in this ONE KEYNOTE FILE (50mbs). Click the examples below to enlarge.
My students made this PSA video on how to use the internet for good as their entry into an online student contest. They came in 2nd place nation-wide. The entire movie was animated using Keynote. See if you can identify the different builds and actions used.
This Fugleflick, I AM ART, was made using keynote animation with green screen effects in iMovie. It's an awesome resource for introducing categories of art to students.
Careers in Art, winner of Nextvista.org's video of the year in 2011, was animated using keynote. The photos were outlined by the technique shown here and the intro was a cool discovery I explain in this tutorial.
I taught an animation workshop today at the Taste of Tech 2017 conference. Below are the lessons we tried to cover and links to the resources. Click on the Thinglink image to go directly there. Thumb through the slideshow for quick tips. Page 1. Page 2.
I was able to attend Kim Darche's session about questioning techniques. To help me remember the great ideas she was sharing, I made this sketchnote.
Digital Carpet Painting:
Before you can go on a magic carpet ride like Aladdin, you need your digital carpet painting in perspective so that you can view it from the side so you can climb aboard. I added my painting into the superimpose app over a plain color background. I found the tool mode for the foreground layer and chose perspective (the default). The configuration needed could be pulled and stretched by grabbing the handles on the image or you can chose a pre-created configuration at the bottom of the screen. I chose the one all the way on the right. Then, chose the checkmark to apply.
Moving Background Video:
One really fun way to extend this lesson into geographic/cultural studies is to have each student draw a landmark that they could fly over: Eiffel Tower, Big Ben, Statue of Liberty, Mt. Rushmore, The Pyramids, Great Wall of China, Stonehenge Grand Canyon, Red Woods, Golden Gate Bridge, Taj Mahal, Hohenzollern Castle, The Leaning Tower of Pisa, etc. See this list of 15o famous landmarks.
Film the Green Screen:
Paper Cut Version:
BACKGROUND: This version of the magic carpet ride lesson includes a paper cut landscape that shows foreground, middle ground, background in paper pieces. These will be animated traveling across the field of view through stop motion animation. It would be a great opportunity for students to show an understanding of foreground, middle ground, and background in the pieces they create and how they animate the scene.
GROUP ANIMATION: I'm thinking that the background animation would be a group project. Each group would work on designing, drawing, cutting, and animating their landmark landscape. Each student would make their own magic carpet video of themselves flying over their group landmark landscape. Therefore, the class compilation video will only have six backgrounds but 24 videos.
MAGIC CARPET MADE FROM PAPER: A digital magic carpet wouldn't look right with a paper cut background. So, they would need to make a paper carpet in perspective. This is a great opportunity to teach students about a vanishing point, converging lines, and how pattern would be small in the back and large in the front (relative size).
Since you are not going to use stop motion for the carpet, I just took a digital picture of the paper drawing and erased the background in the Superimpose app. It needs to be digital for the green screen effect where a student rides the carpet.
This link takes you to a travel website featuring 150 famous landmarks. Every student can feature a different landmark in the background video/animation. This would make the class video even more exciting as they fly over scenes from around the world.
View this safeshare.TV link of the "Whole New World" scene from Aladdin.
One trick I've noticed ever since I was a young cartoon viewer happens most noticeably in running scenes. Instead of the character entering and exiting the frame of view, the character remains in the center of the frame while the background moves. This is very effective but sometimes completely silly since the background is looping over and over giving the impression that the space is a never ending and always repeating. I set out today to try to make a character run like Scooby or any Hanna-Babera character would.
STEP ONE: Running character
STEP TWO: background drawing
STEP THREE: fixing the background
At drew this background thinking I could make it loop somehow in the app. I wasn't able to figure out how to do that. So I took this image, duplicated it, line them up on edge and cropped awu the door. I wanted to make an image that started and ended the same way from left to right so I could loop it. Does that sound confusing? It was. But, now that I know the solution, maybe it won't be hard to replicate it.
STEP FOUR: Creating the animation
The biggest challenge was getting the background image to loop behind the running animation. Now that I fixed the image to match from left to right all I had to do was line it up to start and end with the same looking background.
Second try-new idea for background:
I had trouble making my background loop on my first try. I think the problem was that I learned while going through the process that the image needed to repeat perfectly. So, this time I made it easier on myself. I did the whole drawing and duplications in Brushes Redux app. I drew one piece of a background (house) and copied the layer, resized it, and placed it next to the first until I had 4 houses in a row. I put this tiny tutorial together so you can see that the biggest trick next is to get the running figure to start and end over the same exact background image. Then, it loops nicely.
