Happy New Year everyone! A bit more than a month ago, I released my 4th animated short film “Uyir” and was thrilled by the feedback that I received for it. In particular, it was nice to hear that I had come so far ever since Theevan and that the film brought tears to their eyes. This was a film that was close to my heart and was made as a tribute to my own grandfather. The film is about a loving grandfather and his granddaughter and how things go horribly wrong when he is kidnapped and separated from the one he loves most. I went for a more emotional type of story in this one and I wanted to leave a strong message that would resonate well with viewers. The film took me in total about a year and a half to make and was made mostly in my spare time.
A bit of my YouTube statistics: In one month, this film has picked up nearly 6k views, the most I have ever got for a video within this period of time. The first day release alone had 1048 views, the most I’ve ever got for a video. Prior to this, it was Theevan with 659 views.
Based on the feedback, some of the strengths from this film include:
- Good storyline
- Character design
- Music (can’t take credit for this one, lol)
Some of the weaknesses from this film include:
- Character animation
- Awkward joint deformation
- Fight scene at the beginning too long and unnecessary (distracts)
- Girl should have grown up at the end and the grandfather should have looked more frail (perhaps balding as well along with missing teeth). This would have made the story more impactful.
I used the free open-source 3D software Blender and a bit of the open-source photo editing software GIMP for the making of this film. The video editing was also done with Blender. I tried my best to incorporate the feedback from my previous films and make this film as tight and as watchable as possible.
Ever since the release of “Uyir”, I appear to be dead online. The main reason for this, is that a day or two after I released Uyir, my computer completely crashed and never recovered. I was told that I burned out the motherboard and that it would be better to just buy a new computer. One month on, I have a new Dell All-In-One PC and will be spending time recovering all my lost files. This computer is not as strong and powerful as my old computer though, so that’s a bit unfortunate. This means, I can’t really push for higher quality works like “Uyir” in the near future. I hope to somehow find a way to earn some extra money so that I can upgrade. My current job earns enough to put food on the table and not much else. My YouTube channel only earns me single-digit dollars per month. I will be releasing a book on Amazon soon to help new users learn Blender, so I hope that that can be a good bit of side passive income to fund me.
I have submitted this film to a few film festivals to see how it goes. So far, I’ve been rejected for a few. But that’s ok, since my skills aren’t world class yet. That requires more time. I was quite happy to be have been featured recently on BlenderNation though, so that was nice!
Other than that, I will be starting my next animated film project. This will be my 5th animated short film project! As I mentioned, my new computer isn’t that powerful. So I don’t think I can shoot for an epic high quality film. I will look to do a low budget, low CPU-straining film and focus more on performance. A lot of people have mentioned that character animation is my weakest skill. Well, that is what will be the focus of my next film. Good acting and character animation with less visual “pop”. I will let you know details of this project soon.
There is also Theevan 2 in the pipeline as well. I have started writing the story for it and I reckon it might be more powerful than the original Theevan. But, there are a few issues I’ll need to sort out. For instance, I need to get my original Theevan character rig back and I don’t know where I stored him. If not, I’ll have to generate a new Theevan from scratch, but that might not look right. Nonetheless, it would be exciting (and even a bit nostalgic) to go back to Theevan again. It will be fun working in the fantasy/sci-fi genre!
Here are some posters I made for “Uyir”:
As usual, feel free to drop a comment below and let me know what I should do for my next projects (or even just any way I can get a bit of funding to help me get a better PC)!