Thursday, December 1, 2011

Olive Sculpture

I sculpted her for clean-up animation. Reference makes our lives so much easier.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

TreeKing Progress

TreeKing Progress from OLIVE crew on Vimeo.

Sorry for the lack of updates! OLIVE is well into production, and we're very much on schedule! The Olive Crew has started animating Olive, and we've finished modeling Treeking!

More updates to come soon!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Animation Test and blah-de-blah

I learned so much with this little test.

My "jump test" went out of control and turned into a jump and run test. I was testing out Olive's design to see how easy or difficult it was to animate her. Overall, she was pretty easy to deal with. I had a little bit of trouble with her loose hair strands (at times they looked like horns) but I think I can remedy it. The run was a challenge, because I referenced Edward Muybridge's photo sequences. My first pass looked as stiff as nails, so I added a bit more bounciness to her run and broke the joints in this one.

Click here to see!

Also, Flash BITES. I'm going to try to do most of Olive's acting shots on paper and pencil and try the walks and runs on Toon Boom.

Is anyone else having trouble embedding from Vimeo?


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Tree King 4

This is awesome. I'm trying to choose between this one and TreeKing3 (AKA "The Fat One"). So many pros and cons to both choices!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Trees again!

In the previous style frame I used a grungy plaster texture, and in this one I'm using a crackled paint texture. I think the crackled paint reminds me more of Gustav Klimt's paintings. The cracks on Olive might be too jarring, but I'm not bothered too much by it unless I'm looking for it. I just wanted to stray away from the smooth "digital" look.

Without texture
With texture

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A Fresh Batch of Zane Paintings

Zane doesn't want the tree to look like TreeBeard from Lord of the Rings. I forgot what TreeBeard looked like, but when I saw the pictures, a small part of me died. He looks a LOT like Olive's TreeKing because of that hooked nose and beard. D: See below...

So, we've been going back and forth about a fresh approach, which is taking a while.
TreeKing 1

I love Tree King 1's legs and root feet. This is a minor detail, but I really like the leaves that are just dots, instead of the natural leaves. The spherical leaves have a more Klimt feel. This is also your only painting with a sort of knubby nose, and I liked that nose in the tree sketches earlier. It's a lot more natural. Let's stick with two arms and squinty eyes though.
 The TreeKing 2's body here is a much closer silhouette to what I was anticipating. I like how he's leaning over in his posture. He reminds me too much of a robot though and is lacking in that mystical quality. I'd like more of his head being shown.
TreeKing 3
I love Tree King3's crown! I also like his squinty eyes and mouth here. I really never pictured him being fat, Zane! Although, if he were fat, he would stand apart from the other trees and provide good contrast. I'm slowly warming up to this idea the more I think about it. I love the bark texture and colors on him. They're beautiful! Is his chin hollow?

Ok Olive crew, let us know what you think and please comment below! I'm trying to be more receptive to atypical designs for a truly unique visual experience, but in the end it needs to support the story.

Thank you again for the sketches, Zane! You rock!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Model Sheets Part 3 Facial Expressions

I've put together some roughed out facial expressions. I realized that I always drew Olive with the same expression, so I really needed to get these out. Drawing with a tablet is extremely difficult, but I'm happy with how some of the drawings turned out. Her range is pretty subtle...of course...but there are few extremes. How do you folks feel about the cintiq versus pencil looks?

I'm going to hash out some more action poses and visdev pieces while I impatiently wait for After Effects to arrive in the mail.

Also, my main blog is now. My one year ownership for the domain name expired, and I temporarily switched back to blogspot because I wanted to use for a real website in the future. I typed my old URL in today to repurchase it and was dismayed to see that it was TAKEN. I'm so sad now. Whoever you are who bought it, I hope you're a Miss and a Ngo who loves puns too. >:(

Friday, July 29, 2011

Model Sheets Part 2 Action Poses

Action! I've come across an amazing blog that breaks down great key poses, and I tried to apply those principles in these drawings. I'm debating whether to keep those seams in the overalls or not. They help delineate form, but I don't think they're necessary. Thoughts and suggestions are welcome. Facial expressions are next, as promised.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Olive hears something above.

This is another style frame for my technical director Ryan, because we need to see how the gritty/chipped paint texture looks on the characters together. It's going to be tricky blending the two to match in the same environment, but it can definitely be accomplished.
Working on this film is so addicting. I also miss Provence dearly when I look up reference pictures for my forest. Nostalgic sigh...

Saturday, July 23, 2011


Hey everyone! This is the basic turnaround a basic shape breakdown for Olive. I wanted a very simple design so I wouldn't have to worry about excruciating detail while animating her. I'm a pretty impatient animator, and I'd like to have the most effective design for story and production because I'm planning to do most of the animation for my film. I'm currently working on the action poses, facial expressions sheets, and another style frame. So tune in soon!


If you are interested in coloring and clean-up, please email me at Thank you!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tree King Sleeping

This is a painting on top of one of Zane's compositions. While painting this, I felt very stiff...I realized how important it was to loosen up and not be so nervous about this style I'm trying figure out. It'll come with more and more practice. I'm going to try that speedpainting approach next time. Critiques and suggestions are more than welcome, by the way. :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Tree King Variations

I'm lucky enough to get Zane Yarbrough to design my Tree King, and he's come up with some fantastic first sketches.
beautiful face and hands

Squashed face looks great. I can see Olive and him belonging in the same world here because of his face design.


I love this smiley, friendly face. :)

I'm leaning towards the stronger, less skinny legs. I pictured him with a humped back, too.

I kind of like this idea of dangling arms. Can you keep playing around with it?
I can't wait to see more! This film just got ten times better already. I'm also painting one of Zane's sketch compositions, so stay tuned. :)

Olive crew and friends, feedback is greatly appreciated (especially from the Olive crew who will be modeling and texturing this beast).

Friday, July 8, 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


So I got the privacy settings working on Vimeo, so if you're part of the crew this link is for you. Email me at if you can't remember the password.


Trees trees trees

A style frame for Olive's forest. It's not exactly what I'm envisioning the forest to be quite yet, but every time I'm getting closer. I'm researching for a much stronger style but at the same time, the layouts shouldn't overpower the characters.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Olive-getting closer to finalizing the design

I'm getting closer and closer to finalizing Olive's design. :)

Tree King Visdev

Trying to work out the infamous Tree King design

The main inspiration for the look of Olive is the style of Gustav Klimt. I'm using yellows and golds against the darkest of browns to create a feeling of anxiety.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday, May 1, 2011


Hey, everyone! I apologize for the lack of updates on here. I've been in Lacoste, traveling nonstop all over Provence and spent a week in Paris.  During on of my travels, I found this beautiful tree in the Luberon Valley on a hike to the neighboring village, Bonnieux.  I loved the crown that the chopped branches formed, so I've been applying that element to our infamous tree man.

Here's a still from the storyboards, just to give you a little sneak peek of the old animatic. I'm revising it right now, and I'm excited to see everything coming together!

Monday, March 21, 2011


Hey, everyone!  This is my new blog for my senior film production: "Olive."  It's a working title, but I'll figure it out very soon.  I'm slowly building a very talented crew of animation and visual effects majors to come together and produce an amazing short film with experimental media development, strong artistic vision, and beautiful animation.  I'm extremely motivated and put all of effort into my projects, and I will make sure that this film becomes a reality.  Feel free to check up on the blog weekly updates on character designs, layout designs, art direction, and composite tests. 

--Harriet-Lane Ngo