Karaoke of Scooby-Doo Theme Song:
Sing along or change the words to what you learned while making a running animation.
Fly like Mighty Mouse Might
This idea works for fling if you make the object remain in the frame as the sky (clouds) whiz by. Here is what it looked like when I gave it a try.
View this Animation as a Hologram:
Check out my post about how to set up your animated hologram here.
Try using the running poses in Scratch
Scratch is a visual drag and drop coding site by MIT. I had some students who were really excited about coding come and talk to me today. We put together the running animation in SCRATCH using the individual drawings set to code. View the project here. or below.
A long time ago I responded to Ian Sands on twitter asking for digital images of children's art that he could offer to his high school students to play with as they learn to animate. Some of his students selected my students "He Came with the Chair" paintings. The animations turned out SO adorable and inspiring-see example below or check them all out here. It has been one of my goals to figure out an elementary level lesson with a straightforward app that would give my students the experience of animating their own artwork in the same style. I think I might have figured it out. This technique isn't perfect, but, it will work.
If we had Procreate app: like photoshop
The Brushes Redux app (free) allows you to work with layers like photoshop; select and match colors, use different textured brushes, and save each layer individually-all things needed to make these animations. However, the app does not allow you to select parts of the image. That's how the feet were moved in the animation below. The artist selected the feet, rotated them a bit, and redrew the surrounding space to match. This is the element my students would need to work around unless we purchase Procreate app for the classroom which has all the tools we would need. Sounds like I should write a grant.
Alternative plan: Brushes Redux (free)
This alternative solution for making animated GIF using Brushes Redux is to redraw each change in the piece of art. You need to choose a piece of art that has colors, textures, and elements that can easily be REDRAWN since you can't select and move. So, let's look at these portraits of George Washington by second graders. They each have clear and solid black marker lines and a clean opaque paint. It would be easy to redraw the eyes, mouth, nose, or even the wig or shoulders. Here is my first run through:
After importing your original image into a layer of Brushes Redux, you need to size it and never change it again. Consistency is really key for making the art look like it is moving. I deleted the extra transparent layer and chose the DUPLICATE button (double square +) from the top bar in the layers. I could only see the top layer so the bottom one didn't distract me, but to make sure I didn't draw on the wrong layer, I LOCK the bottom layer when I'm done with it (touch the lock symbol next to the image layer). I can use the eyeball feature to reveal and hide layers to check on how my changes are looking from one layer to the other. I would try to keep this animation simple by not exceeding 5 layers/drawings. It's hard to see all the layers in the app at one time when you get beyond 4. That can confuse your little artists. When you're ready to save your work: 1. close the eyeball on each layer expect your original (bottom layer), choose save to photos. 2. Open the eyeball on second layer and save to photos. 3. Repeat this until finished. This makes the images in the camera roll stay in order.
Now students can go to ezgif.com on their iPads and upload their images into the GIF maker. You'll see above that my five images are made into a sequence of 8 so that it will loop nicely. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 are the drawings. I copied 4 and placed it after 5 so I could start reversing the sequence, followed by a copy of 3 and 2.
Let's spell this out clearly for little artists:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 4, 3, 2 (sequence for 5 images in animation)
1, 2, 3, 4, 3, 2 (sequence for 4 images in animation)
1, 2, 3, 2 (sequence for 3 images in animation)
Here is how it looks: (I used the crop tool to trim off white edges)
Quick Video Overview:
Use this video to introduce the project and help students see what the process requires.
Thinking this through: (my notes)
Another approach I might go with is to add structure the process since everything about it would be new to young learners. We could all work from the same gallery of images so we can tackle similar problems together. If we worked on, for example, these Wild Things from 1st grade, I could demonstrate how I would animate the eyes, mouth, and the horns. They might make other creative choices, but the problem-solving I demonstrate would transfer easily to their creative solutions.
The fifth graders' 3/4 pose portrait paintings are perfect for this animation lesson by making subtle changes in the expression. It forces the artist to think about what faces do to express emotion and map out a sequence of drawings to create this expression. This is a different form of expressionism (HA! Art teacher humor).
The fifth grade Light Up Robot painting is fun to animate with moving and blinking.
These first grade Lima Bean Monsters are perfect for this idea with their big features.
I wanted to see if an app I already had on my iPad, the Green Screen app by Do Ink, could help create a ghostly illusion. I knew that you would have to be able to combine a layer of the environment without a figure under a layer of video from the same exact view of the environment. This layer (the one with the figure) would need to have less opacity (be made semi-transparent) so that it appeared that they were see through.
