100

Yup. This is the 100th entry for this blog. I started it 2 years ago to shed light on my travels as an artist and business person. It's been a way for me to share and process what I've been making and thinking. A lot has happened these past 100 weeks!

Over the last couple months, however, I've had fewer ideas of what to talk about each week. My guess is because I'm also making weekly video tutorials and essays. So, now I'm only going to post on this blog when bigger things happen or when I have something I want to share. The blog has been great for me, regardless of how many people have read it, but I feel like it's had its moment. I want to focus on other things now.

So, in one final, self-indulgent post, I'm going to list some of the things I've talked about over these past two years. Thanks for reading, friends!

Your pal, Bailey

Reel

Today I'm pleased to release the first Forma Pictures showreel. Check it out:

It's been a long time coming, but I finally got everything put together. Hope ya like it. Now, what else has been happening, well...

  • Recently wrapped the first phase of work on a new video game. I've been having a blast getting that put together. Can't wait for it to release!
  • Continuing to get the new journalistic website together, which I'll talk about a lot more this month. It's set to release on March 18th.
  • Tutorials are still coming out each week. I could talk a lot about how difficult they've been, but they've also been good for me. Here's the latest one:

Bailey

The Home Selling Process

I'm pleased to finally share my latest animation venture. A few months in the making:

'Twas a ton of work and a blast to create. I've been wanting to try my hand more seriously at a fully 3D rendered video in this sort of style. And now that I've got a few hundred more hours under my belt in the rendering department, I'll be able to make even cooler stuff going forward.

I'll be showing some behind the scenes stuff in the next week or two. So, if that sort of thing interests you, be sure to check back here at the blog for an update on that.

Bailey

MatterControl

Good news! New video to show:

This is the second video I've had the pleasure of making for MatterHackers. The first video was all about the vision of 3D printing and this video is about their product MatterControl, which is the open source platform for 3D printing.

On the whole, I love working with these guys. They're smart, dedicated, and a total joy to work with. I said this after the last video, and I'll say it again: I hope I get to work with them again! Check them out!

In the meantime, Forma Pictures has got a number of projects in the cooker. Hunted will continue its slow development, as will a couple other small things which are yet to be revealed. And, of course, client work continues too. The next for-client video is scheduled to release in January.

Bailey

Tedium Is My Middle Name

With every project there comes a moment where I have an idea for something, but it's going to require a hefty number of mind-numbing hours of tedious work. In each video I've made, I'v managed to dream up a sequence where a large number of objects on the screen have to animate, and they have to be hand animated. I try to find a way to automate things (and I often do), but sometimes...sometimes I just bite the bullet and do the work to get the result I want.

I thought last week had some tedious moments, but this week was a record setter. The shot in question lasts only about 40 frames, but what I did was place over a thousand cartoon leaves by hand. Each leaf was placed in a logical growth position so that they all grew sequentially in a way that made sense (based on tree branch growth, which I had animated beforehand). Each start point had to be set, and each leaf had to fill up the space so as to not leave any gaps in the image. This is probably boring. You'll just have to watch it to understand.

But anyway, that's my big story this week. I spent 3 days clicking myself into a state of pure monotony. Aren't ya jealous!? ;)

A small portion of the scene (like a 1/10 of view). There are thousands of layers (including the controllers).

A small portion of the scene (like a 1/10 of view). There are thousands of layers (including the controllers).

Bailey

A Whole Year of Blogs

Startdate 69142.3. Blog Entry 52.

Yep, it's been a full year of weekly, Friday blog updates. And over this year I've rambled about everything from project updates, art philosophy, business ethics, experiments, and even the emotional struggles of this craft. This weekly commitment has kept me accountable to peel back the curtain on this journey however I can. I hope it's been interesting to somebody. If not, that's okay, because it's been extremely useful to me.

In other news, animation work rolls steadily on. I recently hand-placed 442 tree leaves and gave them all subtle, stylized animation. It was a way to give the background elements of Scene-D a little extra life. I hand-placed them because I wanted them to look a certain way. Typical. ;)

I wonder how many times I clicked my mouse working on these puppies.

I wonder how many times I clicked my mouse working on these puppies.

Things could change, but I feel comfortable continuing the weekly Friday updates. Onward!

-Bailey

Animation Aspiration

Currently spending most of my days animating and trying to figure out ways to push myself. Some of these scenes are taxing my brain, which is a good thing. Lots of inter-dependencies with 3D and 2D stuff. The next month will be be spent making boatloads of key frames, so expect more of that. And if I think it's worth it, I'll post a clip later to show you how things are progressing. For now, enjoy a screen cap. Not much to see, but the careful observer can pick up clues! ;)

I like curvy stuff.

