Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Sweet winter approaches...

Thanks Cartoon Brew for another nice plug. Much appreciated!

Here are some very graphic crows. Designed for a short film a group of us were working on. It's on hold right now. The visuals are there....but the story still needs work. The sleeping tree is also part of that story.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Allrighty..here are some thumbnails I did while planning out my scenes for Madagascar. They aren't very pretty...but the point isn't about prettiness...it's about ideas..which ideas work the best and are most entertaining? So you pick and choose and hope for the best. I wish there was more time to spend on thumbnailing but it doesn't seem like there is in the land of computer animation. You've always got that deadline hanging on your back and there's no time to dilly dally. It's rush rush rush...let's get this scene done! Huh? "Oh you're THINKING about your shot? Well that's fine, but we need to show the directors something by tomorrow....so just throw some blocking in." Wha? " You don't know who the character is ?" No. "There's no backstory about his life?" Nope. " Oh..hmmmm.....well.....you'll figure it out. That's why we pay you the big bucks." Um... But I need to meditate over my desk like Frank and Ollie...and I need to take walks in the park for 2 days and absorb this scene in my head. Oh really?....." Off With His Head!!!"

And here are some recent figure drawings from a class here at work.

Thank you kindly and have a pleasant day.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


Madagascar DVD came out on Tuesday!
Go check it out if you haven't seen it. I'll post all the shots I worked on soon so that you can watch them over and over and over and over again. Ok, once is enough...or you'll catch all my errors. I just have to fast forward through the movie and remember them. Just don't blink when you watch...some shots are very quick. I think I'll post some thumbnail drawings too so that you can really get inside my head and see how I think and plan out a shot.

This was my second feature I've worked on....my first was Shrek 2. I had such a great time animating these crazy cartoony characters that it really felt like 2d...you could push these characters so much and the character rigs rarely broke or got funky. This isn't a perfect film, nor is it a masterpiece....but hey...how many live action films are perfect and masterpieces? Sooner or later an animated gem will hit and kapowey! You'll be moved beyond words. But hey, I'm working on making a film like that one day so just be a little patient. OK? okee dokee.

Double D as I like to call him...or Donachada Daly as others call him....was my supervising animator on this film as well as Rex Grignon. Mr. James "Badass" Baxter was also my supervisor as well as a mentor. They all helped me out a great deal on my animation and timing and without their assistance I probably wouldn't be sitting here animating on Hedge. So thanks guys!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


These are some designs I did when I was planning my 2nd year film at cal arts. Exploring shapes, composition, and just having fun.

I had these in my portfolio back in the day. The blue woman was actually a sketch I started in the offices of Flinch studios , a Flash animation studio that, to the best of my knowledge, is no longer around. We made Tim Burton's Flash animated series Stainboy there. Boy was that fun. It was a small team and very chaotic...but fun to be a part of something that a lot of people were looking forward to.

Monday, November 14, 2005

I'm still Here...

I know I know...it's been awhile...I've been working on a tough shot lately that's driving me crazy.

12 characters...12.5 feet...that's about 8 seconds. And the worst part is that most of the characters are just watching a raccoon! That's the hardest thing to do in animation I think...trying to breathe life into characters that are just standing and looking around in awe. You start off thinking...oh this is easy enough....and you throw a few key frames here or there...make them breathe a little...(chest expansion) and wallah! All done! Right? DEAD WRONG! My stupid computer hates organic looking things...it wants to animate everything like robots and make every arm swing and head movement ugly! So you grit your teeth and get in there working out all the details till you have a nice piece of polished goodness. But boy oh boy is it a fight! I'm constantly thinking...oh I have to spend more time on the main character in this shot, where is the audience looking, what's the point of this shot, how do I stage everybody so they are all clear? I'm amazed my brain isn't like." Uh Jeremy, perhaps another career would be best for you. Because I'm about to explode. Perhaps milking cows would be more suitable for you, you'll work outdoors, have some fresh air, and eat healthy. But then Logic comes by and tells me ."Yo, Bernstein...that means you have to wake up at 4 a.m...."(because that's when farmer's wake up.) and then I say "Forget it!" and then Mr. Artistic responsibility, comes in and says "Yo J, use your skills to your fullest potential." and I say " Hmmmmm" and then Spiderman comes in and says, "With great power comes great responsibility." or did Uncle Ben say that first? Anyway, I say, "Yeah spidey...you da man!" and then we go sling some webs on some bad guys....but not before I finish my shot.

I tried posting some drawings up today but they failed to load...so instead I give you
some 2d animation goodness...well, kind of. There's this program called flip book and it uses flash to animate from the web...you've probably already heard of this site. Check out my Nostril squid and tell me if you want some more. click below puh-lease.


Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Dinner time

Chef Alfred had a peculiar way
Of delivering his meal to his guests each day.
I'm not at all suprised I suppose
For his last job he wore a big red nose.

Sorry no posts in awhile. My roomie and I (Sean Szeles) had a ginormous halloween party this weekend and had so much to do to prepare for it. We decked out the entire apartment with ghosts, pirates, skeletons, and more. Whew...what a task. Here's what we looked like.

Me as Ali G , Soyon An as a Kabuki Ballerina, Sean Szeles as an old timey robber, and Kellie Smith as a boy scout.

Man that was fun....now to clean up the place.