BUT, the green screen app takes away some of the difficulty of creating two exact videos with and without a figure since you can layer using the magic of green screen over anything and change the opacity with their mask tool. Here is how I was able to achieve the effect. There might be an easier way, but this is pretty simple.
Haunted Masterpieces: using this illusion
Now that I know I can get this effect to work using an app my students already have available to them in the art room, I thought about what content I could teach that would make this illusion necessary. I came up with the idea of Haunted Masterpieces. This would teach, art history, creative writing, storytelling through body language, digital layering, and transparency by having students enter a piece of artwork as a ghost and tell the story of why they are there. This would be a short campfire ghost story that would engage students in a piece of art and its artist.
STEP ONE: Mask out the figure from the artwork (if necessary)
I started with a piece of art, The Scream by Edvard Munch, where I had masked out the figure by matching the colors and textures in a drawing app (see video below or just grab mine here). You might choose a painting with plenty of blank space like an Edward Hopper painting (see my curated collection) or no figures like a landscape or still life. In that case you might choose to skip this step.
STEP TWO: Film the green screen video of the student
Before you film, the student needs to know their story and be prepared use their body language to help tell the story. It might be fun to come prepared in costume or with props. I think a two second clip is all that is necessary. They will write their story and make their haunted video into a looping gif or still image. Filming with audio where the student explains their story would work as well, but each audio clip would need to be short enough that a class video would remain under 3 mins (to keep it engaging). Capturing audio while the student is in front of green screen and backed away from the iPad filming him/her is tricky. You could set up an external iPad mic and have the class completely silent. Or, you can put a lapel mic on the subject if you think you can hide it for the filming. That takes time so classroom management would be more difficult.
STEP THREE: Create the ghostly illusion
The illusion doesn't happen during real-time green screen capture. It happens in post-production. So, students would need to gather their background image and green screen video into their iPad camera roll and open up the Green Screen app by Do Ink. The background image goes on the lowest level. The green screen video goes above it. The app will automatically remove the green but you will need to crop, resize, position the ghost, and mask it to make it semi-transparent to complete the effect.
STEP FOUR: Convert to a gif and caption it with the ghost story
Students can pull up the website EZGIF.com from their iPads and upload the video from their camera roll to convert it to a gif. These can then be displayed on my weebly blog and shared on their online art gallery. They could use the caption tool for the image to tell their story (or use the artist statement section on Artsonia to share in their portfolio.)
Layering into artwork with masking:
The techniques I shared above have the ghost layered over the painting with or without an erased (or masked) element. The easiest and fastest solution to this effect is to find a painting with open space and layer the ghost into it. If you want to explore more advanced approach, you can create an effect where the ghost is layered into the painting as if they are behind elements of the painting. This effect can be created through masking of the original image. All of this can be done in the Green Screen App using their masking tools however, I find it easier to mask images in superimpose app and save them as "mask png" which holds it's transparency in the iPad camera roll. I have a tutorial showing how to use this app this way (see beginning of this video near 2:40).
Now that the background has been erased, the ghost image can be added between these two layers. The green screen app by Do Ink gives you 3 layers to work with:
TOP LAYER: Masked Image (becomes the foreground)
MIDDLE LAYER: The green screen video (looks like it behind the figure in painting)
BOTTOM LAYER: Original painting lined up exactly with the masked image above
Add the frame and museum label
The visual arts national standards emphasize presenting artwork. This lesson could be a fun way to approach the topic by having students CURATE A HAUNTED MUSEUM. After they create their haunted animation, they could frame and label the piece with artist, title, and other information. We could set up a "virtual tour" with their narration presented as a class movie.
..and other Individual Rotoscope Animation Ideas
One of the super cool things about Do Ink Animation and Drawing app is that you can pull in photos or videos and draw over them. Drawing over each frame of a video is a technique called Rotoscope Animation. You probably have seen this technique in the famous music video from the 80's A-Ha's Take Me On. I also LOVE this music video and song by Andrew Huang, Every Night I Dream of Dancing, which is a rotoscope collaboration using 30 artists crowdsourced through the internet.
I tried many ways to instruct my students to create rotoscope animations collaboratively, but I've yet to have them create their own...until now. I think I've come up with some ideas that can make this project manageable for very little people.
