Monday, December 24, 2007

Setting New Goals

So the end of the year is near and I feel like I should set some new goals. I'm not really into setting new years resolutions. But they seem to  fit very well into the GTD method.  So I think I'm going to do things a bit differently by setting some short term goals and some long term goals. I'm not sure exactly what i want my goals to be. Dont get me wrong, I have plently of ideas. I just dont really want to share them with everybody just yet. I would like to set 3 short term goals 2 thing to have done by 6 months and 1 to do or have done by the year end. I'll probally start a list of thing on RTM and that keep it visable through out the year. Heres to keeping promises and a great new year!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Learning New Software

Learning new software is kind of like meeting a friend for the first time. You know there is something about them that you think you'll like. But you know it's going to take a while to get there. Eventually it's going to happen. But along the way there are many bumps. 
I've wanted to learn more about NUKE for a while now. I'm pretty familar with Fusion and after effects. I wouldnt consiter myself an expert but I can pull my own weight. But I feel like those programs can only let me be so efficent. I really want to take it up. Hopefully I'll be able to do that. I have an idea of how I'd like everything to work. But who knows how it'll work out. It's going ot be interesting.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

More Mental Ray

So seriously I'm starting to like mental ray for the first time in a long, long, time but then I find something that just makes me so mad. Mulitpass rendering, which is one of the most important things in production, just doesnt work in maya 2008. I'm not talking about those render layers. That's a whole other post. I'm talkin about rendering the beauty, and then saving files for all the elements that make up that render. Apperently the new mia_x material support it.. but because of how backwards maya is you cant get the passes out with out sacrificing a goat. Seriously who lets this kind of stuff happen. I wish they could just fix so many little issues in maya. How easy would it be to include backburner for maya? That should have been done day one of the buyout and it still hasnt happened. Crazy. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Mental Ray

So the more and more I learn about mental ray the less I get
frustrated by it. Don't get me wrong I'm far from loving it by any
means. But there are a few features here and

Thursday, December 6, 2007


core, originally uploaded by natzke.

some very cool flash art... it would be great to paint something like that.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Broken Laptops and Living on-line

This will be the first of a few post about how a broken laptop,
reading way too much about GTD and moving most of my digital life
online has not only kept me organized but has let me but has expanded
how I think about being organized and structure in my life and work.

This whole thing started earlier this year when my laptop's hard drive
took a break from working. My laptop was my digital life. It had my
email, my music, my photos, my movies and let me carry around large
files. It was great, I had everything set up just right and it was all
working smoothly. I had archived geeky nirvana and it was good. All
that was taken away when my laptop's hard drive ceased to function.

Now my laptop was not the latest or the greatest. It is a G4
Powerbook, dont get me wrong it's nice. But I really didnt want to
spend that much money to fix it and my warranty had already worn out.
With all that going on how was I supposed to get along? I had a tough
choice. Fix the laptop or find another way.

I choose to find another way. I realized that I could pretty much do
everything online. With a little planning ahead and the whole web as
an app thing going on. Tons of things are possible. On thing that is
probally important is that I have a lot of computers that I use all
the time. Two-3 computers at work, a couple at home and a few here and
there. Which means I didnt want to lug around a hardrive and I didnt
want to trust in a thumbdrive thats way to easy to forget someplace. I
really wanted something simple and something that would work
completely online.

The first thing I did was move all my mail to a gmail account. While
I've had a gmail account for a while. I never really saw the benefit
of it. I was perfectly happy using Gmail checks all of my
accounts at least every hour. Which is good enough for me especially
since I dont think there is a way to change it. Gmail also lets you
respond as your account which is great. So no even though you are
using your gmail account, clients and everybody else does not have to

Gmail is great as a store house of knowledge. It's much easier just to
search for the information than sorting through emails, trudging
through folders and conjuring from some strange mental state. It was a
bit of a stretch to let go of folders. After all I'm trying to
reorganize my life. How can getting rid of folders for my all
important in box help me be organized. The truth is that I spent too
much time organizing things that I really didn't have to. It's ok to
let the computers do the grunt work for me.

