Friday, June 26, 2009

Spectral Window Production Log: Theme

I have decided on an overall theme for the Spectral Window. I was originally going to do a space-based theme similar to the ultra-creepy Dead Space video game. However after thinking long and hard about the age of the trick-or-treaters that visit my house, I decided that it was probably a better idea to go with something more "All Ages".

So along those lines I am going with traditional "boogies" like Dracula, Wolfman, Frankenstein, etc. I am still working on the production design so that I can effectively marry 3d backgrounds with 2d characters. I am using Lightwave, Cinema 4d and 3ds Max for most of the 3d elements. There are some great Halloween modeling and rendering tutorials online that I have used before to create Halloween objects, that I will call on for some of the sets and props. Other things will be unique to this production.

So onward we go.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Spectral Window Production Log: And so it begins

I have finally started on my Hallowindow idea that I mentioned back in November. I have dropped the idea of a "haunted yard" as that is too much money and work. I am focusing solely on the animation.

I am naming it "Spectral Window" to separate it from Mark Gervais' work. Right now I am working on the storyboards for the "walkthrough". When they are finished and I create a scratch sound track, I will be doing an animatic. Hopefully I will be able to post some of the storyboards soon.

I am also working on concept art for the creatures and sets. When I make some headway on the animatic I may be able to post some of the sketches.

Right now I am simply trying to work out the best way to do the storyboards. I tried doing them digitally but since I don't have a Cintiq it is simply "uncomfortable". When I do sketching I still prefer the pencil and paper paradigm.

Anyway back to work.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ka-blam works

Well I finally got the Ka-blam section to work so there.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


I heard about this site a few months ago and I had added a link to my site. However for some reason it didn't work so I decided to just make a regular post and go from there.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

It's all clear

It's been a while since an update. I've seen Star Trek and I loved it. I got a job at ITT Tech as an instructor in 3ds Max. I start June 8th. bit the dust, another victim of the bad economy or poor management depending on who you talk to. I've been mulling over some ideas for a comic book. Which brings me to the point of this entry.

I have been studying the art style known as ligne claire and I have fallen in love with it. Ligne claire (clear line in French) is a style popularized, if not created by, Hergé the father of Tintin. On the surface the style is very simplistic. But it requires a great amount of disipline. If you look at the ligne claire books there is an immense amount of detail and the stories are heavily researched.

One of the problems with American comics, at least in the mainstream, is that it's pretty much either superhero, horror or licensed properties. With mainstream European and Japanese comics it's pretty much "balls-to-the-wall" when it comes to style and content. In these countries comcis have always been respected by children and adults alike. It wasn't until relatively recently that some of that respect came to the American scene. The problem, however, is just what I mentioned above: limited art and story styles in the mainstream. How long will the respect last if we do not diverify.

Of course the standard caveat applies here: I love superheroes and horror and licensed properties as much as any other fanboy. But I believe that we need to broaden our scope, both as consumers and as artists. We know about the independent market but "slice-of-life" stories can't be all there is to our industry. Certainly there are some independents out there that explore other story ideas and genres but what I am saying is that these shouldn't be niche markets within the industry.

The web and portable technoolgy have given us new venues for our stories but we have to reciprocate with good content. Why should European and Asian markets be the only ones to bask in diversity? I don't know what to do other than to produce and buy non-mainstream books and stop looking at that as "independent".

One of the ligne claire books that I found is The Rainbow Orchid by Garen Ewing. It's an adventure story a la Indiana Jones or H. Rider Haggard. I've read a few of the strips and I am impressed. However, it is a British book so it doesn't answer the question of what we Americans should do, but it is a beautiful book. It is online and he is already taking preorders at his site for the trade paperback. So take a look and search around the net and support these creators. We can all benefit.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Parents Television Council--A danger to liberty

I am no fan of the Osbourne family. I didn't like their show on MTV and I have no intention of watching their new show on Fox. They are fouled-mouthed celebrities with nothing better to do than to waste the time of those who do watch their shows.

That being said I had to roll my eyes today when I read that the Parents Television Council has sicced the dogs on Fox because of the Osbourne's new variety show. This is one of the groups that sit around watching a television show or a movie so that "you won't have to". People in groups like this either don't agree with people of free-will or they don't know about the channel or power buttons on their remote control.

Now it's one thing if a group of concerned parents ban together to help other like-minded parents to filter what their own children see. It's quite another thing when these groups are too lazy to turn the channel or better yet turn off the TV altogether. When the latter is the case these types of organizations tend to try to use the police powers of the government to force networks and stations to stop showing content that they find objectionable. The interesting thing about these kinds of groups is that there are similar groups on both sides of the political aisle. However, they are equally dangerous.

For every conservative group like the Parents Television Council, there are at least an equal number of liberal groups, like Newshounds ("We watch Fox [News] so you don't have to"), that pop up on the left. They are both dangerous to free-speech, especially when they try to force a network to pull a show using the government as a tool, or when they try to recreate the falsely named "Fairness Doctrine" to allegedly give equal time to opposing viewpoints. One tries to eliminate what they feel is objectionable programming outright. The other tries to manipulate the rules in such a fashion as to make it nearly impossible to air content due to oppressive regulation and the need to give all opposing views equal air time, whether or not sponsors will buy time for those views or not. Both are dangerous in a free society because they stifle free expression.

SOURCE: E! Online article

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


Well I have become a statistic. As of January 19, I became one of the millions in this country that have been laid off. But as a Christian I have been looking at this as an opportunity. I now have the time I need to build up my portfolio and demo reel.

Anyway, on the blog front I have been active on my "America Report" blog. I have sort of been syndicated on the "Libertarian Republican" blog. The owner has shown one of my cartoons with plans to show one or two a week. I have three new political cartoons up for viewing.

With the time that I now seem to have I am about to start up on the Hallowindow experiment that I mentioned a few months ago. Also apparently according to that entry I was out of the political cartoon business. Well, I guess my mood did swing back.

On that note I've also updated the link to the "Obama's Head" animation that I put up last year. I was tired of clicking onto the site and having the thing automatically play. It's somewhat disconcerting to hear your own disembodied voice speaking to you for the umpteenth time. So I linked to the YouTube version, because quite frankly I didn't want to rewrite the Flash version to have a play button.