5 – Blobby Eyes

After I had the “body” of my blob down, I started to think about the eyes. Honestly, I felt like being lazy and somehow justifying how I didn’t need the blob to have eyes…but deep down I knew that wasn’t true (and a lot of my friends were all: “give it eyes.”)

From the very beginning I knew I wanted to have a ‘rolling‘ kind of eye. I remember seeing these kinds of eyes in cartoons, but when I tried to google up an example as reference, nothing. Nothing at all, so now I just sound weird, talking about eyes rolling in eye sockets.

Different search terms gave different results (of course), none brought me closer to what I wanted:

blobeyeinspirations1 blobeyeinspirations2 blobeyeinspirations4 blobeyeinspirations5

^ Noooooo……  at this point I wasn’t feeling crazy enough to  click on any of those links.

So to describe the effect I had in my mind in words: imagine an eyeless slime dripping, then a slight rim of closed eyelids (line) appears, and as the eyes open slowly, the whites of the eyeball are seen first. Then the eyeball rolls, such that the iris rolls from the back to the front by rolling vertically (from top to bottom). Like rolling your eyes up until you can only see the whites, in reverse. Think about it.

Getting off topic:

So I made a final attempt at trying to find a video while writing my process (since I realised how little sense I made). Instead I came across horrifying information that said that it is literally possible to have your eyeball pop out of it’s socket. Blowing your nose, vomiting, excessive coughing…totally normal things.

  • One fellow, “during a fire, was struck in the right eye by a stream of water from a hose, violently thrusting the eye backward. Contracting under the double influence of shock and cold, the surrounding tissues forced the eyeball from the orbit, and an hour later [the doctor] saw the patient with the eye hanging by the optic nerve and muscles. Its reduction was easy, and after some minor treatment vision was perfectly restored in the injured organ. Thirty months after the accident the patient had perfect vision, and the eye had never in the slightest way discommoded him.”


^ So much queasiness.

Back on topic:

More random search terms (hoping they’d result in something):

blobeyeinspirations6 blobeyeinspirations7

^ close, but not really, it’s just looking up in that frame.

I remembered Hotel Transylvania had a ‘blob’ jelly thing:blobeyeinspirations9

I was so sure that when it was  first  introduced it must have rolled it’s eyes open – it didn’t. It just turns around with its eyes open ^

I moved on to just starting and letting my process control what I came up with:

simpleblobanimationseyes1 simpleblobanimationseyes2

^ Coloured the ‘white’ part a slightly tinted white. Went back and checked my original blob, I hadn’t done that with the red and blue blobs (I’d kept their whites actually white). Felt like the slight tint looked better, so stuck with it.


^ Wanted to use the ‘ellipses’ eyelid method to make it blink, but I knew immediately that it wouldn’t work (the area that I could ‘hide’ the lid in was very small – and was continuously moving – so it would be more complicated than it was to ‘camouflage’ it in the black blob).

Decided to make my own ‘custom eyesocket’ using the pen tool to make shape layers:

simpleblobanimationseyes5 simpleblobanimationseyes6

Experimented around, with the direction I wanted the eyelids to exist in:

simpleblobanimationseyes7 simpleblobanimationseyes8

I figured that a ‘regular’ horizontal eyelid was less distracting and more ‘natural’.

I wanted to make the iris move around in the eye in ‘waving kind of way’. I knew I’d accidentally done it the day we were introduced to aftereffects, so I Googled how I could do it again:


Looked into “interpolation” keyframes. They sounded like the thing I wanted:

simpleblobanimationseyes10 simpleblobanimationseyes11

^ Couldn’t figure it out by myself. My professor helped me figure it out. It was simply a position change. The reason it wasn’t working before was because the anchor point for the iris was way off of it (we moved it to the centre of it and it worked perfectly).

Another thing we tried to figure out was how I could track my blob’s drip so that the eye composition would just move with it. It seemed to us that motion tracking only worked with an imported video. I later googled how to track a mask anyway, just because I wasn’t completely satisfied by the thought that it wasn’t possible:

simpleblobanimationseyes12 simpleblobanimationseyes13 simpleblobanimationseyes14 simpleblobanimationseyes15

^ Just reaffirmed that yes, it’s not possible. The mask tracking that gave me hope was really about tracking a part of the video and placing a mask on it (so that the mask is following/tracking the movement in the video).

simpleblobanimationseyes16 simpleblobanimationseyes17 simpleblobanimationseyes18

^ Syncing blinking with the eye movement


^ Did the wavey iris movement. After the whole process of figuring it out, I ended up not having it move left and right in such an exaggerated wavey way. It ended up looking like I had simply moved it left and right in a straight line…


^ Instead of tracking, we figured that I could simply, manually sync the eye with the drip (using keyframes).


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