W34 No odd jobs for me anymore in Position: Vacant (PV)

Leonie’s small blog island says hullooo! (:
Hullo unknown person on the internet! And probably hello to future me!
I hope you’re doing better than I am right now. Assuming we’re alive at least.

Let’s go crazy! Journal Time!

4th Wed

  • Brief Figure drawing adventuuures and Unidentified portrait for the day:
  • Train adventuuures:
  • PV Team Leading: Well I found myself sort of taking the silent approach in taking the reins as the project manager, got that spreadsheet plan I created to get a clear idea on what we can complete this week (while it was intimidating to everyone else).

Did basic lighting setup for two shots, looked into royalty free fonts for the title card and after some discussion, we got things planned for tomorrow. It’s really crazy crunch time as we need to render out and complete 10 shots on average per week, give or take; I guess I’m there to ensure we do it the efficient way while texture maps for the rest of the characters are still being finalised this week.  I decided from tomorrow onwards, to scrap doing team meetings at the start of the day as it left people who come in early with nothing set to do (hence wasting time) while waiting for the whole group to be present for the meeting. If people aren’t sure what they need to do, they just need to approach me about it. Team meetings probably at end of the day or on an individual basis–I hope this works out!

  • Construct3D, “THIS WAY UP” (TWU): Sketched out concept art for the 4 characters…sketchy reaching lineart stage.
Reached a startling realisation; this looks like a family…

5th Thurs

  • Morning Plastic Skeleton Still Life: It happened to be within my radar during the early morning whilst waiting for my classroom to open so I drew it, expressing its agony of losing one of its lower arms. Where did it go?
  • PV Team Leading: very busy day of keeping track of team members’ progress, lighting and rendering setup and bringing up issues to the relevant team members for any troubleshooting needed. I got free hot chocolate though (:

I’m viewing this project management thing like a puzzle to solve with my spreadsheet of intimidation and colour coding at hand to help me; I don’t know what level I’m at but I don’t want to game over just yet. I’m pleased that my team members aren’t feeling as stressed, knowing that I’ve got a somewhat flexible plan in mind and they can simply worry about their roles rather than fretting if we’d ever finish this film. There was a silly moment however, revealing the effects of crunch time on the team. Side note though, the long running joke that this project is all thanks to me to blame whenever things go wrong never gets old for them (not that I ultimately mind).

Didn’t get to fit in drawing as I forgot to have it up while I waited for render tests, wanted to take a few breaks as things render tested and I was busy adapting to changes as new issues came and got ironed out by team members. Felt really brain dead afterwards but I got things planned for this week at least. I don’t enjoy lighting and rendering but at least I don’t hate it; ultimately it needs to be done.

Maybe someday I’ll get better in this area but it’s definitely not what I want to focus on as my specialisation. Apparently I’m going to put forth a few batch renders as well tomorrow and finally see how Tonko’s test rendered the 3D title card fonts. It’s not odd jobs for me anymore.

6th Fri

  • PV Team leading: organised chaos I shall call it but thanks to the rest of the team troubleshooting, getting feedback and ironing out issues as they came, we are generally picking up the pace and we’ve got 5 shots complete and 5-6 shots batch rendering.

Thirty shots to work on left for rendering (animation, rigging/skinning, shaders and lighting set up and rendering) with 5-6 shots to be composited with 3 weeks to go! Personally, I’ve been planning on a day by day basis as obstacles usually come up and doing lighting, render tests, fixing materials, batch rendered a bit and got help/feedback where needed.

  • Unidentified Portrait for the day: Blergh

7th Sat

  • Train Waiting to Vote adventuuures: even though we were queuing in a line…the line moved every now and then so I went from humans to trees to pear rocks to the roof of a building.
Really quiet morning
  • Figure drawing adventuuures: just remember, most women and men don’t look this pretty, young, strong, muscular, cool looking, elegant…essentially like models. Occasionally there are people that are not looking like the average tall, young, stereotypical version of handsome, slightly built man or shapely, young, stereotypical version of beautiful, long haired woman on this site. They are fun to draw, I won’t deny though there are countless subjective notions of beauty out there I have yet to explore. Still, I need to work on anatomy fundamentals so I’m practicing on what I can get.
  • Construct3D, “THIS WAY UP” (TWU): Lineart and design finalising; been debating on the number of characters I should be doing (to keep the scope small) so I’m going to cut the two male characters as well as the bubbly Receptionist character. I hope to make her and the Bellboy character in my own time. I’m not going to do fully fledged illustrated concept art (or am I?) but I will have basic turnaround with basic colours. After some struggle, I went back to traditional.
WIP Lineart stage: I’m still not happy with the Bellboy design especially but I would like to explore his design in 3D instead if there’s time. After a while, I wasn’t happy with any of them. They all need reworking so I’ve scrapped this lineart altogether. Killed it and kept working on the designs.

