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'Confrontation' by Begasuslu by equumamici

Special thanks to Bongoro for bringing this program to my attention and putting together a collection of animations! I've wanted to make something like this work for a ling time! :D


Wallpaper Engine allows video desktop backgrounds on your machine without making too big of a dent on your performance. The quality / performance balance is very customizable.

Try this one out and let me know what you think, and I’ll plan to make more!
...after some technical difficulties (Sorry for that BSOD, everyone who showed up early :p  ) I'm ready to stream!
Come say hello!

Tonight's plan is to work on this:
 Bless you! by GiangHanez2880

and depending how things go, also this:
[Comm] On Watch by 8BitAmy
It's been a rough week. I plan to stream as long as possible tonight. I may have to to AFK for phone calls as it goes on, but the stream will stay running.
Come join me:
picarto.tv/EquumAmici
I've just had the joy of discovering this wonderful animation by StasySolitude!
If you haven't seen it yet, settle in and make some time for it. Ones like these don't come along very often!
...and if you're the reactor type, definitely grab that camera :D

Got a couple free hours to animate!
picarto.tv/EquumAmici
Sit down, grab a poutine, and let's get started! ^_^
  • Listening to: Cider Party
  • Eating: Poutine
  • Drinking: Coffee
One of my personal struggles is staying organized. I have a ton of animation projects in the works at any one time! I thought I'd show a list of my plans. Looking at my to-do list there are like a million things I planned I'd do!!!

'Current' works in progress: (basically the things that are open on my computer right now)
  1. Untitled "Timey Whimey" animation for Lumic4 - it's a secret!
  2. Confrontation by Begasuslu
  3. "Contemplation" Watercolour collaboration - it's a surprise!
Long-term projects:
  1. The Unsung End by Huussii (OMG I started this like 2 years ago D: )
  2. "The Tears of Gaia" audio drama (It's gonna be epic!!)

Future Animations & projects: 
  1. Knock-Knock by Yakovlev-Vad (restarting from scratch)
  2. On Watch by 8-bit Amy
  3. ???   (Add suggestions in the comments below! ^_^ )
  • Listening to: Cider Party
  • Drinking: Coffee
I plan to do a couple hours of animating. Come by and say hello! :-)

picarto.tv/equumamici
MLP Emote Twilight Sparkle Happy I'm super excited about some progress I've been making, and just had to share an update about it! :D
I've received a few requests for tutorials lately, wanting to know how I rig things in after effects. My long term goal has been to be able to create fully animated characters similar to what you see in the League of Legends login screens, and some of you seem to think I'm getting close to that already! (I disagree XD )

I've had some requests to show how to use DUIK, the rigging program the professionals use to create character animations in After Effects (Think League of Legends login screens, animations by 2snacks, really fancy stuff like that). I'd love to show you all how to do it, but... most of my stuff just kind of... looks like I have character rigs. Most of my animations are MacGyver'd solutions that are moved by hand and don't really have much automation to make things move. The thing is...  I don't actually know how to use DUIK!

Until now! :D

Twiggy - Rig Test by equumamici

This here is Twiggy, MadHotaru's giraffe OC. I've made this gif entirely in After Effects, using only DUIK (which is free!) and no other plugins at all! I've started to learn how to use DUIK, and plan to make a few tutorials on the basics!

Bts-close by equumamici

Once you have created a rig in DUIK, it gives full control over the head position, eyes, facial expression, mane, etc. without requiring you to do any actual scripting or manipulation of the pieces. Just scrub across the timeline manipulating the rig controls like a remote control, and voila! Super smooth and complex animations :D It takes quite a long time to set up the rig, but it makes the animation process o much quicker once it's done.

In this example, the little boxes in the upper right corner are my controls. Red controls the eyebrow height and angle, green points the eyes, and blue is the head position. The brown controller furrows the eyebrows together, and the two white boxes give each individual eyebrow a little lift for extra expressiveness. These six controls automatically move all the puppet pins and layers without any other input required. It makes animation so much quicker and smoother!
Bts-all by equumamici

Pretty neat, eh? :D
Twiggy here isn't quite finished, I want to add more controls for the eyes, ears, and mouth. I'd also like to find a way to have her head turn slightly in each direction. There will be a more lengthy animation featuring Twiggy in the future!

I hope to use this rigging method for most of my future projects :-)
I've been working on a little side project, an ambient scene with an animated background and music. It's all in a watercolour style, and I want to place Celestia in the scene with two views. I'm looking for a collaborator who would like to see their watercolour rendition of Celestia become animated! :D

Ideally it would be a digital watercolour with the body, mane, tail each in separated layers. However, if you prefer real paper and water, a hand-painting on a blank white canvas would work as well! 

