Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tying up the loose ends...


I have received the final interior plate art for the TRO from David Dryburgh. It really looks nice and I have received nothing but kudos from those who’ve seen it.

I have also received a final rough for the Velite from Lee Madison. He is busy putting the finishing changes to that piece before moving to the final version of the Striker II.

Geoffrey Butler, my co-author, has finished working on the Jenner writeup and I expect to work on it Sunday evening. After his final go-over, it will be ready.

Eric has been very busy catching up on commission work, and while I am eager to see his take on the Jenner for 3063, that piece is in line and must wait its turn. I don’t seriously expect much until after Christmas.

In fact, I would be surprised to see any of these remaining pieces done before the holiday, as many folks are gearing up for their celebration. I am no different. I got a nice Christmas bonus this year – a week’s pay makes quite a difference, especially as the economy has been in the doldrums. We’re lucky our CEO saw fit to add something to the holiday paycheck. I spent it all on gifts, of course. Momma’s paycheck is coming the day before Christmas, and some of that will go to gifts and a nice dinner. I am hoping to make cookies for the family this year.

Meanwhile, the weather has warmed up and I have been out in the garage working on the TRO. Several pieces of Vlad’s art remain to be cleaned up and it is time-consuming work. Furthermore, I have been busy bundling the art with the writeups in order to make things a bit more organized for our layout man. The ‘Mechs, with the exception of the Jenner, are ready to send off as email attachments. I was thinking it might be wiser to send them on a jump drive or possibly a CD ROM, but Jim Devlin is in England and the shipping time would drag things out further. Still, I may do it anyway, in order to give him something solid to work on. It would save him the time and trouble of downloading hundreds of megabytes of information.

So for me, it’s cleaning up art and when that is done, bundling it. I had forgotten to add art to the section headers, and may do it tomorrow – nothing fancy, but it will break up the monotony of text. Furthermore, I have decided to make some changes to the print-friendly version of the layout. Some of the text needs to be black instead of white for ease of reading. Furthermore, I see no reason why the print version needs to be in anything but greyscale. Colors, even with the simplified layout, just get that much harder to look at when they are forcibly turned into a shade of grey. Better to make it all black and white and sort out the visual problems before we move on.

That’s pretty much it, folks. Sorry I couldn’t have this ready for Christmas, but if you’ve been following this blog, you know the kinds of trouble I have been having with art and so on. Let’s hope the new year brings us the remaining work (and money to pay for it). I will do my best to hammer out the rest here at home.

And before I go, apologies to PaintItPink for splashing my disappointment all over her blog's comments section. It seems the more I see of amateur (or professional) efforts to portray 'Mecha in film, video, whatever, the less patience I have with the work itself. I mean really, am I the only one on the planet that sees this stuff? And is bothered about it?

Thanks for stopping by.



Paint it Pink said...

I think it is being bothered about it that is actually bothering you. To paraphrase Sophocles: men are not so much bothered by what they see, but what it means to them.

Steven Satak said...

WOW. I had to read that three times before I could parse it. Damned Classics-reading women...

I am just saying that it used to be the fact that the CG was really no better than stop-animation and a good deal less than Lucas' 'Go-motion' technique. I figured it would improve over time.

Sadly, it turns out that the jerkiness is due not to the limitations of hardware and software, but the wetware directing the production.

In other words, the clever people who write the stories and the clever people who animate them have not yet realized that their creations are STILL mimicking the look of stop-motion photography.

Is this a requirement of such movies? Do they absolutely have to make the same mistakes over and over to reassure the audience that what they are witnessing is not real? I understand the logic behind Hollywood bombs and Hollywood computers, but really, either they are clueless or they think we are.

Either way, it stinks and has been going on far too long.


Shepard Gunn said...

I remember reading an article many moons ago about "trying to keep the Ray Harryhausen" feel in Special Effects. I'm not sure if this is a conscious thing or subconscious.

I wondering if it's a situation like with scientific theories. Things will change when all the old guys are gone out of the business. I'm not sure if it's true, but maybe the reasons special effects have "stalled" with the jerky stop-motion appearance in most movies is because the people directing them think that's how it's "supposed" to look? They look at it, and then look at the original "King Kong" or "Voyages of Sinbad" and think, "Wow! That's how things are cool!"

That's my third-shift two cents on it.

Karyudo said...

I think it's a case of people making what they are familiar with even if they have no clue. Gundam did an experiment creating a realistic training robot which ended up having no head. That looked so strange, but why does a robot even need a head? It doesn't have any real use for it but after seeing it done so many times our instinct is to sort of follow because it's become a "false" normal. For me when I try to build outside of "normal" it doesn't feel right which sort of just makes it harder to do. I can see that applying to a lot of movie making aspects. We've seen it done, so we end up with a faint forced inspiration.