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Hatsune Miku is a worldwide phenomenon: a global popstar, personality and now, an actress. Bringing her to life on the big screen (of your device of choice), I set out to create my own story featuring Miku herself. Given my affinity with everything Minecraft, there was only one way this could go.

Draft version of an animation featuring Miku. Audio unavailable, but originally lip synced and scored.

The animating tool Mineimator allowed me to create a 3D stage, set the lights and get to work on finding my own Miku. If you’re unfamiliar, Hatsune Miku is as much a pop star as she is a concept: her computer-generated voice and instantly recognizable design are yours to reimagine. My Miku is expressive, bossy and particularly rectangular.

I absolutely love animation when the workflow is simple, and Minecraft’s blocky design makes rigs and their movement limited enough to still be enjoyable, but a lot less labor-intensive to animate. Adding particles, applying squash and stretch, exaggerating poses - it’s a lot easier when you’re working in an established environment, such as Minecraft.

The real deal

My first full 3D animation featuring Miku was a one-shot uploaded to YouTube. I did the background music too, adding flourishes of sounds and rhythm when the video approaches a climax. To be honest, I’m not entirely sure what’s going on in the animation either - I was really just trying to create visual interest.

Using the techniques I’ve learned by making Miku a Minecraft superstar, my next animation will be the music video for VILLAGERS in late 2021.