Database for Animation Studies


Action and Behavior in the Images of Human Gait

Point-light walker (PLW), produced by eight lights attached to the back of a walker, is perceived as a vivid image of human gait. In each of the PLWs made from eight walkers, correlation with the movements of their heel and shoulder, opposite to each other, is calculated to generate plotgraph. Their plot-graphs reveal the pattern, considered to be characteristic of the actor's performance, shaped variously each in his or her own way. In the animated cartoons, the plot-graphs are also calculated with the PLW of image-characters. They appear to be shaped very simply as in a roughly triangular form. Those findings that the live-action images generate a very intricate form of plot-graphs, whereas the animated images indicate a very simple form of them, are considered as that fine movements of the actor need for the audience to recognize his/her intended action. In the animation, however, the animated character need not be moved finely and completely, because the animator elaborates to produce the incomplete images for the audience to make the incomplete complete mentally yielding the deeper impression of living dynamics in the mind of audience.

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