Archive for March, 2008

Transcending History…

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Hey, it looks like James is in the upcoming Soul Calibur. Hey James, that’s a nice out-fit!

Blogging again

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Hey folks. You may or may have not noticed that when I leave a comment now, my name has an active link which goes to my design blog “Busy Words.” Sorry it took so long to get this up and running. To be honest, I was just waiting for the designer of the template I was using to upgrade to a new, fluid design (fancy words for a blog that adjusts to the size of the browser window), but he hasn’t released it yet despite promises to do so. So, I just found another template and did some tweaking to the stylesheet and now its ready. I have a bunch of stuff I want to write about, but have been holding off so as to avoid a backlog of unread articles. Anyway, I’ll be there as often as I am here so please visit; just click on my name in the comments.

Print Ads

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I put together a couple of print ads a few weeks ago to promote our upcoming 2008 show. I am particularly proud of it because I was responsible for both the design of the ad, the design of all of the logos within the ad, and all of photographs used within.

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Double Yikes!

Okay, I do not know which is more creepy, the fact that this thing is amazingly lifelike and autonomous or it makes that whirring sound. Can you imagine hearing that in the distance and getting closer? Only to see some headless quadra-ped lumbering your way? Yikes!

Yikes!

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Well, it just got cheaper to go to the States, but vacationing here is going to kill your wallet. This is the lowest I have ever seen the Dollar trading against the Yen. When you guys were here it was hovering between 127-130 yen to the dollar. When I first started going to Japan on my own, it was around the 150s – 160s. The U.S. Economy in recession (here that GW, I said “recession”, say it with me) is just doing a number on the world’s economies that’s for sure.

Classics

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Found a great Flickr gallery focused on the packaging of classic Atari games from the late 70s to early 80s. Not only is it a great sampling of that era’s graphic design and illustrative conventions, it’s also just a plain, old, good walk down memory lane. A lot more can be found here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/joekral/sets/72157594432670289/

Procrastination Flowchart

Ah, it is finally good to have a scientifically and logically sound set of reasonings to absolutely not get anything done. This, my friends, is a guide to life for sure. Click on the pic for a larger version:

Survived

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I am back. I had to put the above note on the iMac in order to get all the things I had to get done…done. I just couldn’t afford the distractions. And believe me, that was probably worse than trying to go cold turkey on drugs, liquor, what have you. Now, I can finally breath a sigh of relief as the worse is over.

What was I doing, you ask? Well, I was put in charge of checking the entries for a film database that will be going live this month. 630 films starting from 2002. And they needed that done in a month, so I had a certain amount to get through everyday to finish on time, which wasn’t always easy. Some of the entries had horrible mistakes, inconsistencies and translations, that needed serious surgery. Then, at the same time, I was asked by the festival who contracts me to manage their English website for a quick and sudden “renewal” of the design with all sorts of new content. They wanted that done in a week. This was followed by a translation and “native check” (making sure translations by non-English speakers are grammatically correct, etc.) editing job for a 160 page booklet (magazine really) for a the Agency of Cultural Affair’s Film Awards and Tokyo International Film Fest seminar transcriptions. That had to be done in 2.5 weeks. In the middle of that, I was asked to translate a plot summary for a Japanese film pitch going to a film market in Hong Kong. That needed to be done in 1 week. ALL of this happening from New Year until just this past Friday (for me).

Needless to say, this is the busiest I have ever been here. Good stuff. Certainly not complaining. It was the first time that I had jobs coming in as I was in the middle of, or about to finish one. Unfortunately, some of the deadlines worked out to fall around the same deadline as another job, so it was a serious juggling act. And this is why I just had to stay off the web for a while.

I should be able to get to regular postings again, but that’s after I read all 1000+ entries in my news feed reader. What the hell is going on in the world anyway? I haven’t left my house in literally 2 months. Time to get out there! But catching up a bit on things on The Cadre Blog:

  • James, killer piece my friend. Don’t know what the preliminary looked like, but looks like you took advice from the Divine Ms. L and then some. Great foreground, mid-ground, and background dynamic. The “dust” being kicked up gives it lots of energy and makes the gorillas that much more intimidating. Well done. Keep it up!
  • Got an email from Jeromy. He does live, though I think barely. Says he is extremely overworked, but is looking forward to visiting The Cadre Blog when he gets a chance. I think I understand how he feels now.
  • Thank you Kiko for linking to those Shirow designs. I agree, it certainly is interesting to have “guest” designers create special bonus sets. I still appreciate Shirow’s designs, though I think we can all agree that his technique of late has gone south. But there seems to be hints that he is giving up on the cheap, out-of-the-box CG look and is returning to his illustrative skills. In fact, a lot of the older manga artists who were trying out digital techniques seem to be going back to their roots. Kia Asamiya was doing his own digital coloring for a while, but I have since heard from someone connected to him that he has abandoned the computer completely and is going back to painting. Guess he found out how tough it is to get good results (the kind he wanted) from the computer. Perhaps he can now sympathize with the demands he placed on JD Smith and myself .

Anyway, I leave you today with this:

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What’s this?? A package from Kevin O’Neill. What ever could it be for???!

Who watches the Watchmen?

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So, I took a little trip up to Sony Pictures today, and got a whole heaping load of info on the animation dept, the process for making Beowulf and an app. called Massive. And also saw like a 20 sec. scene of The Watchmen movie explaining how they were using related processes to animate Dr. Manhattan. So We got to see a scene with the actor rigged up for MoCap, and then the semi-final render of the CG Dr. in action, having a discussion with Silk Spectre2 I believe. I was stoked to see some of the film, I just wish I had seen more. :(