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Member Since 19 Feb 2011
Offline Last Active Mar 31 2020 01:29 PM

#489146 moving Wicktures that you are watching: John Wick 3 Edition

Posted by Florent on 29 November 2019 - 09:16 AM

Anybobby watching the new Watchmen series? I'm all caught up now and just.. whoa.


I'm a purist in that I like Alan Moore's writing a lot and respect that they are complete works. If there were more story to tell in Watchmen, it would have been longer. Writing lengthy sequel and prequel stories ad infinitum for money is like, the opposite of what we should take away from reading Alan Moore. He's stuffy (to put it mildly) about people adapting his comic books, because he wrote comic books! He didn't write a movie script or a TV show, Alan Moore wrote Watchmen because he had something to say, and he knew that the best way to say it was via comic book. The original Watchmen is a brutal story dealing with truly adult themes, beyond typical graphic sex and violence. The original series is Alan Moore's response to the Cold War paranoia of his time, and should be respected as its own work of art.


But then they gave the movie to Zack Snyder, who did his best, and now all bets are off. We're a cinematic universe now, baby. There's a canon, a timeline, an official wiki. We've exited Fine-Art--And-Literature 500 and entered Modern-Pop-Series 105. Let's dive into the accumulated filth that's foaming up about our waists, shall we?




HBO gave Watchmen to David Lindelof. Yeah.


But it's actually good. What? Yeah, it's actually good. Actually good. As in, this is Watchmen. This isn't Watchmen with Nite Owl II, Silk Spectre, and Dr. Manhattan though, oh no. That was 1985. This is 2019 and nobody gives a crap about the Russians, or Rorschach any more. Watchmen isn't about the Cold War. Watchmen is about 



The characters in this show are just as broken, hurt, traumatized, and scary as their counterparts in the original Watchmen comic. There's really no one to fully root-for, as everyone seems like they're unstable and unwell. If I had to sum up Watchmen in one word, it would be trauma. It's not a fun show, it's a heart-jerker and suspense thriller. There are action scenes where people beat each other to death with their bare hands (you know, superhero stuff) but it's certainly more of a detective show than Zack Snyder's action movie. I would compare the first 6 episodes of Watchmen to the first season of True Detective, which is very high praise. Highly recommend the show, even to purists. 


Looking Glass, the character pictured above, is one of my favorite characters in all of television right now. This show really just throws you around in his story for a while and by the time you leave, you see things from his point of view and everything is different. His origin was the best episode of any series I've seen in a long time.

#488568 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Florent on 20 May 2019 - 07:15 AM

Hey remember when they set up all this mysterious magic? A fully undeniably powerful fire god? Unstable decade long seasons? A full neural network of trees (or something)?, an ice kingdom for White Walkers north of the wall? The show doesn't remember. The North doesn't remember.


The more I think about the show, the more I feel like it was a ponzi scheme this whole time. 