Now after you have moved all your email over what next? Bookmarks,
your list of places you've been things you want to read later and all
those things you should know more about you dont. While google has a
browser sync plugin ( that I do use) and they have a bookmarks app. I
mostly use Dellicous is just great for your own
bookmarks. Using tags to organize your bookrmarks makes a lof sense.
First of all you can orgaize by what ever system you like. The same
book mark can have mulitple tags so it can easily be in many locations
at once. So you can have tags for such things as "Home, Work, Linux,
3d, and whatever" so it's really easy to find everything about 3d even
if it has some linux stuff in it and vice versa. I know what you're
thinking, big woop.

This was my first experence with tags. So in the begining I tagged
everything very specifically. So after a while I started looking for
things again. But I couldnt find anything. I was being too orgainzed
again. It's amazing how many times you have to learn the same lesson
over and over, simple is beautiful. After a bit of reorganizing and
keeping most things to a few tags it's really easy to find what I want
at any time.

So I've talked so far about how I'm using gmail and Dellicous. Next
I'll talk about Remember the Milk, Google Calender and How GTD worked
for me.

Friday, November 23, 2007


So i've found this cool webiste/tool that let's you use a bunch of tools directly through your instand messenger. I'm actually writing this post on meebo right now. I can also "talk" to my remember the milk list or use my delicious links. I'm pretty impressed with how easy it is to setup and use. The only problem that I have right now is that the twitter widget seems to be down. But that should be fixed soon as they have just changed the twitter protocols.

A New Direction

So I'm thinking that I dont want to just post things about 3d and rendering here. I would like to post more about how I've been organizing and simplifing my life. I've found alot of really good techniques and simple tools that really help me out. It would also be more interesting for me to post about this kind of stuff.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Who is out there?

So I've been thinking of why I'm writing this blog or just about anything really. So I've come to one conclusion, I'm writing this for myself. So why do I keep writing on this? Well for me..  I think this keeps me honest with myself and it keeps me motivated knowing that I can see what I have been doing or not been doing for that matter. So I think I'm going to have to start being more specfic about the things I post. Smaller bits of knowlage tips and whatever that I can put up quickly here and there. I know I'm not the best communicator but it's a process I'm working on.  So soon I'll start posting some cool max and maya things I know that hopefully you dont. I think I'll talk about batch render in max next mostly because nobody talks about batch render and I love it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

About Workflows

So I'm thinking that are 2 main ideas in how I work on jobs.
  1. Work to Done
  2. Work ahead, test before finish

Now these sound pretty simple and pretty obvious. But I dont they happen enough. Testing before finals is very important. For everyproject I comp. I always have my comp setup right after my first round of test renders. Now I can evaluate my renders in my comp and see how and int what ways I need to change things. I can also see where is the best place for me to make a change in render or in comp?

Working to done is the ultimate time saver. If I'm working on project I always try to have specfic goals set up for me to work on. Usally I just writ them in a list on a small sheet of paper. Then as I get things done I just cross them off.  Now I have something else to jump on to . So now I'm not wasting any time and I'm just knocking things off my list. It's a very good work habit.

Monday, September 24, 2007


Well I'm sure excited about something. I have finally started editing together a new demo reel together. Wow it's been a long time for me to put something like that together. So long that Premere has come and gone for the Mac man that is a long time. I feel good about all the work I've done since last time I've put a reel together. Maybe this is just the sort of thing I need to do every year or so to reflect on the work I'm doing. It's been a lot of fun getting to this point. One thing for sure, I'm not going to let this amount of time go by with out doing a reel again. So hopefully with in the next couple of weeks I'll have something up on the site.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Bye bye Siggraph 07

Bye bye Siggraph 07, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Prentice is the man!!!!

Prentice is the man!!!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Troy plays Tempest!

Troy plays Tempest!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

John Knoll plays stars wars!!!!!


Teapot!!!!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Plasma Pong!!!!

