Archive for January, 2009

Hey everyone, sorry I haven’t been posting too much, but hey, shit happens right? Anyway, what’s new…what’s new…uhhh Well, I have been back to working out again. I don’t know if I ever made it public, but I was planning on losing 30-40 pounds by April. I started back in late December(like a week before Christmas.) I think in 1 month I lost about 8 pounds which is decent, but I can do better. It’s just been tough because…I am a lazy man. So I had been slacking on my gym time. I hope to change that. I’ve started to crash Rugby Practices at CLU to get some extra cardio on my off days from the Gym. Today was my first time and it went all right. It makes me miss playing.

Speaking of things I miss, wrestling. See, I was once a Professional Wrestler. I believe it was 2005 when my friends and I began training at the School of Hard Knocks with Jesse Hernandez in San Bernadino. I loved it. Jesse is a great guy and I have a lot of respect from him. I learned a lot as well. I trained with him for about 2 years straight. It was quite a committment. I would have to get up at 6:45 AM on Saturdays to meet my friends at the mall to drive 2 hours to San Bernadino. Then we would train for 4 hours and then drive back. Training was a toll which left me not wanting to do anything the rest of the day. And needing to get up early meant not doing much on Friday. So I could say it killed my social life, but in reality I didn’t have one…but it sort of, maybe prevented one, who knows. Anyway, I had a lot of fun and then in the Summer of 07 I studied in London for 6 weeks. It was a break from Wrestling. When I got back, I wrestled in…I believe 1, maybe 2 matches before I stopped. I don’t know how good of terms I left off with. Red, who is like the…Well I don’t know what I’d call him…He was in charge of booking I think and was like an overseer I suppose, he got mad at me for something I hadn’t done, but like a man, he talked to me about it and we hammered it out, and I told him I was burnt out and that he should leave me off shows and the website. I respected him for wanting the truth and coming to me to hear it. So we left it at that, and I haven’t spoken to him since. I’d like it to be clear I have no beef with Red. That’s not the tone I want to convey here. It’s just that was it. It was August 2008 when I wrestled last. Since then I’ve kept in contact with Jesse via Mysapce a little bit, wishing him Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas, etc. I respect both him and Red, and I miss working for them. I just don’t know if I am ready to commit again. I don’t think I have the time with work and school. Perhaps in the future. However, I bequeath to you all, the one piece of video evidence of my Professional Wrestling Career on the Internet.  This is a clip on Youtube you can find by typing in Red Bull Bash. This was for the Red Bull Grand Prix and Party in June or July of 06. We traveled up to Monterey and got paid 100 bucks to do a match in front of about 500 people which was a good crowd. They were hammered and they cheered and booed when necessary.

Now, what else… Let’s see. School is going good. We’re on Week 4 which means class one is 1/3rd of the way done. This weeks assignment is to animate 2 bouncing balls of different weights. This week has been interesting because there has been a lot of talk about timing and a lot of physics principles. And Me and Physics are pals. I love Kinetics and Motion with Physics. So we have been talking about Inertia and stuff, but it’s interesting to see their take on it. I think they arn’t explaining it right but whatever. If I see these problems on peoples work I talk about it. Like for example, two objects falling should hit simultaneously regardless of their mass/weight. Unless its something like a Beach ball which the wind resistance would cause different landings. Anyway, I’ll take off my nerd hat for now.  Below is my current take on this weeks assignment.

Lastly…I haven’t done ANY painting in a while. I would like to change that. I also would like to do more drawing. Maybe I will try to do like a sketch a day or something…That could be fun. It’ll keep my skills in check and maybe boost some creativity. Anyway, this weekend, I want to try to get some painting done on Saturday. Anyway, it is late, so adios!

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Hey there! So, I am back from my trip to San Francisco, and man what a Blast! Definitely the way to seize 2009.  I’ve never been to SF so it was very cool to go there and see some of the sights. So after work on Friday I finished my assignment and went to Carp to get Justin. After a quick stop to Rudy’s for some Mexican food, we left for San Francisco at 7:30 at night.

During the drive, around…10PM we began playing “The Name Game”. Which consists of saying the name of a famous person(Author, Comedian, Actor, Athlete, Composer etc.) like Robin WIlliams for example. Then the Next person has to think of a person whos first name begins with the first letter of the guy’s last name. So if Justin said Robin Williams, I would say something like Wynnona Ryder.  So that started at 10…and we didn’t finish until around 9PM on SUNDAY!…yeah, over 48 hours of playing haha. What did I learn?…well, first of all, this was a fun and addicting game. So much that Michelle and Laurie joined in as well. Secondly, While Y’s may be the hardest letter to solve for (well unless you can think of an X I suppose), not a whole lot of people END with Y….The hardest Letter is probably F, G, or H I would say. Because SO MANY people end in those letters, but it’s hard to think of them.