Second round here is much better. Finding myself more comfortable scribbling on paper as I tend to refine more when drawing digitally. Look at my cute little 60’s stylised Otis elevator. (:

8th Sun

  • TWU Concepts: Scanned the above in and refined them digitally. Lineart noodling despite the physical pains as well as arm strain I’ve been having today. I did take more breaks this time.
  • Started thinking about my research assignment, debating on whether I’ll have it in blog form at all and if so, what am I going to show? Resolved that it was best to leave it till the end of this year. It is technically 1/2 done but in my opinion, it’s 1/5 done.
  • TWU  Female Job Candidate Concept:
I can’t say this is fully illustrated and rendered in a
painterly fashion but it suffices. Apparently I’m making this in 3D
(people start gasping). I’m half excited and half unsure if I’m going to
pull it off. 3D modeling characters shouldn’t be too scary…it’s been 10 months though.
Needed to have a version without the hair getting in the way. Pear shaped lady! Not in terms of looks, but there is a bit of myself in this character.


 9th Mon

  • Unidentified Portrait for the day:
  • TWU  Secretary, Bellboy and Environment Concepts: I had to finish off my concept art so that at least I get to have concept art pieces for show. Blocked them all in but now going through them one at a time to finish them up.
For modeling purposes; she has a tentacle above her buttocks, coming into her spinal column for maximum control of her as a puppet. Advanced puppetry v2 for me sans the gore implied.
How she will actually look: She now looks like a T-Rex lady or someone where their tail bone hasn’t stopped growing. I’m going with more crazier hair colours than Position: Vacant as this is my own personal project even though it’s derived from the world I made for PV. She looks stiff because she’s a puppet after all.

10th Tues

  • Unidentified portraits for the day: had to do a handful to make up for the days I didn’t do it. My arm strain’s not going away so I desperately need to take a break from the computer. I’m just not listening to my brain this whole week.
  • TWU  Bellboy Concept: Getting him done before taking my break. My poor tiny arm muscles! Couldn’t finish the elevator design today. Until next week’s update then (or look at my WIP thread there)!
“Hello! Howww can I help you? 😀 Which floor would you like? 😀 What do you mean ‘Why there’s no down button?” 😀 Are you coming in for an interview? You are seeing things! It must be your nerves! 😀 “

Reflection for the Week: the Self Doubts of Blogging & Social Awkwardness

Occasionally a doubting, self conscious voice says to me, “Leonie, isn’t this blog too much about yourself? Isn’t it too self-centered? There’s too much to read also; people prefer skimming for images. You ramble on too much. Who will read this? What is useful about this? Most artists just show their art.” And I say, “It is my art adventures and progress being documented after all. It is a blog for me to reflect on my progress too; it is useful for me as it keeps me going. Everything else is a bonus. If people wanted images, they can gander at my galleries instead, they don’t need to be here at my personal little place of the internet. In person, I’m more of a listener so this somehow became my online space to voice out (aka ramble) my thoughts; and that is okay with me. Stop thinking so much!” And then the voice is silent because I truly believe my response.

The doubting voice usually springs in after long periods of no feedback at all. And then I remind myself that I can always ask for feedback when I really need it (ie sparingly) from the very few people I consider as art mentors. Usually I find that I don’t desperately need constructive feedback (nor validation from anyone) at all as I already do it to myself (apparently too harshly) and then I keep continuing on.

On a sidenote, I am rarely extremely happy or sad but almost always within the neutral area of the infamous Deadpan Face or Awkwardly Friendly Face that ignores/hides my contentment, enjoyment, frustration, tiredness/sleepiness, fears and uncertainty with life. Not sure if it is considered as social anxiety; I feel it’s more about me conserving energy for what I feel is important (listening & learning about others and getting to know a small handful people on an individual basis at a time), social awkwardness and probably because I’m a boring person to converse with as I don’t talk as much as I type online here (social anxiety at play as I’m already assuming I’m going to be judged as uninteresting and have little in common with people? Though I know that most of my life is consumed by learning about art leaving me little say about what’s popular with movies, music, TV, games and whatnot nowadays). Food for me to think about but I’m stopping my self analysis here and I shall digress!

Of course there are those rare, surprising, wonderful moments when suddenly someone comes up to me whether online or in person to say that they had a look at my blog along with some positive encouragement. “Wow, someone looked at my blog? Hooray!” or “He/she looked at it again? Huzzah, thanks!” are essentially my feelings every time. (:

Because I don’t actively seek to count who actually keeps up to date regularly (a number should not be a basis of self worth anyway), it really is a bonus byproduct for me if people skim through my blog at all or that this blog even connects or helps someone based on mutual interests.

Maybe from now on, I should collect the small handful of positive feedback into one place to help pick myself up during hard times. If you have any or even one, I recommend that you collect them too, especially the meaningful and helpful ones. Once again, thank you to the few of you who did or do this as it makes my day. (:

Takeaway for the week: Doubts stem from your fears. To overcome them, do what you fear anyway but start small. Start with smaller risks then build up to the big risk. Do this with purpose within the moment. Repeat.

Thanks for looking, especially those who have been reading! (:
Until next time, Leonie