Saturday, December 22, 2007

oh snap

Not another one :(

Doing It Twice & Robot Rights

got a face like charles bronson, straight outta green bay wisconsin

We made it to Boing Boing. So sweet.

Thanks to Scott Beale at Laughing Squid for posting about us and then Xeni for throwing it up on Boing Boing. Am I a nerd for being psyched about Xeni Jardin making a blog post of something I did?

Also, there have been several Scott's who have been posting about us on their blogs. I wonder if there's any correlation between being a Scott and posting things on the internet or being a Scott and enjoying anime and D&D jokes. I'm gonna go make a flow chart and try to wrap my head around this.

Being Scottish, It's Shite & Robot Rights

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Did Laura let you leave the house like that?

Man, the internet just keeps on amazing me. First that sneezing panda video and now my new short, IM IN UR MANGER KILLING UR SAVIOR, surpasses the 100,000 views mark on the ol' YouTube. And For Tax Reasons is also ranked #8 Most Subscribed Directors for this week. I think we owe this revived surge to the web comic VG Cats who linked us up recently. Thanks a lot Scott Ramsoomair.

Man, next time I introduce myself at a party I'll have to mention my YouTube accolades. That's GOTTA get me some respect. Now I just have to get invited to some parties. What use are sweaters if you never get invited to holiday parties? No use, that's what. And my Scholastic 101 Bug Jokes are going completely unused. Hey, why are spiders so good at baseball? Anyone, anyone?

In other news, I finished a black and white cut of the Ben Weasel music video for "Got My Number". Here's some stills:

It's not going to stay black and white, but I like the sharp contrast between the two. I might keep some of those hard black backgrounds and shadows and such in there. I dunno, I want to go for a Jaime Hernandez type thing.

Here's one of the shots. I think it's the one with the most drawings in it. Meh.

Until next time.

Internet Spikes & Robot Rights

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Oh man. Some angry dude posted a video response to my new short IM IN UR MANGER KILLING UR SAVIOR. I hate to say it, but I think he's right. . . about everything.

Man, criticism is rough. I'm gonna go eat my feelings.

Sensible Bites & Robot Rights

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Just want to say thanks to everyone who helped me and Matt in making IN UR MANGER KILLING UR SAVIOR, to EVERYONE who linked it around and to the blogs/sites who posted about us. Particularly Jerry Beck at Cartoon Brew and Scott Green at Ain't It Cool News, but also my pals, Raven Baker at Soft Graffiti and the illustrious Will Hines. And whoever threw it up on Fark, Milk & Cookies, and I Am Bored.

After less than a week we had more YouTube views than my previous short "She She She She's A Bombshell" which had been up for over a year, and as of this post we're up to 38,896 views.

So thanks everyone!

So right now there's an epic thread debate on our YouTube comments section about whether or not a Lawful Evil Paladin can exist. If you have the means, I do suggest you join it.

Otherwise we've been getting some good feedback on it- from all corners of the web. Here's what folks are saying:

"I was expecting a lolcat."

"Meh. No reason for that to be over six minutes."

"Heed this warning, God is not mocked. Causing others to stumble bears a wicked price. You should not poke fun at the Nativity. It's not funny at all"

" I don't know, call me a purist, but I don't think this anime was as good as the manga."

" I particularly like the shield that lets baby jesus zap people with lightening bolts :) Je-Zeus!"

and one of my favs

"Dude, Jesus would have owned face with a 20 AC shield. I mean, he already passively takes half damage and always makes his saving rolls."

Call me crazy, but I have a feeling some of the magi are going to make their own voices heard on the subject.

Epic Thread Fights & Robot Rights

PS- the pics I posted here are huge because I promised Tom I'd give him a desktop sized image a while back.

Monday, November 26, 2007


I never thought this day would come, so I won't mince words.



And justin time for the Holiday season, what a perfect coincidence. A horribly tedious coincidence that took a year of my life. Me and Matt started an "animation studio" to house this sacrilegious creation, called For Tax Reasons.

Check out the site at There you can download better versions of the short.

More news to come, I promise.

