Saturday, July 21, 2012

A series of unfortunate events... or awesome events!

Well I had plans for getting my portfolio and site all nice and updated, also got that 2 week job to tide me over, right? Well they kept extending me over and over. Now my contract is up and they might be extending me again (though I guess giving me a new short term contract would be more technically correct). They're all in crunch mode too so I had no time to get any portfolio work done with 10-12 hour work days and 45 mins for the bus ride to and from. I've had two interviews as well, but they both decided to go with someone else and it's probably because I having no high res film anythings on my site.

So the search for a good job here in Vancouver continues, and with time off (unless extended) I'll be able to update my portfolio, website, and my new Paz as I had planned!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A nice turn of events

I am taking an extremely temporary job- of two weeks. It seems that I keep finding myself in a "save the day" position where they bring in someone when deadlines are looming and the work doesn't seem to be getting done in time. Let's see if I save the day again like I did before ^.~

And now for something completely different:

funny pictures - Lolcats: 'Star Wars' Day Classic: Jawa Cat!
see more Lolcats and funny pictures, and check out our Socially Awkward Penguin lolz!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Redoing My Pazuzu Character

You can find my original Pazuzu character on my portfolio site if you really want to see it. I decided a bit back before I moved to Vancouver to redo this character. Originally it was hastily done while creating all the assets for Tribes of the Eternal Moon. While this character was a bit of an after thought and for the most part, wasn't even supposed to be textured, I powered through it as I put together my demo reel in the last month of Full Sail. Given that I've learned quite a bit and I've kept at enhancing my skills, I decided he needed a make over (only doing him as a bust). 

So here is the old Pazuzu, God of Pestilence. 
Edge Flow- untriangulated
Basic Diffuse texture added

Now what I ended up doing is making him into a bust, fixing his edgeflow, going back in and fixing some of his anatomy, like his jaw which the new one now closes perfectly with bared teeth overlapping nicely. I also didn't like flaps of skin hanging down either and so I changed those to be a leather patch nailed into his bone. =D

This shows the newer sculpted version. For those who don't know, the colored squares are checkers used to make sure the UVs, or textured area on the model match in size, and also aren't skewed or wrong in some way. The flesh to bone area on the muzzle now has... a fleshy area of skinless tissue. These are all just screen caps in maya by the way.
As you can see the edge flow is much more organic. The leather strap area has a max stretch (current mouth position) and will fold over when the mouth closes. The 5 star is located in a relatively safe place in terms of potential animation deformation. I'd say this is still a medium quality in terms of poly count like the original.

I've been neglecting the Spikes and collar so far and just started going into painting the diffuse. This time I'm not spending 2 hours to texture the entire character like before, and I'm hand painting the bust like I wanted to do with the original. At this moment I have hardly touched the diffuse other than to block it out. I've been working on some pick up items and such for another project, and getting my citizenship/sin/applications for jobs done otherwise. I will be taking breaks at some point to get his diffuse going this week though. =D nothing better than taking a break to paint!

St George Coat of Arms

To celebrate the attaining of my very own SIN after many trials and tribulations (which include being attacked by crows ) I'm going over a small and quick project I did for my father as a Christmas present for last Christmas. What I did was take our original Coat of arms, or Heraldry and redid it. Originally I was just going to work off the original but as I was listening to all the research my father had done for our family and how inaccurate and cookie cutter heraldry sites tend to be, I decided I needed to do my own research.
This is the original. 
I don't really know where it came from, 
but it's kind of sloppy, wouldn't you say?

So looking into how these Heraldry images are made, it became apparent to me that it wasn't just this equals that. It turned out that every family has a written heraldry, which is much like a word formula, called a blazon, which can then be used to create any heraldry image based on a sentence. For the St. George family, ours was this:

Argent a Chief Azure overall a Lion rampant Gules crowned Or.

The Blazon means this: Silver Shield with a Blue top, Lion positioned over all the shield, with an attacking position facing to the left (3 legs up), colored red with a gold crown.

Starting point where I focused on the lion.

This Blazon is incomplete since it only goes over the shield and mentions nothing about the treatment of the helm. For some of it I had no choice but to go off what the original depicted. I did find out that the knots on top of the helm are basically the feathers coming out of the helm, as well as the "leaves" that decorate the space around the shield. These ornate parts don't seem to have any meaning other than to ornate the image.

