Animatic Critique – “Fruit for the Soul” by Audrey Jordan and Michael Matusick


This is a critique on the animatic of fellow Production 2 students Audrey Jordan and Michael Matusick, as part of our grade for aforementioned class.

On the whole, this animatic is amongst the strongest of the bunch shown in our Production 2 section.

The first aspect of the piece that came to my attention was the sound design. It was consistently strong throughout, excepting two issues. The first, which I know the creators are aware of, is that the sound cuts out briefly when the male character reaches the top of the tree.
The second is the scream at the end. I found the scream too loud in comparison to the rest of the sound mix, and I believe it’s a problem that could be rectified in a couple different ways. The first, most obvious fix would be to simply turn down the volume of the scream. However, since that argues a bit with what we know about screams (that they’re supposed to be loud), I can see how the sound designer would fall into the trap of letting it remain uncomfortably earsplitting.
The other solution I’d offer is a change in shot design. The creators could justify making the scream quieter by replacing the cut to black with a wide establishing shot of the forest the couple are walking through, putting distance between the woman screaming and the camera.

The timing throughout the piece is generally fairly solid, except at the end where the creature turns and leaps towards the camera. There ought to be a bit more time for the creature to anticipate its jump. Not only would that allow for stronger animation, but it would also serve to build more suspense, since that particular moment is the most climactic part of the animatic.

Beyond those gripes, there isn’t much I can pick out that begs for improvement for an animatic like this. The creature design was interesting, the peoples’ character designs worked in the setting (though I wonder why they were wearing sunglasses in the woods), and the trees looked exactly like trees. There are some shots I personally may have handled differently, though that comes down to preference which I don’t believe merits any kind of technical suggestion. I guess if I were to squeeze one more complaint out it would be that the font in the ending credits is a little corny.

Overall, well done and kudos to Audrey Jordan and Michael Matusick.


About torinmurphy

Animator in training. Connoisseur of concepts. Today I live to see. Tomorrow I'll live to show. Every day I live to learn.
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