Robot Rights & Robot Rights

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

We Lost The Entwives

This is a little peek into the pyschosis of animation. Though I'm sure anyone can relate to this kinda stuff. I start flipping through shots I finished weeks ago for this music video and just started redrawing a lot of the key frames.

This is the result of several factors.

1. I find that my drawings age over a period of time. I'll look at drawings from my old short and cringe at some of them. I can see where the proportions are all off and where features look squashed in one shot and stretched in another. Sometimes it just takes a day or an hour or two, you just need those fresh eyes I guess, but looking at the drawings upside down, through the back with a lightbox or in a mirror helps see the asymmetry.

2. If you do one off projects, like music videos or shorts, and are unprepared like me and don't have loads of time already spent with drawing the characters, you might find you don't have the character designs down pat when you start jumping into the animating stage. I've found that only until the end of things do I finally know my characters, and the first shots I did I need some fixing.

3. I really rushed through the animation on IIUM/KUS, which you will soon be able to see, and I really want this video to have some solid designs, especially since the character is stationary in a lot of parts.

The great Matt Sheridan said two things, though he might have been quoting other people. At any rate- at some point he said it takes like 100 drawings to get your character down, maybe it was 500 though. . . and that we all have 10,000 bad drawings in us. Thanks to Christen for reminding me about that last one. I dunno, THINK ABOUT IT.

Somebody remind me to talk about drawing ladies next time. Anyways, back to animating.

Makin' it Nice & Robot Rights

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Slackers: A Documentary On Sale Online

Huzzah! My film, The Slackers: A Documentary is now for sale online at

Apparently it's the ranked number 1 in DVD sales for the past three weeks. Nice.

To grab a copy if you haven't already, click

Caustic Christ & Robot Rights

Friday, September 7, 2007

Promotional Use Only

Just a quick post, I'm pretty tired. I had a late night hanging out with Steve Jobs. And by that I mean doing work on my Mac.

Here's the final art for the Carlapalooza poster. I highly suggest everyone attend, it's gonna be sweet.

For more info check out:

And this Saturday my short, She She She She's A Bombshell, will be featured in a panel of DC Filmmakers for this DC Meets Delhi Film & Arts Festival. Here's a link for the schedule.

I'm in the 2:00 to 4:30 block in case anyone in DC metro area is interested. I think I'm going to have to talk about stuff. I'll bring my presentation on Atlantis just in case. People need to know the truth.

Filmic Delhi-ghts & Robot Rights

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Carlapalooza 2007

Check it out. It took like 6 South Park Episodes to color once I had the scheme down.

Some of the stuff might change slightly (the text will be handwritten) but for the most part this is it. I really wish I knew color theory better. It takes me a while to figure what looks good together and create a pallet to work from.

Coloring is Aight & Robot Rights

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

This Way Out

I'm going to open with a thought.

If I was speeding down a two-lane desert highway in a dust caked beat up 1964 Chevy, swerving over cracked asphalt and armadillo carcasses being tailed by a fleet of state troopers, SWAT police, and militant right-wing religious freaks all screaming for my blood- Rocket from the Crypt would have to be the soundtrack.

Something from Group Sounds in particular.

And as a sweat stained police officer takes a megaphone out the window and starts telling me to stop, that I'm completely surrounded and not even headed towards the border- that in fact I'm headed in the opposite direction of the border, and begins to go into the logistics of why criminals usually head FOR the border- I would give the questionable suitcase in the passengers side seat a pat, pound my foot on the accelerator and turn up "This Bad Check Is Gonna Stick".

But none of this would ever happen because I'm pretty sure 1964 Chevy's don't even have tape decks.

Anyways, onto the animation, I'm still working on like 8 things at once, but they're all coming along. Super secret project code named IIUM/KUS is nearing picture lock as we speak. I might throw up a quicktime of some of the colored and gussied up footage if Matt thinks it's ok. In the meantime, here's a color test for the Ben Weasel music video I'm also working on.

I'm still working with the palette, I'm really trying to envoke that watching TV in the dark vibe because that's what she's doing. I don't know if it's blue enough- I don't know something isn't hitting me in the gut the way it should. Anyone have any thoughts?

