March 31, 2010


In the course of working on a project with Erik and Scott involving some CGI insects, Diana, the art director, shared this great link with us for inspiration. Miroslaw Swietek is a photographer in Poland who goes out in the pre-dawn hours and flashes sleeping insects covered in morning dew. Just when you think you're familiar with the world around you, someone opens a window and shows you the world in a brand new way. The brilliance of these photos is just stunning. Here's the link to the story.

March 19, 2010


Just installed the new Poser 8 and I have to say I am excited to see that they finally got around to clean up after the mess they made of the interface over the last ten years. If you're old enough to remember when Poser was taken on by MetaCreations, you know that Kai put in one of the most amazing, intuitive and clean interfaces on the Mac, or any computer for that matter, and quite some time before his ideas started popping up in the OS X betas. Anyhow, so I just gave this new version a quick spin... some new alien character by the name of Andy is the default figure now... I wonder whether that's a hommage to the amazing Andy Murdoch. He sure looks like the flying chief that kidnapped the baby and put him into a glass jar.

Either way, I kind of prefer a semi naked fist fighting blonde.

I really like the new folder based navigation system for poses, figures, parts... the library... now that there is so much content, the old way of browsing the library really became tedious. To that end, it's great that the new Poser gives us a search function now. How about groups of poses, morphs, or hair belonging to a figure together or highlighting related content in bold if it relates to the selected figure?

Looks like the sketch render has been worked on too. Fun stuff. Hope to find some more time to sink into this new release soon.

March 17, 2010


Kate stopped by today to say Hi and drop off the new 7x7 magazine with the flying whale in Erik Almås' picture of supermodel Maggie Rizer. Not up to speed with the who's who in supermodelling, I had to google her name. Turns out she moved to San Francisco from Manhattan and is working on a comeback after being out for a while. The reason? Her stepdad gambled away her fortune of millions of dollars she had made in supermodelling. With Lotto Quick Picks. Wow. You'd think that the guy at the corner store would have told him that this isn't his game, after he spent the first million there. It's almost harder to believe than her flying out on a whale ship.

March 10, 2010


Working on a series of images with photographer Robert Schlatter that are combination of our CGI and his iconic photography. One of the shots involves half of a retro soda pop bottle, the other half a CGI component that's still under wraps. Although the final image is really a pure front 2D view, Brian Gunderson, the art director showed me a sketch of the sectioned bottle in a 3D perspective view to get a better understanding of what's going on...

I didn't notice his little camera in the corner and misinterpreted the sketch as the view he was actually looking for. Since the bottle is photographed, I asked him how he was going to cut the bottle and keep the soda in it... jokingly... then went ahead to render some takes... and I think it works quite well, no OSHA necessary.

Here's a look at the final image...

And a closer look at the detail...

Probably the most fun we had with this project however was the last minute design and illustration of the artwork on the cans themselves, originally to come from the client but instead added on as super fun side project in the making of this image. And yes, Waldo is in there somewhere.

March 5, 2010


An interesting and welcome break from the regular glass and chrome work, which came to us courtesy of the upcoming Spring Fashion issue of San Francisco's 7x7 Magazine. The original reference had the whale floating, the way they do when they are resting in the water. I first imported the model of this Humpback into the renderer, before posing it or fixing the UV maps of the texture. Just to get a perspective and play with it a little. I love how the basic T pose and the messed up texture tiling made the whale feel like a 747 Zebra Zeppelin. In the end, flaps came down and the Zebra was escorted back into the jungle, but I still like that first shot and while maybe not right for the final image, I think it's perfect for the blog.

Progressing towards the final image with whale texture in place and Erik's toy ship prop in place. We liked how the whale feels more dimensional and dynamic when at a slight angle and not totally pure side...

The problem however was that the toy ship was pure side and being a photo not something you can simply rotate to fit. I felt that that toy boat being too small in scale anyways could be improved upon anyways and then we can match the air boat to the whale. This steam punk air ship is what I had in mind, complete with transcontinental luggage and hat box...

The near to final composite...