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Chop Shop Re-work of Apatosaurus Armature (again)

April 4, 2011

Okay, I’m spending too much time on this Apato Project :x . I can feel motivation waning. I want to get into the frigg’n hands on animation. I did not intend to go farther screwing around with this armature. These past few weeks, armature was mostly sitting on the bench & once in awhile I look at it contemplating the changes.  I was putting off doing any more work on it. I am trying to resurrect an old armature I made so many years ago when my skills & knowledge were more primitive. The anatomical proportions were all so off. The aluminum body blocks had ridiculous proportions. I used only a few ball sizes because that’s all I had at the time. I already previously did a small upgrade to this antique Apato armature (you can read previous episodes listed below). but my gnat’s ass compulsion kicked-in. It was NOT right and Dino aficianados or hobbyist paleontologists would negatively critique it. So I did more chopping up of the armature AGAIN ….. re-positioning, re-sizing the components, re-brazing, re-shaping parts, in effort to be more closer to current Apatosaurus skeletal/anatomical concepts. It is close now but I am not going to devote more time to achieve whatever that perfection is (life is too short!)

BTW, there is plethora of paleontological debate about Sauropods (Apatosaurus in that dino species/family) whether their necks/heads were positioned HIGH  like a Giraffe VS. the head/neck positioned LOW.  The jury is still out and it seems there will  an endless debate about it even after I’m ‘pushing up daisies’.  I tend to go with the LOW neck position. The pushers of sauropods necks being in HIGH position, come up with strange theories to account for the tremendous high pressure required to pump the blood up the massively thick & heavy necks of these humongous creatures, such as having ‘Multiple Hearts in the Neck’. WTF are these paleontologists smoking? But …. I digress.

For a paying client, I do not mind re-working or upgrading existing armatures, but for myself, I prefer to work-out designs, thoughts, ideas and visualize on paper FIRST. This way, one does not waste time in the construction phase. I do all my work whether drawing, sculpting, house projects, working on my truck, etc.  in similar way.  I like to plan as much as possible so that the hands-on stuff goes quickly.  Other’s perhaps think my method is too rigid and not free-flow sponteneous.  I say …. no right or wrong way …. it is the end results that counts. I prefer my working/creation methodology :) .

Only so much modification I can do to this existing armature as the balls joints were kind of oversize and I am not going to replace with new smaller ball joints. Anyway …. Take a look at my ‘Low Rider Apatosaurus‘ version. Head hung low, sleek, and confident (not lumbering & weak) with its ass & tail way up high ….. mighty and proud :mrgreen: ….

Okay, you thought, “Is the above the only picture?”.  I know some of you are sideline couch sitting ;) Stop Motion fans and just like looking & reading about it, and others are doing actual hands on stop motion whether as amateur, hobby, creative, etc. Well to serve your compulsions ….. Go knock yourself out :P …. more photos …. Pic 1Pic 2Pic 3 Pic 4Pic 5Pic 6Pic 7

References: ‘Raising the Sauropod Neck: It costs more to get less’More brain-frying up the Wah-zoo debate (search results) – SMW News ‘Apato Episode 1′SMW News ‘Apato Episode 2′

Topics: Behind the Scenes, Stop Motion, Stop Motion Armatures | 10 Comments »

10 Responses to “Chop Shop Re-work of Apatosaurus Armature (again)”

  1. BIT = ticket untuk 1 trip sehala sahaja di sekitar
    bandar Rome berharga Euro 1.50. Ia boleh digunakan selama 100min, bermaksud once dah naik
    pengangkutan awam (metro prepare, tram atau bas) tu kita leh duk lepak dalam tu selama tidak lebih 100min.

  2. L.I.O says:

    Only took a few pics of original years ago before digital cameras, internet, & maybe you were just a baby then ;) Just could find only one pic which is what you see here ….
    … which also has been online at SMW gallery for long time. If you open two browsers you can study & see difference. Before I recently did all this armature chopping up changes, I should have taken new photos but I didn’t.

  3. Ravenstar says:

    Could we get a side by side shot if you can of the old design and the New one???????

  4. Mark Sullivan says:

    Great looking armature, Lio! You mentioned you might have preferred smaller ball joints. I think when it comes time to animate this guy, you might like not having to push through some much rubber or cotton before you “make contact” with the armature. Looking forward to seeing your sculpting on this. Mark

  5. U_Ani says:

    Dinosaur anatomy may have pretty much depended on the environment that these animals evolved at(pretty much all animals get shaped by the environment). They filled their own food niches thus maybe that’s why the specialized anatomy(I don’t think they raised their heads too high). Maybe the low-going neck isn’t that impractical if you take the environment to the equation. What kind of land did these things live in? And were the drastic changes one reason why they went extinct? Food for thought.

  6. Beautiful armature…reminds me of something Jim Danforth would design…and that’s just about the highest compliment I can give you! So what’s next? A sculpture and foam casting or the Delgado style buildup process?

  7. Ravenstar says:

    Who cares about whats right , the armature rocks. And i would love to see it animated too. big thanks.

  8. Rotter says:

    How about “Are” there, instead?

  9. Rotter says:

    Can’t wait to see it move. OT, I recently re-watched Crater Lake Monster. Is there any BTS shots of the animation out there? THX.

  10. Ron Cole says:

    So there’s this juicy ripe fruit hanging on one of the upper branches of a tree and this starving sauropod at the base who needs to bribe a monkey to go up there and get it for him? Come on!

    There are several less popular theories about sauropod posture I think might be more likely – like the one that says they were actually bi-pedal (walked on two legs, for those of you in Rio Linda) using their tail to aid balance. (also known as Tripods)

    Some argue that there’s a chance that we’ve simply never yet found a complete skeleton and there’s actually a head at both ends for more efficient eating. (Dualheadus-Munchosaurus)

    And of course the theory that says that paleontologists have incorrectly assembled the bones, placing the fore and back legs too close together. The claim being that Brontosaurs walked like giant inch-worms. :shock:


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