28 January, 2010

The 3rd & The 7th: Modeling Reel

"This guy is so good, that it makes me feel bad." - Anonymous CG Student

That was actually said in class as we watched in amazement at Alex's work. This, by far, is one of the best CG modeling reels I have seen. Kids, pay attention because this is how its done.

In this presentation, Alex showcases CG rendered modern architectural models in a way that a photographer would present their work. His compositions are eye catching, has a masterful use of depth of field (blur), lighting and texturing that sets the stage for a an excellent presentation

The clip above showcases a random sampling of shots as well as the breakdowns, so you can see his process.

The clip below is the longer "Third and Seventh" movie (12 minutes long), if you have time, do check it out. The piece is very beautiful. You can learn more about his work and his methods by checking out more of his movies on Alex Roman's Vimeo page here >>. Let me know what you think of his work.

27 January, 2010

Sinesthesics : Demo Reel

SINESTHESICS Showreel 09 from sinesthesics on Vimeo.

This reel is exceptional. Many times, especially in the advance animation classes, students have to animate type, and typically use 3D software to help generate particle effects and slick materials on their letters. This reel not only does that, but it also demonstrates great editing, use of blurs and interesting compositions of the same animation. Just a little somethin somethin to add a little variety to your flava. Nice soundtrack too.

Fire it up and Enjoy!

24 January, 2010

Pigeon Impossible

"Pigeon Impossible" is a clever animated short produced by animator Lucas Martell. I liked many things about it, particularly the clever story, characters, overall digital execution, soundtrack (his music is "off the hook" - how in the heck did you pull that off?), and after looking at this piece, I also noticed that he's got a lot of "behind the scenes" featurettes, so you can experience many the many struggles he faced during the production process. These featurettes are also well designed and entertaining. Thanks Isaac for sharing.

Check out the animation and take a few moments to check out some of the "Behind the Scenes" clips...simply inspiring from an "animator" standpiont.

Thanks for sharing Lucas, keep up the great work. We'll keep an eye out for your next project.


His featurette about writing and developing his script is below...

19 January, 2010

Gesture vs. Lip Sync: Fidel Castro

Which do you feel is most important?

In my animation classes, especially the ones where we focus on acting and movement, the topic of gesture arises. Gesture in essence, is body language, and if you can get the gesture of a character down, if you can make him look like he's saying it, then the lip sync is "icing on the cake" and makes the animation better.

Animate gesture first and make sure it communicates, your character animation will turn out much better. This clip is a perfect example of this. Thanks Trevor the link. Way to go Fidel!

Cheers and Enjoy!

18 January, 2010

Honda Crosstour : Animation

Saw this ad on TV for the new 2010 Honda Crosstour and liked it a lot. Its CG, but has a look and feel that is unique and refreshing. I had to post it here for future reference and inspiration. Its also animated to a great song!


15 January, 2010

Adidas Star Wars Commercial?

Adidas is kicking off their new "Originals" shoeline, and in these commercials, everyone is invited to display and celebrate their style. So, don't be surprised to see cameos from lots of cool people.

I think, whenever you have Snoop, Darth, breakdancing, smoke and Daft Punk all in one commercial, not only is that rare, but very cool. Turn up the volume, you'll like the soundtrack too.

Also, it took awhile, but every time I watch this, I always see something new Star Wars thing appear, either in people's shirts, on the walls and in the sky. Nice!


and the Stormtrooper shoe...sweet.

14 January, 2010

Rogier Wieland: Paper Animation

This is a showreel of great animations by Rogier Wieland made entirely of cut paper. This guy is so crazy in my opinion because of the amount of time it takes to make one piece, but the look and feel of the pieces are outstanding and engaging.

Below is little video about his creative process that I also found incredible. Do you think you would have the patience to create animations like this?

09 January, 2010

Theme Planet Animation

Once again, I will be teaching the Background Design and Layout class at our school, and with every class, we will examine various backgrounds used in animations to be used as good examples, inspiration and so that we become familiar with industry standards, plus I also think that the examples we look are fun and highly entertaining.

This piece by Michael Sormann is excellent in many ways, particularly in his character and background set design. Also....play close attention to his soundtrack which was put together by David Brandstaetter, its extremely professional and it makes the piece grand. To learn more about this project, visit Michael Sormann's Website. Way to go guys!

Fire it Up!

08 January, 2010

Gatchaman: Metal Live

Whoa man! Play this song loud enough, it makes me want to throw myself against the wall. This is the theme song from one of my favorite japanese animations growing up performed live...metal style. These guys are rock it out pretty hard. Turn up the volume, there may be other fans next you.

And of course, the orginal is below for your viewing pleasure.

07 January, 2010


Get ready to see more supernatural movies this year. If you haven't gotten your vampire fix from "Twilight", you may like this one, but its definitely a bit darker. "Daybreakers" opens this week and it looks interesting. In this world, everyone is a vampire, and humans are harvested for blood. A nice little switch than what we are used to...although it reminds me a lot of "Blade".

06 January, 2010

Avatar: MOCAP Featurette

By this time, you have all probably seen Avatar, by far one of the greatest, most enjoyable movie experiences I've had in quite awhile. Be sure you watch it in Imax 3D. You'll be amazed at how beautiful the film is.

As an animator, I paid close attention to the handling of the eyes. In animated CG films, the models and characters look great, but there is always something fake about them, that is usually attributed to the eyes.

This "eye thing" is called the "Uncanny Valley". Avatar however, hit the spot. The eyes looked very natural, through appropriate eye rolls and darts. Not sure if this was MOCAP'ed, anyone know. Usually, this is done by hand.

Kudos to the animation crew of Avatar for making such a memorable film, you guys deserve everything grand brought on by your work.

Fire it Up! Anyone see this for a second time? How was it?

Star Blazers: Live Action - Space Battleship Yamato

In 5th grade, when I came home from school (at about 3:30 - yeah, home soon, I had no idea about girls back then) I would turn the TV on a UHF station 36 in San Jose to catch the latest episode of "Starblazers", a syndicated Japanese animation about a group of space soldiers who had to travel a long distance in order to save the earth. The most visually stunning object at the time was their spaceship, which looked like a huge battleship.

This ship was named "The Yamato" and had a slew of weapons, the most powerful being the wave motion gun. I saw this live action clip "The Yamato", posted here, and became a fifth grader again. Very nice! Not sure about matching the hairstyles of the original animation guys, c'mon, very "Heat Miser". Here is the official Yamato Space Battleship Movie Site.

We've come a long way folks in animation and visual effects. Way to go. And of course, for a little nostalgia, here is the original opening sequence that aired when I was a fifth grader. Feel free to sing along....

We're off to outer space...
To save the human race...

03 January, 2010

Shaolin Pepsi

We're approaching that time of the year once again when Superbowl commercials take the main stage. I saw this and thought it was cleverly executed and simple, although some people still don't get it (especially the end).

Whatever you do, don't try this at home...ouch!
Highly entertaining!

Here's to an incredible 2010! Happy New Year to all of you.