Monthly Archives: February 2014

Building Jonas!

Recently we have been working with the Jonas model that Conann made. The most recent challenge he set us was to actually build it from scratch. Its the first time that most of us have built something that is fully rig-able. It was pretty exciting to be completely honest. It was a good experience to see Conann’s workflow first hand with something of this complexity. Here are some screen shots from my progress.

b j 1

b j 2 b j 3

These screen shots show the three main stages of the build. Things that I picked up from this tutorial would be the isolate selection option and also I got a better understanding of the capability of the extrude tool. This has increased my confidence slightly with using Maya, or at least its a little less of a daunting prospect of trying to model.

Abit about me->

So I have recently became a big fan of the artist Luke Dixon. His illustrative style is kind of a big influence on the sort of design work I would use for my own personal work. I just thought I would let yall know that I am now the proud owner of both the Gandalf t-shirt and the A3 print (signed and marked properly).

 

Ill upload a nice picture of me flaunting my latest purchase soon. Right now I am just glad after a 3 week wait for it to arrive, I am just to god damn busy enjoying her right now. 😉 read em n weap

 

 

 

 

 

Second Maya Homework

We have been learning new methods of creating objects in Maya , the CV tool is quite useful. It allows you to set points on the grid to form the outline of your model then using the revolve tool it makes the full model shape. Its very useful for things like bottles and wine glasses. Conann gave us a quick tutorial on using the CV curve tool by making a wine glass. He then challenged us to make our own wine glass and then a bottle that has square edges eg a Jim Beam bottle.

He is my couple of goes at it!

wineglass_1 wineglass_2 wineglass_3 jim beam_1 jim beam_2 jim beam_3 jim beam_4

whiskey_2

This was a bit of failure lol

whiskey_1

Fancy bottle

jim beam_6

Playing with transparency

jim beam_5

This is my favourite bottle cause its the most similar to the Jim Beam

traffic cone

traffic cone for a laugh

 

 

SOMETHING SWEET->

So recently I began another painting to try and further enhance my skills. It was another one I started with absolutely no idea what I was going to paint (Chaos to control), Im feeling alot more confident but im still struggling with getting the values right in my paintings but I am getting there. Check her out n see what you think.train1Untitled-1-Recovered train

There’s still plenty of work to be done, I think I need to try and be less self concious when im painting. I always find myself work in circles, making a decision, then changing my mind and pressing the undo button. Only to later go back and repeat what I just done.

 

Photography Project outcomes->

Here are my final outcomes I am submitting for the photography assignment we were given. You can view the rest of my images on my flickr

page. https://www.flickr.com/photos/116364146@N05/

MICRO->

redness DSCN3850 botbnw DSCN3791 1794792_605711069505712_422380998_n

 

MACRO->

anbnw trbnw 1798216_605711302839022_712136102_n 1798574_605711382839014_679950935_n 1912490_605713069505512_523288831_n 1932452_605711032839049_393537961_n

 

Fargo- Notes and Graphic Ideas

After using Vogeler’s book to gain a better insight into the inner workings of Fargo’s characters and narrative. We have decided to collectively come together to create a giant timeline that would visually show each of the 30 scenes in Fargo, what characters are in the scene, what they are doing and where they are. This will make the process of filling in the blanks from the other characters of screen alot easier. It allows us to accurately guess what the character should, or better still could be doing. It was a really good group exercise as we all had a chance to pitch in, also by using the knowledge we had gained from Vogeler and researching almost everything about the film. We were able to really get our heads into the mindset of the film, I feel that we done a brilliant job of filling in the blanks and even adding to the narrative by successfully sticking to the rules of the film.

IMG_0072

I know that this photo doesn’t really offer a clear enough picture to actually read any of the post its. But until Ryan uploads the video he has taken of it to youtube its the best I can do. Although it does show the scale of the timeline, the fact that it is split into the 3 acts and the amount of characters we ended up writing for. I was quite pleased with the teams performance as a whole during this exercise, I felt that we had gained alot from it and really were able to show the understanding of both the film and the knowledge we had gained from the writers journey.

Going back to the initial brief, we needed to create some sort of graphic that represented the film. Using the knowledge we had gained we start the conceptualisation process. The first idea that we all liked was to take every thing we had done (Filling the blanks, looking at the actual geography of Fargo itself, Character profiles, etc) and to disguise it as a detectives board, this we all agreed fitted with the murder mystery from the film, aswell as covering the geography theme also. Here is a collection of images our group has produced from this concept and looking at some influences for the design.

