Monday, April 30, 2007

Wallpaper and Future Plans

Just throwing out my current wallpaper design since it's late but I still want to do something. Actually, my real wallpaper is the same thing, but measured for a 1200 x 1900 screen resolution, so for a blog pic, Vivian and her rival would be too small to enjoy. We wouldn't want that, would we? This first try on the other hand is just right for this purpose.

Hopefully, I'll be able to put up some storyboards after I revise some for my upcoming storyboard portfolio. I am also aiming to have my website revised and updated this week, though that will mainly have my current portfolios (minus the Nick Test boards) as well as more finished peices and paintings. I'll probably update the blog more often. It's just easier that way.

Anyway, here's Vivian and a different rival than the one from the end credits of "Vore-aciously Yours", and the poor thing doesn't have a proper name yet. That's not right.

If I were to redo this, I would give the faces more animation. They just don't seem "punched right off the skull" enough.

Oh yeah. My main boss at Titmouse Studio is the man who created "Megas XLR". I have the best job ever.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Enter Cyn

All right, enough looking at the past. Here's one of the character designs that I'm working on for a long term comic project that I plan on doing during my spare time after graduation. I'm not giving out too much on her save that her name is Cyn (for now), she's a drummer in a group, has hearts with skull faces, and even though she's cute as a button, she's a villian. A cute villian.

These are just my current comcepts of the character, and am still trying out different things as her looks and who she is are developed further. Her hair stylle is the thing I'm working on the most. And just for fun, here are some old concept drawings of Cyn.

And remember, she's part of a trio.

To Dream...the Impossible Dream.

More Older stuff. Now, when I first started to become a serious art student, one of the things I wanted to do was to be a great fantasy/erotic painter. I'm talking full-blown Boris Vallejo/Frank Frezetta paintings with classicly beautiful and powerful women with barely any clothes, fearsome monsters, erotic human-creatures, and the kitchen sink. You know, real "John Carter of Mars" versus "Conan" and "Tarzan" stuff in a "Heavy Metal" magazine type stuff. Chicks, chain-mail, it was going to kick ass. Unfortuantly, it became quickly obvious that working beyond 4 levels of tones and color recognition were talents that were a bit lacking in me, even in a beginner's level. For years, I tried to take as much painting and figure classes as I can to get better, especially figure painting. Progress was slow, and works in my eyes were lacking. Frankly, it became frustrating when I would get some of the uniquely shaped and attractive models in class that I would never see again, like for example a female part-time bodybuilder competitor, and my painting of her would look like something out of a child's coloring book (still, that very painting hangs on my wall to this day).

Last semester, on some very good advice, I got the opportunity to deviate off my established animator education path and take a figure painting class with Don Lagerberg. I got schooled in reviewing and having a better understanding on colors, palettes, painting techniques, and toning that I didn't think I could do. It also introduced me to water-based oils, very nice and very clean in terms of paints. Even though taking this class caused the CSUF Finacial Aid Department to kick my ass big-time the following semester, I don't regret taking that class one bit. That department and I reached a compromise, so in good taste, I will not curse it out and bow out a grateful gentleman of refinement. heh.

Here is a painting I did of a very fine model named Aviva Grey (Gray?). Aviva is unique in that she was a friend of mine before my CSUF days through another teacher. She's a great person to eat with, great sense of humor, has a lot of great and blunt common sense and always takes the time to say "Hello". In my opinion, she is also a very attractive woman, a great to draw, and a pleasure to paint for 8 hours.

This other painting is of another very nice and pleasent model and a friend of Don's. I believe her name is Rebecca. Rebecca has a lean but very muscled redhead-tone physique with a regal and mature face and very commanding gestues. I got to do a color painting of her, and this photo I took of it does neither the painting or Rebecca justice.

Well, Obviously I still need a lot more work and I have my animation-based career to work on in the long run, but I haven't given up. Maybe I can do this well when I'm in retirement-age and just use my money to hire a bunch of models from then till the death of me. I think making nice paintings of beautiful nude women would be a pleasent way to live out the golden years. Never give up any of your dreams.

Summer of ', 2006.