Plan One: 1 second loops
Tutorial for Rotoscoping in Do Ink app
Plan Two: Color the Loop
Plan Three: Add Rotating Mandalas
I began a new drawing (still in the Do Ink Animation app) and chose a fill and border color, and dragged out a shape to fill the screen. Then I added line or/and shape pattern.
I made two of these patterned mandalas so that I could rotate them behind my rotoscope in opposing directions. The centers won't show much, so I focus the design on the edges.
Plan four: Dancing Sketches
Since the rotoscope animation has a built in transparency (the background is empty and see through) while it remains in the app, you could use this to create some very cool effects. One idea I've been playing with is to layer the rotoscope line drawing animation over a sheet of notebook or sketchbook paper. Since my drawing looks like it was made using a sharpie marker, I try to enhance that illusion by either leaving a marker on the notebook when I take the still image, or write with a sharpie marker alongside the animation. Below is my first rotoscope done this way, "How to Whip."
Did you see the video of the kids showing up at the end? That was an added step using the green screen app by Do Ink. I exported my sketbookbook video and put it in the green screen app and layered on the original green screen video, lined them up with the drawings. The only problem is that GS app limits you to three layers. I needed 4. So I "flattened" the video effect when I had two kids in place by exporting it. Then brought it back in to a new project and finished the third child's effect.
More Advanced ideas: animated sketchnotes
Mini Digital Stories:
My collaborative Rotoscope Projects:
In 2012, my 5th grade students did a collaborative rotoscope animation project with every one of my 100 students drawing over 330 frames of video pieced back together to make the animation shown in the video below. We entered it into the McGraw-Hill STEMie national online contest and won the $5000 second place prize. This money became the seed money for our 1:1 iPad art room. As you can see from the post, the process was very complicated on my end since there wasn't an iPad app (yet) that allowed students to work over video. We filmed a video then ran it through a program (mpeg streamclip) to break it down frame by frame. Students were assigned frames, pulled it into their iPad from the dropbox, drew over it in Brushes app, turned it back into the dropbox with a number that placed it back into the sequence. I pieced it all back together on my computer using a gif maker to turn it into video. They explain below:
This past school year, I tried a different kind of collaborative rotoscope animation with my 5th graders: a rotoscope in a mutoscope (digital art made physical). This time we made 4 small videos (one per class) that would loop nicely into a hand cranked mutoscope kit by Flipbookit.com. These turned out to be very cool. The work again, fell mostly on me. I had to purchase and assemble the kit, prep the video through their online tool, print the images onto labels, and stick them on flip cards. The students each made one frame of the rotoscope, so they finished in one class period. I love the results, but the kit costs over $40, so students don't get to keep their work individually. However, they do have their still image posted on Artsonia with links to their video.
Connections: Kinetic Art & Automations
Make a Whirly-bird: plan
The challenge is to make a bird from cardboard that has moveable parts. There is a clear connection between drawing a bird and designing a whirly-bird since you just have to break everything down into shapes: head, beak, eye, legs, body, wings, tail. Each shape can be a piece to add back to the whole bird with brads instead of glue. The brads keep the pieces of the bird moveable like a whirligig. However, this whirligig isn't going to be able to move with the wind. It will move through the magic of stop-motion animation.
Since I work with 100 students in each grade level, I have to figure out a way to manage resources and materials efficiently. This guide (below) can be printed on 8.5'x11" paper to help students make good choices for size, shape, and placement of holes/brads. This may help avoid mistakes from misplaced holes, working too small, or wasting valuable space on their cardboard sheet. I will encourage students to create their own designs and not use my sheet as a tracer so I will need to provide extra cardboard for their ideas.
Build a Whirly-bird: lay out and attach
Paint: prime, balance color, add pattern
Assemble & test: add brads & try it out
Whirly-bird ideas: dance & weathervane
I wrote a post about using this app for a collaborative dance video. It's very similar, so it can help you through the steps of using Do Ink, layering video, and organizing files.
This project would teach SO many concepts: silhouette, landscape, atmospheric effects, monochromatic, size, movement, pattern, balance, stop motion animation, and layering. I have a post and tutorial for creating a digital appalachian mountain landscape here.
This same concept translates well as an insect too. If students made a whirlygig insect then the lesson can have a science component to learn about the parts of an insect as they build. No, that's not a tail-it's a stinger. Sorry for the confusion.
