Monday, September 1, 2014

Argos Animation Demo Reel 2014

As many of you know, I've been pushing the animation side of my business, and it's been growing rapidly. Here is a demo reel showing some of my projects:

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

IPad Artwork

I recently finished some artwork for a friend of mine who is publishing some RPG books with Scaldcrow Press. This is a cover that I did for his 1930’s era pulp campaign setting.

For me, one of the cooler aspects about this was that I did this almost entirely on my iPad, using Art Studio and a Pogo Connect pressure sensitive stylus. The only thing I did on my desktop was some refinement on the coloring and adding some of the background.

The initial sketch was done on paper, then I took a photo of it and used it as the basis of some 'inking'.

I really like doing it this way. Up until now the available resolution was just too low to really do this the way I wanted, and if it was going to be printed 8.5x11 as opposed to 6x9 I might still have just gone ahead and done it on my iMac.

It's not quite the "poor man's Cintiq" that I wanted, but it was very close. I'm going to do more work like this, certainly in the initial phases. It's very liberating.


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Happy Halloween

During my copious spare time I made a Halloween card using Tumult Hype that uses HTML5, CSS, and Javascript to create an animation. I did all of the drawing on my iPad 3 using Procreate, then transferred them as .PSD files to my Dropbox account and exported the layers as separate PNG files. The load time is a little long, perhaps I over-reached.
The software allows for a lot more interactivity than I put into it. The only real 'easter eggs' are a mailto: link on the credits, the Play Again button and clicking on the mask reveals the intruders face. The next time I do one of these I'll concentrate more on the interactivity than the animation, and try to use more JPEGs than PNG files. I have this idea for a Thanksgiving themed arcade...
Since the load time was getting too long, I ditched the sound and went with captions and 'sound effect text' like in a comic. I'm not sure it was the best choice. Again, lesson learned.
I don't know how to host the HTML5 version of it here, so the link above will have to do. I was able to do a video screen capture of it and post that to Youtube, so I'll link to that here:
Anyway, have a Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Congregate Logo

I'm not sure why I didn't post this to the blog, as I did the original several months ago. This is a 3D model based on a drawing that I did for a mascot/logo for a local convention. The character's name is Greg 8. The eventual aim was to actually animate the character, though the mesh still needs some work.
Naturally, all the 3D work was done in Blender. The 2D work was done on my iPad using Adobe Ideas, and that was before I had a pressure sensitive pen to work with!
Greg 8 in 3D
Greg 8 Congregate logo

Earbuds and Memories

I am an Apple person, and generally I've had good experiences with the brand. The hardware, while costing more, has generally been worth the expense, and customer service, especially with an Apple Store in town, is excellent.

The one problematic exception is the earbuds. Bear in mind that I'm not a real audiophile. Mostly I listen to podcasts on my phone, or some YouTube or Netflix on my iPad, and I use the buds to keep from bothering my wife. But the earbuds are always a problem. I replaced my old ones three times because they always stopped working. Usually I'd have to fiddle with them to make sure both sides got sound, or I'd have to make sure the plug was seated perfectly to hear anything.

When I bought my iPhone 5 a few months ago, I got the new generation of earbuds, and darned if they didn't start acting up. Meanwhile, my old ones, which had stopped working on the left side altogether, still at least gave me sound. Monoaural sounc, but for podcasts it was fine. Heck, they even survived being put through the laundry.

But the button started acting up, so I went ahead and took my new pair in to be replaced, which they did without a hitch. It was free, which was great. Now I have a new set of earbuds, and from experience I expect them to work perfectly for about three to four months before crapping out. Anyway, now that I had these wifty new buds, I decided to try them out. But as luck would have it, my list of podcasts had been all listened to. So I went with the music that I do have on my iPhone, most of which dates from around college.

It was kind of amaing, really. I hadn't listened to my music in so long, it was like being surrounded by a fog of nostalgia. I experienced the 'shuffle whiplash' of having Paul Simon followed by Red Hot Chilli Peppers, followed by Mozart. But all of my musical purchases were from over fifteen years ago. So there I am, walking through the Taj-ma Teeter in Friendly Center, awash in 90s music and memories. I'm remembering friends from college, projects from my first years at JBDA, driving three hours every weekend to visit my girlfriend in Greenville. It's amazing what two little earbuds can do for me.

At least for the next three to four months.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

New Whiteboard Video

I recently finished a Whiteboard Video for the Greensboro Partnership, for their State of the Community luncheon. It explains their efforts to transform the local economy through promoting entrepreneurship with various programs. This also marks the first big collaboration between Joel Bennett and myself since I bought Argos.

I'll let the video speak for itself:

That really is my big hairy mitt doing the drawing. I used Blender to do all the video editing and special effects. Sort of overkill, but it does speak to the versatility of the program.

I took HD (1080) video of myself drawing, with a bizarre contraption made out of leftover Octanorm in an office at the Nussbaum center, then sped it up. I have over 50GB of real-time video, which I will most likely be deleting. Sort of a shame, since that means the .blend file will be largely useless without them.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Cadillac renderings

Here is a recent 3D model. They will eventually be greatly transformed to use in a story that I want to make about post-apolcalyptic rodents, but that's for another post.

These were made entirely in Blender, and the model was done entirely by me. The outdoor shot is from the warehouse parking lot where I store exhibit materials for clients. I modeled it in 3D and 'projected' the photo onto it to create the textures.