Friday, November 30, 2007

Portland Studios

Today, we visited Portland Studios, an Illustration, Animation, and Design studio based in Greenville, SC. We got a tour of their very large and amazing studio, and also got a small peek into their process work (which absolutely made my day!) We learned about what kinds of things they can make for their clients- really cool cd cases, painstaking but overall very satisfying animations, amazing book illustrations... it all blew my mind. I wanted to cry.

I think I was at a point where I very much needed to see that... I've been having an incredibly hard keeping myself motivated lately, and right before finals, that's a very dangerous place to be. Just seeing their work makes me want to keep moving.....

We got to meet Cory Godbey and learn about his animation process.
OH MY GOODNESS. That Cory is very patient. He and Chris Koelle storyboarded and created an animation to a song by Stephen Delopoulous called The Run of the Beast.

I have nothing to say about this wonderful amazing super awesome animation except WOW. and that the Society of Illustrators seems to think so too, because it got accepted into the 50th edition of The Society of Illustrators Annual.

He's currently in the process of making an animation for Microsoft (I think?) --- which I can't seem to find the name for or the page with quick sneak peek animations of the characters.... Anyways, there's an awesome storyline about a man who gets a potion that makes him younger and the consequences that become of him (or don't) when he doesn't share it with his friends. I'm eagerly anticipating news that it's either being used on their website or at least that it's finished. Guys.. someone out there.. I'm not kidding. Tell me AS SOON as it's done!!!

Next, we met Justin Gerard. He just got done illustrating Beowulf (book one) and you can buy that here.

Again. I wanted to cry just looking at the books. He showed us some process-y (and secret!!) things about the image of the boat and vikings. I absolutely can't wait until I learn how to do stuff like that. I want to start right now. RIGHT NOW. Justin - you are number one awesome in my book right now. Also in your Beowulf book too.. since we're speaking of books, of course. but pretty much- i want to be like you.

I really enjoyed visiting Portland. I don't think it was a coincidence that we visited right before finals week when everything was due. I've been feeling pretty sucky lately... about my work and about a whole bunch of other things, but this was so encouraging... I feel like there's hope .. somehow that I'll be out there making art for a living with a bunch of really cool people who love Jesus...

dang that would be awesome.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Do not fail, as you go on, to draw something every day, for no matter how little it is it will be well worthwhile, and it will do you a world of good."

Cennini, 1370 – 1440

Thursday, November 22, 2007

my grandparents cook WAY better than yours

satisfied tummies make for great stories and awesome sketches

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Home for Thanksgiving

Residence Halls closed this morning at 9:00AM, so I had everything packed up (for the most part yesterday) and sat the desk from 7:30-8:30 and then I was off. Have I ever told you how much I dislike driving (especially on highways)? A little bit here and there is fine, I like driving through places that have slower speed limits and more things to look at, but 2 and 1/2 hours from Rock Hill to North Augusta is just aggravating! It is good thinking time, I guess.

I got back home around lunchtime.. I was glad to see my mom and dad and brother again. I think the last time I had seen them was during Fall Break. (which now that I think of it, wasn't that long ago)

My brother plays the baritone now. He couldn't wait to play Jingle Bells for me. He's freaking awesome at it. I doodled him.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Pixar Short Film Collection

November 6, 2007: The Pixar Short Film Collection and Ratatouille DVDs are IN STORES..
Yes. Grace and I were there that afternoon ... talk about exciting! I had seen Ratatouille twice already- the first time was June 29 in New York City (the day it came out!), and the second was on a date with my bro and mom and dad back home. I think I will probably watch it a gazillion more times- the rendering is absolutely gorgeous (and the story's great too)!

Last night, Winthrop's Society of Illustrators showed the Short Films Collection DVD from start to finish. Mike Sudduth, our So Ill Pres, let me make the flyers for the event- We usually have film night on Wednesdays, but because of Thanksgiving coming up, we thought that Monday would be good.

Twenty-five people came to see the Short Films- which was surprising because of the irregularity of the time. I feel like the So Ill kids are getting closer and are forming a tight community. We sit in the auditorium in more of one huge clump rather than last year, when we were all spread out with our own friends. We even had new people come last night who had never even been to So Ill before and we got to meet them and start friendships.