Noun: Ponzi scheme;
A form of fraud in which belief in the success of a nonexistent enterprise is fostered by the payment of quick returns to the first investors from money invested by later investors.
"a classic Ponzi scheme built on treachery and lies"
They lure us in with the promise of intricacy and depth, then slowly dissolve every plot thread until there is no possible dramatic conclusion to any of the characters' storylines. This episode felt more like an epilogue to a long running show, but we never really got an ending. The Song of Ice and Fire (shamelessly shoved in at the last minute for no reason) wasn't finished. It doesn't even feel like there has been a story in the past few seasons. What was this about? What was the theme? What were they even trying to say? It felt like they shot a bunch of scenes with characters unrelated to each other and only ever loosely connected and just sort of stitched them together.
The thing is too, if this season was a standalone HBO miniseries it would be pretty good. If you ignore the decade of groundwork laid down by previous seasons and books, this season was probably pretty watchable. The problem is that it doesn't exist in a vacuum. This isn't a standalone miniseries, it's a grand finale. A big, dumb, ending where nothing makes sense and everything is disappointing. Was it bittersweet? Was it happy? Sad? Bad? Anything? But yeah, King Bran the literal "that guy" tier dude whose personality, character, and relevance was stripped away off screen three seasons ago, yeah, he's in charge now. Okay? How is that supposed to make me feel? Is he wise? Does he know a lot? What's his tax policy? He keeps telling us he can see everything and knows everything, but he never used his knowledge for any discernible cause, except maybe to seize power. Remember, he agreed to come to King's Landing (off screen) because he knew he would be elected leader (allegedly). Bran is just as self-centered and blasé as anyone else, and doesn't deserve anything. He did nothing. Literally has had no connection to the rest of the plot until the very last second where he claims it was all part of a plan (or something?) for him to become king. I don't understand. Maybe it's cause I'm not an enlightened wise old sage like Dave Benioff orDan Weiss, who are much smarter than me and wrote a story far too complex for our simple minds to comprehend. 
Man, I thought I was over it. Really, I did. Going in there was no malice, hatred, etc. Just disappointment and a little sadness over how much I used to care about these characters. Once I saw Arya walking around WITHOUT THAT HORSE WE SPENT LIKE 25 MINUTES WITH last episode, I lost it. I got actually angry. When I realized I put more time and effort into caring about this story than the showrunners, I felt a little betrayed. By myself surely, because they got me. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, you can't fool me again. It's funny. We all thought they cut the fools out from the story, but in the end we were the fools. For even paying attention. 
Check please.

#488566 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Florent on 19 May 2019 - 08:55 PM

My one regret is that I wasted so many hours of my life thinking about this garbage.



#488543 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Florent on 13 May 2019 - 10:11 AM

A lot of the Targaryen stuff just solidified and I liked it.



#488528 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Florent on 06 May 2019 - 11:31 AM

So it's bad. It's been bad for longer than it was ever good. But now it's like, really bad?


I can't anymore. I can't. If there's any silver lining, it's that even the normies are starting to notice. Water-cooler conversation surrounding this show is ragging on it, and I'm loving how much we're all hating it together.


#488502 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Florent on 22 April 2019 - 08:19 PM

I liked this past episode. What a world we live in. The "knighting" scene had me misty eyed, everything with Jaime, Theon, even Arya. I liked Arya's scenes for the first time in what, four years? Five? It was nice.


Man, I miss this place. What happened to us? 


#487601 D3 2018: The DMC5 Display Demonstration

Posted by Florent on 12 June 2018 - 06:13 AM

Here we go! Death Stranding got me legitimately hyped. Suuuper curious and intrigued by this game. Wanna wander around that desolate waste real dang bad. A wandering survival game that isn't just status bar management? I'm in. Also I love her her umbrella. We'll see what Kojima cooks up plot-wise, I'm sure it'll be zany and fun. Love the tone they're setting though, very tense but somehow peaceful. Getting really good vibes. Not sure how Kojima will factor in Nuclear disarmament tho lol



Assassins Greek looks like the regularly scheduled AssCree silliness. Might be into skippering a trireme around but IDK, it's still an asscree. We all know what it'll be like. That Samurai Dark Souls looked pretty cool too. Still though, gonna wait and see if they develop a good game around their (promising) gameplay systems. The soundscape was super dope in that demo, I might be in just for that tbh.




MAN tho that Spiderman game. Never before have I felt so much like I skipped out on drinking some koolaid somewhere. I'm pretty sure you couldn't pay me to play through another mookfight -> cutscene -> boss. The Batman Arkham games (which they are just ripping off for Spider-Man?) put me into a boring coma that lasted years. Which part of it looks good? What is there to be excited about? I feel like I've already played this game.




#487424 D3 2018: The DMC5 Display Demonstration

Posted by Florent on 09 June 2018 - 12:12 PM

I would LOVE to have been a fly on the wall when the dude pitched his "We'll read twitter questions on stage" idea


EDIT: Did she say phallic?


EDIT 2: No srs did she say this person's name is Phallic????