Anyway, after 3 hours, we managed to make it to SF. Michelle had decided to go out and was planning on making it back in time…but she failed haha. THANKFULLY Laurie was home and let us in. The name game continued for about an  hour before going to bed. Michelle came in a wee bit intoxicated looking for her pj’s. It was an odd night. Apparently she had to walk over 3 miles drunk back to her house, ha!

So the next day we began by heading downtown and walking around. We stopped by Union Square, and then a couple shops. We met up with Laurie who got off work early and headed over to the Wharf. By this time Michelle had joined in the Name Game. We took a street car to the wharf and even though we were at near opposite ends of the packed car, we were still playing haha.

We went to the wharf and saw some Seals and stuff before heading down to some place to find some clam chowder. PS-Mission Accomplished! So we relaxed for a little while before heading out en route to Chinatown. We walked through little Italy and found the food part of China Town…Some WEIRD shit there man….WEIRD shit…It must be something about seeing Meat carried in a cardboard box without any sort of covering haha. We went down one street and suddenly THAT was where all the cool shit was happening. Chinese New Year is today I just remembered. So it was some sort of New Years Party. But there were all kinds of cool little knick knack shops. I ended up buying 3 Swords and a stand for 24 dollars. They are of poor quality…more of that later…

We just kept on moving and eventually decided to cook some dinner(and I posted the suggestion of havin some brews). So we(read, Justin) cooked some pasta and lived the Miller High Life. I must mention the High Life….Miller Makes a fantastic beer with the High Life. Not only does it go down smooth, you get a large quantity for under 2 dollars(32 ounces which is almost 3 beers). So when you have about 3 of those, you’re feelin PRETTY damn good. Now, Justin is a small guy and he had 2 of those. Needless to say he was drunk, but he was HILARIOUS! I’ve looked at some pictures and videos of that night and I just laugh. There are videos…but I won’t post them because he’s got “frollegues” who don’t need to see it haha.

The next day, we got up, a skosh hungover, and we went for a walk along a path. Michelle and Laurie live in the outer part of the city, and so it’s very quiet and much more relaxed. We walked a path to get a good look at the Golden Gate Bridge. I got some nice pictures. Then we drove over the bridge to the vista point for some more pictures, and then around 3PM we were off…and yes still playing the Name Game.

And then….by like….9 we were home(and we stopped at Carl’s Jr. for 40-50 minutes). All in all, it was a great trip, lots of fun, and a lot of memories. Below are some choice photos from the trip.

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Hey everyone. How is it going? You know what’s silly, I don’t even remember what I wrote about last. So let’s just move on forward, shall we? So, what’s going on lately? Well it’s Week 3 of Animation Mentor whoo hoo. This week’s assignment is to Sketch bouncing ball, Animate a bouncing basketball or soccerball, sketch a pose of Excitement, and then make a pose of excitement. I’ve done all of the sketching, but I’m finding excitement a tough pose to do without being cliche, something mentioned in the lesson this week. It’s mainly due to the limitations of the character we have.

Stu has no facial features, no shoulders, and no individual fingers besides a thumb and a mit. So it becomes a bit tough to do some exciement poses. Like take the below image for example:

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You know those hands and that face would be tough. Oh well. Oh, haha, I just realized I posted my sketches for this week’s assignment haha. Well then I’ll just move onward. So I’ve been working on my Bouncing Ball Animation. I’ve come up with using a soccer ball and have two different animations.  One is a pretty standard animation, and the other is a bit more…playful I guess.

I’m having trouble uploading a Movies so I will not show that until I can get it on youtube(which wont let me upload yet.)

Otherwise, I have been painting just a little bit. Below is where I’m at with my painting of Allison. The eyes and a little bit of the hair were what I did. The eyes are a little too bright so I’m going to need to tone them down a little bit. The face still needs work. It’s mostly the whites of the eyes that are the problem. The pupils and stuff came out pretty good so far. Still gotta sit down and work some more on some of my fine art stuff.

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Well I’m pretty tired and Lazy, so I don’t feel like writing too much more. I’ll try to a better and more in depth post tomorrow sometime.  Otherwise, Have a good day, and Listen to plenty of Andrew W.K.

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So Week 3 at Animation Mentor has started. We’re about to animate now. We have 3 assignments for this week. The first is to animate a ball bouncing in 50-100 frames. The ball is supposed to be like a basketball or soccer ball. Then we’re supposed to Thumbnail that animation, Sketch some poses for “Excitement”, and then to pose Stu to match the sketch, or at least based off the sketch, and still showing “Excitement”.

