Intro - Short but Sweet

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Los Angeles, California, United States
So many interesting things happen around us, Why not write about few of them?

Monday, January 31, 2011

Animation - Art or Science?

Consider we playing a game where I tell you a word and you have to come up with the most suitable word describing what I said.

What comes to your mind when u hear the word - 'Animation' ?

hmm.. Tom and Jerry? Childish? Funny? or.. Creative? or even.. Artistic?!

Animation is a combination of 2 "E's" -Engineering and Entertainment. I always wonder about how it has been so successful in hiding the basic secret - 'How animation is done?' I very recently realized a fact that making an animated movie is 10 folds more interesting than watching one!

But, That's not what i am interested in today. I am concerned about the question, Whether 'Animation and Graphics' considered more as an art or it has some different meaning?

I just want to narrate you my today's incidence from my class - Physically Based Modeling for Simulation and Games. After a mind tiring session of solving linear equations, double derivatives and finding force and energy on all these particle systems, one of the student asked the professor - "How do they come up with these equations?"

I really liked the question, I always wanted to ask this. This guy finally did!
The question was so simple and really interesting, How do mathematicians come up with equations like Force Equations, Tylers Equations, Alphas and Betas and Gammas, sine and cosine of angles, Derivatives and Integrations? It almost waked everyone up.
And the answer was more interesting..
Prof said, "It is simple, It is just like a symphony is created. It is just like a song is composed."

Mathematical equations are made just like a song is composed? The simile is so wonderful. The all so boring math equations are created just like a beautiful song! Whoa! That's a relief.

But the equations I learned in this subject has made me to believe, that Animation is just not a artists work. There is a lot of maths involved in every small thing in this world..
for eg.
- A strand of hair is imposed by Eulers Equations and So are waves of the sea.
- Fire Particles in computer animation are not random but they are moderated by well formulated algorithms.
- Water, Trees, Bushes, Rocks all these things might seem to be part of the background.. But they too are generated with intense algorithms and complex rules.

Mass Spring system, Newtons Law, Collision Detection, Linear Equations.. all these are required to generate one simple scene of any animated movie. There is hours and hours of efforts while bringing up a small movement. A slight wind, a simple wave of hairs, falling of rain.. all this is backed up with mathematical equations.

So, next time I watch an animated movie..


1 comment:

  1. Bestest of all the articles till now!
    Keep it up.