 

Rachel’s analysis of shep disguised as a wanted poster.

Ryan’s analysis of Jerry as a police report.

This was the character profile that I done for Carl as his death notice.

Hank’s detective board in breaking bad.

In the background we can see the evidence board from True Detective.

 

CINEMAGRAPH->

Another idea we were thinking of looking into more was a cinemagraph. At first glance a cinemagraph appears to be just a photography, but they are actually like gifs, they use subtle motion combined with static images to create a very appealing image. In some I feel like they give a really eerie feeling, especially the ones in which the subject is staring directly into camera. Unfortunately every time I try to post one on here it just saves as a static image, so here is a link to some……..

http://cinemagraphcollection.com/

Anyway the reasons why we liked the idea of producing the cinemagraph as our final graphic were that we could combine this with the other idea we liked, the evidence board. I also think the subtle movement also can add a sense of realism (if done correctly) and this would be a nice fit with the Coen brothers style. We were thinking of setting a scene up with the board in the background with one backlit character/silhouette, probably smoking ( fitting with the neo-noir style of the film) would be sitting at his desk looking stressed. So this concept I would love to go forward with, ever since discovering cinemagraphs I have wanted to make one, also I like how it would combined both of our favourite concepts. Thus gaining the benefits of both, which in my mind would tick all the boxes for our hand in. Here is a couple of mock up sketches Ive done, looking mainly at composition.DSCN3926

 

 

Jonas the lamp!

We have been given our first taste of animating with Maya. Conann provided us with a fully rigged model. Which is Jonas the lamp.jonas

 

This is Jonas, he is a pretty cool model. He had only a limited amount of of controllers making him ideal as a starting point for learning the basics of the animating process. It was a lot of fun using him, our assignment for this week was to follow a step by step tutorial than Conann had made which consisted of the basic movements to make Jonas jump. Then we were asked to create our own jump taking the knowledge of the model that we had gained from the tutorial, I decided that I would make Jonas a bit of a show boat and had him do a back flip. Anyway here are links to my playblasts of my attempts and a couple of screenshots. Apologies about the low resolution.

TUTORIAL JUMP

jonas jump

This is the mid point of the jump, showing the squash on Jonas’ body at the peak of height.

 

BACKFLIP

These just show Jonas at the three main stages of his back flip. For influence on how his body would actually position itself at these point I took reference from a free runner called Sebastian Foucan, here is a link to a video showing a bit of Sebastian in action and also a talk he gave for TED about our relationship with fear, check it out he is a cool fella.

 

 

 

bk f

picture-of-sebastien-foucan-in-casino-royale-large-picture

This is a screenshot of Sebastien in Casino Royale

Imaging + Data Visualisation and Photography Research

On our first Friday lecture with Paul he explained that we were going to be completing three projects over this module in relation to the lectures he would be giving us. Three projects->

-1.Photographic

-2.Illustrative

-3.Data visualisation

The first was photography, based on Micro and Macro we have to complete two sets of six photos. He asks us to use composition rules when taking photos, to also consider narratives within our images and to learn how to save and compress images for screen.

Macro- Landscapes, City scapes etc. He suggests taking lots of images then selected the best six. Also he wants us to think of stories behind our images. What are we trying to say?

Micro- A set of small individual items. They can link to the Macro set or can be completly different approach.

As part of this task he asked us to also open a flickr account to make the hand in of images easier, heres a link to my photostream!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/116364146@N05/

PHOTOGRAPHY RESEARCH->

With the goal of taking ultimately different photographs I set out to find techniques that professionals use to make their images unique. Previous to this I havent really had any proper exprience with proper photography, normally I just take photos with little or no thought put in about framing the subject, composition or lighting etc. I think it will also be hard for me to incorperate narratives into my photographs, the things I would normally take photos of are just things that would inspire me or interest me it could be fun trying to take thought provoking images.

I have found an arcticle online during my research that feature multiple pointers apparently can help people find fresh and unusual angles in photography. The source is Wayne Turner- http://www.picturecorrect.com

1. Don’t stand infront of the subject- most people take photos at eyelevel (approx 5 feet)- use your feet and move around.

2.Embrace embarassment and try lying on your stomach.