Excitement

This is my Stu Thumbnails. You can see me get better as I kept going haha. Drawing requires some warm ups. I need to be drawing every day.

Bouncing Ball

And my bouncing ball drawings…which are shit. However, a bouncing ball requires some physics….well it doesn’t REQUIRE it, but man I dig physics. I did some tests with a basketball. I found that the ball can bounce anywhere from 7-11 times in under 5 seconds. The first fall took .4 seconds. Then the time from that fall to the next fall is .9 seconds…which means that the second contact occurs at 1.3 seconds.

Now the thing I hope fellow students realise is that Horizontal Motion is independent of vertical motion. Also, that a ball should take the same amount to fall that it took to rise.

Yeah, I’m a physics geek, it happens. But I mean…as a guy, how am I NOT supposed to be interested in throwing, smashing, and breaking things? It’s like Physics is meant for me.

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Today was one of those Lazy Sundays you hear about. Only it was a Saturday. Which is good, because if it were Sunday and it were actually 4AM on Monday Morning before work I would be in for one very very rough day, actually.

Today, I did some laundry, ate at Urbane Cafe(which is my weekend ritual), cleaned my painbrushes, and painted some more. I painted Allison’s eyes today which was good. I think so far they’ve come out all right. I need to do the eyelashes still, but once the eyes are done it should be easier(as I am prone to mistakes, and wet on wet produces a lot of mud).

After that, I took a shower and headed to Carpinteria. Justin, Gonzo, Sarah, and I went to Kai Sushi in Santa Barbara. It was very tasty as I often find Teriyaki Beef to be(not big on sushi anymore). After that we went down the street to Java Joes and partook in many nerdy conversations. About how the Math from the Bill didn’t add up, googolplexes(One of my FAVORITE topics), exponential growth, and so on and so forth.  This seemed to piss off Sarah(who drove) and she just wanted out. I guess we might be slight losers, who knows?

Then I came home and tweaked some of my Animation Mentor Assignment. It was tough because I had 2 poses made, and it was pretty even on which one people thought I should use as the assignment. The funny thing is that I think girls prefered one and guys the other. It ended up being pretty split at 3 and 3 I believe. I decided to side with the ladies on this(mainly because I think the silhouette is clearer). It’s nice to have it done and finished. Especially since it’s so late now. If I went to bed I doubt I’d get up before 11:30 tomorrow.

Anywho, that’s about it. Tomorrow I think I will paint, watch some football, visit my friend in LA, and maybe see a movie. Speaking of Football, Go Steelers!….As for the NFC…well…I guess Cardinals? I dunno.

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I often wonder about the worth of some of the technological advances we make. I mean, take the cell phone for one. 5 years ago, I never needed a cell phone. In fact, I prided myself on NOT having one because it seemed to just enslave people. I liked the idea of a portable phone for emergencies, but then some ass hole invented Text Messages and suddenly you’re tied to it. And now, it worries people when they don’t hear from you when you call or text them. But 5 years ago, I would call my parents and say “Hey I’m going to go bowling, I’ll be back later.” My parents would ask me what time I’m coming home and I’d give them a guess and if I’d be later, I told them I’d call. “Keep Me Posted” was the key phrase used. Now there’s this instant access, and here I am enslaved by my phone. Below is a great clip from The Boondocks about some new technology and texts.

Now, the internet is how I found this clip. This is the beauty of the internet in it’s truest form. Sharing information from multiple sources. I can find almost anything I need. If I’m curious about a topic, there’s websites that can tell me about it and allow me to read up on it(Wikipedia is amazing for this).

But for every great thing on the internet, there’s probably 100 worse things on it. And I’m not just talking about pornography. I’m talking about ignorant, racist, sexist, bigotous, and stupid shit, you know? Some of it is hilarious despite it’s pointlessness(Look up Failblog). The sad thing is you can find ALL of these negatives on Youtube.

So with all the useless videos of Blue Flaming kids, Guys and Jars, Girls and Cups, and some jackass being birthed from a cow; websites dedicated to weird fetishes, ideals, and images(I’m talking about you 4Chan), it leads to the question of there is anything worthwhile on the Youtube?

I was in my Multimedia Community Class which, really was a pointless class, however my professor, Barry, said “There is nothing of value on Youtube. And I challenge you to show me otherwise”. Of course this was part of a game where if we answered a question right, we could go up and play a video to try and prove him wrong. If we could prove him wrong, he would end class right then and there no matter how early it was. Many videos were shown. Human Tetris, SNL-Dick In a Box, and some others. None of which proved him wrong. I remember, I answered a second question(Human Tetris was one I played), so I got to go play a second movie. And I thought of a movie My Art History Teacher in London showed us. He had thought the very same thing, that there was nothing of value on youtube. But then he found this video and it changed his mind.

