September 30, 2005

More Open Season Pics

Here's more picture's from open season:

I didn't do any of them. Over all I'm pretty happy with the way the film is turning out. I'm way to paranoid to say anything more then that, you'll just have to wait to see for yourself.

Jarry Juhl

The first employee hired by Jim Henson Jerry Juhl passed away from Cancer on Monday. He was originally hired to be the puppeteer who replaced Jim Henson's wife Jane Henson, but he soon became a writer for the studio. This is no small task for the Henson company was working on a lot of shows including the Muppet Show, Sesame Street, Fraggle Rock, as well as the movies.I'm a huge puppets fan, this is a sad bit of news.

For more you can read this great writeup on filmforce, and there's the Henson's Official Announcement. I originally found this out at The Disney Blog.

September 29, 2005

The Feel Good Movie of the Year: The Shining

Check out this great movie trailer for the Shining:

It just goes to show you how important editing is. Kinda reminds me of most movie trailers you see today, any movie can be misleading if edited differently.

USA Today Article about Open Season

USA Today has an article about Open Season. The article doesn't say much, it tells a little more about what the plot is like and, like most articles on animated films, it spends a lot of time talking about the voice talent. I don't think it tells anything new. In any case, check it out if your curious:

September 21, 2005

Plan Ahead

I have to agree with Jason on his blog.
Planning your animation before going at it makes it much more enjoyable. It's temting to just jump right in, but that's the worst thing you can do.

Thumbnail, Thumbnail, Thumbnail, get out of your chair, act it out, and thumbnail some more. Work small, I like to work small because you can get a lot of ideas down quickly and it forces you to think in silhouette. You can't draw that much detail small. The great thing about thumbnailing is that you don't have to be tethered to your desk to do it. Recently I was stuck in a long boring meeting, I took my sketchbook, instead of waisting an hour I felt like I was able to work on my shot for an hour. When I got back I knew exactly what I wanted to do. It saved a lot of time.

If you look on page 236 of Illusion of Life there's a great page of thumbnails that Mark Davis did. This is kinda like what I like to do (except my thumbnails don't look as good). I like to explore the idea firs, get a bunch of crude drawings down and don't think about the order of things. This is where I think about how a character would do something, like hold a glass, or open a door. This is also where I try and come up with the most entertaining way of doing an action. Then after I've come up with a dozen or so different ways of doing that one action, I video tape myself, so I can see the subtle things I might be doing without thinking about it. Then I'll go through the video tape and pick out the actions that work. Then I'll thumbnail again, this time I do things in order. I try and let the flow in at this point. This is where I do a lot of improv, I get the thumbnails down quickly only focusing on the forces and the action. After that do I launch Maya and pose out the characters.

Even in Maya I work in the lowest rez possible, shutting off anything I don't need. Get the poses down quickly, flipping between poses as best as I can.

I'm working on a 500 frame shot right now. So you better believe that I'm planning the hell out of it.

September 19, 2005

What to do this weekend: Resfest 2005

I'm going to Resfest this weekend:

If you haven't been to Resfest, you should really check it out. It's pretty darn cool, I try and go every year. It's a festival where they show the latest and greatest of film graphics techniques. My personal favorites are the music videos: "Videos that Rock" and "Cinema Electronica". But this year I'll also be checking out the feature film Infamy by the director Doug Pray who's previous documentary "Scratch" I've seen a number of times and has a warm space in my DVD collection. I also plan on catching the Panel: Street Art or Not.

Should be a good show.

Crap, I should look at a callender once in a while, it's next weekend.

September 15, 2005

Madagascar DVD artwork...again!

New Mad Cover
Originally uploaded by ejhdigdug.

Okay, again with the Madagascar DVD artwork. It looks like they've realized that there are indeed four different penguins and they've lightened the beach. Still the same crummy innards though.

I'm looking forward to seeing Corps Bride. What I've seen looks great. Two Stop Motion films this year, that's awesome. Who said that computers would kill the art of stop motion.

September 13, 2005

Madagascar hits the #7 Spot

Thanks Jason for pointing out Madagascar hit the #7 mark for computer animated films. Bookended by Toy Story films. That's pretty darn cool!

September 12, 2005

Cool Shot

So, I got like this really cool shot to do. I really like it, and I don't want to fuck it up. So you probably won't be hearing much from me as I focus on the the shot.

In the meantime check out these cool blogs:


Donnacha Daily's:

Harald Siepermann:

Alfred Jodocus

John Nevarez


Wow, they really make me want to draw more!

September 4, 2005

Mad's revised DVD cover

Mad's revised DVD cover
Originally uploaded by ejhdigdug.

I don't want to pretend that my little blog has any power to change things. But DremWorks improved it's cover art for the Madagascar DVD. It's much better, not perfect. Now if I could just get them to change the inside. How about those deleted scenes? How about DTS?

September 2, 2005

Madagascar Box

Originally uploaded by ejhdigdug.

So it looks like they've released the info for the Madagascar DVD. It goes like this:

Universal Home Video has released early details on Madagascar which features the voices of Chris Rock, Ben Stiller, Jada Pinkett Smith and David Schwimmer. This recent Dreamworks film will arrive in a single-disc edition from the 15th November this year. Retail will be around $29.99. The film itself will be presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, along with English and French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround tracks. English, French and Spanish subtitles will also be provided. DVD Extras will include the first ever Penguin commentary as they give you their unique take on the film, some untamed games and activities (including Foosa Whack and Learn to Draw), a Behind the Crates featurette, a Tech of Madagascar featurette, a Mad Mishaps featurette, a 'Crack the Code' game for a special prize, and plenty more.

$29.99? I have to say I'm pretty disappointed with all of this information especally for thirty bucks! I mean I like the the Penguin short, and the Penguin Commentary sounds like a good idea. But it's only on one DVD and there's no mention of deleted scenes! There was a lot of good work cut out during production of this film. They easily could have filled a second DVD with all of that stuff. Pluss the box looks like it was designed by the intern at "Food For Less." What's with the yellow line that makes it alredy looks like it's already headed for the bargain discount bin?

Yha, I'll end up buying it anyway.

September 1, 2005

Force Vs Form

Carlos has posted one of my favoret Don Grahm notes. It's called "Animating Force vs Animating Forms" I first read this in school and it made a big diffrence in my animation. Check it out here:

Draw the Looney Tunes

I was in Borders Book store last night and I ran across a new book called Draw the Looney Tunes: The Warner Bros. Character Design Manual. Now I've seen a lot of how to books, how to draw bugs bunny and the like. But this one was printed so nicely. It was hardbound with foldout pages and good paper. It was obviously not meant for young kids so I had to take a look at it and I was surprised to find that it was a really good book. It was all about drawing, no real mention of animation, but it was as good as most life drawing books I've seen. It had big sections on the line of action, rhythm, line quality, perspective, you name it. I was pretty impressed with it. I don't know if I would call it a mush have animation book but it's definitely worth a look.