Step 1: pose
Step 2: import photo and draw
In the Do Ink Drawing and Animation app, touch the + in top right corner and choose "New Drawing". Click on the layers tab (top middle, it has three lines stacked), use the camera icon to import the photo. The photo defaults to the top layer so grab the three lines on right of layer and drag it to the bottom. Touch the empty layer to select it and do your drawing (tracing) first. Then add your extras to transform the photo into a superhero or fairy. In the screenshot above you can see that I took the opacity of the photo layer down to 0% so that it doesn't show. I drew the figure three times and change it slightly in each. I use the + button in the bottom right to make the next frame and redraw over the last with slight changes like blowing hair, cape, and shirt. These changes are seen as a ghost effect from one layer to the next. That can be turned off in the settings if you prefer. I made each of my lines in my drawing connect so that I could use the pour bucket to color everything. I use the Preview button (looks like an arrow head) to see how my animation is looking. It will animate too fast since it is only 3 frames long. That's okay. We can make adjustments to the timing in the next step. If it looks good, choose gallery button top left.
Step 3: layer the flipbook animation
Prepare a background image or animation to make your character "fly" across. I had a castle drawing in my camera roll on my iPad. Again, in Do Ink animation app, I touched the + in top right corner and chose "composition" this time. If you background is a photo bring it in using the camera icon, if it's another Do Ink drawing, bring it with star icon. Then bring in you animated superhero/fairy with the star icon. It will be too big at first. Use a corner handle to rize (do not touch the green dot yet) and place it in a starting position. Take a look at your timeline. It may have defaulted to only 2 seconds long. Touch the diamond and drag out each layer as long as you want. I used 4 seconds above. Before you animate you may want to slow down the flipbook style animation. Touch the gear in the lower right and slide the timing down to half speed (0.5). Now create an animation path by touching and dragging the green dot (see my green line above). Use the play button to preview. If it looks good, touch gallery. This is where you can find the share button by touching the gallery thumbnail and export your animation a as a video. I would create a class video from their short clips like the ones I made for first graders.
Need a tutorial? See my Fugleflip page and follow Draw & Compose tutorials.
Step 4. Turn these into holograms
Now that you have these little flipbook animations, make them into a custom hologram. I wrote up all the steps for creating this effect in this previous post.
One of the ways I love to integrate technology is by extending physical art creation with a digital element. This idea relies heavily on both physical art and digital manipulation since it begins with drawing and ends with animation. Here are the results below:
The time-lapse: iMotion App
First I practiced my drawing. I had done lots and lots of insect drawings with my 1st graders this school year, so I didn't have to practice long. See this post for drawing resources if you want to try an insect too. I set up the iPad on a tripod and opened up the iMotion app, set it to time-lapse (take a picture every second), and started my drawing.
When I was done I exported the video to the camera roll. It was 7 seconds long.
TIP: It is important to start the video with the blank sheet (no hand) and end with just the image with just the drawing (no hand) to help out your animation steps coming next.
Stills from time-lapse: Green Screen App
You need to capture an image of the blank sheet from before you begin drawing and the final image of just the drawing. (See below). These two images are needed for the next step. There are a few ways to capture these images but my favorite way is by using the Green Screen app by Do Ink. I load in the video, toggle the timeline indicator to the first frame, select "image" and "save" to the camera roll. I do the same for the last image. It's a clean clear image and you can control it very nicely. Taking screenshots might work too.
Clean up the Drawing: Superimpose App
Before you can animate you have to isolate the image by erasing the background and saving it that way in a PNG format. You can do this very easily in the Superimpose App. I pick a color for the background, bring in the drawing for the foreground, then use the magic wand (default) to select the background. If it takes away too much I can draw it back in with the eraser or erase away mistakes with the paintbrush (counter intuitive, I know). Then I touch the house icon, find the share button, and "save mask as PNG". This puts just the foreground image (your drawing) with transparent background into the camera roll as a png. See my image below. Use the beginning of this tutorial to help you.
Make an animation plan and end image:
Since my drawing is an insect, I thought it would fly and land on my finger. So I posed and took a picture that leaves room for the insect to be added back in later. Now with this in my iPad camera roll I have all the elements to begin animating.
Animation: Do Ink Drawing & Animation App
My steps below explain how I put together the animation using the Do Ink Drawing & Animation app in the composition mode. If you rather see a tutorial start at 53 sec mark.
After previewing the animation (using the triangle shaped play button) I saved it to the gallery and shared it as a video to the camera roll. Now, I have a time-lapse video and animation to combine in a movie editing app like iMovie or Pinnacle.
Similar Idea: Make it and Move it
This post maps out ideas for making art projects physically like a paper collage or painting, then making a digital image of them animate. Click the image to see post.
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