Archive: January 2016 - Spinland Studios, LLC

The Anatomy of a 3D Character Build: How I Create a Virtual Character

  • January 31, 2016
The Anatomy of a 3D Character Build: How I Create a Virtual Character

I've already posted about the fun 3D gargoyle character I'm creating but today I decided I'd like to go more in depth into the process of getting the model from concept to fully-realized and ready to animate. That last is still a work in progress (a "WIP" in the vernacular) but it's quite close to completion now. I'm always excited when a build gets to this point because then the real artsy fun can begin! To recap, I became intrigued by a gargoyle statue in my neighbor's coffee shop and decided I wanted to do something related as a 3D character. This is a photo of the statue itself: With...

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Be the Change that You Want to See in the World

  • January 27, 2016
Be the Change that You Want to See in the World

No one else is going to look out for your interests; it's all on you. Some personal slice of life musings. Read on at your own peril. I've been wanting to "get involved" for a long time. As I see it: if you want things in your life to change your next step is to get off your keister and set processes in motion to affect that change. I've stood by that philosophy in terms of my professional and personal life, and I can honestly say I live by my principles. But what about the stuff around me? I can b*tch and moan online until my fingers fall off but apart from indulging some catharsis WTF am I accomplishing?...

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Fun 3D Gargoyle Project

  • January 25, 2016
Fun 3D Gargoyle Project

Keepin' things real. You know what they say about all work and no play! My next-door neighbors own the Utica Coffee Roasting Company, a most amazing local coffee shop (they roast their own blends, as you might have guessed, and they use only top shelf beans they purchase from all over the world) that could hold its head high in NYC or Boston; on a shelf there you can find a really cool gargoyle statue keeping an eye on the place (see above). I've long wanted to have a play modeling and rigging something similar but only recently has work allowed the time. After a weekend of experimenting...

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Creating a “Toon” Style Character Head

  • January 22, 2016
Creating a “Toon” Style Character Head

A star is born This post is a followup to my earlier piece explaining how 3D modeling can be likened to sculpting in virtual clay. Last time I used a basic torso build for my example; today I'm going to up the ante: I'll not only go into the beginnings of modeling a "toon" style head, I'm going to do it live, with video. W00t! Before we run the film I'll give you a little background to help put what you'll see into context. First, the style I favor for this sort of modeling is known as "box modeling." The name comes from beginning with a very basic shape, such as a simple box primitive, then...

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Spinny’s Networking Tips: Selling Yourself

  • January 13, 2016
Spinny’s Networking Tips: Selling Yourself

Just don't This post will eventually devolve into a diatribe about sales tactics and techniques. That process is inevitable, as I see it, because the primary goal you are trying to achieve when networking is to get others to "buy" you, buy your brand, and establish you in their mind's eye as an attractive source for what you're selling. The process might be a gradual one, but that is your end goal. Yep, it's a sales thing. I say that with no small amount of trepidation because I consider being a "salesperson" tantamount to having every hair in my head plucked out while being forced to watch...

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No, you are not ‘running late’, you are rude and selfish

  • January 10, 2016
No, you are not ‘running late’, you are rude and selfish

Oh, my fur and whiskers! Inspired by reading this fine article whose title I stole by Greg Savage. As we said when I was in the USAF: if you're not 15 minutes early you are late. I live by that. I don't expect a full 15 minutes early from you but if it's 10:05 for a 10:00 meeting you can expect I will be texting or calling you asking whether there's been a problem—and we will not have gotten off to a good start. Leave earlier. Don't overbook your time. Tell your current meeting sorry but time's up, you have elsewhere to be, and you can talk later about a followup to finish things. You are "not...

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Spec Work? Just Say No!

  • January 8, 2016
Spec Work? Just Say No!

Wakely is not amused. I'm going to start setting up the grounds for this rant by sharing a little recent personal anecdote: For the first part of 2015 business at Spinland was more than slow: it was nonexistent. That situation was of my own making as I let myself become drawn into a lengthy on-spec project that consumed all my time (which also meant no time spent marketing). This project was potentially a Big Deal™ with promise of paying back the time investment handsomely. It actually fizzled when, after no few months of hard (and uncompensated) work on my part, circumstances forced...

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Another Happy Client Speaks Out

  • January 8, 2016

Tooting my own horn here, but that's sort of what "marketing your business" is, non? Just received this testimonial from one of my recent clients: We recently worked with Mark and Spinland Studios to develop a series of animated narratives that demonstrated our modular precast concrete roadway system and the construction techniques used in its installation. There was limited video footage of the product’s application to assist Mark with the animation’s development. Mark embraced the challenge of learning a new technology and the construction equipment/techniques used in the product's...

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Another “Welcome to my world” Musing

  • January 2, 2016

First things first: this is not a whine. Oh, no. I love what I do and when it gets challenging life just gets better (if a wee stressful at times). That disclaimer out of the way, some 3D geek musings on tweaking my Wakely model. First issue: I had already built the head and was playing around with the features and stuff when the client dropped the bombshell right before (as in, one day before) Xmas: they really wanted the first animated promo piece by the following Wednesday night to support a New Year's Eve party. The original plan was the first piece wouldn't be needed until Valentine's...

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