A lot of the shots in this video involve this girl sitting still and watching events unfold on the television set, so I'm able to throw a shadow on her no problem. I'm hoping that I can keep up a nice shadow for the moving shots in front of the TV set as well.

And on completely stationary front- here's a poster I'm working on for a sweet two day show coming up in October. It's a birthday show/benefit and with a bunch of sweet bands like the Ergs and The Max Levine Ensemble. I still have to color it and add in all the info and what not because, you know, people should know that kinda stuff about shows.

Anyways, to make up for the lack of animation, here's a little pencil test from some animating I'm doing at my job. I just made up this little character and did an 8 drawing run cycle on 4's. It's a bit clunky but it was fun to draw something completely different from what I've been working on.

Stationary Bikes & Robot Rights

Friday, July 27, 2007

Hey Kid! Help Computah.

This is a frame from one of the shots I've been working on this week for IIUM/KUS. Probably the most effects heavy shot of the whole short. I've said it before, but the whole short doesn't look like this, I don't want to do any false advertising. Well, really I just don't want anyone to be disappointed, and be like ". . .oh, I thought this was going to look different when it was moving and stuff. . . stop IMing me all these links."

This whole week I've been fixing and rendering out what are hopefully the final shots for the short. I'm sure I messed something up though.

We decided to make the short HD or make it IN HD- how would you phrase that? The reasoning was that it would look nice if it were ever projected for a festival or something. But I don't know if this short would really interest festival programmers, I think it's better suited for an internet audience who's avoiding doing work/homework/socializing at all costs. I wonder if there are laurels for that I could put on a poster.

Anyways, being primarily viewed on the internet (and this is assuming people don't gouge their eyes out in the first 30 seconds) means that the majority of viewers are going to watch this short mildly compressed at half it's resolution. This on top of the hard drive space and render time makes you start to question things. Why we tried to meddle with HD in the first place!? Who were we to play god!? You at least need to go to grad school for that type of thing.

Robot Rights & All's Right (With The World)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

((Holy Shit) I Can't Believe I Still Don't Have) A Short Done

Wow, it's been a month since I last updated. Well, I've been working my ass off and I've got the pictures to prove it. Any photographic evidence you see otherwise is a blatant Stalinist forgery.

We're in the belly of the beast right now, three projects going on at once, so first things first. The pick up shots for the new nerdy ass short, codenamed: IIUM/KUS, are done and should be cleaned and colored by tomorrow. So hopefully a shit load of After Effects work will get that thing to picture lock either this week or next week.

Next up at bat is the music video I'm animating for the Ben Weasel song "Got My Number" off his new album "These Ones Are Bitter". If you like Screeching Weasel and/or pop punk tunes go here and download it.

These are some of the more interesting storyboards from the animatic.

Can you figure out what music video is about? Get out your special Ben Levin decoder rings and mail in your theories to :

"The Astounding Confounding Storyboard Mystery & Great American Anal Portrait Contest"
c/o The American Family Association
PO Box Drawer 2440
Tupelo, MS 38803

Finally, my partner in crime, Matt, and I finished storyboarding a short we're working on with improviser/comedienne extraordinaire Jackie Clarke. We've learned from our sins with IIUM/KUS and are making animatics for everything now. It's really crucial to storyboard AND make an animatic because it helps to see how long to hold each shot, how angles pair up, and if you've got everything running smoothly with your dialogue track- blah blah blah.

Thus we've started this system of buying stacks of blank index cards to storyboard on. The theory being that we can in turn use these cards as rough layouts for the actual animation and that the smaller size of the drawings will help us cut down on pencil mileage. Plus it's nice to hold a fat stack of smudgy cards strapped together with rubber bands and feel like you actually did something with your life.

Here's what the stacks for the Ben Weasel short and the Jackie Clarke short look like:

And in an effort to make this post ridiculously long- my old short, "She She She She's A Bombshell", got a mention on this podcast GeekNights. Check it out:

Trotsky's Cous Cous Delight & Robot Rights

Saturday, June 23, 2007


The first run of DVD's of my documentary on the ska band The Slackers- aptly titled The Slackers: A Documentary- arrived this past week. It's a feature length documentary I directed slash produced slash edited slash carried around a golf bag of tripods and mic stands doubling as light stands for.

