Thursday, 28 August 2008

Chain Lace Fence

Found this great idea for a chain link fence on the Lost at E Minor blog (via my concept art course). This is a great idea to bring some thought, design and even artistry to a utility product that impacts our environment for us all. There is a little more info on the Demakersvan site for us.


[Lace Fence design, image from the Demakersvan site]

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Vexille

This Japanese animated film is a glorious blend of the the anime look and styling with the wonders of 3D CG. I really like this approach, it is like a 3D comic and seeing the character of illustration coming through in a fully animated film looks stunning. The funmation Vexille site has plenty of video clips to truly inspire, and here is the UK Trailer on youtube:



I have to get this :-) [According to JB Hi-Fi it will be here October 8th]

Unity Engine

I was reading a little about the Unity Engine which allows for some very nice real-time 3D across any platform really. This means that from PCs to consoles to browsers to iPhones, the engine helps you get there. At least that is the idea and after only a quick look there are some impressive things to behold.

I will take a closer look at this over the next few days - to get the drool started, lets just check out youtube vids :-)



Image Metrics new vid from SIGGRAPH 2008

Those guys at Image Metrics have a new video, more of a blend of animation, rotoscoping and performance capture I guess. There is a good article by Jonathan Richards for Times Online which has the cool details for us. Here is the vid - just to inspire:



pretty awesome huh !!

Spykee Meccano Bots

Another little robot that would be great fun to have a play with is the Erector Spykee. For a little toy to come with so many features is great, if it were autonomous then it would be astounding :-) If it is Meccano related then I would hope we could add, remove, modify and expand the design as well. Also check out Spykee.org.


[Images of 3 of the newer Spykees from the Spykee.org site]


Here is the (rather daggy) promo vid:

Monday, 25 August 2008

THE DARK KNIGHT

Circumstances had conspired to prevent me from getting to a big screen to see the masterpiece that is THE DARK KNIGHT. Given that, I headed into IMAX, if I was going to see the latest Batman experience, why not big and loud.



The film was simply stunning, every aspect of the formula coming together in a symphony of emotion, power, morals, danger, style and punch. The oppression of the giant screen and the penetrating audio of the IMAX experience was actually a little overwhelming in places. Christopher Nolan pulled all the pieces together to make an unforgettable piece of cinema.



I dont want to just applaud the work, but it was so powerful that I didnt get the chance to think about the special effects work. There was alot of effects work for sure, so much of the film just couldnt have taken place for real, but it is so well done that we just accept all the events and are drawn in ever more. This is a movie experience that delivers against so many vectors, a day later I still feel the
presence of the film, I just grabbed the soundtrack by Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard to keep the effect going a little longer. Actually some of their work resonates with what we have been exploring in my COFA course on Sound Construction and the concept artwork for the film - esp the joker has already come up in my other COFA course.



There are zillions of reviews out there on the net on sites like IMDB and RottonTomatoes - where the score is sitting on 94%. The Wikipedia entry has a less passionate set of info and data for us as well.

Here are some of the poster images:




Final word - REMARKABLE

---

The most notable trailer at the screening was for the Watchmen - now that is going to be incredible as well - more on that later.

The Murder of Crows

I heard about the sound installation by Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller via my Sound Construction course. Forming part of the Sydney 2008 Biennale this work was something new to me : The Murder of Crows - A Sound Installation.

I had a nice sense of anticipation as I headed for the old Pier 2/3, past our famous Opera House and beneath our iconic bridge, with the Science Show podcast in my ears, merging with the sounds of Sydney. Inside the rustic space, we see a series of old wooden chairs arranged in a rough circle in the gloom about an equally gruff fold-up table. Many of the chairs are occupied by speaker boxes, while others stand around as if watching from the back, some 100 speakers in all.
I took a seat near the centre, others would come and go throughout the 30 minutes of sound, music and voice sliding around us.
The auditory immersion was great, like being 'in' sound. Many times it was very hard to tell if sounds were part of the piece, made by other visitors or if a piece of Sydney's volume was intruding. With your eyes closed you could follow footsteps around the space and the virtual voice comng from where they stop. It was really hard not to look around when a singing voice would come from behind you.

Check the information on the piece on the Biennale2008 site, including an image of the space.

loved it!

Sunday, 24 August 2008

G Engine 5

For our first submission in Sound Construction 1 we have to create a short piece using a set of sound bites in ProTools. I created an audio piece that builds engine-like to a crescendo and warp-like conclusion. I actually had quite a bit of fun manipulating the sounds to build a sound piece - all new to me.

I threw the piece into iMovie along with some images from a recent visit to the Sydney Aquarium and their starfish touch-pool.