The Surreal Life

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Have you ever had a dream where you weren't sure if you were awake or asleep? Ya. It's called Mescaline. That's what I felt like this morning when I woke up to get ready to work.. 5, 6:30, 7:30am.. I couldn't decide at what point to arise, and when I did, it felt like a dream. Another ten hour day came and went yesterday, and now it's back again. Another thirty more hours of work, maybe more, until the next free day.

've been tossed another four or five shots, making my total count, eleven. Believe it or not, I'm on the high count for shots for this show! Several of the other artists have max of three or four. Unfortunately or fortunately, which ever way you look at it, none of my shots are what you'd call blockbuster, just difficult. We've got about 30 or 40 compers on the show. We swallowed a couple when Meet The Robinsons wrapped earlier this week. There are still a number of unassigned shots, and I'm hoping for a fairly big one, but we'll see. I'm apparently the 'toss those to him, he'll get them done quick' guy.

Last night I had a chance to sit down again with my pet project, my G36c A5. It's coming along fairly well, but haven't had a chance to solidify everything. I'm currently rigging up an electronic trigger system which be toggled via the Safe>Single>Auto selector switch which exists on the current gun. There's a significant amount of hacking required to mate the A5 e-grip internals to the Marui G36c grip. Hopefully by the summer it'll be completely done. The good news is that I can still play with it without the electronic trigger, resorting to the mechanical system instead.

A great thing here at Digital Domain that I haven't mentioned yet are the training programs for employees. From someone wanting learn Nuke, to Houdini, there's something for everyone. Aside from my initial Nuke training, I haven't done any more, simply because my work schedule doesn't allow for it. Every Wednesday there's a small gathering of like minded folk (math geeks) who listen and learn about the latest techniques that are propagating our industry. Today it's A Practical Dynamics System. Other items in the past have included: Super-Helical Hair, The Complex-Step Derivative Approximation, Transformation Matrices, and Elastica Inpainting solved with Texture Synthesis Techniques. All really fun stuff. Most have been presented at places like SIGGraph, and usually it's a presentation of the paper and discussion.

UIAsolo06.jpgIn addition (holy crap, there's more?!) to all this visual effects news, I've got even fancier news. Aside from the various vfx memberships, VES, ATAS, I am also part of UIA. What does this mean? Well, I'll tell you. Those that know me well know that I've got a side business in product development. I haven't mentioned it here since it's not related to visual effects, but it's just some me news. Over the past year I've been developing a product for the general populace, unrelated to visual effects. A couple weeks ago I finally sent my disclosure to my patent agent, who will be formatting it for the USPTO and submitting the PPA for approval. In a couple weeks (or however long it takes for the USPTO to approve), I'll have patent pending on this product (one of several that I have in the pipeline), and I'm one step closer to world domination! In actuality, once it is approved, I've got the difficult task of finding manufacturing, marketing, and distribution. Lots of work, but it'll be so sweet in the end.

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