The DVD's will be going on sale online soon, until then the Slackers will be selling them at their shows, so check out their tour dates section of their website.

I also whipped up my own site- for the documentary, and a little trailer for it. Check it out.

Anyways, I'll have more info about where to buy it when it becomes available. But in the meantime thanks to everyone who helped me out on it. I'll give you all copies of the final product because gratitude isn't tangible. But seriously I owe you all. Thanks.

So This Is Night & Robot Rights

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Bloodbath Several Blocks From Burger King

I'm going to be animating all today, trying to get this short closer to being done. In the meantime, here's a flyer I'm also working on.

Oh yeah, and if you're in the NYC area, you should check out this show. It's gonna be rad.

Pop Punk Nights & Robot Rights

(That one is weak I know.)

Friday, June 8, 2007

Side Projects are Never Successful aka Wings Is Just Taxi/Cheers In An Airport

So, we got a rough cut of the new animated short- code named IIUM/KUS. And with the rough cut I now realize we need roughly 10-12 completely new shots among other little fixes. But it's looking good. And it might be funny. I can't tell. Being with the same script and jokes for over 4 months is like saying "spaghetti time" over and over again. Eventually, the words lose all meaning and you never want to see a Sopranos episode again.

In the meanwhile, two other projects are in the works. Here's a rough storyboard from a music video I'm going to be animating for Mr. Ben Weasel's new upcoming solo album.

She's holding a cell phone. Yeah, that's right. I'm storyboarding and making animatics for my shorts from now on. Leave me alone.

of Spring, Rites & Robot Rights

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Stop, Drop, Shut 'Em Down Open Up Shop

Oh man, so I had all these awesome blog posts planned, but shit got crazy and you know what they say- the best laid plans blah blah blah don't play Sun City.

So, almost all of the shots are in After Effects and everything is starting to come together. Here's what it's looking like so far.

Most of the shots aren't as fancy as these, I was just trying to impress people. The majority look more like third image. Man, I'm really kicking myself for not making an animatic. The shots are individually looking ok, but will they piece together well? Probably not.

Oh man, did my computer just make a goat noise? Dude, I gotta get out of here, it's 2 AM.

Barnyard Frights & Robot Rights

Sunday, May 6, 2007

The colors children the colors!

So a while back I had this contest asking all of my fans to submit a color scheme for the characters in my new short- the winner would actually have their scheme used for the final animation!

I only received one submission. I blame poor advertising, which consisted of a sticky note I put on a stray dog- hoping he would you know, wander around a lot. Nevertheless, that single submission was great, though I could have done without the mockery.

Anyways so I started coloring in the characters, ran it through a bunch of filters and stuff in After Effects and this is what I got!

JK. These are the swatches I made in Photoshop to help me color, but it would be kinda cool if they looked like this. Probably would have made the past 4 months easier. . .

Jimmie Walker sez:

Dyn-o-miite & Robot Riiights!

Friday, May 4, 2007

More Color.

Color is dominating my life lately. It chafes.
Fishnet Tights & Robot Rights

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Color Schmolor/Corrections

If there's one thing that still baffles me, it's color schemes. I allotted 3 weeks for coloring this short, but I feel like this whole week is just going to be me trying to figure out the color scheme. It's weird because you sorta have this picture in your head, but when you slop it down in photoshop, it's just looks like weird.

Oh well, in the meantime, here's a cleaner version of a cover for the next "Shut Up and Do It" comp, though I must make a correction, this is not set in stone, it's possible another persons design might be used.
Potato Blights & Robot Rights?

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Rising Up, Back On The Streets

Ok, it doesn't look like much stacked on my floor like that, but those folders contain the 865 drawings I just finished scanning that make up the new animated short, codenamed: IIUM/KUS.

Hmmm, 865 still doesn't seem like that much. Considering the months and months of drawing. Well maybe if I put it in giga terms:

Scanned at a index-finger-blistering range of 300 to 900 DPI, those graphite-laden motherfuckers take up approximately 18.75 GIGABYTES of memory. If this were 1993, you'd need a motherboard melting stack of 15,625
" floppy disks to hold all of that data. How do you like them animated apples?