Plasma Pong!!!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Wens at siggraph

Sorry I haven't posted today. The whole morning I was in a talk about
how they made the sand for spiderman and that was really sweet. A lot
of stuff about ri points and point clusters. It really got me thinking

Then this afternoon I taught my masterclass and that went really well.
Better than I expected, I got a lot of people that came up to thank
me after and I had to hurry it up in the end. I was worried that I
wouldn't gill the time. Hopefully I'll be able to do something like
that again .

Well I'm off to the Electronic Theater hopefully that be as good as
the one last year.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Vray 1.5 is out now!!!!!

Vray 1.5 is out now!!!!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Autodesk user group party on the carrier

Vray booth is pretty nice

Vray booth is pretty nice, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Autodesk booth at siggraph

Autodesk booth at siggraph, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Where are our images? There where a bunch in the u

Autodesk booth at siggraph

Autodesk booth at siggraph, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Where are our images? There where a bunch in the usergroup though

Autodesk user group!!

Autodesk user group!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Transformers presentation

Wow the transformers presentation was really cool. I got a lot out of
it and it seems that ilm is starting to act more like a smaller studio
with fewer people doing mor and that sounds awesome to me

Monday, August 6, 2007

Autodesk buys mudbox!!!

Just found out at the user group

Shape depiction and stylization

I'm at a paper that is all about deceting and editing lines and shapes
for toon like rendering and its really great to see all this work I've
got some great ideas

Thursday, August 2, 2007

5 of my Favorite Books

If I could take five books with me to an island these are the ones I would take:

  • Dune - Frank Hurbert
  • Foundation - Issac Asimov
  • Enders Game - Orson Scott Card
  • The Butlerian Jihad - Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson
  • Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
So it's pretty obvious that I'm a big Sci-fi guy, after all there are 2 Dune novels on my list. Foundation is one of those books that I'd love to see be made into a movie but then once the movie would be made I would probally hate it. You know how it is when you really care about something and then you see somebody else do it and they just dont seem to do it right. However Enders Game would also make a great game... now that would be interesting. The orginal Dune book is one of those things that I could just read and re-read over and over again. I just love those huge stories that make everybody in them seem so small but so important.


So I'm working on this forest scene in max. I'm really happy with how it's coming so I thought I'd post something.. but the compression is really really bad. But this scene is so cool because it's just using a vray sun/sky for everything. The primary GI is Monte-Carlo with the secondary being lightcache. I'm just really impressed with how it handled all the geometyr, motion blur and GI. The trees are the AEC trees that come with max with materials I made.

Monday, July 30, 2007

The beer fest group

IMG_0971, originally uploaded by Pe Tor.

The few the proud the aw beer fest group and our lovely red bus... I had an awesome time!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Beer Fest!!!!!

Beer Fest!!!!!, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Michigan Beer Fest Summer 2007

Monday, July 23, 2007

Me and Meghan at the Brooklyn Bridge

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Last night was fun

Last night was fun, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Picnic with Meghan in central park

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Me and Meghan having a great time in Ny!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

5 programs I want to Learn

Here are 5 programs that I want to know a lot more about.
  • Modo - a very up and coming program, lots of features
  • Zbrush - the program that turned modelers into sculptors
  • Nuke - it seems to be the only high end compositing app out there people care about
  • Mental Ray - well Autodesk keeps including it with everything
  • Final Cut - got to edit all together someplace right?
I would like to start modeling more. I have not really been doing it lately and there have been so many cool advancements recently. I just want to be able to take advantage of it. Modo and Zbrush really seem to be where a lot of development is happening in how you create your cg assets. I could only wish that there was the same amount of enthusiasm put towards rendering programs now.

I'm becoming more obsessed with how the elements that I create are being compsitied together. My friend Bruce Spike who is the main Comopister at Armstrong-White is just great at it. I think we work really well together and we can pass the buck between us. Meaning He knows if something is difficult for me and I know when something is difficult for him and we work around a lot of each others problems. I would like to know more about nuke so I can more easily anticipate his problems and do more compositing of my own. Digital Fusion is another tool out there but there is much more hype around Nuke so I guess I want to see what it's all about.

