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CASE STUDY

Description:

This project is about bringing to life Schubert, the lovable nueroitc sea turtle. The story that I have thrown Schubert into is one where he has to save his beloved beach home from the neglect and ignorance of the bad beach goers he encounters. In this animation, Schubert encounters a woman who is not properly weighing down her plastic bags. Schubert comes to the rescue and teaches her the dangers of not anchoring her trash, and what might end up happening to it if it flies into the ocean.
 
Research:
It didn’t take long looking through the internet to learn that one of the biggest threats to sea turtles are plastic bags that fly off the beach and into the ocean. This is because these bags end up looking a lot like jellyfish when they hit the water. Jellyfish happen to be a favorite food to many sea turtles, but when the turtles get confused and attempt to eat the plastic bags, suffocation is often times the result.
 
Strategy:
I had done a lot of work to become comfortable with the design of our hero Schubert. I went through many character designs and finally found on that would make it easiest to break him apart in flash and create a sort of 2D turtle puppet. This was done by taking all of the features i liked most about each design and simplifying them into the most basic shapes I could. the Beach and clouds were easy enough to create, but i did use Daniel’s “Beach Junk” file to create the chairs, umbrellas, and even the outline for the girl that Schuby ends up interacting with. Another key to making the scenery come alive was the ocean. Luckily, Jennifer had created a colorful, lively ocean that i was able to throw into the background to give my beach some waves. She was also kind enough to throw in her turtle design, which was perfect for the scene where the turtle is suffocated by the bag, since hers was a more realistic, swimming turtle. 
 
Challenges:
the biggest challenges for me came from simply never having used flash before and having to tackle a lot of problems for the first time. Daniel was a fast thinker and created a good storyboard, which moved things along nicely, and Jennifer threw in some beautiful symbols to give the animation a more life-like feel, but in the end putting it all together was the biggest challenge. It was hard for me to keep track of symbols and layers. Often times i would end up altering original symbols without realizing it and having to go back and re-work a whole segment of the animation. learning to simply duplicate symbols was a habit i had to fight to get into. Another big problem came with piecing all of my scenes together at the end. I ended up bringing the final product into Final Cut to stretch some of the time and cut away some errors with a little bit more ease.
 
In The End:
The final product turned out much better than what i had expected and i walked away having learned a lot more than i originally thought i had. I would change a few things, such as tightening up the layers and adding more sound effects. Sound editing and the voice overs in particular where all done last minute and i think i could have improved  a lot of those factors had i given them more time. It would have also been nice to have some voice actors other than myself. All in all, this project taught me a great deal not only in flash, but simply in a new timeline that i hope to bring over into my other editing work in the future. I don’t think this is the last the world will see of schubert.

Schubert character description…

Schubert is an anxiety ridden sea turtle. He is a far from the life of the party, and would be considered a bit boring by any sea creature who happened to make his acquaintance. If he is not fretting about the many daunting aspects of turtle life, he is doing his very best to stick to his daily ruitine. Straying from this even in the slightest will cause Schubert a great deal of worry.

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Jhonen Vazquez is probably the biggest inspiration for Shubert and any other mess I come up with. He was the creator of comic books such as “Squee!”, “Johnny the Homicidal Maniac”, and “I Feel Sick”. He is probably best known for his Nickolodean show, “Invader Zim”.