#486947 Dalton's Wish Fullfiller 5000 (What do you think Dalton should draw next?)

Posted by Florent on 01 April 2018 - 12:21 PM

the animals and bird thing is an interesting idea I hadn't thought of. I'll look into how I would do it! I will definitely be doing more perspective shots too though. I still haven't decided on an actual concrete size for the giant though.. If I could request a concept art piece though I'd love to see your take! We all have different ideas of how it'll look, I'd like to see yours before I post mine!

#486927 Dalton's Wish Fullfiller 5000 (What do you think Dalton should draw next?)

Posted by Florent on 30 March 2018 - 10:48 AM

We're rezzing this? Ok I'm down


got any ideas for scenes for my animation? Any visuals you could come up with... might just make it in ;)

#486858 COLOSSUS (Formerly The Mystery Project) : Part 6 [UPDATED 3/21]

Posted by Florent on 22 March 2018 - 08:03 AM


I only just noticed the familiar Daishi 'mech. Awesome. :D

Impressive animation! I'm still trying to figure out the mystery of the mystery project. Is this a Dark Souls thing? I know Dark Souls has campfires, lol.


Ha! Glad you noticed. That MOC was wayyy inspired by your version from back in the day. 


But no, not Dark Souls. I'm glad you picked up on the vibe though! Dark Souls is my #2 inspiration for this project. I may even make a similar project for DS1 after this is done... but that's spoilers for real life.

Since you got so close I'll reward you with another thing I used for concept art/inspiration:




I don't really like this album all that much but I saw the cover one day and fell in love. I love this aesthetic of an Arthurian looking knight looking over dreary and misty mountains, possibly on the hunt for some great beast. Well, that's almost exactly the plot of the PS2 game I'm basing this off of.


(No, it's not Monster Hunter.)

#486852 COLOSSUS (Formerly The Mystery Project) : Part 6 [UPDATED 3/21]

Posted by Florent on 21 March 2018 - 08:43 AM

HEY GUYS! You know what time it is. This is a REAL UPDATE this month. Wooooo


Although it's gonna look small for you, be assured that this is hours and hours of working, trying to figure out different softwares and like, actual the actual physical quirks of lighting rigs and stuff. Not very flashy or interesting stuff, just hours spent looking at OBS studio wondering how I can make it work. I think I got there in the end, though. What do you guys think? Yes, we are now at the point where I'm going to be posting youtube videos of GIFs rather than stills.



Hoo boy. Getting to this point has been a lot of work over the past 6 months or so, but I honestly get a lot out of this so it's worth. I have some footage representative of how I'd like the whole project to look. Finally tho I mean jeez. Notice how you can see the wooded area with the stone golem figure on the hill at the right of the frame. Also, I'm aware of the weird drifting that the foreground is doing. I can't figure out how to fix that, but this is why I call it WIP test footage. Just one more problem to solve.


I did as much as I could to the raw footage (stills taken in my living room) to try and stabilize each frame, because my camera doesn't have one of those remote buttons to release the shutter and take the photo without touching. I have to actually press the button on the camera each frame, which means every time I want to take a new photo it will be SLIGHTLY misaligned with the previous, even if just by one pixel. I don't think there's a workaround here, because it's a physical issue with the hardware. Might have to look into getting a different camera :\


That said, here's the raw footage from my entire test shoot. I only greenscreen'd that first bit to test the chrome key (official name for green screen) functionality of the software I'm using. 



Pretty good, huh? I'm actually quite proud of it. Adam Savage (the red haired Mythbusters guy if, you know, you're a pleb and don't know who he is) retweeted a test gif a while back, so I've been riding that wave for my inspiration. https://twitter.com/...523972479094785


Here are some raw stills so that you can see what it looks like when I take the photos.






As you might be able to see there's still some light being reflected off the green screen, which makes doing the actual effect much more difficult. Still learning how to light these things. 

