This is a short teaser for Combound, an original story I developed in the spring 2016 at the NC State College of Design. In it, a young boy caught in an intergalactic war crosses paths with a young woman with the ability to transform into a giant robot. Combound was my first time at incorporating the possibility of a bigger narrative outside of a school project. A lot of my inspiration for the character designs and backgrounds came from 1980’s anime.

Below are the initial storyboards. These went through three drafts before being approved by the teacher. A lot of what changed is just how events led from point A to point B.

Of course, one of the highlights of Combound is the effects animation. Take the laser beam for example. Legendary Japanese animator Yoshinori Kanada was famous for letting his effects take on their own “character” which is something I took inspiration from here. A lot of unique shapes are used to make the initial build up more dynamic before the laser beam straightens out.

Perhaps the biggest challenge of the short was getting the appearance of the giant robot right. This cut went through a lot of iterations. Adding frames, removing frames, changing poses, and changing the timing.