I like curvy stuff.

Bailey

A Whole New Project

I've got some cool news. This week I began working on a new animated video project with the good people at MatterHackers. The last video I made with them was so fun to make. And it came out a year ago...

Well, we're excited to be working together again. It's going to be a difficult one, but it has the potential to be good. The mission that they have is special and inspiring. It gives these video projects real meaning. They also have a mature understanding of the artistic process and we trust each other to do our jobs well. I couldn't ask for a better situation.

So far I've been looking for the music and writing the story. As of now, I've listened to over 1,200 potential (and relevant) songs. It's really tough when I find a song that's almost right, but not quite. The story is coming together too, but it still lacks a certain feeling. Writing is hard!

Lastly, I'm going to do my best not to kill myself working on this project. I have a 20-mile marching schedule in place. Slow and steady, baby.

Bailey

Laying the Groundwork

This week is one of those weeks where there's not a lot to show. Frankly there was a lot of business and prep work being done. However, that's not to say that there isn't anything new to see. I'm still creating daily sketches in the sketchbook. With each sketch, I learn a new technical thing. Most suck overall, but here are two of the better ones where I tried different ways of getting stylized atmospheric perspective.

Forma Pictures has more than a few projects lined up for release in the coming months. And each of them will serve the company in different ways. Some are client gigs and others are original IPs that will be produced by the company. Hunted, the film that's had the most attention, is but one of them. One of the other projects in an early stage of development is a more stylized, lighthearted adventure.

Hunted

And lest you forgot, all the updates for the progress of my short film have been moved to a different blog. And it updates every Tuesday right HERE. Two painted concepts are already over there just waiting to be looked at! What'r'ya waiting for? :)

Coming Soon

Next week I'm launching my 4th edited short. It's been a labor of love, so I'm excited to finally share it! In the meantime, take a stroll down memory lane with the first edited short I made a while back:

Stay tuned, lovelies.

Bailey

Be You

This week I'm gonna talk about my favorite subject in the world. But first, an update: I can't release some of the recent client work I've done, because it's still not official yet. I know I said I'd show it this week, but I can release it in like 3 days so it'll be live soon. As for this week, there's a cube dancing video at the end of this. :)

If you've spent even two minutes with me, then you know what I love to talk about: happiness. As far as I can tell, happiness is the only thing worth pursuing in life. If you're happy, truly happy, then you don't give a shit about anything else.

Quiting my day job was the best thing I've ever done. Ever. It's not like I was laying bricks before and now I finally get to do art. In fact, I was an artist who was able to work with some great artists everyday. But something was off. And there was a lot of bureaucracy I was dealing with. It wasn't exactly what I wanted, and it was eating me up inside.

Today, I'm still an artist, but the rules are different. And it feels good. Actually, it feels criminal to be enjoying it as much as I am. Every day is an opportunity to pursue my passions and experience existing. I've been thinking that life is like the world's best open world game. You can do anything in it. But unlike video games, in the real world you can actually go into any store, climb any mountain, and talk to whoever you want. There are endless speech choices and an infinite number of plots with boundless decision trees. Not to mention the scenery or the ultra HD resolution. And as for the personal and cultural expectations we place on ourselves? They're idiotic. There are no rules. We're all just making it up. Obviously don't harm anyone, but other than that...it really is boundless.

The point is that anything is possible. There are no excuses. You can do anything. You can become anything you want to become. There are people way less fortunate or able-bodied than I who are achieving ten times more than what I'm achieving. 

Yesterday I watched the movie Chef directed by Jon Favreau. The job situation the main character has in the beginning reminded me of the yucky stuff I had to deal with at companies. But then he goes out and starts to get what he wants...what he needs. I was really relating to this guy. But we all have this need, and it's different for all of us. I sure didn't like the particular system I was working in, and now I don't have to be in it. I get to choose more of what I work on, I get to collaborate with some killer artists, and most of all I get to take care of me. I've got a limited number of years left on Earth (if I'm lucky and don't get hit by a car), so I'm going to squeeze every drop of goodness out of it that I can.

So if you're feeling lost or even slightly frustrated, have heart and listen. That voice inside you is crying for a better life. It wants you to be you. And it will never stop pestering you, so you've got to listen to it because no one will do it for you. I learned that the hard way. That damn voice just wouldn't stop yearning for something better, so I had to go out and make a life for myself. I'm stumbling around just like everyone, but I'm doing it.

And let me tell you, the world is greener. Much, much greener.

Bailey