March 2009 Archives
A crazy amount of stuff has been going on the last couple of days. I've been slammed at work, working on this giant robot movie. Suffice to say, it's going to kick ass. I don't know much about the story, but it'll definitely be a popcorn fest. And that's what I expect. Over the weekend I picked up a PS3, simply for the BluRay. Yes, I bought a drive for my PC, but I need something for the significant other to enjoy. Sure, I can play games on it too, maybe the exclusives, like MGS4 or Resident Evil 5, but I will probably stick with my X360, since most of my gaming buddies are on there. And Microsoft did a wicked thing with having Achievements. Achievements are the new high scores of yore.
We watched Baraka on BluRay in 1080p over the weekend on the PS3, and it is amazing. Regular HDTV programming doesn't even come close. The cable compression makes everything crappy. Baraka was filmed on 70mm, and the picture quality is amazing. The next purchase on BluRay, BBC's Planet Earth. And then the classics. Robocop, Predator, and Terminator 2. As long as the quality is worth it, I'll pick those up. Here are some more screen captures from Baraka.
I've been tweeting (twitting?) quite frequently on Twitter, simply because it's a quick and convenient way to share what's on my mind at any given moment. Both this blog and Twitter have their places, for sure. I've been looking at new ways to disseminate information on this blog, and very shortly I may update the look once again! Here's what the Wayback machine has on DigitalGypsy. Right now, the Gallery and Images section of this site haven't been updated. I'm hoping that the next iteration will change that.
This weekend I'll be at OTIS to meet my new VES mentoring student! This year it'll be a junior who's studying compositing. This will be my third year doing it, and I've enjoyed it every time. It'll also be my third year in Los Angeles, and my three year anniversary of being at Digital Domain is this week! Wow. How time flies. I've never spent more than three years at companies, so if I stick around here, it'll be a record! For those keeping track, three years at GVFX, one year freelancing, three years at Tippett Studio, and three years here at Digital Domain. I don't foresee any plans to leave DD at this time. They've been good to me, and I've had a chance to work on great projects. I can't believe I've been doing this for 10 years.
Industry Wages Incorporated released its first press release yesterday, here's the Reuters link. If that expires, you can always search on Google News. I've also included the full text in the extended entry below. We are currently monitoring bugs and errors which may appear as we get more users, troubleshooting as we go and working on the next step in functionality. It will most likely include significant job listing improvements, which should make everyones life easier in searching for jobs.
The company Press Release will be coming out this week. Brandon and I are reviewing it today to make sure it meets our criteria, and then we'll publish it. If you're interested, check out these two links, here and here. This is where it's going! Excellent. Also this week we finalize our Statement of Information for California, and send it off to Sacramento. Slow and steady. I'll have the full PR up here, as well as on VFXWages as soon as it's public.
Another short weekend, mostly spent at work working on Transformers. Looks fancy so far, and I've got some decent, sexy shots. I bought a BluRay / HD-DVD combo drive for my PC at home, so I can start viewing and reviewing my previous work and can start to cut an HD reel. Ooo. That's going to be wicked. I can't wait to see what my old stuff looks like in 1080p.
Also over the weekend, I received my personal web code for Showtimes For Your Consideration shows. Like last year, ATAS members are receiving codes to view SHOs shows on the internet. It's an excellent idea. They've got the full seasons of Dexter, Bullshit!, The Tudors, Weeds, and lots more for viewing. This Emmy season looks to be interesting!
A quick conversation this morning with the significant other about what I was having for food at work today promptly had me reply, beer and Red Bull. Of course, there's more in there. A yogurt, maybe a donut. But the majority of what's in the fridge at work consists of beer and Red Bull. What's in your fridge?
A colleague of mine from the past sent me a new website, catering towards demo reels. Check it out at cgcritic.com. Basically you upload your demo reel for all to see. You can leave feedback and get professional feedback, if you're interested in tailoring your reel to certain industries. No longer will you have to wonder why you're not getting called back.
Ever wished there was a site that you could go to and just look at demo reels from all over the world that ranged from good to bad, rookie to pro and everything in-between? And then after you could rate and comment on those reels? So did we... So we made the site. Welcome to CG critic©. Why are you here? Whatever the reason may be, we've got you covered.
Another name for light rays, god rays, environment rays, you name it. Ever wonder if the artists in film could get them to actually render in real time? Well, my brother over at Coin App has taken some initiative with his company, and following what Kenny Mitchell from EA demonstrated, applied it to his game in progress. Head on over to his site to see how it looks for his up and coming game. There's also some nice video of SSAO and a teaser for the game, coming out when it's done.
The game space is pushing the envelope of real-time atmospherics and effects.
I have this idea for a contraption that can move a person through time and space. It's revolutionary! Basically, you enter this cylindrical tube, sit down and strap in. After about 30 minutes, you fall asleep, and awake at your destination, where ever in the world in may be. I call it, an airplane. We've come a long way in a hundred years of flight. The quick flight from Guadalajara to Los Angeles was just under three hours long, of which I slept all of the way. Walking down the Third Street Promenade at 11am just after spending the morning sitting on the terrace of our friends hacienda in a third world country was surreal. The trip from a first world to a first world country is jarring as well, but not so much as this one! I've put several videos up on my youtube account of the place, be sure to check it out if you want. It's not visual effects related, but still kinda cool. The entirety of last week was spent at their place in Mexico, away from the bustle and commotion of visual effects, spending most of the week sitting by or in their pool, discussing topics from; why there isn't a good sci-fi show on TV, how the Watchmen might turn out, economics, housing troubles, management, Vancouver, Mexico, US, visual effects, special effects, weather, business, some politics, life, and almost every other subject under the sun! A good friend from Vancouver joined us, so it was the five of us, chilling for the full week. A very relaxing time was had, in preparation for the months ahead!
Yesterday we hit up the theatre to see Watchmen. It was a long movie, but what do you expect. It was a very intensive novel. I appreciated all the work that went into it, and the movie did show the backstories of some of the characters during the title sequence, as well as bits parts of characters throughout the movie. Overall, I really enjoyed it. Was it an identical retelling of the story in the book? No. Actually, I enjoyed the ending to this film almost more than the book ending, and I can see why they changed it. Both mediums have their pluses, and I am glad for the changes in the film. Jackie Earle Haley did an awesome job as Rorschach. The reveal of him when he gets arrested was just as powerful as in the novel, as well as the end of the movie and Nite Owl screaming no. A pretty powerful scene. The epilogue at the end was kinda hammy, I could have done without that guy from Eureka.
A disappointment for me was the stoic line by line retelling by the characters. At times it seems they have no emotion, no attachment to the characters they're playing. Just reading lines of dialog. That was a shame for a lot of the characters, as the action scenes were very well done. The opening scene of The Comedian battling the intruder in his home was excellent. This is how powerful characters should fight, with weight and substance. So many films don't contain it.
On the visual effects front, congratulations to the teams that worked on it. There were some great effects and some invisible effects that worked well. I can only imagine the discussions in dailies dictating how blue Dr. Manhattan should be! Cheers for dealing with it!