3. Vary the height- use this exercise- start at a resonable distance from the subject. Take a shot firstly standing, then crouching, on your knees, backside and finally belly (could even try lying on your back). Now review all the shots and select the best. This exercise produces a wide variety of angles and perspectives making it easier to find the most suitable shot.

4. Birds eye view- It doesn’t necessarily have to be a really high and dangerous position, anything that is just above normal eye level. Its just another way to experiment with angles that might produce more interesting images.

My favorite photograph from this arcticle was one taken by David Hobcote.Image

Its called ‘I watched the bee, the bee watched me’. The subject was positioned infront of the sun to cause shadow, this combined with the use of a low level flash to sufficently light the reeds create a cool effect. I really like the low angled prespective of this shot, it gives the viewer a new way to see the world, obviously from the pov of a bee. The shawdow created by the man makes him look collosal compared to everything else in frame. Brilliant!

I also picked up a book by Fran Halsall called ‘Light and Shadow- The Art of Landscape Photography’. The book was really useful in terms of the basic sort of rules of photography like the Rule of thirds, etc (In progress)

FREE TIME->

At the beginning of last semester it was the first time I had actually tried digital painting. This semester we haven’t had any projects that require any digital design work, So to keep in touch with the digital work I decided to muck about with a little caricature of myself. Its still not finished but I thought I should throw it up here to show abit of the process.

DSC_0843

This is the first sketch I done, was just playing around and just decided it looked like it would be both fun and challenging to paint.

footer1

At this point I was just trying to get a base layer of colour and tone into the painting.

footer-Recovered

At this point I have tried to put in some of the finer details and I have played around with the background. Theres still a good bit of work that needs done but its getting there.

Fargo Character Archetypes

After reading Vogler’s book ‘The Writers Journey’, we decided to look at the characters from Fargo and assign them to the archetypes from the book to gain a better understanding of the characters and their role in the film.

We started looking at Jerry first, we decided he was best suited to the trickster archetype ( A catalyst that causes events to change but they themselves do not). In Fargo Jerry is the original source that eventually leads to serial killings, if it was not for him and his elaborate plan to kidnap his wife to make money both Carl and Gaear would not have commited the crimes in Fargo. We also felt that he could maybe be a Shadow archetype aswell, this is due to the dark desires that Jerry shows in the film.

We grouped Carl and Gaear together, they also fit into both the Shadow (often a hero’s enemy. They show dark desires or darkest fears) and the Trickster archetype. Their actions fuel the story and they also show very dark desires when they firstly kidnap Jean, their ability to kill people freely without hesitation and with no signs of feeling guilty are also evidence of just how dark these characters are. They are also being pursued throughout the film by the Hero (Marge).

Marge fitted best into the Hero archetype (they leave their ordinary world in order to answer a challenge and to restore a balance). When we first meet the Police Chief Marge she leaves quite an uneventful life, it is clear that there is not much crime going on in Fargo she also is happily married to her husband Norm, this is her ordinary world. When she finds out about the murders this was her call to adventure. She has to stop these murders and find out the truth about what has been going on to restore the balance in her life.

The Officers arent a major part in the story however we still felt that they could also fit into an Archetype. We believe they could be considered to be the Herald(This character/s announces change)  in Fargo. They are usually the source of information for Marge and contact her everytime there is a murder.

Jean’s father Wade is another character we looked at that could possibly be fitted to an archetype, the Mentor (Source of wisdom and motivator, they may have their own agenda). We were thinking that Wade could be considered a motivator for Jerry, this was due to the fact that Wades was pretty wealthy and that Jerry had a clear desire to be greedy and earn as much money as possible, it is very clear that Wade has his own agenda in Fargo, when he was told about the kidnapping he insisted on bringing the randsom money himself even though Jerry told him the kidnappers only wanted to deal with Jerry and this could ut his daughters life and his own at risk he still went ahead and done it anyway.

Mike Yanagita was seen as the shape shifter (provides uncertainty for the hero, behaviour can change). This was an easy character to fit to an archetype as he is only in one scene in the film. He asks Marge for dinner then makes a move on her even when he knows she is married to Norm. He also tells Marge about his wife and how she just recently passed away, Marge later finds out that he completely lied and didnt even get married.

