January was an odd month in terms of our brand spanking new blog schedule (which you’ll notice, has already morphed into Saturdays instead of Fridays). On the other side of the words, I’ve been working on a project I’m really excited about and I’ve started work full time. Those two things haven’t quite figured out how to play nice yet but the hour long lunches are helping.
There’s a hint about my project a little further down the post, but if you’re interested in helping me out I’m looking for some testers. Anyway, much more on that later – lets get on with the tasty goodness for this month.
SIGGRAPH is Returning to Vancouver!
In a couple of years. Before I start gushing about just how happy this makes me and why, here’s a quick summary of what Siggraph is about for the uninitiated:
SIGGRAPH (short for Special Interest Group on GRAPHics and Interactive Techniques) is the name of the annual conference on computer graphics (CG) convened by the ACM SIGGRAPH organization. The first SIGGRAPH conference was in 1974. The conference is attended by tens of thousands of computer professionals. Past SIGGRAPH conferences have been held in Los Angeles, Dallas, New Orleans, Boston and elsewhere across the United States.
It’s basically one of the biggest graphics conferences in the world. Last time it was held in Vancouver and broke its prior conference attendance records. I love Vancouver and its close to a lot of my friends; if I’d known about it a little earlier last time I’d have saved and gone.
I couldn’t be happier that they’re returning in 2013 – saving as we speak. Is anyone else planning to attend?
Get a head start with this month’s Online Event
Escape Studios are holding a webinar on the 15th February called ‘The Industry’s Best Kept Secret: Houdini‘. If you were around for my take on skills needed by a VFX Artist then little bells should be ringing all around your brain right now.
Here’s what they have to say about it:
Houdini has been on VFX the scene for quite some time, but over the last few years it has benefitted from somewhat of a revival. The product is renowned for combining superior performance and ease-of-use to deliver a powerful and accessible 3D animation experience for CG professionals around the world. In this webinar, Mark Spevick, our VFX tutor, will explain why it’s become a piece of software which is near impossible to live without and will dispel some myths about it being difficult to use. Mark will walk you through some definitive steps to help you get to grips with the software so you can start integrating it successfully into your workflow. As an integral piece of industry standard software, which all artists need to be in the know about, this is a webinar you don’t want to miss.
I think that pretty much speaks for itself! The webinar is free, if you have the time I’d recommend signing up and attending.
Best 3D Student Tweets of the month
Project: Creative Author Team’s Writing Club (Meow) | RocketHub http://www.rockethub.com/projects/5243-creative-author-team-s-writing-club-meow Finally updated the image! Have a look at our new logo
This may or may not be the project I referred to briefly in the introduction.
The results of yesterday’s animated GIF about SOPA – The Oatmeal http://j.mp/yY47wz And this is exactly what we love about the news. =)
Unless you’ve been happily living under a rock, you’ll have heard of SOPA over the last few months. This tweet is referring to The Oatmeal’s recent news coverage thanks to his efforts campaigning against it.
Are You Afraid to Pitch Editors? This Is the Reason You Shouldn’t Be | The Renegade Writer http://t.co/EvmfU6R0
Quick look at letters of intent from the editors point of view – useful and insightful.
How to Photograph Your Own Textures | Vandelay Design Blog http://t.co/nEk8R4Ix
A skill we should probably all have as graphics professionals, especially important for texture artists.
I Am Not a Web Designer http://j.mp/wRnQHw
Deceptively simple as far as tweets go. FreelanceSwitch talks about how we’re not really our job titles in the eyes of our customers and how we can take advantage of this.
Posts of last month
Guest post granting insight into the use of auditory illusions and computer graphics with some speculation on how those techniques could be used in the future.
Mehdi Shay shows us how to use alpha maps to create realistic foliage without spending hours modelling.
Theory posts on (you guessed it) Deliberate Practice for VFX artists written by yours truly. They show off a bunch of research I did on job postings interpreted into something we can work with.
Guest post overview of what it takes to become a 3D animator. Not sure I’d call it exhaustive but its a good starting point.
Plans, purpose, and all that fun stuff for the blog in 2012. Worth a read if for no other reason than to see the good intentions before they get altered. 😉
What to expect this month
Not quite so many posts planned for this month (though no promises on that count). Here are my plans such as they are:
Theory: Building Change into Your Workflow.
What do you do when you’re almost finished a scene, and suddenly you need to change something? Does it throw off your entire workflow or have you prepared for such eventualities?
Tutorial: Modelling or Unwrapping Small Accessories.
I haven’t decided which yet, if you’ve a preference let me know (and I’m happy to do both).
Review: Android 3.0 Animations.
I received a copy not long ago in a Giveaway and since mobile seems to be increasingly relevant for everybody – Why not?
Leave a comment to let me know what you thought of this style of post, and which ONE part you found most interesting.