I mentioned the other day that I was working on a side project that was eating up some time.
It was finished shortly thereafter but I have a horrible memory and completely forgot that I said I would post the results.
Hopefully by now my longer-time readers will have noticed I have a new header.
(Go on, scroll up to look if you don’t know what I’m talking about. I know I had at least one person miss it entirely. Even though it fucking MOVES! If it was a snake it would have bit you! So says my Granny.)
I had been toying with the idea of getting a new banner since my original one was so BLAH. It was just a generic shot of a moon on a starry background. Whoop-de-doo.
An invite went out to the blogging community to submit ourselves for inclusion in the new Azeroth United project. (And it’s more than just bloggers, it’s a gathering place for the whole WoW communication-community.)
Catch was, they wanted a 200×200 pixel shot to represent my blog.
Duhhhhh…. I got nothing.
So that forced me to really kick it into high gear for designing a banner. Then I would have something to sample down to the appropriate size.
Was checking on the image size requirements for my banner on this blog and noticed that the site accepts gifs. And if it accepts gifs then it accepts animated gifs!
Downloaded the latest copy of WoWModelViewer and I was off. This is really a neat toy to play around with. You can check out all sorts of gear, mounts, characters, NPCs, monsters and items – as well as their animations. For giggles find the Lich King files and select the “mount” animation; had me laughing pretty hard.
Got my banner done, sampled it down to submit to Azeroth United and then had one of those creative fits where I absolutely had to do another one.
It’s just a little animated gif of my husband’s rogue stealthing through the hallway leading to the throne room in Stormwind.
Now I would like to point out that I do not have software capable of blue/green screening or full-blown automated animating (yet – it’s in the mail).
The WoWModelViewer only does animations with the character in the same place, i.e. walking in place with no forward locomotion. For my banner, that was no problem, he’s just standing there, no illusion of momentum needed.
But this means that for the tools at my disposal, to make his character appear to move, I had to position every single frame individually.
This was a labor of love and I immediately demanded that he show his appreciation by loading it into his profile on our guild website and then posting a comment somewhere so people could see it.
Of course, I did it with the size of my banner in mind and our guild forums are much more narrow so I had to create a second copy that is greatly trimmed down in width.
I’ve got some new software coming in the mail so hopefully I can start dabbling in more complicated animations. I have a couple ideas that are just too much to stick in an animated gif and would be far too time consuming to try without better tools.
As I do some experimenting, I’ll be sure to post results here.