The two views I'm looking for;
1) a distant 3/4 view, seeing Celestia from above and behind. She is turned slightly so that we see her right side. Her body language is quiet, as if in deep reflection. Her entire body is in the shot.
2) on a 16:9 canvas, a close-up profile view of Celestia's face. Her head takes up most of the right side of the canvas. Her mane is partially visible behind her. Her eyes are closed. Her face shows that she is troubled. 

If you or someone you know are seriously interested, send a note my way! I can send you the scene she will be placed in for reference. I will update this journal article once I have a confirmed artist, so if you are reading this right now, I'm still looking for someone! ...is it you? :D
Working on some video editing for about an hour. Come say hello!

picarto.tv/EquumAmici
picarto.tv/EquumAmici

Working on some animation. Come say hello!


It will be spoopy!
Nightmare Moon grin
Reference2 by equumamici
So, waaay back somewhere in 2014 I saved this video to my computer of a horse running on a treadmill. I finally know enough of how to use After Effects that I can actually do something with it!

Last post I took you from motion capture to puppet creation, and ended up with this: 
Running Pony Rig (WIP) by equumamici

After some more work, I've been able to create this!  
Alicorn Run Cycle (WIP 2) by equumamici

A ton of cleanup later, and all the parts are seamless now!! Some parts change shape over time too, and I had to change a bit of how the hooves and joints were moving in the 'puppet' version. I was trying to get away with a single puppet point on her foreleg's backward bend, but in the end I had to go back and re-do the tracking with two pivot points in her carpus to make it work. 

I drafted up a mane and tail  too! They're only hovering in place for the moment while I fine tune the details, that tail isn't exactly where it should be... they will be motion tracked in the end. I think I'll make a separate post about the mane and tail creation.

You can see there's a bit of a stump where the tail should leave the body, my intention is to have an actual tail that fades into transparency as it enters the ethereal hair.

I also created quite a bulky shoulder, this is for attachment of her wings of course! I have some studying to do to figure out exactly how they should look. I'll probably start with closed/folded wings, but I have an ambitious goal of being able to make a flight sequence at some point!


...what have I gotten myself into?
MLP Emote Twilight Sparkle Stumped Dunno Shrug 
I'm working on an ambitious animation; the goal is to create a totally anatomically correct and hand-painted-looking alicorn!  Perhaps I'll even turn it into a YCH for you watchers? :D (Big Grin)

Running pony rig - Motion capture - WIP by equumamici
Step one was to motion capture a reference, and for that I found a video of a horse running on a treadmill. The motion tracking module wasn't able to cope well  with this... so all those motions were traced by hand! It ended up working very well :-)

Running Pony Rig - Motion Capture Data (WIP) by equumamici
This is the final motion data I'm using for the rig. I took the reference running horse and shortened the length of its back (MLP universe equines have very short backs compared to IRL horses) And changed the head movement as well.


Running Pony Rig (WIP) by equumamici
And here is my WIP puppet rig! It's very rough around the edges, but it's only a placeholder after all. I'll have to use some imagination and experimenting to create a mane and tail along with those missing wings. 

I'm super excited that this has worked out so far! I'll be picking away at this over the coming weeks and hopefully manage to get it finished.
MLP Emote Twilight Sparkle Happy 
Someone made a pony puppet rig for FaceRig!
...I'm very excited!!! If this does what I think it will, I'm going to have a lot of fun making some of these puppets myself!! :D
Face Rig Test by equumamici
  • Listening to: Mother Changeling
  • Playing: Pony Town!
  • Drinking: Caffeine
So, you like my animations? You should totally go check out this changeling animator I know,

:icontheshadowscale: TheShadowScale!

ShadowScale creates animated paintings as well. Having gotten started animating paintings a little while after I did, I'm a bit alarmed at how fast I'm being caught up to! XD Those animations are getting better and better each time one is posted. Now that you guys have all met Thorax... I figure it's safe to bring this bug out as well!

Head over to that DA page and give a follow! Changeling 
  • Listening to: Mother Changeling
  • Playing: Pony Town!
  • Drinking: Caffeine
picarto.tv/EquumAmici

I plan to stream more work today of my commission for :iconkahai99:. I managed to get it fully rigged and greenscreened before After Effects decided it didn't want to work anymore.
Yesterday's stream was full of technical difficulties, I hope to make up for it today! 