Matt's already half way done cleaning the photoshop files, and coloring should begin by Monday. Man, we've been working non stop on this bastard. I need an intern.

Anyways, I promise to deliver it soon. Until then, more updates, and in COLOR. For now, here's this rough sketch I did for the next "Shut Up and Do It" compilation. It's 4 punk kids putting together a puzzle of America.

It will look good whatever. Check out the first comp, it's sweet New York and New Jersey pop punk bands. You can download it for free here:

Until next time.

Boy Fights & Robot Rights

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

OMG We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story

Yep. We're back. Or I'm back. And principal animation is done! We're still waiting on the second unit in Chicago to finish some backgrounds and establishing shots at Wrigley Field, but we're on our way. So to celebrate, here's a little test Matt and I did, messing with anime speed lines:

Oh man, looking at my user photo I think I gained some weight. This animation is gonna kill me if this humidity doesn't first.

Hot Sahara Nights
Robot Rights.

Saturday, March 3, 2007


Production on the new short, code named: IIUM/KUS, will be on hold for the next 8 days, while Team Ben & Matt work on 15 seconds of animation for a certain live action television pilot being made for a certain Adult Swim. So here's some fan service. Well, I consider it fan service.


Robot, rights?

Sunday, February 25, 2007

STEAMPUNK: a solution to our energy crisis

Fear not populace, there are 1 5/7th shots left to animate before post production begins on the new short, code named: IIUM/KUS. In the meantime, here's a rough design for a steampunk bike-powered tank:

Looks a little front heavy I guess, but whatever. Nobody's going to be driving it outside of the Red Bull Fluntag™. Unless of course, certain higher ups at the Pentagon receive a certain military proposal. DHL don't fail me now!

Well, that's all I got for now. So until I turn on my scanner again, here's more quasi-Japanese parodies.

And remember, next time there'll be more fan service. . . I guess for Darrell or something. I think he's my fan.

Robot rights.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Good-bye OC. We hardly knew ye.

God damn it.

Illustration "Kid Chino & Cosmo Girl" by Zachary Judd Scheer.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

It must be coming towards us at a FANTASTIC speed!

It's been a hard working 3 day weekend leaving us with 3, count 'em, 3 shots left to animate before we go into post production for the new short- IIUM/KUS. Post production seems like an odd way to put it, I'm sure there's a better animation term. What I mean is before we have to scan in all of the shots, create a color scheme, color all the shots, composite them, edit down the audio, build and polish the entire soundtrack, and you know, decide it all sucks and wasn't worth it.

But there's still a bit of time before we realize it all sucks because the last 2 shots are going to be tough. In fact, the last shot is sorta like 8 seperate shots rolled into one, but whatever.

In the meantime here's a
a rough design for one of the characters in the last shot. This robot fellow is half an homage to Robo from Chrono Trigger, and half stolen ideas from Appleseed.

Now more than ever.

Robot rights.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Bo knows staffs

Pencil test time. I've been working on this shot for my upcoming short (code named: IIUM/KUS) for the past couple nights. Here's a rough test of a fellow getting hit with a staff. Not a bo-staff. I don't play like that. Either you call it a staff or a bow, no "bo-staffs" around me. Donatello has a bo, Gandalf has a staff, and I guess Robin Hood had a quarter staff. . . Look, that's just the way it is in my book. Saying bo-staff is like the equivalent of saying Japanimation.

Ok well it's probably not, I just googled it, and "bo staff" did show up on an online store called Karate Depot. But Wikipedia has an entry for BO'S not bo staffs. So yeah anyways, here's the shitty pencil test.

Cartoon violence is hard man. That amazing Warner Bros. crew did this shit the best. It is truly an art form, and after finally giving a go at it, I realize how awesome those animators were and how shitty I am.

Bo Jackson knows Robot Rights.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

I'm Still Alive!

As some of you may know I was sick this past weekend, and progress on IIUM/KUS has been slowed slightly. But my thanks to everyone for sending in all of those lovely get well cards, cookie bouquets, and gift certificates- they really raised my spirits. And a big thanks to Noriko Fujinaka, who sent me this lovely drawing I've posted here. I don't know what it says, but it sure is cute. However I feel I have to make it clear that I don't have a cat, just in case anyone is thinking of sending some get well cat nip or something. I have no use for it.