 I did change one thing which I thought was necessary since the family did attain knight/nobility hood at some point in their history (it's been 6 months I'm foggy on the actual details of who and when). The Helm with an open visor means that the family had attained nobility or knighthood. 

Changes made, rough coloring.
With everything ready and blocked in, I went a head and finished it off for the final piece shown below:
The Final

Hurray for finishing my dual citizenship ... ness!

Monday, May 14, 2012

From East to West: Arriving in Vancouver

I've arrived in Vancouver, BC, and I have to say, this city is pretty great. I traveled by my self from Michigan, driving the entire way. It's now been a week since I've arrived, and I'm still pretty sore, though I suspect it's from the large amount of walking I've been doing, and not from driving 6 days straight.

As for my road trip, I do have to say that technically I DID drive from Maryland to Vancouver with a couple month stop at Michigan- So I'm keeping my claim of traveling across the country. I was staying in the "suburbs" of Detroit if you can call it that. It was basically the Utica and Rochester area.

I ended up leaving Michigan only to stop and stay in Michigan City, Indiana. Nothing really all that amazing about the drive there, but I did like my stay at a Microtel Inn for the first time. The next day I traveled to Hudson Wisconsin. This also meant that I was traveling through Chigaco. For the most part I ended up seeing a great deal of industrial areas.
After Chicago as passed it was apparent that I was in the land of Cheese and farming.

I stayed the night at a small place called Royal Inn, which I believe was a family operated hotel. It wasn't a holiday inn or anything but it was pretty nice. From there I took off towards North Dakota, passing along the rolling hills and farm land which seemed to go on forever. Then I encountered some curious hills, which signified me entering the 'Bad Lands', or so the oil guys told me they were.

I finally made it to Medora North Dakota, of which I thought for the longest time was some made up place the Google guys put on a map as a joke. There is only one road into this tiny town and one road going out. I think the town was all of 4 blocks big. This area is just amazing though, and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to "get away from it all". There was a nice ranch, and tons of fun little things to do for summer time. It was a good thing I stayed before their tourist season started, because it was hard enough to get a room with the demand from the lack of places to live for the oil boom employees. And I saw plenty of oil pumps and rigs on the way to Medora. The Gas price was pretty cheap as well, but from Medora on out, the price just climbed.
Leaving to get on my way was a bit tricky considering that I had to find where their one gas station was hiding. While I waited on my pump, which was ancient, I got a good picture of the building across the way. The Badlands soon gave way to a flatter terrain.
After a while I saw something looming in the distance. If my Chevy Tracker had eyes and feelings, it'd probably would have been in emotional pain.
Needless to say it was pretty painful driving up those mountains into Bozeman, Montana. My little Tracker just isn't happy with hills, and even though I used the truck lane, and the power option, it was a struggle. The temperature went from a cool 75 / 80 degrees to 50 or lower in a matter of an hour or two. At some point it started snowing.

 So I finally arrived in Bozeman. I was exhausted at this point, but I checked into my hotel, comfort inn, and took a look around.

I found that the Museum of the Rockies was open and I woke up early the next morning so I could at least see their famous Dinosaur exhibit. I was not disappointed! The exhibit was just amazing with very detailed fossils on display, quality I hadn't seen before. It might have been that they were the actual fossils. I also was able to see laboratory where actual Paleontologists were cleaning and preparing fossils. It was fantastic!

After Bozeman, Montana, I took off to my next destination; Moses Lake, Washington. I Drove down the mountain back into more rolling hills. This time the hills were pretty empty. Some scattered farms were here and there, but it was mainly lakes, wind, hills, and nothing much else. I ended up at the "Interstate Inn" which was also more of a family run business. They were really nice and friendly though, and I had the best sleep of my travels there. That's right they had special beds with those expensive memory foam mattresses.
The next day, and the last day, I'm off! But what do I see again? More Mountains. It looks as if the white caps of the mountains feed off into clouds.
And then it snows again. More this time. I'm thinking to myself at this point, "Geeze I wonder if the roads are icy... "
Finally I get out of the mountains and up to the Canadian border. After 2 hours with the immigration office there, I was allowed in! Haha. Mainly the hold up was them checking the content of my car and on my Citizenship. In any case I arrived in Vancouver at last. The end!

*All photos were taken with my Android phone.