Saturday, 19 September 2009

iPhone 3D

I grabbed a few more iPhone apps to get a better feel for its 3D capability - good excuse anyhow.
I am really impressed with what this little machine can do - it really is so much more than a phone or music player. I am wondering if we will get things like sketchup viewers, or even sketchup for the iPhone itself one day. Its ability to be an Augmented Reality window is certainly there.

I have been having checking out:
Tiger Woods PGA Tour


Need For Speed Underground

Assassin's Creed

[pics all from the iTunes site]

Avril the Yawnosaur dives into Celtx

Following from class where we were introduced to all manner of script and character breakdown techniques. We were shown Celtx, a piece of open source software that can manage the scripting process. So I created a much more official looking script/screenplay for Avril the Yawnosaur. The software is designed so I could detail every aspect of the production and its elements, but I have done enough for us to work with so far.

Here is the script in all its new glory. It is 5.5 pages which is still a bit too long (we only have 5 mins max). The version below has already been edited down to 3 creatures, so it will be tougher now to find more to cut. (darn it, Blogger stripped out my formatting)

Avril the Yawnosaur


Graham Hannah
(With Kylie, Olivia and Ying)



DAD approaches door quietly - peers inside


(tired but happy)

Hi Little one, are you still awake

Dad moves to the bed

I couldnt sleep

Dad sits on the edge of the bed

Avril does a big yawn

awww that’s a big yawn, you look
pretty sleepy to me

Both smiling

Can you tell me a story

hmmm really, you cheeky little one


Ok then, if you lie down and rest

Alicia nestles down and Dad tells the story with facial
animation, actions and even sound effects.

This is a story from a long time
ago ... actually a very very long
time ago ... back in the mystical
times of dinocreatures, flying
lizards, ginormous insects and
birds with spiky teeth.


As the story is told, cartoon-like images of the creatures
appear and move about on the walls of the room - showing
Avril’s imagination playout out there.

This is the story of young Avril
the Yawnosaur, who was only little
and often had trouble getting to
sleep in the jungle.

The jungle where she was growing up
was filled with all manner of
strange creatures that made an
equally amazing range of sounds and
noises. The various residents moved
around on the forest floor, climbed
slowly up the giant trees, swung
madly through the branches and even
soared above the treetops.

Though Avril believed she would one
day be something special, she hadnt
managed to master any of her

On this very night, little Avril
just couldnt get to sleep. All the
other Yawnosaurs in her tribe were
already snoozing, they all lay
quietly, oblivious to all the
jungle sounds that kept Avril

First there was the Stompadon, he
was the biggest and hairiest of all
the creatures in the jungle and
tonight he was obviously out
looking for his comb. Finding even
his huge comb at night wasnt easy
and his thunderous feet were
stomping and stomping and stomping.
stomp stomp stomp.

High in the trees a pair of
Poposaurususes were doing their
version of song, which included the
occasional POP so loud that a new
set of leaves would be blasted from
the trees and slowly waft their way
slowly all the way down to the
forest floor ... POP

Then there was a lone
pteranoscreech swooping and


squeeling high above the dense
canopy of trees, but the sound
still managed to make its way all
the way down to little Avril’s
ears. Pteranoscreeches learn to
talk by scraping their long claws
on blackrocks high in the
mountains. By the sound of things,
this one must have done lots of
practice. Screeeech Screeech

Little Avril was still small for a
Yawnosaur, but she did a nice big


Nothing seemed to change, she
looked around her sleeping family,
hoping that one would wake up to
help her. They all slept quietly
though, despite the stomps, pops
and screeches echoing through the
green jungle.

Composing herself, she did another
yawn ...


Maybe they were right, the sounds
almost seemed louder than ever.

Avril the little Yawnosaur then
took a deep breath, composed
herself and did her biggest yawn


Can you yawn like little Avril?

Avril does a big yawn as well (she now yawns along with Dad)

At first the jungle seems just as
noisy, but then Avril hears the
sound of something very large
nestling down to sleep, soon
followed by some very hairy
snoring. It must have worked, the
Stompadon was no longer stomping.


Listening, Avril could still hear
the occasional POP from the
Poposaurususes and the distant but
piercing cry of the Pteranoscreech.

Avril smiled, proud of her first
success, but then the loud POP from
high in the trees and that ear
splitting screech reminded her of
how hard that was already. She was
amazed all the other creatures
could sleep with the POPs and
Screeches still going.

OK, she composed herself and let
out her biggest yawn yet.


Avril and Dad both smile after yawning.