I took requests after After Effects stopped working, and ended up making this DPAM animation for :iconlittleslimy:

Pepper Rage Shift mod and Pearl Pastel by LittleSlimy

I'll be posting a journal notification when I go live! 
  • Listening to: DubstepGutter
  • Playing: Pony Town!
  • Drinking: caffeine
I"ll be workign on a commission for :iconkahai99: for an hour or two!

picarto.tv/EquumAmici
  • Playing: Pony Town!
  • Drinking: caffeine
Comment below with what you've got!
  • Reading: exams
  • Watching: exam grades
  • Playing: exams
  • Eating: caffeine
  • Drinking: caffeine
Art Questions:
  • How do you make these animated pictures?
    Almost all of the animations in my gallery have been created with DP Animation Maker. It is a program that lets you animate images by warping and distorting, to put it simply. It's a fairly inexpensive program that you can buy on Steam, or you can get a free trial of it here. It is cheaper to buy straight from the developer's website :-)  I would recommend it for anyone who wants to get started manipulating images in a simpler program (Compared to something intense like After Effects, where you basically have to take a training course)

  • What else do you  use?
    I use PhotoShop to touch up all of my gifs after they're created. Most places have size limits on gif files, and PhotoShop lets me tweak the settings so that it ends up being the file size I need. Gif files straight out of DP Animation Maker are huge! DPAM also is not able to make transparent gifs, so sometimes I make a gif with a colored background and then use PhotoShop to make that color transparent.
    I have also started to use Adobe After Effects for my most recent animations. This program is much more difficult to use and much more expensive, but lets you do really fancy things! It also lets me create  layers and layers of animation. However, even though I am using After Effects now, all my animations still start out in DP Animation Maker to give the characters movement.

  • How can I learn to use the programs you use?
    I highly recommend using an online tutorial, there are lots of them out there. My personal favorite is Lynda.com. This is where I learned how to use Photoshop and After Effects. They have very good introductory courses for you to follow along with, and you can go through as many tutorials as you want for a flat monthly price. 
  • Do you stream your work anywhere?
    I do! Follow me at picarto.tv/EquumAmici . I stream once or twice a week and always announce my bigger streams here on Deviantart. Sometimes I'll feel like doing a short, informal stream and you'll only find those ones if you're following my Picarto. Soemtimes I open up spontaneous requests on stream as well :-) 

  • Do you get permission from people when animating their paintings and such?
    I get permission for every piece I end up posting in my Deviantart. You will also always find a link to the original source and artist in my descriptions :-)
Sometimes I will work on a request in a stream, or start animating something just for fun, but I go back later and check with the artist before posting.

  •  Do you take requests?
    I love getting requests, it is a great way to discover new art! I look at all requests, but I can't make any promises that it will end up being animated. I keep myself super busy so I don't have a ton of free time to do all the requests I receive. Sometimes I'll see a request that really speaks to me and it ends up getting animated spontaneously, other times it just doesn't work out.

  • Do you take commissions?
    I do! But it's a bit disorganized right now.  Message me if you have a piece you would like animated, and I can give you a quote on how much it would cost. I am working on a proper commissions list, but since every animation is so different, it's hard to give a quote without seeing the actual source image.

  • How long does it take you to animate a painting?
    It varies a lot from image to image. I am 'capable' of animating a simple image in about half an hour, but for average animations I usually spend at least a few hours. My fanciest animations have taken 12 to 20 hours, and usually I will go through about ten different versions of the final product before I'm satisfied with how it turns out.
  • Any chance of you doing a tutorial for animating paintings?
    Unfortunately, tutorials are extremely time consuming to make and it's a very broad topic. The other issue is that I usually work on  things in pieces at a time, and making a tutorial on the whole process would be hard to manage. I don't have plans to create any tutorials, but I might start putting up time lapses of animations that I stream on Picarto! Sometimes I will also post a behind-the-scenes or WIP in my scraps folder. If you really, really want a specific thing tutorial'ed, I would consider doing it for a small commission or tip! :-)


Other questions:
  • Are you enjoying season 6 so far?
Overall, yes! I'm not too excited about the opener (it felt a little world-breaking), but I've really loved what followed!

  • Llama or Alpaca?
Llama. I think the amount of hair care required for an Alpaca would make me go crazy.
  • Best princess?
Don't do this to me D:


I've decided it's time to make a frequently asked questions journal, and while I have a few questions I hear all the time, I was hoping to include a few more you may have. Comment below, and I'll do my best to give you some answers!

MLP Emote Twilight Sparkle Happy 
  • Listening to: Monstercat 100th Podcast
  • Watching: MLP Season 6! :D
  • Drinking: Coffee. LOTS of coffee.