Saturday, February 25, 2006

Hey, you look like Jim Morrison!

... from the totally silly department tonight, I went to the Fleetwood tonight after too many beers and shots at Banfield's (West). Kathy, Monica, and crew took care of me in splendid fashion and I reciprocated in a different way. Jim Morrison, Jr. came in with a few crinkled one dollar bills in his pocket and daddy's credit card -poised to pay for a couple of burgers. He was short three bucks and was willing to settle for one - till I paid for the second and the tip too. Jim, baby, ya owe me one. I laughed out loud hearing you say "thanks a lot, Sir!"

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Much Ado about Cartoons Part II

... usually I'm last on the UPS delivery route, but the truck arrived before noon yesterday. I was playing with my new software until I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer and I absolutely had to rest. I downloaded and saved the tutorials from the Toon Boom website, along with an E Book they offer, and I began familiarizing myself with the program. Honestly, I think the tutorials are not as well done as they could, or should, be. That's a bit dissappointing. There are forums on the website, but they do not display properly on my PC. Reading them is a real chore. Fortunately however, experience with paint and graphic programs pays big dividends while learning this program. Having a collection of these paint programs at your disposal can only improve ones' work in Toon Boom Studio. Additionally, if you want to use this program, a tablet, like the Wacom Graphire, is essential. I'll continue working with the tutorials.
...I am providing a link to a very good animation, called "The Dead", that I discovered on the web recently. It is a QuickTime mpeg4 movie and will take some time to download if you have a slow internet connection, but it is definitely worth the wait. This animation inspires me. Too often, the Flash cartoons one finds on the internet are examples of "kitsch", as Marshall McLuhan would define the word. They are often little more than bawdy, off color jokes with little substance that everyone has already heard. "The Dead" is different. The foundation, a poem, is a dance with words, and simple, but truly artistic, line drawings illustrate it. The three core elements, the idea, the poem, and the drawings, seamlessly blend together and flow into a thoughtful narrative.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Much Ado about Cartoons

... one of my favorite uses of technology is the package tracking system used by UPS and other freight carriers. After entering a confirmation number and zip code on the appropriate page, the carrier provides information about your package's journey - arrivals and departure scans, locations and times, and an anticipated delivery date. I'm tracking a package sent from Mesquite, Texas and, when I last checked, the package was already in Missouri, heading north, to be delivered on Tuesday.
... the package I'm tracking contains software, specifically an animation program that I plan on learning and using. Remember the Jib Jab cartoon, "This Land Is My Land", featuring Bush and Kerry, that became so famous during the last presidential election? How about the game where you catch as many babies as you can as Micheal Jackson tosses them off a hotel balcony? Ever watch Animaniacs? These are the kind of animations one can animate with this software program.