The Train to Qinling
My senior thesis short, I am responsible for all aspects. This film takes the viewer through a magical experience of a Middle-Eastern traveler that gets lost on a train in China with no one else but a Panda! She must learn to communicate with him in order to find the adventure she was looking for in an unexpected way.
"The Train to Qinling" has yet to be released in public and is privately listed for the judges.
In the meantime please enjoy the teaser trailer and some development work I've created :)
The Train to Qilnling - Short Film
The story is based on a personal experience of mine backpacking in Far-East Asia, where I learned that there are many ways to communicate, even when words are not an option. It is also inspired by my experience connecting with non-verbal children through art.
My goal is to convey important subjects with the world through adventures and innocent stories. I believe the best way to influence the young minds is through the subtleties that speak to the subconscious of the viewer. “The Train to Qinling” discusses the importance of communicating with those who are different from you. Rather than fearing the different, we should embrace it and find more creative ways to understand one-another. Communicating with people from different backgrounds, cultures or even disabilities create the most amazing and enriching experiences.
PangPang went through a design change. After finalizing his design and beginning to model I realized the 3D representation was not working as well as I would like. I ended up re-designing him and re-modeling.
Although I took liberties both with his design and way of acting, a lot of research went behind creating PangPang's character. Some acting moments like the ear twitches or the licks and little mouth movements were inspired by real pandas. His clumsiness and chubbiness were also all part of the elements I wanted to keep from real life. However in order to convey emotion that would be understood by the viewer, he makes sounds that are not true to panda sounds. He is missing two fingers and his proportions were exaggerated in order to give him the young and innocent look.
He has large arms that end with tiny hands, his stubby legs and feet and his big belly were a big rigging challenge. I ended up creating various solutions to keep the volume of the model when deforming.
Born and raised in Israel, I wanted to represent a design which isn't that common on screen. Gili has olive-skin, a round nose and frizzy hair, breaking away from the light-skin, button nose female character, while still keeping her appealing.
The cloths, colors and jewelry, were all inspired by my own home.
For her dreads and earring I wanted to have a more natural movement so I created a dynamic rig for each individual dread and for the earrings, while manually posing and tweaking the animation.
I created the hair and fuzz on the scarf using xGen. In the film I simulated the scarf using nCloth.