Right now, I would like to fill up some space by showing some peices ether won't fit into a character design or storyboard portfolio. I feel it is also a good time to show off a few proud older peices so that everything onward is brand-spanking new.

The first few come from the summer of 2006. First is a acrylic painted caricature I did of Andy Warhol.

Next is a pen and ink editorial illustration I did for a story regarding the legacy of Christopher Columbus. I thought it would be interesting to have him stand judgement in front of Saint Peter, with a little nod to Gustave Dore's illustrations to Dante's "The Divine Comedy".

The third is a poster design for Anton Chekhov's play "The Seagull". It almost got the honor of being the offical poster for Cal State Fullerton's Fall Production of said play, but alas it fell just a little short. Maybe if I didn't do the text by hand...ah, the road left untraveled. Still, I'm honored it was even considered, and I thank Larry Johnson for encouraging me to put in the extra effort to give it a running chance.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Go, Gilberto, Go!

Good News: I turned in my storyboard test of Nick's "Go, Diego, Go!" as part of my storyboarding class. It was a great experience working on offical studio paper, and even though there are some mistakes, especially after listening to the studio tour after they were turned in.

Bad News: Due to legal reasons, I cannot post them. Damn.

Drawing with Don

A few weeks ago was the spring 2007 portfolio review. For me, it was a day of meeting professionals, getting great critiques, and hanging out. After eating out with some friends, I went back to campus and decided to visit one of my favorite teachers, Don. I caught him in the middle of a critique, but he invited me to draw with him that Saturday. Don has become something of a mentor to me and more important, a good friend, so I came that Saturday to his studio classroom on campus. It was just him and his grandkids, so it was like visiting a friend. Don set up a prop head with lighting for me to draw, so draw I did.

Good times. I would have never been able to draw like this without good teachers like Don.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Prima Viviana Assoluta

Some of you may remeber my 353 film; "Vivian the Fairy in 'Vore-aciously Yours'". Well, one year and one film later, I'm still tinkering with my leading lady's design in my sparce spare time. I've also gained some new influence, such as the design theroies and arguments from John Kricfalusi's blog, as well as a newfound love for classical dance like ballet. Actually, the latter is the extention of my oldfound love for thick dancer legs, but that's another story.

Anyway, some of the things I've been changing is making the face less of a single unchanging shape and more of an expressive head that whole structure can change to reflect emotion but still be recognizable as belonging to that specific character. I'm also getting a good working formula on how Vivian's eyes and eyelashes work.

I'm still having trouble getting the hair to work as a completly working-3-demisional object, kind of like the problem the Bruce Timm Batman series had with the first Gordon design's cowlick, beofre completely redesigning the character for the later episodes by just giving him a crew-cut.

One thing I've begun doing as mentioned before is studying ballet performances. I began using gestures that I captured from a Nino Ananiashvili video I have to pose my character to better understand how motion and a dancer's anatomy works in these captavating performaces, as well as reviewing squash and stretch over the whole body.

Okay. The last gesture was from a belly dancer video I have. Sue me.

As you may have noticed by comparing these very recent sketches from the year-old turnaround back on top, Vivian has gone through some other changes. She's more round overall, her waist is more appropriate to her body type by being bigger (but not in that "Fast-Food Nation" type big), her arms are longer and more muscled as well as having actual pectoral muscles running from under her deltoids.

The reason I designed her some simply at first was that I had no confidence that I could pull of something more natural but still good for animation. But as I doing the animation, I found myself constantly breaking model by drawing more anatomy and shapes. I can't help it. I love doing good and expressive figure drawing. I felt pretty bad about it towards the end of the semester, but my teacher, Chuck Grieb, said there was nothing wrong with a character's design evolving during animation, and I liked the way my character was turning out. Below are some frames from that very film.

If there is to be another Vivian the Fairy film ( and now that I have a copy of Flash and the knowledge to use it, so possibilities are fair at the moment), expect changed models as well as a lot more nods to dance. I might even slug more with music and set the whole film as one big ballet. Just with half naked fairies and a whole lot of violent fighting.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

All right

Two and a half years laters, I have returned. Man, this place needs some updating.