"Animating animals is usually fun, but can often be complicated and technical. Figuring out what to do with all those legs can really trip up an animator. We can animate human-shaped characters a lot easier than multi-legged beasts because we have an intuitive knowledge of the way bipeds move.
It is easy for an animator to act out a motion when the character moves like us; feeling the action 'in the body' helps us understand how to animate it. So what happens when the character is a quadruped and you don't have that intuitive feel at your disposal? How do you make that movement believable? Suitable reference and a sophisticated media player is the place to start.
Luckily for the animation community, there is a wealth of reference material that can help. I'll walk you through my process for animating quadruped locomotion and share classic references that will help you deconstruct the fundamentals of the four gaits: walk, run, trot and gallop. I'll also share an example of my own 3D walk animation and offer technical tips for creating believable quadruped locomotion cycles."
(Cathy Feraday Miller, Gamasutra)
Fig.1 Richard Williams, uploaded by "animan1999" on 25 Aug 2009, YouTube.
Fig.2 Richard Williams, uploaded by "animan1999" on 1 Sep 2009, YouTube.
"Zoomorphic presents a startling new trend in architecture - buildings that look like animals. Animal resemblances arise for various reasons. An architect may wish to create a symbol, as architects have always done. Or, there may be a functional explanation for why a building comes to share elements of its design with that of some living creature.
Until now, the Art Nouveau was perhaps the high water mark of architecture's attempt to embrace nature. Today, with computers and new materials, architects are able to design and build more freely so they are exploring the natural world once more."
(Victoria & Albert Museum, 2004)
"Karhut, sudet, hirvet ja pöllöt kyläilevät ihmisten kaupungissa. Eteläafrikkalainen kuvataiteilija Roger Titley sekä israelilainen Airan Berg herättävät henkiin suomalaisen metsän eläimiä ja kutsuvat sinut mukaan. Avoimia, ilmaisia työpajoja järjestetään eri puolilla kaupunkia: toreilla, aukioilla ja puistoissa. Osallistua voi kuka vain. Mukana tunnelmaa kohottamassa on myös oma orkesteri. Eläimet kylässä -tapahtuma huipentuu musiikin tahdittamaan kulkueeseen Taiteiden yönä."
(Helsingin juhlaviikot, 2011)
"In this whimsical world you can adjust creatures' perceptivity, sociability and motility attributes to affect their movements. Amusing push-pulls evolve as creatures approach one another. Groups of dynamic, mutually responsive characters emerge."
(Edith Ackermann & Carol Strohecker)
"Dutch artist Theo Jansen has been working for 16 years to create sculptures that move on their own in eerily lifelike ways. Each generation of his "Strandbeests" is subject to the forces of evolution, with successful forms moving forward into new designs. Jansen's vision and long-term commitment to his wooden menagerie is as fascinating to observe as the beasts themselves.
His newest creatures walk without assistance on the beaches of Holland, powered by wind, captured by gossamer wings that flap and pump air into old lemonade bottles that in turn power the creatures' many plastic spindly legs. The walking sculptures look alive as they move, each leg articulating in such a way that the body is steady and level. They even incorporate primitive logic gates that are used to reverse the machine's direction if it senses dangerous water or loose sand where it might get stuck."