Sunday, November 14, 2010

Nov 11th

SO, ok, a little behind, been busy lately.

Lets start off with Nov 11th, Thursday.  So I got moved into a new office on Thursday, which was pretty cool.  I get a new computer this coming Monday, which will be awesome, since the headphone jack in mine currently doesn’t work.  Haha.  Hard to hear dialogue in a busy animation studio from just your computer speakers! 

Anyway, the day went well, though it was a bit frustrating.  I was working with Burt, the Elephant rig, and editing a scene where his trunk to push a box across the floor.  SUCH a simple shot, just literally sliding the box along the floor.  You’d think it would be like, 15 minutes to get it blocked out.  Nope.  Haha, apparently the IK rig system of the trunk is like nothing I’ve ever seen.  Normally you think: ok, so I will parent the box control to the end control on the trunk (the nose), and when its in IK, if I just animate the BOX, the trunk will follow it.  Piece of cake.  Not with this rig!  So you switch it to IK… but only the joint that is parented to the box is what moves with the box.  There are like… 6 joints in the elephant trunk.. and because of this, it means I have to animate EACH individual joint on every frame as the trunk moves across the floor.  OH MY GOSH.  Talk about frustrating.  So Im sitting there, thinking, “ah, it’ll look fine, I’ll make these adjustments I got from Myke and re-submit.”  No, I ended up re-animating the trunk completely like 7 or 8 times.  No exaggeration.  I had Pete, the other Animation Director, come take a look at it (really good a technical aspects of Maya animation), and there was nothing he could do to get it to cooperate either.  Frustrating!  So, anyway, I ended up just Animating the whole trunk over again in FK, and just fudging the positioning of the box, and keying it on almost every frame to make sure it wasn’t jumpy.  I think I got it alright.  But still, for a little bit, I wanted to pull my hair out!  It took most of the day, which I didn’t expect, so I got a bit behind on some of my work, but that’s alright. 

Also, Nickelodeon was in town today!  SO cool.  So the office was all decked out, and we got to sit and talk with a bunch of important people at Nickelodeon, including Mark Taylor, head of Nickelodeon Animation Studios (SUCH an incredibly nice man), as well as with the three writers of Penguins!!!!  Omg it was so cool.  I loved that they came in and sat and talked with us in our office.  They literally just wandered in and had a chat with us about the characters, the show, if we had any questions, etc.  It was fantastic to throw things out at them, and of course to learn more about the show.  There was also a group Animator QnA with them as well toward the end of the day.  How cool!  I love it.  Its fantastic to hear about how a show came along, and where they get some of their ideas from for the show. 

So, by the end of such a good yet frustrating day, I was able to get that shot in and submitted, and then started on my next shot.  Not too bad.  A dialogue shot, and with a bunch of the other characters just kind of idling in the background.  Idling characters are HARD.  Haha.  So funny how that is.  At least I got it started though.  Then, it was onward to the Pub for some drinks.  I ended up having dinner as well, which was nice.  The apartment mates were having a Barbecue at the house, but honestly, I really really enjoy the company of my coworkers.  Nick, Kate, Cristine, Mercedes, Matt and Carla… awesome people.  And there are more too!  Anyway, I love hanging out with them, I always leave having had a good time, so I didn’t mind being late to the BBQ.

I got home and started looking at a few new apartments.  Im realizing (I know, I said it was all great and good before) that this is definitely not a place that I want to live full time.  After being here just over a week now, you start to see how people really live, and some of them are just downright messy.  I end up cleaning the counters and re-washing dishes (we have no dishwasher) pretty much daily because some of them just are not very… clean.  Heh.  So yea… Anyway, Im searching.  We will see, hopefully something good comes out of it.  I hung out with the housemates for a while, and now I am off to bed.  Going to start reading my book a little bit.  Maybe start getting into it.  More Nickelodeon things tomorrow!!!!

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