I’m definitely a dog person and I’ve been wanting to do some kind of dog design for a while now, so I decided to a dog in Illustrator and turn it into an animated gif! I started out with some sketches:
There were a few others but these were the best ones for sure. At this point I wasn’t totally sure what I wanted the dog to do yet, I just knew that I wanted it to be a dog. I played around with a few different poses and even different breeds of dogs. I decided to ditch the realistic and go for more of a cartoony look like the sketch on the left.
Then I went and started to make it in illustrator. I started with the head and modeled it after the left sketch and decided that I wanted him to open up his mouth and pant with his tongue sticking out, so I made sure that the different parts all worked together and were able to move which was trickier than I thought! I’m used to not having to worry about the pieces that you can’t see.
I then decided to have him sitting instead of standing and honestly kind of freehanded this in illustrator, but went a little bit off of the sketch on the right.
Then I thought “what if a ball rolled past him and caught his attention?” So the last thing that I designed in illustrator was a tennis ball.
Then I took it into After Effects which was much trickier than I thought it would be. It took me a couple of times going back and forth between Illustrator and After Effects before I got it right. There were small things that I didn’t initially realize – like that the eyes needed to be on separate layers so they could move correctly and that his stomach/torso (do dogs have a torso?) area needed to be separate from the rest so that it would look like he is breathing. In the end this is how it turned out and I have to admit that I am pretty pleased with it! I keep finding myself watching it over and over and chuckling to myself.