Tuesday, November 6, 2012

New Sketch Blog on Tumblr!

My old Tumblr account became a meaningless wasteland of reblogged Star Trek memes, so I'm starting a new one just for sketches, doodles, and some of the work I'm doing this year.

This is necessary because I'm not updating this site nearly enough this year. This isn't because I'm not making art--I'm the head Storyboard Artist on the USC Holodeck / Wild Skies virtual reality game program, I have a paid job as a cartoonist and animator for the USC Viterbi Communications and Marketing Department, I have been active in weekend Game Jams, and I am taking a variety of animation and drawing classes this semester. Unfortunately most of the work I have been producing has been exercises or repetitive sketches or storyboards that either I feel don't merit posting, or would be a hassle to continuously update.

So I'm starting a casual sketch blog. I'll be uploading some old sketches and work I have been doing this year, but I'll also be uploading at least one BRAND NEW sketch a day. At least I'm going to try.

To the upper right is a sneak peek of what you'll find on the site . . . concept sketches for a Zombie Film Noir game me and some friends are creating for the current 10-day Game Jam!

As always, you can locate my tumblr by clicking the icon on the upper left below my profile picture and gallery list.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Asymmetrical Old Man Face

Haven't painted anything on Photoshop in a while, so I decided it was about time. It was a lot of fun quickly rendering a cartoon character and abusing symmetry. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Gifts, I Guess

There's been a bit of a hiatus this summer as I've been dedicating myself to both smaller and larger projects, and just have not seeing much point in updating. But just for fun, and to assuage rumors of my premature demise among my 5 followers, I decided I'd post some of my little projects--most of which are just the little cartoons I make my friends and family on their birthdays and such. They're good practice, and some point I might try hiring myself out for little commissions like these, so they're good for gallery-building in that respect. One of these is for a friend who's birthday has yet a month to transpire, so shhhh!

By the way--I scored a job! And a great one! I'm doing art and animation for the USC Viterbi School of Engineering's Communications and Marketing Department. Basically I'm promoting the work of our school's students and staff with my art. I get to work remotely--a freelance job. So I have a great deal of flexibility, save expenses, and have the time and option of taking on another job if one is made available. Here's a concept sketch I made for my boss today for my current assignment.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Duck Lady at UC Davis

Now that my first year at USC is over, I'm visiting my best buddy over at Davis. Had to occupy some time while she did her homework and designed this chick. This piece has a bit more of the fashion vibe than I like, but I'm okay with it. Would love to do a walk cycle of this character, though I'd simplify the design and it'd take a while and a light table I don't have right now. Don't expect one any time soon.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Drawings and Updates

So I've revamped the site so it will be more accessible and more professional, and added a resume. The change was long overdue. I'm still having trouble with fonts, however, so if you see Comic Sans or something equally nasty, I assure you it's meant to actually be a quite nice font, but the site keeps spitting it out differently.
Also, here's some of my art from my drawing class last semester! Hopefully I'll have more illustrative and conceptual art up soon. (Also, sorry for the low quality of these photos--I'll try to get better soon.)

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Humbling Experience of Becoming an Award-Winning Director

Will and I won the USC Shoah Student Film Contest with the prize of $1500! It's nice to have all of our hard work pay off. Special thanks once again goes to Radical Face, who would have earned my lifetime fan-worship for their generosity in letting us use their song, "The Strangest Things," if they didn't already have it for their haunting and beautiful music.

Metamorphosis Group Project

Part of a morph assignment for my animation class. We took the drawing a teammate created, and morphed it into our own drawing. Our prompt was crumbly, irritating, finger. My bit was from the finger giving the bird crumbling to right before the hand holding the face, in which the face becomes an egg. If 'the bird' bothers you, my apologies! But rest assured I was flipping myself off for hours and from various angles while using my own hand as a model for this.

Here's my bit again:

Paint on Glass

Regular old poster paint on a piece of glass. I didn't use the medium completely right, but I can definitely understand the potential of paint on glass now, and would be very interested in using it again when I have real time to dedicate to making an animated piece.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Yeti Wizards! Ed Wood 24 Hour Film Competition

So we had 24 hours to create a film for USC's Ed Wood competition. Traumatic. The concept was largely mine--which I should either be pleased with or embarrassed by. No awards this time--although we had asked before time and been assured animated entries were eligible in the competition, on awards night they gave us an honorable mention because they said they had no category for animated films. 


But the important thing is that the animation department was represented, and we looked pretty darn good for 24 hours of work. Maybe next year the judges will open up their minds and realize SCA has an animation department, and that animation is an established form of film.

But more important than all that, this was my voice acting debut! Jabril bothers me about having no voice acting talent, but even he had to admit that this was the role I was born to play!


Shoah Foundation Student Film Contest Entry

This was actually completed in the beginning of February, but I had to delay posting it for reasons relating to competition eligibility. The learning curve on this project was immense, and I learned a lot about using Toon Boom more efficiently and effectively. Will did such an amazing job on the sound editing--I'm still noticing new things he did to make the music work with the clips so successfully, and I was there when he did this.

Thanks again to Radical Face, one of my very favorite bands, for giving us permission to use their song "Strangest Things! It added so much to our video. I hope Ben Cooper would enjoy what we've made with his song if he gets the chance to see it.

