Highly stylised animation

F Di Fiore, F Van Reeth, J Patterson, Philip J Willis

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In this paper we argue for our NPAR system as an effective 2D alternative to most of NPR research which is focused on frame coherent stylised rendering of 3D models. Our approach gives a highly stylised look to images without the support of 3D models, and yet they still behave as though animated by drawing, which they are. First, a stylised brush tool is used to freely draw extreme poses of characters. Each character is built up of 2D drawn brush strokes which are manually grouped into layers. Each layer is assigned its place in a drawing hierarchy called a Hierarchical Display Model (HDM). Next, multiple HDMs are created for the same character, each corresponding to a specific view. A collection of HDMs essentially reintroduces some correspondence information to the 2D drawings needed for inbetweening and, in effect, eliminates the need for a true 3D model. Once the models are composed the animator starts by defining keyframes from extreme poses in time. Next, brush stroke trajectories defined by the keyframe HDMs are in-betweened automatically across intermediate frames. Finally, each HDM of each generated in-between frame is traversed and all elements are drawn one on another from back to front. Our techniques support highly rendered styles which are particularly difficult to animate by traditional means including the ‘airbrushed’, scraperboard, watercolour, Gouache, ‘ink-wash’, pastel, and the ‘crayon’ styles. In addition, we describe the data path to be followed to create highly stylised animations by incorporating real footage. We believe our system offers a new fresh perspective on computer aided animation production and associated tools.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-123
Number of pages19
JournalVisual Computer
Issue number2
Early online date7 Dec 2007
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2008

Bibliographical note

The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com


  • Highly-stylised modelling
  • Interaction techniques
  • Paint systems


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