Friday, December 21, 2012

The Glitch

So this may or may not be my last post on this site and I wanted it to go off with a bang. Attached are two videos by a YouTube group called Corridor Digital (and their secondary YouTube account all about how they make their videos). The VFX in their videos are great and they even show off the stuff they do for us viewers so we get more of a personal connection with the group. They're located out in California and they post a lot of videos. Happy Hollandaise Sauce and a Merry Candlenights to all!

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Hobbit

It's finally here! The Hobbit an Unexpected Journey is now in theaters for everyone to experience and enjoy. I've been a Lord of the Rings fan since the first movies came out back in 2000, and have read the books twice since then (as well as any other readings that Tolkien and his son have offered). I was one of the few millions who went out and saw it at the midnight release and I can happily say that it does not disappoint. One issue I had was that I saw it in 3D and was forced to sit in the front row due to the theater being packed; so I unfortunately am not a good judge of whether or not the 48 FPS that everyone is talking about is a good or bad thing. The 3D was certainly a cool feature however, and I would like to see it again from a better perspective! The story holds up incredibly well. Peter Jackson does an absolutely faithful representation of the books through his movies, and that still holds true for the Hobbit. It is a little goofier than the original Lord of the Rings were, but that was expected, as the Hobbit is a more kid-friendly story to begin with. The effects are stunning as well. There is more magic this time around and fantastical elements that Jackson seems to rely more on green screen and digital animation. The video above shows how they work in the green screen technology as well as the new RED 3D camera systems. It's really interesting to see how goofy everything looks in real life, but is translated to look gritty and realistic in the film. This is in no way a bad thing either.  The story is now framed as a tale being told to Frodo by Bilbo; which I feel justifies a lot of the more ridiculous and animated moments as exaggerations to the story. An Unexpected Journey is to be followed by two more movies, The Desolation of Smaug and There and Back Again.

Here's a link to the official Blog for the movies:

Please, do yourself a favor and go see this movie,

And good luck everyone with finals and have an awesome break!

adios amigos

Tis the season so I, as several others also have, decided to post a good ole Christmas video. This is just a little animated snow man and some lasers and beams. It's just a nice little video. I hope all of you have a great break and maybe I'll see some of you next semester. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, of course only if we all survive past next Friday.

Last Blog!

So I must say that this has been a great class. Looking back to my first blog and seeing my 'Kayla' name project in After Effects is pretty funny. Some classes I am slightly glad to have end, but this one I really wish I wasn't done with. I am definitely going to continue to develop my country music video and play around with video copilot tutorials. This stuff is so exciting and I can see myself working out in the real world someday at a job where this is incorporated.

And you know what... after all of this I finally feel like all of the times Arturo says, "You guys can do this right now with what you know!" I actually can do. Thanks everyone for a fun semester. Have a great break!

(Here is a little Holiday Greeting created in After Effects.)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Drake Equation

     Happy last post!  Well, isn't this a bittersweet moment?  Over the past few months I have posted about motion graphics from things like movies and especially music.  I think my favorite post on here was in regards to Flying Lotus's Layer 3 live set-up.  As an avid music connoisseur, I find it exciting to see two of my favorite things, music and post production coming together.

     For my last post I am changing up a little bit.  This is a video that would not be too hard to replicate in After Effects, it is using motion graphics to explain the Drake Equation from Carl Sagan's Cosmos.  None of it seems particularly difficult, most of the objects just grow and shrink as well as fly around the screen.  The only one I am not sure about is the rotating Earth.  See the video to get what I mean.

Visual Loop Daily Video - Drake Equation by Visualoop

 My guess is the image of the Earth was originally a flat .png and the editor grabbed the edges and pulled them back as to make the image like a cylinder.  Then they warped the top and bottom so that they were touching opposite ends.  The middle may have been "puffed" out to make it appear like an orb.  But this is just a guess!  :)


So if you don't already know, I am a huge Pendleton Ward fan. If you already knew though, I am still a huge Pendleton Ward fan. I have seen every single episode of the ever popular Cartoon Network show "Adventure Time" and when he backed the kickstarter of LA Game Space by creating a video and tee shirt, I funded the program because (aside from it being a fantastic and wonderful idea) I wanted that tee. Anyways, Mr. Ward recently came out with a new show through Frederator Studios' adult production label Cartoon Hangover simply called "Bravest Warriors." The show features four teenage heroes-for-hire as they warp through the universe saving adorable aliens and their worlds by using the power of their emotions. Below is the fourth episode which features some 3D animation of a flying space-bus crashing onto the marvelous city of Mars.