We put Shep down as the threshold guardian (Can test hero, usually on the side of the shawdow characters). Shep is the threshold guardian as he provides a link to both the shadow characters for both Marge and Jerry. Shep must have been asked by Jerry if he knew anybody that was up for commiting serious crime as Jerry must have known about Shep’s police record. This is how Jerry goes from being a rip-off car salesman(ordinary world) into a criminal ( crossing the threshold). Shep is also key to Marge crossing the threshold and leaving her mundane police cases for one that is alot more serious. He is her first lead.

Fargo- Events Log + MAYA UPDATE

ACT ONE->

1. Jerrys meets Carl + Gaear, they arrange the kidnapping.

2. Jerry goes home, dinner and discusses a deal with Wade.

3. Carl + Gaear on the road, plan for for and prostitutes.

4. Jerry at work, tries to rip off customers, they complain.

5. Carl + Gaear pull up at Blue Ox with 2 hookers.

6. Jerry at home, call from Wade (11.05) to meet him at 14,30- Jerry then tries to call of kidnapping- but it doesn’t work.

7. Carl + Gaear on road to twin cities, Gaear has not spoke for 4 hours.

8. Jerry gets call, $320k of loans threatened to be recalled.

9. Carl + Gaear kidnap Jean.

10. Jerry meets Wade- no deal happens he then returns home to see the kidnapping has happened.

11. Carl + Gaear get pulled over by police. Shit gets real, A cop and two teens are murdered.

ACT TWO->

12. Marge’s first appearance, at home asleep, recieves call and goes to crime scene.

13. Jerry has breakfast with Wade and Stan, they discuss the randsom money, returns home to check on Scotty.

14. Carl + Gaear bring Jean to cabin (inmost cave) Jean attempts a blindfolded escape.

15. Marge at office, has lunch with Norm. Officer has a lead on car- ‘Two men with company’ at Blue Ox, Marge questions the 2 hookers- leads to twin cities- one was ‘funny looking’.

16. Carl + Gaear + Jean at cabin, silence between Jean and Gaear while Carl struggles with the TV signal.

17. Marge gets a call from Mike asking her for dinner, (22.45)

18. Jerry recieves call from Carl,demanding more money for the murders.

19. Marge + Norm have meal, call for new lead (03.00) leads to Shep.

20. Jerry, Stan and Wade discuss how to deliver money.

-Marge on phone at twin cities

– Carl goes to parking lot to switch number plate.

21. Marge questions Shep.

-Jerry wants to speak with Shep.

– Marge questions Jerry about knowledge of any stolen cars.

22. Marge and Mike have dinner.

ACT TWO B->

23. Carls at a club with a hooker, he gets laid then beaten by Shep.

24. Carl phones Jerry demanding the randsom money.

– Wade leaves with the money and goes to car park, Jerry reassures Scotty.

– Wade meets Carl, they shoot each other, Carl has killed Wade and drives off with money.

-Jerry arrives too late- goes home to bed.

ACT THREE->

25. Officer gets lead on crims location, ‘funny looking’ is said again.

-Carl buries the majority of money in snow, he attempts to patch up his wounded face.

26. Marge gets call from friend, learns that Mike has lied to her, she then reconsiders what Jerry told her, goes to the dealership to question him again, he runs.

27.Gaear is ingrossed in TV drama Carl comes back, finds Jean dead, they argue over money and car, Gaear kills Carl with axe.

28. Marge comes across car and cabin, finds Gaear shredding up Carls body in wood chipper, Gaear gets shot in the leg as he attempts to escape, gets arrested.

29. Jerry gets arrested at motel.

30. Marge goes to bed with Norm, his painting is now on 3cent stamp. Their baby is due in 2 months- THE END

 

MAYA –

We have been making our first piece of animation on Maya. Conann had us make firstly a rubber ball and to animate it bouncing. This was going back to using squash and stretch which we had touched on last semester. I’ve been finding it quite confusing at times, although some aspects of using the software I am slightly familiar with, for example using key frames to set key poses and movements is something I had used before in flash. Anyway heres a link to my first bouncing ball. 🙂

Maya continued->

For abit of homework we have to create and animate three different types of balls going down stairs. A bowling ball, a tennis ball and another bouncy ball. I think the key things that we needed to learn for this really was just to consider how the different types of balls would squash and stretch while interacting with the stairs and also to pay alot of attention to the timing of the animation to make the balls appear as natural as possible. Here mine!