After he saw that video, we were immediately let out 35 minutes early. So the moral of the story, is for every ignorant ass hole on Youtube, and every pointless, stupid video(Excluding The 2008 Live Rick Roll by Rick Astley himself) there’s still wonderful videos to be found on Youtube. So my advice to you, enjoy the funny videos, ignore the lame ones, and just don’t read the comments.

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So one thing my mentor at Animation Mentor assigned to us this week was to watch The Dover Boys of Pimento University and look closely at how the transitions were made. I’d suggest you have a look at the video itself. Just look it up on Youtube.

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So here is Dan Backslide. A rather funny character who uses the less common phrases of “Hark”, “Drat” and “Double Drat”. Anyway, this is a frame at Frame 5810F, or 3:13. In this scene, he is pining for this woman who’s name escapes me currently, but he says “HOW I LOVE HER…” Then he makes the move to this pose…

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Now, here’s Dan Backside at Frame 5819 and 3:14. So there is 9 frames of transition. Now, the eye tends to blur fast motions, and 3D applications have taken note of this and applied what’s called “Motion Blur”. Where the computer will calculate the motion of the model, and blur it based on its acceleration and velocity. But ol Chuck Jones didn’t have this luxury, so how did they solve this? With very odd and unique frames like so…

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Those are the transition frames and some are put on 2′s(ie shown twice). Just some food for thought.

Compare it to a frame of Presto(one of the best Pixar shorts ever) using Motion Blur:

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Here, Presto is using Motion Blur, and you can see the big difference here to The Dover Boys. Motion blur blurs the object in both directions more or less, not necessarily treating it like Putty as the Dover Boys does. So you have an interesting look at the old way and new way, to do the same thing.

That’s about it, I’m goin to bed.
Adios!

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Hey Hey Hey! So, it’s a new year(it was in my last post too but still…). My New Years Resolution was to get a life I guess, and so far 09 is going great. I hope you all had a fun, safe, new years. Mine was spent playing Mario Kart on the Wii and going up North to the Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez with a couple buddies of mine. I won 135 bucks playing Blackjack and I might be hooked on gambling now. We brought in the new year, came home, and things have just been going well lately. So well it would seem that I can’t really remember what I did the last few days(even though I haven’t had any hootch).

I did do a little bit of painting which was nice. I got the background painted on the painting of my friend Allison.

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I finally got that background in there, as well as the little silver strips on the argyle sweater. I think it’s safe to say that from the neck down, the painting is done ha. Now I need to do the whole face and hair. I also still have to finish my woodcut that I started back in June, oy vey!

I’ve also started at Animation Mentor. It’s been pretty good so far, it’s got me pumped and excited, just adding to the greatness so far that is 2009. Last night I had my first Q&A session where I got to meet my mentor Joe Mandia(http://www.joemandia.com) whos a really cool down to earth guy. Got to meet some of my classmates, and it just is very exciting to get going on this. My buddy(and manager) Kai is also doing it and he is equally stoked. Feel free to check out his blog on the right.

Today I got to meet 3 people from MAXON HQ in Germany, Marco Tillmann, Bernd Lutz, and David Drayton. They were here for some Business and I got to meet them which was nice. I saw them all at Siggraph when they were here, but I didn’t get talk to any of them or meet any of them. Simply had Kai point out who was who, and so on. But it was nice to actually sit down, meet them and stuff.

So I mean, with painting going pretty well, hanging out with friends, gaming big time with Call of Duty World at War with Justin and Derek, Animation Mentor, and Work things going well, man 2009 is really coming out strong haha. Not to mention my birthday on Saturday, as well as my lovely neice’s as well, so I think Saturday I’m probably going to go to downtown Ventura and hit up a bar or something with my friends. If you’re in the area drop on by! I don’t know where we’ll be but who cares haha.

~Bret

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The website has a new look, and it’s being done through WordPress now instead of Greymatter. So it should be a bit better. It’s been a while since I have posted, but I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a good New Year. 2009 is brimming with possibilities, and I hope it is an amazing year for everyone.

Let’s see what is new…I have been painting just a wee bit, and I will try to upload some images later. I still have more work to do on the website to get it back working(mainly the gallery). I still have to finish my woodcut, GRRR!

However, this blog should be getting more and more Animation stuff on here which should be pretty cool. I start my online school, Animation Mentor, on Monday and I’m stoked. Kai, my manager at work, is doing it too and he has a blog on it as well. That’ll be on the blogroll when I get it set up again. But, yeah I plan on posting a lot of my progress on here, but I also hope to not be neglecting my other art…outlets I guess would be a good word.

Anywho, it’s late and I have to work tomorrow. So take care, and Happy New Year!

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