CSE 456 - Story for Digital Animation


Iteration 3: Ni Hao Pow! (7/14/09)

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- Beatsheet
- Shot List
- Character Design: 7/12, 7/14: 1, 2, 3
- Layout
- Thumbnails
- Storyreel
- Reference: 1, 2, 3

1) Once upon a time there was a guy, Yao, who had a date with a girl named Mei on New Years Eve. 
2) Yao was nervous and worked all day to prepare the perfect romantic dinner, making huge quantities of heavily-seasoned food. 
3) Right as he finished his elaborate, excessive decorating and making everything perfect, she arrived. 
4) He brought the first course but when Mei tried to get him to watch the fireworks with her, he put fireworks in her food to win her affection and he didn’t notice when she tried to kiss him because he ran to get the next course.  
5) He decorated the next course with a more extreme display of fireworks and she became worried. 
6) Finally, he brought out a cake, which was covered with the biggest display of fireworks, and Mei was frightened and it blew up in their faces, which makes Mei get upset and leave. 
7) Afterward, Yao goes to apologize, bringing a gigantic pile of flowers to Mei’s door, but when he sees her concerned expression, he tosses away the excess flowers and gives her a single rose.

ARMATURE: Moderation is the key: less is often more.


  • Mid-20’s
  • Short-sighted, eager-to-please, insecure, nervous
  • Thinks that more is better.  He compensates for his insecurities with excessive behavior.
  • He likes to cook, but there is room for improvement
  • Has a crush on Mei and is hoping to win her over with dinner
  • He and Mei have been friends for a while
  • Friendly, genuine, tries too hard in all areas of his life, overachiever
  • Nervous about women in general


  • Mid-20’s
  • Kind, gentle, thoughtful, good-humored, tactful
  • Has a crush on Yao and is interested in more than friendship
  • Likes Yao because she can see he cares, even if his attempts to impress are misguided
  • Plays along with Yao’s attempts to impress her, but really she’s interested in him
  • Forgives easily


The story takes place in modern China, although the time period is somewhat ambiguous and not very important to the story.  The meal will take place right outside the house and fireworks are present because it is New Years.  The fireworks that are used in the food are hanging around the table as decorations for New Years.  The kitchen is the room closest to the eating area.   

 1. Is the story as clear and succinct as you can make it? If it isn't, how can it be improved?
- Yes, we think that the story is succinct and easily understood.  We made many changes to the original story, primarily to reduce the number of characters and adapt it so that the setting was in China and took place in one space.

2. Do you have a visual style in mind for your story and if so, can you describe it or provide visual reference?
- We are going to use a cartoon style to take advantage of illustrating extreme emotions and body movement to represent our characters.  Unless we receive feedback that prefers people to animals, we have chosen pandas as our main characters since they are native to China and because they will be easy to relate to and appealing to look at.

3. Why should this story be told? Why would anyone care?
- The story should be told because it is about moderation and being able to realize when something is going well, rather than overdoing it.

4. Is there an emotional hook in your story? Is it engaging?
- People can understand wanting to impress people and gain approval, whether it be from a romantic interest, a boss, a friend, etc...  It is engaging because of the quick pacing, humor, and fun characters

5. Have you captured the visual transition in your story? Have you captured and illustrated the story beats? If not, what can you do to improve your visual storytelling?
- We think that we have captured the overall flow and transitions of the story and have improved our camera positions since last time to reflect changes in mood and action.