Monday, December 28, 2009

Another Blog.

I've just created another blog.  I have a terrible habit of starting and starting and starting and never finishing.  No, rather, I continue to set up finish lines but don't make any effort towards crossing them.

I'd created the blog for another purpose, but what the hell, I can't let snatching up that blog name go to waste.  So, I've canceled one project not even half an hour into it.  And then've started a new one.  One whose finish line is set... nowhere in sight.  Welcome to Grandpa's Violin.  Sometimes I wonder whether using Blogger over Wordpress is a good idea.  Anyway, I had intentions to make a diary blog but in my narcissism decided to scrap that.  "Grandpa's Violin" is the one Yuki Kajiura song that my dad recognizes.  Well, if you haven't heard it yet, please do so now.  I'll wait patiently.

I'd originally planned the title to be based off of my favourite song "Winter" but the theme was too general.  Everything from "handinhand" to "darknessofwinter" was taken.  What i could get was "throughwinter" or "thruwinter" or "middleofthewinter".  Now, Through Winter isn't such a bad name for a blog, but Grandpa's Violin--now that evoked some real emotion and antiquity.

I sure wish i had a Grandpa with a violin.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

December 25th, 2009  Yay Christmas!!  The year is also almost over.  Unfortunately, I've gotten sick over the past few days.  Not sure if it's poor sleeping habits, an infected tooth, or both.  I've come down with three dis-eases: a toothache, headache, and the chills;  they always seem to come together.  Anyway, here's what I've been slaving over.  Christmas cards!

These hand-made ones have been taking my time away from Anime LA convention preparation.  They take so long to make!  I've uploaded a couple at DeviantArt #2.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Winter Break preview

This winter break, I've decided to work on some fanart for Anime LA!  This will be my first time staying in an Aritst's Alley, and hopefully my first time cosplaying, so I'll be both nervous and excited!  Here's a sketch of Miku.  My plan is to have three paintings, one each of Hatsune Miku, Lal'c and Nono, and Ayanami Rei ready for the convention.  Time to get to work!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Figures Week 11?

Either Week 11 or 12, most likely eleven.  Anyway, on to the pictures.  Maybe some sketches coming up in a post.  I'll have to quickly fill the sketchbook up, and post the best scratching and scribbling i've done in my most recent.

Ugh, sorry about the bad lighting.

Figures Week 10

Week 10, the 4th of November 2009.  Is it just me or does the conte not go well with the paper?  Dangit i accidentally used flash on the first image.

Figures Week 13

Catching up on some old posts.  Stuff must be so unorganized now.  Week 15 was skipped for an Interactive Media showcase.  Awesome work being done by the students here.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Teaching Moral Character

I'm visiting a friend at UCLA this thanksgiving.  What?  USC students can't get along with UCLA students?  Anyway, she's gone to bed after claiming her one hour of sink/bathroom time, and we'll be getting up, not too early tomorrow to go Black Friday shopping!  Sadly, there are no awesome classic films being shown right now, and every girl wants to see New Moon.  Ugh, at least i was forced to watched Twilight last, Friday, was it by Cさん.  Terrible movie.  The awkwardness in the character interactions made it seem as if there was absolutely no script at all, or the actors couldn't perform.  Awkward.  I haven't read the book,but I've heard that it's just as terrible.  Terribly popular. 

Well, we had our student made, dorm-made thanksgiving dinner.  I washed the rice; what an accomplishment!  V-san was introduced, no, I was introduced to V-san, I don't know if it was Hさん's poor introduction, as she failed to mention my name, or the fact that the fact that I was a trojan that triggered no response from him.  Not even a "Hey, welcome to UCLA!"  Is it my face?  *Hさん's keyboard's s key is tricky.  What did I like?  Talked about video games again.  H?さん is a Neotokyo player.  I've finnaly found one.  Also an avid(if i have any idea how to use that word) MMORPG player.  No games for him in college though.  I brought my PS3 to school, but have only really been able to play recently, and just Assassins Creed II, with all the hype surrounding it's launch.  Ubisoft at USC, the Lineage trailer, got me excited enough about the game that I didn't wait for the delayed PC version.  I've loving the game, but the graphical capabilitie of the Playstation don't seem to be able to handle the field of vision well at all.  Is it just my system?  When the textures shift slightly, or objects appear before you as you close the distance between you and them, the "reality" of the game, the immersion that I expected (as i play with nearly no HUD), is broken.

Anyway, H?さん says that his approach would be improvement on existing ideas, basically, "I want to make an MMORPG, now what can I do differently to make it better."  Everyone asks, what kind of game do you want to make.  Yet, I hesitate to choose.  There are genres to be created.  I want to make a kind of game that you didn't even know existed.  My approach would be to build the framework from scratch.  I hope i don't give up after laying the *whatever those wooden, oh, piles?! (wiki...) yes, a PILE! I'm urprised I even remember the word.  Oh, and just looking up contruction on wikipedia, I realized the green material clad around the to-be Student Union isn't just and Orange texture placed in for the level design of the build.  It's an insulator.  I really though it was just temporary texture. -_-

So, what did I want to talk about?  Oh, we had chicken.  Yes, chicken, pre-cooked turkey was sold out ;_;  On the boring side, list of events.  I got off the bus at the right stop, after freaking out thiking i had gone all the way to Santa Monica,  Then I couldnt find the small Le Conte cross-section, walked down to Westwood.  The reliability of buses scares me.  Epecially after that close shave in Irvine.  Don't think the bus wa ever gonna come.  *Wow this paragraph is really boring, but I'm putting down some reasons to learn to drive.

