Monday, September 17, 2007
Making of Tip Talk
If you haven't notice, The New Paper has a small cartoon column called Tip Talk. It's a weekly cartoon that Tip Talk is based on 4 characters, from the Kopi-O Klan, whom Ernest Luis, the TNP Postman, would interview every week. They are punters who would make bets on the coming EPL matches.
It has gone through several visual changes over the years. There were pen & ink versions and vector style. The recent version is created in 3D. Tip Talk has been around for years and the character designs are already well established. I just had to turn them into their 3D form. We have Maya for doing that.
The modeling process took about one month. Then I had to put in the bones for the characters to enable them to make some simple poses. Below's a model of Pundit in the classic T-pose in a 3D environment. The T-pose is the default pose for 3D characters so that they can be posed easily.
Modeling the set, which is the coffee shop in this case, took just as long. You can see that I've modeled quite a bit of props on the set. They just serve as the backdrop in the panel.
The advantage of 3D is after you have the models, creating panels is easier because you don't have to draw the characters anymore. You just have to pose them and render out a frame.
After squeezing his brain dry, Ernest Luis, would email me the content to go into the week's column.
Depending on who's appearing on the column that week, they will be added into the scene respectively. For this example scene, we have only Pundit, Mani-Kam Mani-Go, 3D Ernest and a guest character called Ah Pek, with his pet bird called Big Bird.
The characters are put into position based on the respective talking order. After which, I'll do a render at the size of half a TNP page.
Next, the rendered image is placed into a layout software for compositing and adding of dialogue. The finished layout will then be sent to the sub editors for proofing where they check for mistakes. If everything is alright, the column is placed onto the page with other content and printed.
Days later, we'll get complaints from our readers saying that they lost money following their tips. Just kidding.