Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas all!

In spirit of the season I worked on a Christmas'y painting. Originally intended for Jeff Jackson's challenge for this month, until I actually read the challenge and realized it was specificically for Santa! Ho ho ho whoops. This ones for you though, Rudolph!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

My finals:

Here are the products of my laziness.

First up - the illustration final. To get this into digital form I had to do 2 scans, which were both a bit bright, but close enough - much better than a camera was giving me. This isn't 100% done. I still would like to tighten up the horizon line and a few things here and there, but I also feel like I should move on. Ultimately I am happy with it, and it looks much better in person than on the computer :o

Next, my first reel. Ahhhh the first reel, the one you never wish to show any employer, but ultimately have to make it as a starting block to build from.

And lastly, my model. It seems I need a better computer to actually zbrush real high res stuff, go figure.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Another semester down, one to go!

Thank god that semester ended, now I can work on other projects in my "free time" until the next one begins again. I plan on posting my first reel, my illustration final and a render of the model I was working on in the next few days. However, until I can get a good picture taken of my painting I will hold off making that post. Until then, I'm gonna post some stuff here as I get cranking again on the sketchbook project.

Disclaimer: My laptops screen sucks, so I'm really not sure at all how dark this is going to look on other monitors haha.

Anyways, I'm always 0n the hunt for a new way of painting in photoshop. This process began with just drawing with black and white, no opacity. Once I got a scribble that looked cool I turned on opacity with pen pressure and started adding in value to render the form. Then once I got a few that I liked, I stuck em in a line up - added a multiply layer gradient and painted on top of it to bring out the highlights a little bit more.

I'm a bit unsure as to the usefulness of stuff like this. It seems more costume design than character design, but maybe that too is useful.

And more! This is one of the simpler approaches to concept design. I'm just painting black for a silhouette and then adding in some negative space to define the idea a little bit further. The middle guy is a revisit of an idea I posted a while ago.
More more more more!

Ok I realize some of that is really ambiguous, but it's fun to draw ^_^ Now heres an attempt to make use of that approach...

Today was pretty unproductive after getting a wisdom tooth removed :\ Here is another page. I somewhat like the character in the center although I'm not sure who he is. The sketch in the top right came out cool though, and sparked an idea for the 4th sibling which was the one I had never been able to figure out. The idea is the master/slave deal where this little girl would ride on the shoulder of a large robot. I'm thinking she could be super animated and expressive to contrast with a lifeless robot that might resemble a large hulking zombie.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Illustration final - coming up with ideas:

The semester is almost over, and that means it's time for finals! I'm so excited! hah :P I'm going to post as much as I can of my thumbnail ideas and sketches for my final illustration project. Again, not sure how many people actually check my site, but for me to see it all together might help. This post will be updated with more progress as I go.

First up, and an idea I've been wanting to illustrate since I did the concept as a sculpture, are the Sirens. This is a "quick" sketch that I painted before bed, and I may very well wake up tomorrow and wonder why the hell I posted it. But for right now, I'm tired and I think it's looking pretty cool. I'm a little disappointed with how little I pushed the color, I should be better by now, argh... anyways, more to come.

And another... Not sure how I'm liking this one. It was an interesting idea but really hard to make work. It really needs 1 more scene to tell a complete story, even as simple as it is. Of course it's just a value comp as I wasn't going to mess with trying to come up with the idea + color at the same time :P

One more update... I had to go with the sirens as my fall back. I thought we had one more week this semester so things are getting really crazy. This photoshop isn't finished, but due to the lack of time I'm just gonna move onto the real deal and wing the rest.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Model progress...

So this model is coming together now... I've almost got every bit of him blocked in with the exception of 2 pieces of clothing. It's looking pretty cool, but without any high res detail or textures it is still pretty far from realizing the concept. By the way, I don't know why this image is forcing you to download it and not opening like all the others in a new window - strange.

I'm also gonna share a progression clip I made for one of the masks. I actually did this for all of em except for the one on his head :\ but since the one with horns is the most interesting right now, I'll just post that one. :D I did this by setting up the render early on, so while working I could do some quick renders at unique stages and then compile those jpeg's together using Movie Maker. This is a pretty effortless task that gives a really cool insight into how the model was made.

That's it for now. Ideally this model will be finished (modeled + high res sculpt) in about 2 weeks... Ouch, time to get working.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Sketchbook Pages

For going on 2 months now, myself as well as a few other current and graduated Cogswell students have been working on a sketchbook which is to be presented at Comicon 08'. The project was put together by two instructors, Jeff Jackson and Dave Perry. Our task is to interpret and conceptualize the Grimms Fairytale The Moon (which you can read here). Things are still in the early stages, but I thought I'd share with who ever actually knows about my blog what I have been doing so far. I'm not going to narrate these images, just know it is a lot of thumbnails (quick ideas). Most of the characters are for the 4 'brothers' or siblings as I'm going to go about it. The small blocky head dudes are going to be my interpretation of the undead, and of course the 2 old guys are labeled as St. Peter.