Hum, any meaning to today's events?  I read Wolpaw's interview (VALVe, with the other writer, also) but maybe those thoughts should be posted to IMD?  He views the world through his (i'll dub) "current-project" filter, and everything that happens, experienced, sees, hears, is compared to work.  "How can this be used in my game?"  So, maybe I should turn on my filter right now.  I chose paper as my currect game project while sitting in the dining hall, Parkside, I believe.  Twyla Tharp says to keep your project a secret though, and they'll be more fun to do and FINISH.  I desperately need to finish, or even, start.  The star I'm reaching for is iPhone game.  Unfortunately, the concept suits 3D more, so maybe i should develop the other one.  Maybe

What I wanted to talk about in the post was my experience reading on MangaFox today.  One Piece.  Awesome.  Bleach, scanlators left a "watermark" and it was unreadable.  So I didn't read it.  Naruto, nudging forward a bit.  One Piece movie-prologue chapter?  Double-awesome, reminded me of tons of characters, which I'm sure One Piece alreasy has.  That nostalgia calls for some re-watching of One Piece, if not the entire series, whatever my sisters will.

This caught my eye.  *Oh and there's so many topics in the post I wont know how to tag this.
Well, I'd like to include an image with everpost, but the image might defame my blog, and I just had technical trouble, own no rights to the image (thought i posted Bae Doona), and, yeah.  *typing that out on the internets.

So, the title of the manga Need a Girl *translated from korean (여자친구만들고파!) caught my eye.  Hey typical manga for teenage boys, I wanted to see how this one would hit the demographic, and its portrayal of women, and the art (actually, "any short-haired girls?").  It's a little too straightforward on the perversion.  From the pages that I've read, lots of fanservice, fantasy, relations with classmates.  But what really caught my eye was the use of popular Chinese idioms, wise sayings, phrases your parents or teachers would recite into your brain in an effort to encourage better, healthier behavior.  At first, I had thought "The early bird gets the worm" would be the main theme of the chapter, but the idioms kept coming.  I'm not on my computer right now, so maybe I'll edit this post with the idioms in Chinese later.

But, these were four-character idioms that I learned in Chinese Culture class, coming right back at me.  I love it.  I love the idea of applying those timeless sayings to a situation in a manga.  However the schoolgirls are a tad bit too distracting. 

How would this be taken in a game?  Perhaps the interactivity would make the lesson stick, for the lack of a better term.  Mostly, a choose your own adventure/visual novel with moral elements.  Thoughts, thoughts?

P.S.  How many words have i written in the past hour?  Blog vs. Diary!  I'd rather not hurt my head over it, but my organizing self can't resist.  Perhaps a historian would like to do the dirty work and compile it later.  I don't feel obligated to have work done by others.  Now, those labels...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Figures Week 8

*cough cough* After a week of midterms, my hand churned out a whole bunch of useless drawings, the connections between my eyes and my brains fell apart...  Life goes on.  Here's Week 8. terrible.  Again with the left hand. I'm sick and tired of it, may be alternating from now on.

Figures Week 7

Hmm, Google's new image system is throwing the order of my pictures around, sorry. I'll just have to leave the thumbnails medium sized.  Here's Week 7, mostly with the left hand, whilst I coughed from a sore throat.

Figures Week 6

Silhouette exercises.  Then we switched into a left-hand exercise (and vice versa for left handers).

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Bae Doona!

Last Friday we screened Take Care of My Cat (2001).  I sat there astounded by Bae Doona's performance, her tomboyish appearance, short hair cut, the silent rebellion she put up against her family.  Her face was perfect for that.  Cute and bright-eyed, she was the nexus of the group of five friends, always making the phone calls and trying to get them to stay together.

It's a feeling that I can't explain clearly,... when I am left with a great impression of an artist, and ... perhaps nostalgia..., and they come back to me after a period of time and touch me again with another piece of work, except that I do not recognize them immediately.  Two weeks ago I learned the name of Zhao Wei, my favourite Chinese actress, after learning that her song "畫心" trumped alan's "心戰" for Red Cliff in the Hong Kong Film Awards  (I just noticed, both composers are Japanese).  I remember her as the actress for the tv series Return of Princess Pearl and the film Shaolin Soccer.  Even she was in Red Cliff.

And Natalie Portman went under my radar with V for Vendetta, until I soon fell in love with her role in Leon (1994).  Who else?  It's just that feeling that I get.  The first time it's just "Omigosh what a great actress".  The same thing happens for another film, and then its only later that I realize that both characters were played wonderfully by the one and the same.

I just noticed, that for the competing songs, both composers are Japanese.  That leads me to my main point of the article.  We also screen Hirokazu Koreeda's After Life (2001), and it turns out that Doona is going to be starring starred in his upcoming film Air Doll.  Professor Lippit talked about the inter-national, cross cultural cinema that is rising in East Asia.  For example, he said that Takeshi Kaneshiro can be quintessentially Chinese in a Chinese film, and also be quintessentially Japanese in a Japanese one.  Talk about a great actor.

I'm really looking forward to seeing Doona's performance.  Unfortunately, it may be just for Doona's performance, as critics are stating that the adaptation is "lacking substance."  I'd also like to see what trend Koreeda is paving in his cinema.  We're seeing a convergence between the Asian cinema's, now when's the localisation going to pick up?

Friday, October 2, 2009

Figures Week 5

This week's model danced for and met Michael Jackson!  He was a wonderful model, and brought lots of new poses.  Bua showed us his work in progress, some wonderful artwork, and taught us about the intricacies of ownerships of rights and photographs and likenesses.  A company can own the right to your likeness.  And if i do fanart I could argue to say that my work is selling because it is drawn by me, and not because it is a drawing of a popular character.  Right, people buy drawings of their favorite characters all of the time, and sometimes even terrible artwork gets sold.  I wonder how I'll do when and if i get my prints out in the Artists' Alley.

First two pages fixed up a bit by Bua.