Thursday, March 31, 2011

Conan Trailer

Here is a link to the new trailer for Conan the Barbarian. The trailer is pretty sick considering 99% of it is all particle effects. There's also a really cool Conan the Barbarian logo at the end that looks 3D and has a cool sword sliding through it. This is the first trailer i've seen thats so particle heavy and I think it has a cool effect compared to just showing some movie footage. Great use of sound also.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Friday, March 25, 2011


Yesterday, while doing some green screen tutorial I mentioned the fact that when there are highly reflective surfaces, such as glass, involved, it is better to add that surface later via tracking and compositing, so that the glass surface reflects the final environment and not the studio where it was shot. Here is a perfect example from Avatar, thanks to Cinefex magazine, the premiere efx publication without a doubt. In this particular case a matching 3D model of the face shield was added later so that the actual story environment could be reflected. You can see the little red tracking dots around the face mask.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Real Motion Graphics!

Since Leah posted her light writing piece in the Fiction Field blog I think she (and all of you) will be interested in the work of Lichtfaktor which are a couple of very active German artists. But in this video (no need to speak German to understand it!) you can also see the work of my favorite light graffiti collective. The fabulous and radical (and OPEN SOURCE!!! yeah!) Graffiti Research Lab. There is also a piece on the AR (augmented reality) group DAIM using tracking fiducials to create 3 dimensional light graffiti. This is the 21st century after all...

Stock Footage

Arturo was right about filming possible backgrounds and scenes while we still have access to great equipment! I came across this clip (which costs $300) of Fall Creek on a stock footage site. Sure would be easier to just shoot it ourselves while we still can!

Green Screen Test

Today in Fiction Field we ran through a green screen test in the studio. This is what we ended up with at the end of class. Pretty cool. The characters were green screened separately and then appropriately re sized and placed.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

After Effects, video tracking moving letters in NYC

Click here to see what i'm attempting to do in class.
I have a lot of high res pictures from the nyc and i thought i might as well try and make it work. this particular video used tracking in after effects. ill probably just simulate my still pics so that it appears like video and hope it works out
if you guys have any ideas what i should try and spell at the end, let me know


Over the break I saw the movie "Limitless". While I don't really recommend it due to lack of a good story. They do this really cool sequence where the camera is zooming in and moving throughout the city and the people are actually moving it's not just all still photos. so for the motion graphics you should check it out.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Completed Background Comp

This is the completed background that i've been working on the last few classes. The background image I made in photoshop from about 5 different pictures. I added animated birds and also animated the smoke coming out of the smokestack.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Three Designers

Paul Rand was an American graphic designer who was best known for the corporate logos he created. The innovative and forward-thinking logos he created for companies such was IBM, Westinghouse, UPS, ABC, and dozens of others changed the way companies marketed their products with sleek, streamlined marketing. His approach was generally one that revolved around simplicity and it's probably that mindset that made his logos incredibly popular. If you google image search his work, so many recognizable corporate logos come up that it proves that he was a pioneer in the industry.

Scott Kim is an American artist, computer game designer, and puzzle designer.
Perhaps best known for his puzzle designing, his achievements in other fields are not to be ignored. Kim worked on developing games for PlayStation and Nintendo64. Kim's most recognizab
le work is certainly the ambigrams that come from his 1981 book Inversions which produced some wildly popular graphics and designs. An ambigram is something that reads that same going backwards and forwards.

John Medea is an American graphic designer, computer scientist, and university professor. He is most known for his work while attending MIT as a software engineering student. He has been heavily influenced by the practices and principles of Paul Rand and attempts to utilize Rand's style into his work.

Scott Kim FAQ on hiring a designer

I thought this was good for any of us to read who are going into design. He's very frank about his work and gives a great explanation of the client/designer relationship

The Maeda Connection

Processing was built by 2 MIT students, Ben Fry and Casey Reas, in 2001. And who was their adviser who couldn't see the need for such a program? John Maeda! Luckily Ben and Casey ignored Johns misgivings and went ahead with the program. If you want to read the article click here. He also tells a funny antecdote about Paul Rand too.

Graphic designers

Paul Rand was an American graphic designer, most well known for his corporate designs. He made memorable logos for such companies as ABC, UPS, Westinghouse, and IBM. His design techniques revolutionized the commercial art industry and helped companies realize how important design was to their business. He used minimalistic styles because he believed that the more simplistic a logo was, the longer it could survive. Clearly, he was right because many of his logos are still being used today.

Scott Kim is a graphic artist, focusing in on puzzles and puzzle design. He is known especially well for being able to warp letters and words in creative ways. He wrote a book entitled Inversions, which showcases his ability to write words that can be read in more than one direction. He also creates puzzles for computer games.

John Maeda is a graphic designer and computer scientist, who is currently the president of the Rhode Island School of Design. Designers, such as Paul Rand, inspired Maeda to begin his work in graphic design. In that sense, he promotes the idea of simplicity in an ever-expanding digital age, much like Rand promoted simplicity in the ‘60s.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

3 Graphic Designers

Paul Rand- Changed his name in his early twenties which helped to jump start his career. He made magazine covers that he charged no fee because he wanted full artistic freedom. He is most famously known for the corporate logos that he created in the 1950s and 1960s. He created these logos for companies such as IBM, UPS, ABC and many others, which many still use today.