We titled our entry "Strange Inheritance," because I think "strange" is how I feel about the holocaust--it didn't make sense, it doesn't make sense, it is unnatural, and I don't think I, or anyone else, will ever understand it. I tried to reflect my impression of warped reality in my art, and I think "Strangest Things," in addition to using our title adjective, has that same feeling. What sealed the deal on the title was when I realized survivor Evan Gershon said strikingly, "It was the strangest thing," in the first interview segment of the film when he talks about the plaster mask. These words really stuck in my mind upon hearing them because it was shortly after Will and I'd gained permission to use "Strangest Things" in our entry. "Inheritance" was a keyword from the film prompt: Inheriting the Holocaust.

Will and I are currently promoting our film online and on Facebook in order to compete for the Viewer's Choice Award. If you'd like to help support our film, please rate it here. If you REALLY want to help us, please share the link on Facebook! Voting is open until March 15th. The winners of the Shoah Student Film Contest will be announced in early April.

Cut-out Animation Exercise Extravaganza

Our assignment last week was to create a cut-out animation based on surreal animations, the 1970s hit Frank Film, or Terry Gilliam's work. I mixed Gilliam with surrealism--the opening walk cycle was based on one he liked to abuse. I was really loose with this assignment, and had a lot of fun creating something funny and straight out of my head and humor. 



Thursday, February 16, 2012

Visual Music: Genesis Ch. 1 Vol. 32

In Intro to the Art of Movement CTAN-102 our second assignment was to sync animation to an instrumental segment of music--in a manner inspired by Oskar Fischinger, so NO CHARACTERS!
Unfortunately, all I had to make this with was colored paper, four beads, and sparkly pipe cleaners . . . so I'm not feeling GREAT about this. People seemed to like it, however--but I think that's more to do with how great the Alan Parsons sound.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Shoah Updates

Some scenes I made recently. The walk cycle isn't complete--it will repeat, and the background move behind him. The spider scene will play with the concluding words.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

GGJ Creation GAIA GRAVITON with The Artists Formerly Known As The Artsy Hipster Gamers

So Jabril and I collaborated with The Artsy Hipster Gamers (a freshman interactive group) on a Global Game Jam Project. The Global Game Jam requires teams or individuals to create a game within 48 hours. This is what we came out with. In the game you play as this elephant-tree-force-of-nature-monster, who tramples the bleak concrete buildings to reveal beautiful green grass. However, as the monster you must avoid trampling the same ground twice. If you do, the grass becomes infertile dust, and you decrease your score. Even while worrying about not retracing your steps, you as the monster must avoid small red soldiers wielding swords. You must also terminate the blue hammer men who will attempt to rebuild the suburban jungle. To destroy both these hammer men and the red warriors, you can place your cursor over them and then click to kill. Green vines will rip from the ground and drag these poor souls through cracks and into the Earth.

The link to download and play our game is here: http://www.mediafire.com/?hdedndbb2mkk5g6
Go here to see our game on the official Global Game Jam page, and please rate us favorably!

Had a lot of fun working with these guys! I'm really proud of our product, and can't wait to see what I can animate for them next time!

Also, some screen caps of the game for the bandwidth-challenged. Click for best view:

Friday, January 27, 2012

USC Science Film Freshman Victory

Andy Su (Scientific Consultant), Maria Raykova (Director), Mara Guevarra, Kayla Carlisle, Jabril Mack
So the freshmen animators have made another conquest! We've been awarded second place, and the prize of $1,500, for our 10 minute cartoon about the atomical composition of life, the universe, and everything in it, which we entered in the school-wide Science Film Contest. (We were the only freshman team.) The competition was meant to unite those of us at USC studying media with the members of USC's science and math departments, in the hopes of encouraging aspiring filmmakers to help these guys educate the masses. Andy (a fellow freshman studying aeronautical engineering) was our scientific consultant, and we were directed by the talented and determined Maria Raykova.

Some of us came over-dressed.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Shoah Foundation Film Progress

I'm working on an entry into USC's Shoah Foundation student film competition. The Shoah Foundation was founded by Steven Spielberg after making Schindler's List. During the filming of the movie, Spielberg was approached by many Holocaust survivors who needed to share their stories. He realized that if these stories were not recorded soon, they would be lost forever. The Shoah Foundation is based on the USC campus.

I'm collaborating with my friend Will Merrick on an entry for the annual film competition. I'll be animating, and he'll be editing. Right now all we have is big plans and the beginning art pieces I'll turn into the final animated scenes. The film will be a combination of animated sequences illustrating the stories of the Holocaust survivors, and clips of these survivors telling their stories.

Here is what we have so far:

A demo of an interview segment concerning the transportation of the Jewish people from the ghetto to Auschwitz.

I'm thinking on reusing this assignment from last semester to conclude.

 A segment will be based off this photograph relating to one of the survivor's stories.

Only the eyes will move for this scene, and there will be shown the air coming from the nostrils.

So that's all for now! I'll update more as I get farther along. I'm hoping to use the song "Strangest Things" from Radical Face's album Ghost, which, for the record, is one of the most unique and imaginative albums of all time. Of course I need to write Ben Cooper first, and ask for his permission. It would be unbelievable if he said yes!