I was planning on writing a post about gamma correcting Mental Ray so it renders out in correct linear color space but that post would be more involved and I am currently swamped with lighting a full trailer by myself with the due date coming up fast. Thus, here is another story.After giving up on Tiger Tails, this was the story that I had decided on doing. Inspired by La Luna and Le Maison en Petits Cubes. One small environment, one main character and one sub character. While in the character design class, I took advantage of the assignments and refined my main character further and even ended up building a maquette. In the end I decided against doing my own project as I preferred to work on multiple collaboratives and as a texturing and lighting artist I would have long breaks inbetween as I wait for modeling, rigging, animation, and dynamics to be done. I still do love the story and maybe I can make this short film in the future.

The main character, Reo, is an old star miner who has lost his wife, Vera, and is now nearing the end of his own. Reo has a small house on a small planet where large geodes grow. His work consists of hitting his hammer at the geodes which forms stars and the impact causes the stars to fly off into space, thus shooting stars. As Reo comes home from his work he recalls his past with his wife. Before going in the house, Reo makes sure to wipe his boots on the doormat first to remove the stardust so as not to track it through the house. After Reo hangs up his vest, he wipes clean the stardust on the hairclip that he has attached to his vest, a present he had once given to Vera and she had worn on a daily basis. Reo makes his way to his chair and sits down to take a smoke. As he puffs away he recalls his last moments beside his wife as she laid on her bed with her last words of always being together in each others’ hearts. Reo gradually turns white and glows and goes supernova. As the particles of Reo float and swirl around in space, joining into a stream of other star particles, another series of particles twirls around Reo’s particles. They are Vera’s particles and as they gradually gain form, Reo and Vera gradually consolidate back into physical beings and once again land on a little planet with a little house. They take each others’ hands and walk towards their new life together again.

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Tiger Tails

As a graduate student at the Academy of Art I have to do a thesis project as part of degree. Starting back while I was taking a story development class at the University of Washington I began thinking some ideas and thought I finally hit one that I liked over the summer before I started at AAU. Unfortunately I this story has currently been abandoned since I found myself creating something that did not seem to be feasible to create and finish within my time at the Academy. I had way too many characters, a giant forest environment, and I wanted to have dynamic hair and fluid dynamics.  I drew character designs and even had "storyboards". Storyboard in quotes because they weren't really storyboards in the traditional sense. Around that time I was looking into how and why comic artist chose the shape and size of their panels and loved how it was specific to the composition that helps lead the readers' eyes through the pages. I tried trimming down my story and it became about how the tiger was good friends with a rabbit and the rabbit kept on trying to set the tiger up on blind dates but I just really wasn't loving it. Here is to share and document it and maybe one day I can come back to it.

Armature: Home is where your heart is and your heart is with your loved one.

[Once upon a time] There was a tiger that lived in a cave in a forest.  However, he wasn't happy with his living quarters. As he looks around his cave, all he sees is a cold and barren space. The cave was spacious with only a small pile of bones strewn on the side and a mat of leaves and sticks serving as his bed.

[Until] Later at night, while it was raining, and the tiger was lying down read to go to sleep, lightning flashed and there was a large crack of thunder which, shortly after, was accompanied by a large thud; looking up startled from the sudden sounds, the tiger saw that a portion of the ceiling of his cave had fallen in.  As there was nothing he could do about it currently as it was dark and raining, he laid back down exasperated and resolved to look for possible new quarter in the morning.

[And] When morning came and the tiger strode out of his cave, looking back as he had no real attachment to his bland cave, he shrugged and went off on his journey. The tiger wanted somewhere to belong to.  He searched high, up in a tree along with birds. (The chicks in a nearby nest started chirping frantically when they saw him up on the branch. This brought the mother bird flying speedily back to chase him away with repeated jabs and peckings on his head.) He did not belong there as it was difficult to stay on a branch and he quickly fell off and landed hard on the ground, dazed.

[And] He searched low, underground in burrows with the rabbits. (He stuck his head inside the burrow, surprising a family of rabbits inside. The rabbits quickly scampered out through the back leaving him alone with nothing but a face full of dirt.) He did not belong there as it was small and cramped and he could not fit inside. His head became stuck in the opening of the burrow and he had to struggle to free himself.

[And] (He searched in the river with the fishes. Unfortunately the fish all quickly swam away. He tried to catch up to them but he was not as fast. Soon he was out of breath and unable to continue staying under water. Coming out of the water and gasping for air, he dragged himself out of the river.)

[Until] Sunset came and the day was coming to an end but the tiger still had not found a new place that he could call home. Having no choice, disappointingly, he heads back to his original cave to stay another night. As he neared the entrance of his cave, he suddenly noticed something was different as there was a presence from within the cave. As he saw the tail of another tiger suddenly flick into sight, he leapt backwards and began growling and snarling at the intruder upon his territory. Another tiger appeared from the cave, and she was the most beautiful tiger he has ever seen, with fluttering lashes and exquisite stripes. He quickly snatched up a mouthful of flowers that have grown on the side and bounded over to the female tiger’s side, offering the flowers. The female tiger looked bashful but graciously accepted the flowers and gestured him to follow her inside the cave. Inside, while it was the same cave that he lived in previously, the tiger saw everything differently. The cave looked brighter and warmer. The fallen portion of the ceiling has become a flowering shrub that decorated the cave and the bed has become soft and fragrant, made from grass and thistles. It now felt like a home, and the tiger knew that this is where he belongs.

[Ever since] The two tigers lived together in the cave happily.

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