But back to business, we are down to the single digits. . . barely. 9 shots left to animate/clean up. These are the big ones, but I shall plow through them or die trying. Well, I'll plow through them or get really tired trying.

Get well world.

Robot Rights.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

cross bloggination

The final details are moving along with "The Slackers: A Documentary"- hopefully some solid news by the beginning of next week.

What went wrong?

Robot Rights.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Destruction by Definition

Voted my favoritest pose I drew today. Even though the feet are kinda screwy along with the right hand . . . and that weird shoulder blade mound. . . I enjoy the butt crack being shown though, I think it makes up for it all.

16 shots to go. My fingers have blisters on them. But not from drawing, because I started practicing bass again.

Friday, January 26, 2007

The Third Slackers Movie

First there was Richard Linklater's "Slacker", then that oddly awesome "Slackers" with Older Pete from from Adventures of Pete & Pete, and finally the seminal ska band of New York has their own name to add to the list with my newly completed documentary aptly named: "The Slackers: A Documentary".

The culmination of nearly three years of work, this feature length documentary trails the history of the band from their small two tone-esque beginnings to their present reign as one of the most respected American ska bands.

I can't tell you how many nights I've worked on this piece; shooting shows, hauling a golf bag full of makes shift light stands and tripods, sitting alone in the dark editing, testing colors and levels and hating the world. But finally the deals are in the works right now to make it available to the masses at your next local Slackers show.

More news to come.

Robot rights.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Sing On! Lionhearts!

Ok, the events of today just made this short, dare I say, fucking epic.

Here's all I'm gonna say, I had worked my way down to 17 shots left, and then I recalculated with a new page of storyboards for those ambigious +/- 3 shots, and now we have 25 shots left to do. So that 3 turned into 8 I guess. Or more. Ah well, here we go.

Watch out.

Robot Rights.

Monday, January 22, 2007

14 Days Later

Like every project I undertake, it always takes forever longer than I originally thought to finish.

On January 8th I had 42 shots left to animate. It's January 22nd and I have 20 shots to go. I was hoping to be at least done with the animating by now, but now that I know the post-college-no-girlfriend amount of animation I can churn out on average each night, I can see that I had quite unrealistic goals.

I am indeed no Jack Bauer.

But it is all moot since any sane American (or Australian) knows that the liberal left wing Jew run media doesn't pay much attention to a slow and steady progress report on an animated short, they only care about those first frazzled 100 hours of animation. So let us look back at what I did in those first 100 hours:

-Animated some stuff.

-IMed people way too much while I was supposed to be animating stuff.

-Updated this blog.

-Made several prank calls to the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 689 for which I'm sure to pay dearly.

-Raised the national minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.24.

-Passed a bill broadening the range of stem cell research to encompass even the radical "Stir Fry Cell" experiments in which fetal stem cells are used as a secret ingredient on an upcoming episode of Top Chef.

-And finally, I watched Clerks 2 on loop for several days, and then watched seasons 6 & 4 of The Simpsons (both with and without audio commentary), season 2 of Futurama (again with and without the commentary), season 2 of Curb Your Enthusiasm, several discs of season 2 of Kids in The Hall, the first full fledged season of Aeon Flux, a couple Garth Merenghi's Darkplace episodes, and listened to several This American Life episodes.

Ok, that was stupid and this has taken way too long to update. I'm outta here.

Robot Rights.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Bunnyslaughter is my new hardcore band.

The second wave of recordings have been recorded! The illustrious New Adults, Adam & Zach, lent their vocal talents to a microphone in an apartment in Queens last night. And Queens saw that it was good. And Queens said, let there be audio editing.

Over the next week I'll be sifting through tons of takes, and probably recording a couple more. But it should be good. Some of the takes gave me the hiccups from laughing. I almost barfed.

I hope it comes together. It's really weird recording dialogue all separate like that. Like one person at a time. That's why I foresee some re-recording. Plus I'm anal like that.