I've also got this scene which I cut, even from the raw footage, because it didn't come out right. The figure moves kinda awkwardly (I was trying to animate from a new angle) and jumps around the set a couple times from when it fell over and I lost the exact placement. Whoops. Oh well, it's still fun. Here's what it looks like when not done well. 




That's all for this month, folks! I think next month will probably have a completed version of this scene, either re-shot or fixed up in editing. Maybe even set it to music? I'm planning on making this about 1 minute long.. four seconds down I guess, right?

#486729 COLOSSUS (Formerly The Mystery Project) : Part 6 [UPDATED 3/21]

Posted by Florent on 01 March 2018 - 06:51 PM

Well hello again everyone! Another month of slow progress unfortunately. I've been really busy with work, and I need to be able to work on this at night, but when I have to go to bed early that just doesn't happen. So this month I decided to do a little 'behind the scenes' episode of this behind the scenes series. Very meta. 


Here we go!




Larger photos this time because I got a camera upgrade! Not that I actually went out and bought one, but I was able to borrow it from my sister. Hooray for generous siblings! I thought I'd take a little virtual tour of my work room. I've spent about five years just filling this room with stuff that I love.




Here's the current status for my painting bench. I'm not currently painting anything so it's kinda barren right now. I like how it looks like a Jackson Pollock type painting.



This is where I keep all my miscellaneous supplies as well as jacket. I've got warhammer stuff, flocking material, the sets I'm working on, spare parts and sprues, and just kinda odds and ends that I find and pick up. There's also clay and various aerosol paints and coatings as well. The fan is for air flow when working with liquid latex and other smelly chemicals. I like to think it helps.




Just a closer look at the supplies. You can see the paint set I use, sandpaper, and even a backup flight stick for flight sims. There's a resin casting kit and some model kits I bought for parts in the corner there too.




Here's the front of the completed mountain cliff face. I've knocked that tree down and had to glue it back so many times. You have no idea.




Now moving along the side of the room you can see my Lego shelf, mostly populated with modified sets and a couple MOCs. I ran out of room and had to start putting newer ships on the floor, as you can see. 




Didn't realize how blurry this one is, sorry.  Just a full shot of the shelves. Each level has a theme except the bottom. Try and guess what's each?




Here across on the other side are a few model kits that I've actually finished. The Red Baron's triplane and the Santa Maria. Both really fun builds using similar techniques to what I'm doing for this very project. I briefly toyed with the idea of incorporating the ship into this film, and still leave the possibility open, but it would be realllllly complicated and would only be a background element. Probably won't do anything with it, but it's a fun thought.




Up on this shelf I've got a couple perler bead creations from when I was younger, butterfly knife trainers from when I was into TF2, and some custom lightsaber hilts made from plumbing pipes. Really happy with those tbh.




Continuing on (we're moving clockwise) I've got my computer desk and some more model kits. Those are those cool as heck Gundam snap-fit kits. They're insanely detailed and articulate, ingeniously designed works of art. I don't like how they look per se (never been a fan of anime mechas) but I appreciate the build quality so much that I keep them together. Plus I keep the boxes cause it feels right.




Closer look at the models. Honestly pictures don't compare to actually holding and posing these guys, seeing their armor plates separate and their joints slide into place. These guys make the most complex Bionicle look like a single DUPLO brick.




Plus I got this thingy, which some of you nerds may recognize :P




Onto the next room (yes there are two)! This is where I sleep and just kinda store stuff. Things in here are mostly B-tier lego creations that I don't have the heart to salvage pieces from. 




You can play "spot the pop culture reference" from my early-2010's Lego builds.




This is what's really exciting me these days though. I bought a greenscreen and tripods! This way I can edit out backgrounds real easy. Just have to iron it out first.




I also got these funny looking things. They're basically just light bulbs on poles with an on-off switch and an umbrella arratched to one side. This way you can reflect bright light into something with softer conditions. Point a couple of these guys at something and it'll look like it's in a movie. I've been reading up on cinematic lighting. Really cool stuff. This is why I need darkness to work now though, because everything else is done except the animation itself. 