Something I think is really great about the show is that whenever they release a new episode they also release a "behind the scenes" video, featuring the voice actors acting and some of the animation process, and an animatic storyboard. This is a fantastic way of not just drawing in viewers but giving them more of a personal relationship with the show and how its made. Below are those bonus videos for this episode.

This may not be completely related to this blog but I feel that motion animation is still animation, making cartoons just as serious. This episode was released on Thursday December 6th and there is a new episode every Thursday so keep your eyes peeled for the newest episode coming out today.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Let's Get Smokey

So I've spent the past couple days devoting all my time and energy to my Fiction Field final project, a film called Dog House. It's awesome, and it looks GREAT. I can safely say that despite the sleep deprivation, I loved working on this film. I'm so happy I got to spend so much extra time on After Effects, because I can definitely say I feel a lot more comfortable using it, as well as more confident in my color correcting capabilities.

Apart from coloring the film, I also did most of the graphics for it, including the intro sequence, which required a smoke .mov file I downloaded for free from a free stock-footage website courtesy of By following this tutorial, I was able to quickly and effectively adapt the smoke title lesson into a great title sequence for the film.

I've looked at a few other videos by this guy, HPnoticTutorial, and he's pretty good. His accent can be a little hard to understand at times, but so long as you increase the player quality to 360p you're good to go. 

So yea, that's it for this post for me! I'll see you all tomorrow!

(Also, the Fiction Field Production 1 screening is from 10-12 this Saturday, December 15th, so be sure to stop by if you're free! It'll be a great time!)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Publicized in Newspaper

My recent post of the 2012 Muscular Dystrophy Video I produced has gotten national attention. This included as of recently, the media. My hometown newspaper did an article on the story behind me producing the videos because of my Mom, who has Muscular Dystrophy. The picture that is shown above is from the Reading Eagle Newspaper. Along with this, The Ithacan is also doing an article on me too. My goal was to get this story as far out as possible to help find a cure for Muscular Dystrophy. I believe I have mostly achieved this goal.

Final Holiday Movie: A Christmas Carol

This is the epitome of motion graphics and animation.  From making Scrooge look like Jim Carrey to the life like images telling a classic christmas story.  They are able to capture the comedic timing of Jim Carrey with the vivd images of Charles Dicken's story.  The 3 ghosts are exactly what I pictured when reading this story.  I love this movie even more than Polar Express.  It always leave me in awe how detailed the images are; from Scrooge's grimy teeth to his large pores in his crooked nose.  It is definitely  a film worth watching this holiday season.

Stan Winston Interview

Just a really short interview with the VFX master Stan Winston. He designed the creatures in films such as Jurassic Park (1993), Terminator 2 (1991), Aliens (1986), Predator (1987), The Thing (1982), and the list literally goes on and on. He used traditional puppets and animatronics as opposed to CGI which wasn't available at the time. I still think his work looks exponentially better than anything that's put out today. He also won four academy awards. Booyah.

Below is an example of his work from The Thing. Oh it's too good.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Incredible Camera...

The camera shown in this video is incredible. Ramesh Raskar and a team of MIT students/professors developed a new camera that can record at a trillion frames per second. Some of the ramifications for this technology are shown, like advancements in medical technologies to help with invasive surgeries, firemen in rescuing survivors from a building. I believe that there are numerous possibilities not discussed in the video, particularly in a military setting. On the other hand us creative types could make some extremely cool motion graphics with this camera. I just wonder what someone could accomplish with a camera like this and creative intent. It is hard to describe exactly how powerful this new technology is, but I feel like the video really speaks for itself. I recommend everyone watches it; this camera could have a big impact on media in the near future!

why did it take me so long to discover this song?

One day I was very bored and decided to do a YouTube power hour. It started out with me looking up hockey highlights which led me to football and one of the videos had this song (300 Violin Orchestra by Jorge Quintera) as it's background music. I fell in love with the song. There are no words. Just some great violins and and great beat. I found a cool visual effect video for this song. At first it appeared very simple to me, but as I watched, I found it appeared as though it was growing towards the top of the screen and that it grows and dies in sync with beats in the piece. It's not very complex, but I found it to be very fascinating. Do yourselves a favor watch the video.

This is the video that led me to this masterpiece:

How I Met How I Met Your Mother

One of my best friends from home and I had a tradition when we were in high school where on New Years every year she would introduce me to a new TV show that almost always ended up being one of my new favorites. Degrassi, Bones, and How I Met Your Mother are just a few of those shows.

HIMYM has been one of my favorite shows for years. The main characters, Ted, Robin, Barney, Lily, and Marshall are brilliant, hilarious, moving, and talented. And the story, told through narration by Ted, is being recounted to his kids years in the future. It is a brilliant concept, and it makes the story that much better.

