Bouncing ball

After finishing our first attemt on bouncing a bowl we were shown how to do squash and stretch, so our homework for next week is to bounce three different kind of balls. I had no experience in animating in 3D at all, and I had to try a few times before I got it right.

But first things first, before I even opened Maya, I did some research. I wanted to illustrate the weight of the balls somehow, not only with squash and stretch, but with timing as well. I had a look at the Fundamentals of Animation course that Aaron Blaise made. Anyone can make a purchase for it on his website, . So far I found it very useful.

“Animation is the caricaturing of life. It’s taking life and exaggerating it. And that’s what squash and stretch does.” says Aaron Blaise in his video. I agree with this, and this is one thing I have always loved about animation. There’s no physics or any laws to bind us.

I also had a brief look at this section of Richard Williams’ The Animator’s Survival Kit. (It’s all very useful I just didn’t have the time to read through the whole book yet…) I have tried to put in use what he writes about spacing and timing. The ball gets slower as it reaches higher in its arc and than falls down quicker.

Conánn sent us a file, and I think it was alright for a tennis ball, so I used it as a reference to create mine. It wasn’t easy, I had to get used to the graph editor, but after a few failed attempts I could put it together.

My second ball was the bowling ball.

I found this video really useful even tho I didn’t model any stairs at the end. Considering the hardness of the bowling ball I didn’t use any squash and stretch, and I only added small bounces.

At the end I had a lot of fun with the small bouncy ball.


All in all I was satisfied with the outcome of these three balls.


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