Avril hears a peculiar sound then,
a rather strange long pooooop
sound. after that no more leaves
are seen falling from high up in
the trees. The Poposaurususes must
be sleeping now as well.

Avril hoped that this last yawn had
done the trick, what could resist
that yawn after all. But it wasnt
long before she heard that chilling
squeal again. Was there anything
she could do about the
Pteranoscreech soaring so high
above the jungle where she was
trying to get to sleep.

Avril wriggled her shoulders,
getting ready, looked around at her
sleeping family one more time
before letting out the biggest yawn
the jungle would ever see.


Avril and Dad do huge yawns. Alicia blinks a little
afterwards - looking extra sleepy.

That last yawn took alot out of
little Avril and she found her head


DAD (cont’d)
resting gently against her mossy
pillow. The jungle was quiet now,
she wondered if the screeches would
continue. She listened hard for the
sound of the pteranoscreech,
wanting to be sure - but she found
it hard to concentrate, feeling
sleepier and sleepier and sleepier.

Avril falling asleep, Dad talking more quietly now.

The jungle was now quiet, only the
soft sounds of sleep weaving around
the tall trees. The Stompadon’s
enormous hairy chest rising and
falling with each slow breath. The
sound of his soothing snores
wafting up to where the pair of
Poposaurususes slept peacefully.
Lastly no more screeching could be
heard and all the Yawnosaurs
dreamed the most beautiful dreams.
The best dream of all was saved for
little Avril, who dreamed of
sleeping, sleeping and more

Dad slides a loose hair across Avril’s forehead

sweet dreams my little creature.



The Pteranoscreech plummets to the ground with a thud
sleeping soundly :-)

Thursday, 17 September 2009

WOW Trees

Wandering around in SL there are always new and interesting things to see. This shot is from the WOW Fashion Mall and is interesting particularly because of the trees. The fountain does add some life, but the fun dr-Seuss-like trees (both green and pink) are what make it memorable for me. This is another good example of building a place which isnt bound by reality too much.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Unis in SL

There are lots of universities and educational bodies with Second Life presences of various types and to varying degrees. With us using the UNSW Atoll for Computation Studio, it is fun to join in, even if it is in a different way. Many of the uni campuses in SL look very ordinary actually, with large stone buildings and formal grounds, not really exploring the 'virtual' very much. Here are a few shots of a little tour around some of them:

Pity they are all so empty...

Yawnosaur - colour bedroom concept

Here is another very quick mock-up of how colour might work in terms of the sketches coming alive on the walls for the Yawnosaur short film.

The Girl Wearing Glasses

[The Girl Wearing Glasses, image from Henohwa Choe's website]

This is a fascinating image I came across in my latest copy of 3DWorld (121). The Girl Wearing Glasses by Henohwa Choe, may not have been created for us to discuss what 'makes an image look real or cg' - but that is the conversation that sparked up several times. If I get really picky, then there are little things that I might argue would give away that this is CG, but when we look at photos with blank backgrounds of real people, some of them look pretty CG-like as well - scary as that sounds. Even so, several people were convinced that there was just something just not quite right.

Full credit to Henohwa, it is a beautiful image with detail in every element. He used Maya, Mental Ray and Photoshop.


I will have to assemble some people images, both CG and real and get people to pick which are which...

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Back into Second Life

I am back into SL again as part of Digital Computation Studio, our first task is to populate the UNSW Atoll with something reminiscent of a cityscape for the class to create their 'places' within. Armed with the 'paper' metaphor it should have a certain elegance (at least that is the plan).

I am just upgrading to a premium account so I can play with some of the more entertaining import tools etc etc. Here is the current Oinkfrog Tharnaby at the currently empty island:

(hmm maybe I should make my beanie glow more...)

Monday, 14 September 2009

Yawnosaur two wall mockup

Same idea but with 2 walls going...

Yawnosaur bedroom wall concept

Here is a quick mock up of one way to integrate the sketches or other imagination visuals into the bedroom. Basically bringing the walls alive with the tale.

The colour treatment will need to be different and I think using both walls could work even better, perhaps even utilising the ceiling and floor in various shots can work as well.
These cartoon images will need to be animated to some degree, whether they just moce in FinalCutPro or AfterEffects, or whether some animation of them is generated first in Flash or Animation Studio etc - still to be deturmined.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Yawnosaur character sketches

The Yawnosaur tale introduces not only the Yawnosaur herself, but a few other odd creatures from the ancient jungle. Here are some of the development sketches of possible looks for them, here you will find ideas for the Yawnosaur, Stompadon, Hornitoadzzz, Poposaurususes and the Pteranoscreech: