Big Hero 6 is a 3D animation movie about a 14 year old kid and his big super soft robot. The film is more aimed towards family and children as it doesnt use any harsh words or parts.
When they made the production of the film, it usually starts off with a story team of people who create the actual story, which meant that they woud have to they meet up and plan the entire film. They talk about what the film is about, what is the theme, who are the characters, and why the characters are important. While they are discussing they come up with ideas and start putting them storyboards, allowing a story to start to take shape.
While the team animates, they also create sketches of the characters and how they act in different situation with different facial expressions. an example of these drawings is a model sheet below, Hiro Hamada, the main character, these are for animation supervisor for the animation pre-production.
During the character design, they had to imagine what a typical 14 year old boy would wear as his clothes and look like and they chose to go with a boy with quite messy hair and a hoodie and many teenagers could relate to him.
After sketching the characters, they go through Maya software process where they make an outline of the character to get a basic size and shape then add on different parts and details to the character. The animators use the puppet tool in order to shape hundreds of different poses, these guys are usually called the sculptors and modellers.
Furthermore, when creating Baymax, they made a variety of different looks in order to get the best form, shape of the character. They approached seeing as him a balloon, making his body shape like a pear and quite overall. The directors wanted a huggable character which seemed really innocent and adorable.
After all the 2d drawings have been made, the animators take these 2d drawing and convert them into digital work. One of the important things is character exploration, how characters can move around. As they were animation Bayax, they wanted him to also move in a cute way so the animators looked at things such as toddlers, pandas to penguins.
The team did testing of penguin forms, toddler forms, and pandas form, and everyone agreed that penguin walk was the winner since it seemed the cutest for baymax. This demonstrates that in the animation industry, animators have to go out and explore real life scenarios and replicate them in animation
During the animation process there’s a lot experimentation, the animators did a small task in how would different characters walk into a café shop. As Hiro Hamada is quite a confident and cool kid, he comes into the café and kicks his legs up in the chair, in contrast to the other characters where they act completely differently. This idea was generated from a real life kid, and how it contrasted into the animation.
When they were animating the movie, they would need to make the animation look as realistic as possible with a cartoon look at the same time and as lighting makes a big difference to the overall animation they would need to understand how the lighting worked and where the light would reflect from the camera to different objects. As shown in the images above.
After animating all the characters and objects, the team add textures and detail to the characters to make it stand out and look more appleasing.