This is gonna be a goofy one, a bit different from the goofiness of "She She She She's A Bombshell". Anyways, in the mean time, check out this pencil test. It's a rough animation of a guy getting hit with a giant hammer and his helmet spinning in the aftermath. It still needs some in betweens and the beard should lag more behind the hit motion. So basically it kinda sucks.

Matthew Lillard's away message is "I'll be right baaaack".

Robot Rights.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Sugar High, you know, from Empire Records

So it's Saturday night, and the current "shots left" count for the new animated short is 29 (+/- 3) out of 47.

Today I cracked open my new Pro Tools LE and microphone to record some voice over action. Luckily the heat is rarely on in my apartment, so it was relatively quiet. That is aside from the Fast & Furious III: Astoria Drift drag racing that takes place on my street.

My work flow is definitely out of order. I
f you're going to independently make a hand drawn animated short, or a "drawie" as we call it in the business, then you should really follow steps similar to these:

1. Buy Richard Williams "Animation Survival Kit" to make sure you have some back up help.
2. Skim through the cool drawings, then put it down and write a script.
3. Storyboard the script.
4. Look at "Animation Survival Kit" again, be surprised at how heavy the hardback version is and how it knocks over all your other books like dominoes when you try to stack it on a shelf.
5. Record and mix a rough audio track.
6. Make an animatic (a video of your storyboards cut to the rough audio).
7. Send your friends an mpeg of the animatic, and when they don't get it tell them they "don't know shit about structure" and sign off IM immediately.
8. Animate.
9. Pencil test your animation.
10. Fix and clean up your drawings.
11. Steal Adobe Photoshop and After Affects.
12. Scan & Color your drawings.
13. Sequence and composite the drawings in Adobe After Effects or some program and sync them up with your sound.
14. Get a final audio trizzack.
15. Wonder why you've gained so much weight.
16. Output your shots and cut them together to make the final product.

Obviously, I barely know what I'm doing, but usually you record the audio before you animate so the drawings fit the acting. Der.

Since Matt and myself wrote the short and are also doing some of the voices there haven't been too many problems. Though the past few days of looking over the script and recording have added almost a page to the script.

No problema because I cut corners by using replaceable jaws for lip syncing. But more on that later.

Until then, here's a couple drawings. Also, my mom noted I spelled phoenix incorrectly in the last post. I apologize to all of the mythological fire birds and Arizona for my ignorance.

Knowing is half the battle.

Robot Rights.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Come see the violence inherent in the system!

So last night, for the very first time, I drew a pheonix. Not saying anymore than that.

I'm working my way down the list of shots to animate for the new short. Only 35 left. Of course I'll probably end up adding 2 or 3 more shots before this is all done. Until then here's a note I received in the mail the other day. All the way from the John Stossel "Gimme A Break" compound in Scranton, PA. Apparently he's upset, and doesn't have any paper.

I'm concerned. Not for my own well being, but for John's.


Robot Rights.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Blacked out text is the new blacked out text.

I'm censoring this post in the ever so trendy fascist dictatorship style because I know so many people are waiting with baited breath and rocket powered fishing rods to see what the new animated short is all about.

"IIUM/KUS" (the new short) is sort of an experiment to see how fast I can make an animated short. The previous and only other animated short I've ever made, "She She She She's A Bombshell", took roughly a year to produce from start to finish- script to sound design etc. And roughly a year equaling 7 minutes and 38 seconds of animation is clearly no way to live my life. So what's different on this short?

First off, it's very unorganized. Take one of the storyboards por ejemplo:

Note the meticulous attention to illegibility, the almost Machiavellian lack of detail in the characters bodies, and what could those red circles mean? I don't know, I forgot already. Yeah, there's no animatic. So what if I've started animating before even recording the audio? What's it to you?

Difference number two: I'm not the only animator. This new short was written by Mr. Matt Burnett and myself, so he's drawing some stuff too.

Difference number three: I'm off the meth. I can't tell you how many times I sold my light box senior year of college. I can't because there's still some pending civil suits.

Will this short look good at all? Will we be able to finish it within the relative span of a month. I do not know, but like I said it's an experiment. There's 42 shots to go, can it be done?

I'd say this is totally some Jack Bauer shit, but I don't watch 24.

Stay tuned.

Robot rights.