Scott Kim - An American puzzle and computer game designer, as well as an artist and an author. Has created thousands of computer games and puzzles today. He speaks on puzzle designs today at the International Game Designing Conference today.

John Maeda - A computer scientist and a graphic designer and is the current President of the Rhode Island School of Design. One of his idols was Paul Rand when attending MIT. Received the National Design Award for Communication Design in the US in 2001. He is also an author.


Paul Rand - Rand was probably successful because he believed that good design was part of life. Steve Jobs, who hired Rand to create a logo for NeXT called him "the greatest living graphic designer" shortly before his death. And while some in the graphics industry didn't like him, it is indisputable that Rand's work transformed the industry into what it is today.

Scott Kim - Kim is a designer in many aspects of web games and toys. He specializes in ambigrams and inversions, which are really quite cool. Like what Dan Brown did in "The Davinci Code." You can even buy Scott Kim greeting cards with ambigrams on the front.

John Maeda - Maeda is a designer who also works at MIT. One of his missions is to teach people how to use simplicity in such a complex global environment. He collaborated with Reebok to make shoes, and his designs can be found in many other places.

3 Designers

Paul Rand-started out his career with designing stock images for a syndicate that supplied graphics to various newspapers and magazines. eventually he became one of the biggest American Graphic designers. he designed some well known logos for different companies like IBM, ABC, Ford Motor Company

Scott Kim- designer known for designing puz ambigrams zles and

John Maeda- started out as a computer designers and in the 90's when computer-aided design began he influenced and helped typographers and page designers explore the freedom of the web

3 Designers

Paul Rand
Paul Rand was a graphic designer who attended the prestigious Pratt Institute. Rand started his career by creating stock photos for various print media and then went on to create logos for companies such as IBM, UPS, Enron and ABC in the 1950s-60s. Most of them were very simple and he believed this is the way graphics should be. These logos are what he is remembered for, and while they were considered minimalistic, they were very effective and memorable. He also convinced companies that they needed a defining graphic to be remembered. Some of his designs are still in use today.

Scott Kim
Scott Kim is a designer who specializes in puzzle and computer game design. He has also worked with video, print, and the web. He is one of the most well-known designer of ambigrams, which are graphics (usually words) that can be read multiple ways or may even read as multiple words. They are some of the most difficult graphics to create, which is why his work usually starts around $1000. He published a book called Inversions featuring his work in 1981.

John Maeda
John Maeda is a Japanese-American graphic designer and computer scientist. Currently he is the president at RISD (Rhode Island School of Design). He also teaches and has written several books. He has received several awards for his work and was named one of the 21 most important people in the 21st century by Esquire Magazine in 1999. His goal is to increase the role of graphic designers and artists in the future. His website, , not only features graphics but some very neat and creative things to play around with.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

John Maeda

John Maeda is the associate director of research at the M.I.T. Media Lab in Cambridge, MA. He is a well-known graphic-designer, visual arts and computer scientist. Maeda is known for his theories on “simplicity” and “humanizing technology” in the digital age and was announced as the next President of the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in 2008. Maeda made his mark by redefining the use of electronic media for all ages to use as a way of expression.

Scott Kim

Scott Kim is a graphic and logo designer, who specifically focuses on logo design and lettering. He likes to involve clever tricks with lettering, when of course appropriate, such as when the subject matter itself is tricky, paradoxical or contains some sort of double meaning. Kim has worked in various mediums, such as print, video, software and the web. His website is honest and has great recommendations for companies to turn to if his price (starting at $1000) is too high or the client is looking for more than he can provide. He prefers to design corporate brochures, book covers (layout, lettering and some illustration), and titling for video and interactive media

Paul Rand

Paul Rand not only created logos for various well-known businesses of today but created children’s books with his wife, Ann. Together they worked on four children’s books, Ann as author and Paul as the illustrator. I thought this would be interesting to post since everyone has seemed to take the liberty of writing about his successful career as a graphic designer, creating significant logos in today’s society, such as UPS, ABC, and IBM. He was on top of the world in the 1950s and 60s but continued his work up until his death in 1996. Here is the cover of one of the books her illustrated with his wife.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Paul Rand, Scott Kim and John Maeda

Paul Rand, a Brooklyn native, is a graphic artist who is best known for designing corporate logos. Rand first found success when designing covers for “Direction” magazine. He went on to design for “Apparel Arts” magazine and “Esquire-Coronet” magazine. While he created memorable work in these endeavors, his corporate logo designs are what truly distinguish him as a successful graphic designer. The first major logo that Rand designed was for IBM in 1956. Rand took a simplistic approach when designing many of his logos. Attached is a link to many of his logos:

Scott Kim is a graphic designer who specializes in creating designs for puzzles, computer games and magazines. He attended Stanford University where he received a BA in music and a self-designed PhD in Computers and Graphic Design. He is very well known for writing inversions. Inversions are graphic designs which allow viewers to read the design in more than one way. Kim wrote a book called Inversions which includes 60 of his impressive designs. This book connects Kim’s work in symmetry with psychology, music and art. Inversions can also be used as a teaching tool. Some of his designs can be found here:

John Maeda is a graphic designer who is a proponent for simplicity. Maeda first earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science and electrical engineering at MIT. He then went on to complete his PhD in design at Tsukuba University’s Institute of Art and Design in Japan. He is currently the President of the Rhode Island University School of Design. Maeda is the author of Laws of Simplicity, a book which aims to help people find ways to simplify their lives and gives suggestions for how to simplify product design. He encourages connecting technology with traditional creativity.

Paul Scott and John


Paul Rand began his career providing stock images for newspapers and ended up being the “greatest living graphic designer” because of the images he created for corporate identities. Rand is famous for the creating logo’s for companies such as IBM, ABC, Cummins Engine, Westinghouse, and UPS. He stressed the importance of his identities and convinced companies that they needed a defining graphic. His philosophy was that a logo would not survive unless it was designed with simplicity and restraint. All of his corporate identities can be considered minimalistic but their effectiveness and impact was huge in the 1950’s – 1960’s.

Scott Kim

Kim is an American puzzle and computer game designer. Starting as a puzzle maker and columnist, Kim has become a master of ambigrams. Although they appear to be simple in nature they are actually very difficult to create. The best part about Kim’s designs is the fact that they are visually stimulating. Each word needs to be read backwards and so identical curves need to be made to work for 2 different letters. The ambigram below was created for a private school in California. It’s amazing how the same shape can be interpreted into two different letters.

John Maeda

Maeda is a pioneer of creativity. His goal is to increase the role of artists and designers in the creative economy that is the 21’st century. Maeda has some really cool things on his website including this.

Scott Kim Logos

These two logos, designed by Kim, really caught my eye. Chanpon - "web site for people with dual Japanese and American identities. Chanpon means "mixed-up" in Japanese." It is pretty cool that Kim's logo reflects the mission/purpose of the web site on different levels. Both english and japanese characters are mixed together, the "p" in ChanPon serving as different characters in each language.

A look at Paul Rand

Shortly before his death, Paul Rand was asked by John Maeda to speak at MIT. When Maeda asked, "what is the difference between an artist and a designer" Rand replied, "There is no difference between a designer and an artist. They both work with form and content. I try to create art, whether I make it or not is not up to me, it's up to God."
Rand sounds like quite a character. He has designed logo's for all the biggest companies; IBM, ABC, UPS, and Westinghouse to name a few. So many Iconic brand logos started with him, chec out his gallery here
Scott Kim designed this version of J.S. Bach's name symmetrical over a vertical axis. Not only did he do this design, but he also wrote an Augmentation Canon in tribute to the great composer. Kim says, "Canons are similar to inversions — the goal in both cases is to compose an aesthetically pleasing result by following a mathematically precise rule."
This piece is in 2 voices, they both play the same melody an octave apart but the soprano melody uses notes with half the duration of the bass notes, so it goes through the theme twice while the bass plays it once.

John Maeda

John Maeda is the president of the Rhode Island School of design. He is dedicated to linking design and technology. He is influenced by the work of Paul Rand, who's logos were often very simple and elegant. Here is a video of Maeda speaking at the Ted Conference about simplicity and elegance.

Paul Rand

Paul Rand is most famous for designing the logos of several large corporations. The familiar logos from this image were all designed by Rand. His most famous logos were created in the 1950s and 60s, but his work continued to receive plenty of recognition until his death in '96.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

ICTV Graphic

This is a graphic I made in Photoshop for an ICTV show Nick and I work on. We wanted to use it as a background in a monitor that the 2 hosts sit on either side of. I'm trying to brainstorm ideas of how to animate it now...I don't want anything too crazy because it will take away from the hosts talking and be a distraction. I saved it so when I import to After Effects all of the layers will be there so I can animate each one individually. Any ideas?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Flock of Birds

Tomorrow I'm going to work on maybe adding some animated birds to my background I made last week. I want to put a flock of birds in the distance to add some movement so it doesn't look like a still. Also I want to animate the smoke a little bit in the image.

Locked In

My Locked In video from Tuesday, draft edition

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

What do you think?

Hey guys, so I've been working on a sequence for my "production company" and I just want to know what you guys think. I used a tutorial for the butterfly, which can be found here:

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Oscars Intro

The introduction to the Oscars this weekend was decently entertaining. The green screen and re-creation of scenes from the films was impressive. Anne Hathaway and James Franco appeared to be realistically interacting with the characters in the nominated films thanks to some precise editing, costumes and green screen effects. If you haven't seen the intro, check it out!

Great Graphics bringing the 90's to life

Hey guys,

I saw this video today of a live action Pokemon movie. The motion graphics is really well done, and I figured since we're all 90's children that you guys would enjoy it.