It really isn't that important to mention this, but it is an effort for me to go for more of a cartoony look. This isn't my native drawing style but it is a fun process and you definitely have a lot of freedom to come up with cool and interesting things.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Pixar! and a painting.

So as I mentioned before my school put together a private tour of Pixar. This was made possible by Roger Rose, a long time Cogswell alum who has been working at Pixar as an animator since the first Toy Story. The tour had to be kept small so we didn't completely mob Pixar, and somehow out of the 7 or 8 spots, both Chris and myself were lucky enough to go.

Here is everyone that traveled with us in Chris' car. That's me, Robert Moore, Marika Timmerman, Christian and David Hines. Aren't we cool standing in front of the Pixar gate? Not pictured are the slackers in the other car (Barb, Katie, Andrew and Matt) who just had to go to KFC first.

We met up with Roger outside the front door, we said hello and introduced ourselves and went inside. Right away we ran into Rich Hurrey, a technical director whom Chris, Andrew and myself had met during the recent bay area Modo usergroup meeting. He recognized us even if he doesn't have any idea what our names are. We shook hands and everyone else was like "uh you guys already know other people at Pixar?" That was pretty damn cool :D

So the tour started and we pretty much got to see the whole complex. We walked around towards the render farm where all the busy little computers are churning out their next big hit movie I'm sure. This "farm" was actually a lot smaller than I had imagined. Roger mentioned that even since he's worked there it keeps getting smaller and smaller.

From there we walked the upstairs hallways and got a chance to see a lot of cool artwork, original storyboards, scene color comps, maquettes (friggin' awesome sculptures) and the doorways of various important peoples offices. I wanted to go in and bug everyone but we had to remain respectful. /sigh

We went downstairs again to check out the Pixar theater and Daily room (a smaller theater where they review progress). This was the only 'disappointment' of the tour. I was really hoping we'd see some sort of a sneak peak of Wall-e but ah well! From there it was off to the animators area which was really cool. Each individual office was decorated in a unique fashion. Some were made to look like individual shacks with cool props adding to the atmosphere, and some looked like they were in more of a jungle setting. I wish I could have gotten pictures of this part, but I think these hallways can be viewed in some special features you just gotta know where to look. Rogers office was also cool. The face of it was decorated like a western saloon, complete with the swinging double saloon doors.

From left to right: myself, Christian, Roger, Katie, Robert, David, Andrew, Marika, and Matt

After that, the building was pretty much covered. We went back to the lobby to hang out for a bit, chat with Roger and spend money at the little store they had. At least 4 of us just had to get these cool brown athletic Pixar sweaters.

Aren't we dorks? Anyways, this was just a completely awesome experience. Pixar is without a doubt one of my dream jobs. Those of us in Chris' car made a promise that we were all future Pixar employees, and when the first one gets in (probably Marika) we will try to get the others in.

Lastly, and not related to this trip, here is a photo of my first acrylic illustration project. It is currently hanging up in the hallway at my school, so I think the bad lighting tinted this a bit too orange. The board should be white as well as the highlights, oh well. This was one of my first paintings and it turned out great I think.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Drawing Salon

So every Wednesday night's I go to a drawing salon that's held at my school. For ~3 hours I draw naked people :P It really is a lot of fun and VERY important for an artist to do as often as they can. I am going to start posting some pages or drawings from each session, even if it doesn't go so well (which happens from time to time for everyone).

5 minute poses:

They are not without error of course, but I've only been doing it for a couple of years.


I guess you really have to be excited about something to be teased, so maybe this is only a teaser for me haha. I couldn't resist combining the elements of this model even at an early state to start to see where it's heading. Getting the masks, or at least the one on his head, to lay down like the painting probably won't work but we'll see. Also all these masks are modeled from a reference photo, but even after I give the lower one his beard and hair I think the facial features of the one I painted are more interesting, what do you think? If you can even see it that is.

Oh yeah and I'm going to Pixar Friday. Hell yeah!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Things I'm working on...

Hey, so I've never had one of these before so this will be a learning process for me.

Here are a couple images of things I'm working on for classes at Cogswell Polytechnical College in Sunnyvale, CA.

This is a WIP color comp for my next illustration project. This was painted in photoshop, but the final will be in acrylic.

Next up are some components for a character model I'm working on. (seen here)

It feels like I'm working on 100 other things, but that's all I'm posting for now! Now to format this page...