Sunday, May 22, 2005

Whoah, boy!

I started animating a lip sync on Friday in an attempt to get one to beef up my reel before sending it out this week. I took some video reference with my new iSight and got to cracking. I've not done a 3d lip sync in a LONG time and it was bit daunting getting back into it until I remembered that it's just keyframes like any other animation. I got most of my blocking done Friday and made it into my linear tangent phase when I heard from a friend of mine in the industry who gave me a very good critique. The clip I'm using has a definite build up in the intensity of the character. His critique said that I was overacting and not giving any room for the intensity of the action to build with that of the dialogue. Better to push too far and pull it back than never stretching the limits. At least I read something to that effect in The Illusion of Life. Here's where I stopped: Overacting So, with that, I threw my keys back to stepped and started redoing some of my major keys and breakdowns to try to get a real build in intensity of action. While waiting to hear back on some work, I went ahead an broke down the mouth shapes. They're not quite on yet. My main concern is getting the new actions down. Much more work needs to be done, but here's where I stopped for the night: Remix I'm hoping to finish the animation up today (it's 2:00 in the morning as I write this) or tomorrow. My compliments to PJ Leffelman and whomever else from The Art Academy worked on this rig. It's solid. I gotta figure out how they did this fk to ik match and vice versa. I think Lowman has it as well. Fantastico!

Thursday, May 19, 2005

My hats off to the Art Institute of Washington...

I attended the Art Institute of Washington in 2001 for a few quarters. Made some good friends but decided I wanted to go to a different school and so transferred to Savannah College of Art and Design. To get my transcripts released, I had to get as special loan to cover all unmet costs. I did so, got my transcripts and moved to Savannah. Fast forward 4 years. So, last fall, I get a call from a collections agency saying that AI had put me in collections for a balance I owed. I had never heard a peep from them since I left so, suffice it to say, this was a bit of a surprise. Over the next few months we went over the details of how I'd paid and they wouldn't have released my transcripts if I hadn't, etc. etc. Every month it seemed, I'd get a call, tell the agency the same thing, and they'd say okay, we'll get back to you. Yesterday, I got a call from them again and she tells me that most people pay and the contest it. To which I replied that that didn't make any sense because when they have my money, what do they care? So I asked if there was anyway to work through this, call someone etc. She said I could call AI. So call them I did and left a message on the voice mail of the woman whom I was supposed to talk to explaining the situation and asking what I could do. This morning, I got a call from the agency saying that AI had contacted them and credited my account and we were square. So, thank you Art Institute for taking care of this, I'm very happy to have that monkey off my back.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Treasure trove for animator sound clips...

I'm probably 5 years late and a dollar short on this, but I just came across this site. If you're not taking a clip from the 10 second club, it can be a pain to find a good clip to animate from. If you're in that boat, stop by here.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Rhinos running in my head...

I finally finished up animation on the rhino and finished. The guys aren't done adding all of their fx stuff, so I did a basic render with the animation. It was a challenging project. There are some strange mechanics with trying to get an character to catch a moving object. I wasn't able to just animate a cycle and move a global controller because the feet had to "stick" for Jon to add his dust and impact effects. That made it a bit more challenging but a better learning experience. One of the more challenging aspects was attempting to get the weight right. Speaking of weight, I've started running to get some off. It's amazing how far you can fall off that wagon. In my time in the Corps, I would run 6 miles at a time, no sweat and had better than average 3 mile time. Whew, a few years sitting a computer animating most of my time took me from that to barely being able to run a few blocks. I found me a training regime which has is supposed to get me back up to running 3 miles again. It's one of those run 3 minutes, walk 2, run 5, walk 3 kinda things. I'm about half way through the program, am running half of my about 40 minute cycle and I feel loads better. I just wish Savannah wasn't so blazingly hot every time I wanna run. Perhaps I should run at a better time of day...naw, that'd be too easy.

Monday, May 9, 2005

Congrats to my buddy, David Bokser...

David and I both were selected as finalists for region 2 for the Student Academy Awards. Dave for Le Vieil Homme et Les Poissons and me for The Potter. I found out today that David was selected to go on to nationals. I just wanted to give Dave his props. He's a talented film maker and a good friend. I can't wait to see the final results and I really can't wait to see his next piece.

Sunday, May 8, 2005

Animal reference...

Been getting good feedback on the Rhino animation. Still got a good bit to go. However, Reed on CG Char was kind enough to point out a new resource to me. A site for animal video reference. Phenomenal stuff. Check it out.

Tuesday, May 3, 2005

Murphy up to his old tricks...

So I released The Potter yesterday and was absolutely blown away by the response in the forums. However, right about the same time I released it, my personal server where I host my site and The Potter site died. Thankfully a member of CGTalk let me host some mirror pages with the important info about the film and the sites finally decided to come back on a couple hours ago. I received an email from the SCAD tech department saying saying that we'd passed 10,000 downloads sometime this morning. Let's see 10,000 x 63 meg = a lot more bandwidth then I got. So, naturally, I'm very grateful to be able to host it there. I'm just blown away... ...back to animating.

Monday, May 2, 2005

The Potter is released...

After what seems like forever we're ready to release The Potter online. I'm looking for some hosting solutions that would allow me to release it full res, but I'm on metered bandwidth and can't take that chance of a fun over-your-limit bandwidth bill coming my way. So, without further ado.... • Quicktime - 480x270 (63 meg) Gotta get back to that rhino now...

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