I was reading the tutorial available on the website about how to do lip synching, and it misses a VERY important notation on the theory of lip synching.
(helped me out a lot, though; I didn't even know there was a zoom function in Premiere 'til I read it ^^; )
Searchy, also, fails to find a tuturial on the forum dedicated to this. There's a casual notation in one of the threads, but nothing more than that - and if someone needs help, will they find it there? Better to have an emblazoned thread that says, "FIND IT HERE!"
Lip synching by itself (not counting fancy pans or other movement in the shot) is not
hard, animators have been doing it for almost eighty years now. Why can't you?
No, it's not because you're dumb. I'm scandalized that you would even think such a thing! It's because they knew something you didn't: the basics of lip movement.
While I was tempted to go and pull some frames from an old Disney cartoon for this, instead I decided to use what I had and do this quick, while it was still in my head.
Essentially, the human mouth has 'three' positions when talking, and these are all the frames that YOU need when you're doing lip synching. You can have more than this, and your work will look better, but it'll be time-consuming and not altogether necessary. The eye will be tricked into 'seeing' the words with just these three mouth positions.
The MOST (MOST MOST MOST) common is halfway open:
Usually if a tongue movement makes a noise (like 'ch', 'ka', etcetera) then it's a halfway-open moment.
Next most common is fully open:
For yelling, of course; but also for sounds like 'o', 'ha', 'e'.... a lot of vowels by themselves fall in to this.
And LEAST common (pay attention, now!) is fully closed:
Only a few, sharp sounds use this, like 'p', 'th', and others.
I'm sure anime studios have little "Basic Mouth Movement" charts up on their walls, with each of the Japanese hiragana identified with a mouth size so that amateurs don't get it mixed up. Non necessary for us, because we've got their work right in front of us.
But how to do it easily? Nothing will replace effort and patience, but there are a few things to understand that will make it easier.
The halfway-open position is the most common for mouths to be in while talking
. I can't stress this enough. Humans almost NEVER close their mouths while talking except to make very specific noises. If there's no other movement necessary in the shot, I'd suggest exporting the halfway-open frame as a bitmap and placing it on the bottom video layer (Video 1B, for Premiere users), so you don't waste a lot of effort copying the most common mouth position. It looks static, but if that doesn't matter it will make it easier until you can get the hang of this thing.
The closed position is the least common for mouths to be in while talking.
Why am I repeating this? Because it's such a simple mistake to make, but it's so common and so unnecessary. Don't even have a closed mouth BETWEEN words; do you really close your mouth between each word? I'm serious. Leave it in the halfway position between words. S'all right to have it closed after they're done speaking, though; I shall allow you that much.
Never do single-frame flashes of a mouth movement.
You want at least 2, more commonly 3-4 frames, for any mouth movements. The only exception should be SOME of the closed-mouth sounds, which are always very fast, but you should always have a halfway-open frame before and after the close mouth.
This gets said over and over, but seriously, get a mirror and SEE how your mouth moves when you speak whatever you want to lip synch. Watch each word carefully and divide it up into halfway, fully, and closed portions. If you don't and you still complain, you have no one but yourself to blame.
And now for the bit of a pimp (small price to pay for a handy tuturial?) I managed to do some reasonably effective lip synching in this video, the first I ever tried lip synching in, because I understood
these techniques, and now hopefully, you do too.
http://www.animemusicvideos.org/members ... p?v=131422
The other tuturial at http://www.animemusicvideos.org/guides/ ... psync.html
is fine (great!) for the technical aspect; if you don't know how to do it or even what I'm talking about when I say 'frame' (don't laugh, I didn't know either) go read it right away. But as far as it goes he didn't EMPHASIZE the theory of it enough, or even have more than a single sentence on it - and he missed the most important point, that a closed mouth is least common. ^^;
Any other thoughts on the mystic art of lip synching, as long as I've got this thread here ready to recieve your confessions?
Official Fanboy Disclaimer: The above post is not meant to be taken internally. If you do so, consult a doctor immediately. Examine the post carefully, because it may have been meant as tongue-in-cheek. If you take the post too seriously, be warned that the poster may be laughing at you very loudly. Do not taunt Happy Fun Post.