It was super exciting. We started the DVD atom the very first short film Pixar made (The Adventures of Andre and Wally B) and continued all the way through Lifted (Which came out with Rat.) There were parts in the Pixar collection where you could hear us all gasp in horror- Pixar's very first (and very brave) attempt at a human figure- wow- they've definitely come a long way since then.

You can see in the bottom two images- the communication of "a baby" was successful, but obviously they were in the beginning stages of their new technology. Does the toy look familiar? Pixar was foreshadowing (or inspiring!) both Toy Story and One Man Band with this short film.

There's something about Pixar's stories that make them so incredibly witty. I couldn't even count the times that we laughed so hard that we couldn't hear the audio of the movie at all. It was alright though, I really enjoyed spending time with everyone and getting to watch a movie together. I miss that.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Soularium Image Surveys this Thursday!!

This is the flier [c/o Chris Fox and Kinko's] advertising next Thursday's Campus Crusade for Christ meeting. We're going to go through the photographs as groups and discuss why each image that we've picked answers each of the five questions:

1. Which 3 images describe where your life is right now?
2. Which 3 images describe where you wish your life was?
3. Which image describes God to you?
4. Which image describes what you've experienced spiritually so far?
5. Which image describes where you wish you were in your spiritual journey right now?

Ansley, Stephen, and I (and some other Friday Arts Project/Campus Crusaders) have used this survey before on Summer Projects and Winthrop's campus, and every survey that is done is anonymously posted to My has example photographs from the set and the top 5 image-answers for each of the 5 questions.

Soularium is a great conversation tool because I think it's interesting to get to know someone on a deeper level, you know? I mean, you can know someone for years without even knowing them... knowing where they stand on the important stuff, and what's really important to them. I think that when you're able to answer tough questions - the ones that don't have simple easy one word answers- with photographs, it's like you're opening an entirely different door to their heart..

The soul never thinks without a mental picture. -- Aristotle

Monday, November 5, 2007

Dia De Los Muertos

Every fall, Winthrop has a CVPA (College of Visual and Performing Arts) Sponsored Arts Ball. The themes are really great each year. In the past they've been 'surrealism', 'superheros vs. villians', and last year was 'film noire'. This October, the theme was "Dia De Los Muertos"- or Day of the Dead. Day of the Dead is a traditionally Mexican celebration that honors the life of relatives and friends past. If we were going to be accurate about that aspect of history, the Dia De Los Muertos Arts ball this year would have probably been extremely different, but it was fun seeing a lot of college students dressed up as dead guys and skeletons. We probably played up the creepy part a bit much.

The freshmen art majors were responsible for decorating and providing snacks related to the theme. Let's just say that it was a bit weird to be walking around in McBryde with tombstones and eating bone shaped cookies and skeleton cakes.

This is right before we were going to walk across campus. That's me and Angel on the left. Jenny and Will were brave enough to use facepaint.

On the way, we stopped under a lamp post to take a picture of Jenny, Angel, and her Oreo graveyard cake!

There were photo stations set up for anyone who wanted pictures to remember the night.

It was so awesome to see Dr. Dufresne, my Art History Prof from freshman year dressed up for the Ball! Here she is at the sign in table at the entrance of McBryde.

Liiiiiiiiiiiiila Shull!!! We grew up in North Augusta together. I remember in high school seeing her art displayed in the halls and hearing Mrs. Stalk-Vargo brag about how talented Lila was. I think she was born with talent.

Winthrop's music students

Theater majors chatting before a performance

Oh my gosh. Becky!

New friends Julie and Jeannie

This guy made my night! I was talking to Dave and Sally Brown about how cool everything had turned out and I had just gotten used to the skeletons and the rest of the overwhelmingly bright Mexican clothes... I turned around to see this guy- Dead (in a really gross way), and unable to get the salsa off of his spoon!!! He stood there for almost 20 seconds forcefully shaking the spoon up and down, but that salsa wasn't going anywhere. It was hilarious! Dead, frustrated guys are funny.