I tried using natural lighting in some test footage, but this is what it looks like. Because of the nature of stop-motion there could be minutes between frames, where a cloud could go in front of the sun or a car could drive by and the lighting is all super flashy and inconsistent. Plus it looks like I shot it in my living room near the window, which I did. This was also a test of using a bedsheet as makeshift greenscreen for the background. It kinda worked but I decided to get a real one to make it easier to set up. Also, a quirk of this camera is that it doesn't have any option for a remote shutter like my phone. This means that I'll have to put a 2-3 second delay on actually taking the photos, because even the little nudge from me pressing the shutter release on the camera moves it ever so slightly. In the footage above, each frame is about 1-2 pixels off from the previous, which makes it look all shaky and bad. Just another problem to solve through testing.




I also made a full, longer version of that test gif. Still learning all the quirks of animating this way.



That's all for now folks. Sorry it's been a while since a real update, but it's been hard juggling social life and a new job recently. Life is kinda hectic, and this eats up a lot of my time. I just don't have enough hours in the day to get it done. I like actually literally have nothing to do except animate now, so no more procrastination is even possible.


See you all soon! Hopefully...

I also made a full, longer version of that test gif. Still learning all the quirks of animating this way.

#486515 COLOSSUS (Formerly The Mystery Project) : Part 6 [UPDATED 3/21]

Posted by Florent on 02 February 2018 - 01:09 PM

Hey all! Since I didn't update last month, I've decided to give a little teaser for this month's update. Hopefully I'll have something really cool to show you at the end of February here.




It's a test shot! Again... Yeah yeah I've already posted a couple of these, but I've built up the baseplates even more with the clay+polyurethane foam from my last update.



But I do have one more thing to show you guys...



#486343 COLOSSUS (Formerly The Mystery Project) : Part 6 [UPDATED 3/21]

Posted by Florent on 24 December 2017 - 03:20 PM

Hey guys, small update this month. Unfortunately didn't get much work done because of the holiday rush at work.





I did manage to (almost) finish my second armature though! There are still some parts on the legs and feet that I need to touch up, but this guy in 90% done.




I made the tunic out of a burgundy T-shirt I bought at Goodwill for .99c (second hand thrift store for my non-US peeps). The armor is painted cardboard from a cereal box and Greenstuff molded by hand.




The belt/strap along his tunic is also greenstuff. I tied a string around the area but it didn't end up looking right. 




Both armatures facing off. Reminder that the rock guy is supposed to be bigger. Like, much bigger. You'll see next month ;)




His pants are liquid latex, which I painted on over a layer of clay that I put on the joints. Liquid latex is funky because it's white while liquid, then dries into a kinda gross transparent-yellow color. Thing is, if you add a couple of drops of paint to it while it's wet it can actually retain that color. I added grey, green, and black paint almost equally to get the.. well, it just ended up being gray but I kinda like the way it looks. I used plastalina clay, which is basically just sculpey that doesn't dry out or harden, on the joints. Just built up little "clothes" thickness so it doesn't look like his pants were painted on... which they were. then after a couple coats, I carefully peeled away the latex and removed the clay. The cool matte-gray color of his pants in the photos is achieved by turning the latex pants inside-out, so it still has a little bit of clay residue and texture that was maintained. It gives a neat look, IMO. I'm really happy with how it turned out.




I kinda like how the lighting looks and reflects off the dirt and grass on this platform. I may end up using this angle instead of the 45° angle I was planning on. We'll see. Next month. I promise.




Aaaaaaand because this is a progress update, this is pre-paint.



Unfortunately I didn't have time (or daylight, tbh) to set up any real test shots or animation. Now that all the prop/set/actor building is done though, I really have no excuse any more. The only thing left to do is start animating and shooting. Oh, also I have to paint a couple rocks. Please ban me if my update next month is just more painted rocks. See ya guys! Hopefully it'll be cool. It'll be great. It's gonna be great. It's gonna be great.