Saturday, 31 January 2009

Cintiqs and Sketchbook Pro

I was helping Fowksey with the setup of a Cintiq 21UX in his office yesterday. The Industrial Design program has a few and it is nice to see them in the hands of designers like this. He is a fan of Sketchbook Pro (now in the Autodesk stable) so we grabbed the trial and he quickly threw a few sketches down - awesome. I liked the reaction of other staff - this is something that will really take off for their program (I hope).

I will just check about the uni licensing for Sketchbook Pro, then dive in and give it a whirl as well.

Here are some images from Jeff Smith's Sketchbook Pro Gallery:

[Images from Jeff Smith's Sketchbook Pro gallery on the coroflot site]


There are of course some neato vids of talented folk doing great things with this combo of hardware and software. The video set by heroemission (Kylie Ranciman) on youtube has ones like these - which show both product and character style drawing.


Oh and the new youtube embed codes are cool as well. Look there's orange...

Logo Thinking

I had some fun doing a few logo sketch ideas for TouchStrategy (for a friend of a friend, Hi Julian and Andrew). The logo ideas have my cartoony kinda feel to them - at least they do when in this sketch form. I like the strategy iconography mixed with fingers and the idea could be 'rendered' out in a few different ways. The idea is relatively extensible as well - using them in various proportions and levels of detail etc.
Some of them are a bit complex for a logo and might need an iconified version as well...

Anyhow, lets see what they think:

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Cyber King and ABC iView

Yes, Dr Who is back for another Christmas special and we get some cybermen and a rather cool steampunk giant bot - "dreadnaught class" no less. There wasnt that much CG actually, just enough to give us a fun piece of giant robot fun slotted into a rather interesting tale. The story wasnt freaky, like some, but rather more intriguing and part of the larger continuum of Dr Who really. The tech on display in this episode was just gorgeous, a cool mixture of brass, rivets, coils and slightly more techie cyber-tech. This married very well with the old-tech-Doctor and our lovable regular-tech-doctor (hopefully that makes sense to those who have seen the episode).

Here is a piece of the concept art by Peter McKinstry via the BBC Dr Who site.

[Cyberking concept art image via the BBC site]

I failed to watch on Sunday, but that was an opportunity to try out the ABC iView service. This is quite a cool online video streaming system that allows us to pop back in time to see things we missed or that are on at times we cant watch. Plus it just looks cool - here a handful of screengrabs of the various screens on my way to watching this Dr Who episode. Starting from this nice graphical ABC site through the various iView screens - the stills dont do the dynamic elements justice - but they are fun to see anyhow.

[images of the ABC iView service step by step]

New Desk

Was struggling a little to get everything working on my little desk - so a trip to Freedom later and now I have space to burn and it looks swish as well. I now have some more room for external screens and the Wacom goodness. (I like the way my MBP matches actually :-)

Monday, 26 January 2009

Vue 7 comp

[Promo Vue 7 image from the website]

I have admired (window shopping style) E-on Software's awesome Vue software for some time now and I like how it regularly has people thinking the renders from it are real photos. Vue version 7 ramps things up again, I really have to find the time to play with this. The software is getting some pretty high profile clients as detailed on the showcase/spotlight page (like Indy IV and Pirates).

Anyhow, the reason I was looking at Vue again now, is because of the cool results of the Vue 3D environment Competition that finished up late in 2008. I like these because they arent professional projects - but they are still oozing class - more to aspire to...

[Images from the Vue 7 Competition via the website]

Maya Tutes & Serenity

Slow going - maybe only because I keep getting distracted - but the Autodesk Learning Maya book is proving fun. It certainly dives right in there with poly modelling of a character straight off the bat.

Plus watched the Serenity movie for the first time - chock full of CG and effects work which bring their sci-fi world to life. Very cool movie, reminded me alot of Babylon 5 actually, there is some real clever work under the covers of the plot and characters. Now I think about it, there is a fair amount of Blakes 7 in there as well, even Resident Evil for that matter...

[CG image from Serenity - actually this is from Firefly - via WIkipedia]