Friday, June 27, 2008

Laughing Like Hyenas

Oh man, what's better than meeting up with your best friend and just laughing at nothing until your stomach hurts? Well that's just what I did tonight. Zack, my best friend from Wisconsin, came into to town for work and we met up for dinner. Always great to see him, talk of old times, talk of new times, the future, and everything in between. Our sense of humor is in alignment too which helps. It's that sort of esoteric talk between close friends that most likely no one else will understand. We've known each other since elementary school, but interestingly hated each other at the time. In junior high my family ended up moving next door to his and in one of life's funny ways of working out we became best friends. What a great guy though! Always great to see him. There's nothing we can't talk about to each other.
I continue to work on my cheetah project. I haven't posted much on it, because I've been taking a ton of Maya tutorials lately, usually about an hour or two's worth a night. It's been great. A very complex program, but because of this when used properly is very powerful. Although out of pure impatience I began to build the 3D model of the cheetah, I shouldn't have because I don't even have all orthographic views of it drawn out yet. Oh well, I'm just blocking it out and trying to get the general feel for it detail at this point. Anyway, as more fleshes out I'll post on it.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Death of a Great

I just read very sad news the movie fx/monster maker Stan Winston has passed away, losing a battle with cancer. This really hit me. I've admired his work for so long, especially one that I believed to be one of the best movie creatures ever created, the Predator from the whole Predator franchise. His company was responsible for endless movie creations from Edward Scissorhands, Jurassic Park, Terminator, and recently Iron Man and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. It was one of my goals to perhaps work with him one day, but that dream can no longer be realized unfortunately. I have no doubt though of the continuing quality of work from Stan Winston Studios.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Test Run

Here's an early test for the Cheetah run cycle in Flash. I just want to start exploring body movement and gesture with it. Weight of course will be very important to capture as well. I've watched a LOT of footage thus far on cheetahs (with I'm sure more to come to aid me in this process). After I get all this down, along with more sketches and paintings, will be the tough part...Maya! I'm still very novice with the program and will be watching MANY tutorials, so I hope it will all pay off in the end. Either way, I'm lovin' this and having fun!
Side note: I saw Kung Fu Panda today, and loved it! The design of film from the backgrounds to the characters was beautiful and so colorful. I know that one of the people who designed the characters was artist Nicolas Marlet, who has also done work with Pixar, and someone who I greatly admire. The story was great, good message, and very inspirational, both aesthetically and in general. Thanks Dreamworks!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Band Meeting

Small break from the Cheetah project, for a band meeting with Flight of the Conchords! They may be New Zealand's 4th most popular folk band, but they're number one in my book. Their show debuted on HBO last year and really developed a cult following. It tells (humorously) their struggles to make it as a band in New York City with the help, or lack there of, from their band manager Murray and with the support of their only obsessive fan, Mel. Well recently they came to San Francisco as part of their US tour, and Sarah and I were fortunate enough to go see them. It. Was. Hilarious! The show was opened by a comedian who played a racist fruit stand owner who hates Australians in the HBO series. We felt very fortunate to see them, on top of the fact that we got to see and meet Rhys Darby who plays Murray in the show a few months ago at the San Jose Improv. Go Kiwis!