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Update: Here is the paper rolling up transition put into practice. I'll be able to reuse this trick a lot, so the work involved was worthwhile:
Poser did the job (see previous entry). Here is a quick example of the animated paper...
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There's no way I could complain. While I slaved over my project, Max set off on another race. This one was three days. I can't sail because I get terribly sea sick. It's a beautiful sport, but I am incapacitated by nausea. The sea sickness medicines only made me sleep between vomits, or induced night terrors that I would never want to repeat. I am happy to stay home and work on my project, instead.

The project, by the way, is shaping up nicely. I will be finalizing the rough placement of a large segment within the week. When it's ready, I have a few volunteers who will view it and let me know whether it's coherent. I'm really quite happy with it. I think whatever comments they make will not lead to any major revisions. One never knows, though.

Here are two videos taken by Max's main race pal, a young Frenchman who worries whether I resent how he takes Max off on sails so frequently (that's Max in the video). No, sir. I am very happy to know you think Max is the most companionable skipper on the bay! Plus, you always serve great cheese and wine! Oh, and as competitive as you are, you don't mind when Solar Wind doesn't finish near the top. ;-)

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After feeling pretty darned pleased about my progress last week, I'm disappointed with the results I'm getting this week.

I've been working on an important section about the artist's body. Measuring requires position awareness. One of the toughest things to convey to students is that there is an imaginary projection plane from which measurements are taken. The section I'm working on now is where I convince the viewer that movement by the point of view, the projection plane, or the subject leads to trouble. Depending on what moves, and in which direction, a) scaling discrepancies, b) surface visibility alterations, or c) a combination of the two develop. It's all tedious material, and while memorization is not required, the listener must not zone out. To be effective, the explanation must be short but complete. Deciding what to show and what to say is harrowing. You see, I feel under pressure to make progress right now, and since this particular section is key to the premise, the pressure is heightened. This has got to be nice. The right music will definitely help, and there will be text overlays, which will certainly re-enforce any important points. I can't work on music or text overlays until the script is finalized. :-P

This clip is a demonstration of just how unformed the section is right now. The timing is too fast. The voice over is not properly placed -- mainly because it's still in flux. When I figure out the best arrangement, the solution will seem obvious. No one will guess that this part was troublesome. The window structure in this clip is the projection plane, materialized for demonstration purposes. Normally, the projection plane is imaginary. Placement of the imaginary projection plane varies according to the measuring technique.

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I needed to solve a problem with my demonstration animations. How was I going to point out elements in 3D scenes?

At last, I hit on something I like. I create snapshots and, as necessary, move and resize them to point at and discuss. Here is a snippet from the sequence where I put the method into play. As before, this is all rough placement and subject to change. The voice over is placeholder quality, only. The timing and shaping of the parts will be adjusted and refined later. The script may change, too. But this is a big improvement and gives me a lot of hope about the feel of this project.

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It's been a rough week, dvd-wise. In spite of having a clear direction, it was slow going. The main trouble was knowing what could be done, but not knowing how to do it. I whacked at various filters in Final Cut Pro for a day but failed to make a feathered, masked image move properly over another image. The next day, I used Photoshop to create the scene in a 65 frame animation, but it ended up ugly in the timeline. That brought me to dinner time. Rather than fight into the night, I gave it a rest. Nearly every time I hit a wall like this, then get a decent night's sleep, things fall into place the following day. Sure enough, yesterday morning all the tools seemed crystal clear to me, and my motion sequence came together in a matter of minutes!

That's not what I'll show this time, though.

With one animation problem solved, I was able to turn my attention to something easy by comparison. The poses were fun to create and I'm generally happy with the renders. Plus, they look fabulous in the timeline on the color video monitor!

The illustrated story unfolds behind the cut... )

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This is a shot from a long scene about parallax in my dvd. This scene is used as part of a discussion about the entrance pupil and photography. Later, a camera appears in the scene, demonstrating good and bad pivot points for tiled shooting. It's really tedious, like much of measuring is. I believe one reason no one has written a good book about measuring for artists is it's just plain tedious -- tedious to read about, tedious to do, and tedious to construct a legible discussion on the topic. Luckily, a little joy can be extracted from the creation of the dvd. My hope is that nice looking scenes that clarify information as succinctly as possible will make enjoyable the task of finishing this (for me) and watching it, for the viewers. I kind of had a good time putting these poses together today. By the way, I built the chair you see here. It's the first thing I made in Silo. :)

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I'm sure I will be posting quite a bit about my dvd here, so I think it's time to introduce my animation characters.

Each 3D character was altered from its default state. Each went through Silo to make it just so, then exported back to Poser as a morph of the original character. Each also received new or modified textures to go along with its new persona. It took quite a bit of time to work out all the problems that developed. It would take a very long time to describe every aspect of the entire process. But I want to discuss it with you, so this will provide enough info to spark specific questions. Behind the cut, you can see the original models, just as they look when first loaded into the scene, side by side with the final characters.
See all the characters behind the cut... )

First Post

Jul. 11th, 2009 11:08 am
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My journal originally started in Live Journal. Disappointed in their business model, I moved here, to Dreamwidth in May, 2010. In this opening post, I changed my original reference to lj, naming Dreamwidth as host, but replies still reference lj. I'm happy I found Dreamwidth and look forward to many years of carefree posting!

I grew up and still live on the San Francisco peninsula in California. My life is devoted to art. I am a painter. I also teach and coach professional artists at their work places -- the local animation companies.

Writing is not easy for me. I tend to go over and over what I write to make sure it is clear. I spend more time writing than should be necessary. Posting to DW could possibly interfere with the work I need to get done, yet posting may also help me stay focused on my work. It all depends.

Could I find sympathetic and supportive commentary from fellow DW'ers? I bet yes. That's why I begin.

I'll start with where I want to go...

Read more... )



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June 2013



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