Phobia animation with Jeanne Prigent

Jeanne is a talented and dynamic freelance 2D animator who worked on Neurodeck’s phobia animation.

What is the part of your job that you like the most?

The part of my job I like the most might be making the rough animations. That’s the step of the workflow where you bring life to the character – for Neurodeck, they were phobias. That’s the moment when you have to think about the movements you’ll make, the personality of the subject and even what the player might feel while watching it. It’s the most interesting part of the process and I am thrilled everytime I start a new animation!

What have you learned from your experience on Neurodeck?

I graduated less than a year ago when I started animating for Neurodeck. I had already worked on games, but they were student games, game jam projects or serious games that weren’t supposed to reach as many players as Neurodeck. Thanks to this experience, I improved my animation skills since phobias’ actions were movements I had never animated before – it was very different from the usual walk cycle, for example. Thanks to the team who trusted me and my work, I gained a lot of self-confidence and I’m very grateful for this.

How was your experience on Neurodeck different from what you used to do? Was animating 15 phobias challenging?

The biggest difference from what I used to do is that this time, I was responsible for the animations only and had an Art Director and Creative Director to lead me. I had never been involved in a project which was at a fairly advanced stage either, and I rarely animate characters that I haven’t designed myself.

Animating the 15 phobias wasn’t too difficult. I found my own workflow I could repeat every time I’d begin working on a new one. They all share similar animations (Appearance, Idle, Hit and Defeat) and then they have their own actions. Idle is the priority because every other animation has to start or end with the idle pose. During the process, I would ask for some feedback from the team, especially from my leads, to make sure this animation would match the design before cleaning and exporting it. It went well and I could even rework some animations I wasn’t happy with.

Is there a phobia or a card that reminds you of a special event in your life?

When I worked on Mysophobia and Nosophobia, I couldn’t help myself but think about the current pandemic. Haptophobia as well. Those ones felt too real almost! Otherwise, even if I’m scared of spiders in real life, I feel like Agoraphobia is scarier than Arachnophobia for some reason.