Saturday, January 16, 2010

A Little Tweak Here...

And a little tweak there. And boy have I been doing a lot of that! :) With the school year back in full swing and now the next course I'm taking, free time is scandalously short. :( It doesn't mean production has stopped for me - it just means it's switched gears and slowed to a crawl. But I'm still having fun, nonetheless.

The voiceacting front has picked up a bit for me which is awesome. A few weeks ago, Raven2angel's "Echoes" was released with mostly positive feedback on many aspects - set design, atmosphere, facial animation, and the VO work. I was really glad to have been a part of that production because the tone was something a bit different from what I had attempted before and I found it a bit of a challenge. But it seems to have all worked out well so big kudos to Raven for her vision and attention to detail. It really made the script come to life. And also kudos to my co-actor, ESROTU (Mike) - he had a wonderful voice for the role so I hope he continues to do more voiceacting.

I'm also really pleased to have a role in Rage's upcoming "MEG" production. I've almost finished the script and it's been really engaging. Half the stuff he's planned, I don't know how he's going to pull it off, but I know that he will somehow and it will be a sight to see! :) Also keep an eye out for his soon to be released "Grayskull Ch. 2 - Rise of Hordak" - it's going to be good, folks! Other VO roles include WX_IVAN's "Sting of the Scorpion" and act3scene24's "Untitled", so I'm gonna be quite busy!

So yeah, I'm squeezing in the VO stuff because it's doable right now. Now as for my own films? Again, haven't abandoned but it's just taking a long time. I have started up production again on "Well Done" and here's where that tweaking comes in. When I wrote the script a while ago, it was before iClone 4 came out. In my films, I like to challenge myself to attempt things that aren't necessarily so easily done. Now that being said, what I had set out to attempt in the script before might have been challenging in iC3... not so much in iC4 anymore. iC4 has a lot of introduced features that really makes it possible to easily achieve what I had planned and even more. So with that, I was at an impasse. I need and want to respect the fact that I already have the VO work complete and I still fully enjoy the story. Now my challenge is to find a way to take what I already have and somehow take it even further. I've been introducing a few new scenes that complement the original script without having to rewrite any of the dialogue. I think these new scenes will give it the 'freshness' I was hoping to achieve initially.

I also hope to continue the set building for "Hide And Seek" - this is where my training with stuckon3d's awesome tutorials are really going to be of use. I'm going to try to implement all that I've learned so far into this project so it should be interesting... once I get the time. :)

And finally, I decided to abandon my website. Before I became aware of this animated stuff, I got my feet wet with fanvids for my favorite tv shows. That's where I practiced my video editing, the art of storytelling, study of camera work etc. Anyhoo, the site where my videos were hosted over 3 years had some server problem and they lost all of my files. Not just mine, but a bunch of others' as well. They said they were trying to restore some of the files but asked if we could notify them personally if we were affected and they'd try their best to help. I didn't make a fuss. I didn't get mad. I just did as they asked, left a post, and waited patiently. One week, goes past. No reply. So I left another polite request to find out what was happening. Two weeks - no reply. (Yet I saw other posts were being addressed - by people who made a stink about things.) Three weeks - no reply. After TWO months - still no reply! FILEDEN - do not walk - run away from this company!! I mean, really! Does someone have to cuss you out before they're important enough to deal with? Am I still bitter? Maybe. But a simple acknowledgment that either A) they're working on the problem or B) they're sorry but they can't them back - would have sufficed and I would have been fine. It's basic customer service. AND after 3 years, you'd hope that meant something. There was no cause for my posts to be ignored. Anyhoo, I digress! :)

So yeah, about the same time I was having this issue, I got my mitts on WidgetCast and the lightbulb went off in my head. I still had the low-res versions of my videos on my computer - at least it was something. So I said to myself, "Self, why not just put them all in a widget and stick it on my blog instead?" And so the tweaking began! I uploaded those files to a NEW host, poured over tutorials to figure out what I was doing with WidgetCast and I'm happy now to have all my past works as well as current projects all organized in one tiny widget for display. After all the work that went into managing the site, I find this just awesome. So the widget is complete and you can find it on the right. Feel free to take a look through if you've got some time to kill. Keep in mind - the quality of the works will vary. Even then, the goal of my projects was to focus on or learn something new - sometimes it worked out well; other times, not so much. But that's where I came from and I wouldn't be where I am today if I didn't start out with that back then. Hopefully I'll continue to get a bit better with each new project, one tweak at a time. :)

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