ANYWAYS, for the motion graphics portion of this post, I thought I'd mention the intro credits. They're in a really cool pop-up style that we've seen in class before that uses different camera angles to transition between stylized photos of the characters meant to represent the premise of their friendships over the years. I think it's super cool and I love how it ties into the show without loosing its audience.

Anyways, I hope you guys have a great weekend! See you next week for our last few classes!

Game Of Thrones: Opening Sequence

One of the more impressive opening sequences that I've seen is the opening to Game of Thrones on HBO. I've seen other people post the opening video but here it is again for people that haven't seen it.

The opening goes through the map of the world. The producer of the opening sequence said they wanted everything to look organic and full of nature. But they also wanted to mirror the complexity of the world and the show. Here is a video about the making of the video.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

I'm-a Let You Finish...

But Kanye West and Marco Brambilla's music video for the song "Power" is the greatest music video of all time. No joke. This video screams excellence in the regular West-ian fashion, mixing themes from Michaelangelo's Sistine Chapel, Greek Mythology, Occult tarot cards, and Egyptian Mythology. Although the song was created by Kanye West and the video was directed by artist Marco Brambilla, the real work is the visual effects in the video. It features moving images, slow-motion, mirrored duplicates, and a whole slue of other effects. Not to mention the censored version of the video has Mr. West's eyes illuminated, the background has changed from a stage setting to more of a cosmos, and all of the previously naked women are now donning very loosely draped cloth.

The Director's Cut

The visual effects are all done by ARTJAIL and additional computer graphics done by UVPHACTORY. First off, ARTJAIL is a visual effects boutique and art space, residing on the amorphous border of Chinatown and the L.E.S. NYC, that have done many of projects with numerous groups like Levi's, Nike, IBM, Google, Mentos, and a plethora of car companies. They were involved with many aspects of this project from pre-production to post and finishing, giving them a real understanding of what the Director's vision for the piece was. UVPHACTORY, on the other hand, is an award-winning motion design, visual effects, and production company. Working with Brambilla, they created additional 3D graphics for the video. The director wanted this video to be less of a music video and more of a piece of moving art where two artists collaborated to make something beautiful and they really did. If you don't believe me, watch both versions of the video then we'll talk.

The Censored Version

"Power" is the third song off of Kanye West's fifth studio album "My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" released in November 2010. The original music video for the song was released in August 2010.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Stop Motion Animation

This is just a cool video I came across on Vimeo. It's facts about the GIF file and it's interesting how they show it through different material. I like the clay animation they use to make words and the sound effects are really cool and bring it to life.

A Short History of the Gif | Moving the Still from LEGS MEDIA on Vimeo.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

On the Second Post of Christmas Ashley McGinnes Gave To Me... The Grinch?

"How the Grinch Stole Christmas" is a Dr. Seus classic come to life.  The bright costumes, sets, and special effects make this movie a "must watch" during the holiday season.  The colors are absolutely fantastic and the movie makes you feel like Who-Ville could be a real place.

My favorite part is how the movie first sets the stage:  a snow flake falling.  Then, with the help of AfterEffects no doubt, you zoom into the snowflake and see that a town resides there.  This is just one of the reasons why this movie is so magical and well done.

Commercial - Toyota Prius "People Person" Campaign

Toyota and Saatchi and Saatchi teamed up to advertise the Toyota Prius, which has expanded its line to four vehicles. The Advertisement features a man going about his daily routine in the morning who just so happens to be made up of 18 different people. As the commercial goes on, the individual people “peel off” and rush to their respective cars and into the horizon while the voiceovers chimes in the background: "There's the original one, the bigger one, the smaller one, and the one that plugs in. They're all a little different. Just like us." The goal of the commercial is to show us, the consumer, that the Prius is still the same car, only now suits different people and their needs. Unfortunately, although very different, this ad is borderline creepy. It makes me feel like I’m watching the short film sequel to the human centipede. The last thing this makes me want to do is buy the Prius, and I think I speak for more than just myself. I’m not specifically sure what makes this ad so weird; it might be the lady who cheerfully doubles as a hand, or perhaps the butt who just so happens to be the nose? What the heck were Toyota and Saatchi and Saatchi thinking when they aired this commercial?

Monday, December 3, 2012

"Tiny Tortures" by Flying Lotus

Hey yall. So the artist Flying Lotus just released another music video from his new album "Until The Quiet Comes." It's really an amazing video which features a ton of 3d and most likely some after effects. Plus you have Elijah Wood in it, which is very surprising. The song is so atmospheric and just plain cool. Hope you enjoy!