Ah Mental Ray, well Autodesk keeps putting in all of their products for some reason. I'm a big big fan of Vray, it's just so sweet. But It seems like a lot of people are using this and making some pretty impressive images. Especially in animation and film that seems to be where it really shines. The whole final gather thing seems to be really annoying and I just dont ever want to deal with photons. This one is going to be an up hill battle.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Demo Reel from 2002

Here is my old demo reel again, only through Virb which looks way better than Youtube compare for youself

Envelope Project

Teststing out Virb video posting

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Great Day Out

Great Day Out, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Harrison's First Day

Here's a lot of rendering in a short time

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Submission for Envelope

Here is a very wanky 3d peice I made for a friends gallery show. This I actually made the music for.

Ocean Drive Rocks_crop

Ocean Drive Rocks_crop, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Here is a very old rendering of a Suburban from 2003, vray was cool even back then.


bib_racetrack, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

What can I say about Bib ( the mich man's real name) I just love working on him. He's always so fun and a nice distraction


WiredRockets, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

All the rockets on the cover are cg and created by us at AW, I was the lead color and light artist of the 3d elements

FJ Cruiser CGI Montoge

I was responsible for the all the Lighting and rendering of the elements that made this style up. Every sequence is made up of at least 7 layers all rendered from the same max file. I learned to love Batch Render on this project

Ford Edge Web Intro

Some mangement, mainly color and light. This project allowed us to experiment with every part of our pipeline and set the stage for how we are working on the Mercury Vechiles project

Mercury Vehicles Montage

Here is part of the Mercury Vehicles website. I was mainly resposable for the Lighting, Shading and Rendering of all the Exterior car elements. Peter Reynolds worked on the Interior and the backgrounds where provided by Moving Pixels.

5 Albums to Listen to

Here is a list of the 5 most recent albums I cant live with out:
  1. Dimmu Borgin - In Sorte Diaboli
  2. Smashing Pumpkins - Zeitgeist
  3. Nine Inch Nails - Year Zero
  4. Morcheeba - The Antidote
  5. Sophie Ellis Bextor -Trip the Light Fantastic
There arent too many people that would put all those artist together and to be honest I'm a bit embarassed to myself. But these are the albums I find my self constantly listening to.

The next big thing

So I'm thinking that I might need a new challenge here soon. Now I'm hoping that the new short I'm working on will be that challenge. Somehow I will have to keep it moving on and not let this die an early death. But that's the real trick isn't it. It's easy to have a side project. Keeping them organized and moving on is like having a job without a place to work. Having a time and a place to work on something like this with enough hours to actually get something done seems to be the hardest thing to do. Now throw a few other people into the mix and the task becomes down right impossible.
I have been thinking that some task based system would be great to divide up the work. Remember the Milk has some great task tools. But so far it seems a bit difficult to work with and for me that means that I just wont use it. I'm a big fan of Ta-Da list while they are simple they lack enough complexity to use with a group of people.
Another Idea to keep the motivation happening is to keep a blog of production. It'll be great to post stuff for other people to start to see whats going on. Now this so far is my favorite idea.

Bell dog at my house

Bell dog at my house, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.


Fireworks, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

Peter Reynolds at his finest

Peter Reynolds at his finest, originally uploaded by mrloafbot.

This is pete, and this is me testing how blogging from flickr works. This could be very sweet.

Monday, July 9, 2007

You Tube Version of my old Demo Reel

I would like a uniform

So I'm sitting here watching Star Trek and I have realized that I
would like a uniform of my own. Not that does not mean that I want
everybody to wear one but sometimes it would be easier just to slap
something on with out having to worry about What it means. Maybe
clothes mean too much. It's not like I try very hard to look a certain
way. But now that I think about it maybe I try too hard not too look
like certain things. Now who said that class struggle is over or that
clicks only exist on high school.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

test post

This is the first post to test out my new blog about things I care about