Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bye Bye by Mario Pochat

More of AM's shorts... I love this school!

Supermarket Fever by Hichem Arfaoui

World Record by Arne Kaupang

Daphne's New Broom by Ales Mav

Another great AM short!!

Daphne's New Broom from Super U on Vimeo.

Devils Angels and Dating looking for Animators

Director Michael Cawood (friend of a friend) is starting an animation over at and is looking for some strong animators to join the team and establish a high level of quality. Unfortunately I don't have enough time to try to join the team but the project sounds fun and I like the characters...

Visit his website for more information about the project and how to join the team:

Thanks Daniel Harfmann for sharing this info to help your friend!!

George Grows- haha nice idea!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Bobby Pontillas on Demo Reels

Demo Reel Reviews

When I was applying to the studios, I would always wonder what Demo Reel Reviews were like.

What do they talk about? How many people attend? Was someone taking notes? How many do they look at at one sitting? There are more than enough resources out there that address the golden demo reel do's and dont's ; Keep it short, best stuff up front, cut the so-so work. But even equipped with that knowledge, I know there's still a sense of vulnerability that comes with sending out your work.

I've been able to sit in on quite a few reviews since being here, so here are some things I've seen that I'd like to share to students wondering the same thing. It seems like after the holidays, a new wave of demos are being sent out, and hopefully this helps. I'm sure every studio is different, but here's how they go down at Blue Sky, and I'm betting there are lots of similarities.


-In an average week, there are maybe 2 reel reviews. The attendance varies , usually hovering around 8-12 animators, and one Animation PA loading about 6-10 reels per review. It's usually in this small theater room called the "Chop Shop". But your work will be projected on a pretty big screen.

-Any animator can come to these reviews, if the majority of the room likes it, it gets forwarded to the supervising animators. If the supervisors like it, they will contact the candidate.

Malcon Pierce on Demo Reels

An animators demo reel is a key player in getting into any animation studio. Putting together a solid demo reel that shows your strengths, and shows that you are unique can be priceless when it comes to finding a job. Alot of times reels are packed flashy menus and house music. This can really hurt your viewing time and could cost you the chance for a position.

Keep your demo reel simple. If you can set your DVD up so that it automatically plays when it is inserted into the dvd player, that’s better than a huge custom DVD menu that is hard to navigate through. If you do have a menu, make sure there is a big play button that is easy to read so that the employers view your reel can easily start your reel. Remember that studios get many demo reels and when viewing them, the last thing they want to do is have to figure out how to play the reel. If the reel is to complicated just to play, you run the risk of just getting skipped.

Also, be careful about putting in music in your reel. Remember that not everybody likes house music, or country! This can hurt your reel.. it is very detracting. Let the animation do the talking.

Don’t worry about textures and lighting etc in your reel. If your applying for an animation position, don’t get caught up in texturing and lighting your animation. Playblast can work just fine. If you have an animation that is loaded down with bad texturing and bad lighting, it can hurt the animation. So play it safe and just worry about the animation. The people looking at your reel can see right through all the fancy rendering. Spend your time on the animation, that is whats going to get you hired.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

World Builder by Bruce Branit

I was talking to a friend an in the middle of the conversation we started talking about this short which I had forgotten but it's really nice:

World.Builder from Kusanagi on Vimeo.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Blink in relation to cinema podcast

My friend Richard O'Meara gave me a link to an interesting podcast he listened about blinks. They also give some links to books (In the blink of an Eye) and an abstract from Tamami Nakano about this.

Here the links:
Blink in relation to cinema podcast
Tamami Nakano’s study

Carlos Baena on Feedback

On Feedback

Feedback is quite a delicate part of what we do. Sometimes animators take it well and other times not so well. Over the years, I've come to learn that without feedback, my shots or anything I do would look like complete crap. Getting some fresh eyes on what it is that we do, really helps, especially when you are staring at your same shot for days and/or weeks.

I noticed people give feedback in some ways. I'm not writting here about how to give feedback...but instead, some pointers that may make the process a little easier.

* First, does the animator want feedback? Are you confortable giving feedback to a person? If you are not, then don't. However, if the animator is open for suggestions, that's a great quality as it shows he or she wants to improve the shot.
* Also, the feedback should be honest. I always go to particular animators at work, that I know will be direct on their feedback, and will not pull any punches. If I want to improve as an animator, I need that.
* Not all feedback is about things to correct in the shot. Even if the shot needs a lot of work, it's nice when someone brings up something that is actually working.
* Make the feedback constructive. Doesn't help to hear "That looks wrong" or "That area seems off". Instead, find ways to let them know how to fix it. Maybe the up/down curve could be smoothed out...or hold that pose there a little longer so that we read it.
* What kind of feedback are you passing? Is it feedback that will improve the shot based on what the animator has in there already, or is it feedback that will make it different? Big differences.
* I think it's important to respect the animators idea/choices. I would not want to give a friend feedback that will completely change their acting choices, unless they ask for it. Also, it's important to remember that this is their shot. Not my shot. Helps to keep that in mind.

Despicable Me Trailer 3

Cool Style! La Queue de la Souris (A Mouse's Tale)

The Third & The Seventh by Alex Roman - just breathtaking

The Third & The Seventh from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

Made by just one guy, it's hard to believe that it's all CG.

A piece that tries to illustrate architecture art across a photographic point of view...what a great way to start blogging on 2010!

Here also some compositing breakdowns:

Compositing Breakdown (T&S) from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

Happy New Year!!