This animation started out as an illustration of a Mech Pilot taking a break in a war-torn city. At the time, I just concentrated on lighting and texture. I wanted to take the idea a little further, so I revisited the concept with an eye towards limited animation. I sketched it out and then recreated it as vector art. I started with the Mech and fleshed out the full armored vehicle. Then created the character and background.
Once the art was completed, I imported the assets into Adobe After Effects and built the skeletons using the Puppet Tool. Each element was animated in separate compositions and then combined into the larger whole. I could then tweak the pilot animation without worrying how it affected the Mech animation. I created the fire and sparks using After Effects proprietary tools. No plug-in tools, like Trapcode Particular, were used.