I’ve had a lot to think about over the last couple of days. It seems that inspiration, at least for me, has always come in the face of adversity. Over the past year, with everything generally being a lot more “comfortable” than I expected, there hasn’t been much in the way of creative motivation coming out of me. I want a challenge. I want lots of challenges. Finally, the realization is striking that in order for those challenges to happen, I’m going to need to dig deeper than I ever have and learn to be self-motivated in action and more importantly, disciplined.
Welcome December. I’ll be using this month to plan out a load of projects for next year as well as ACTUALLY start testing each of them out. With a stomping grounds of precendent, I believe it’ll be a lot easier to continue the momentum. So let me rephrase… December is ACTION MONTH; the month of getting everything to its full swing.
Here’s some of the ideas I’ll be working with over the next week; planning out and executing:
1 ) Articles on TDSRC
2 ) Daily Journal
3 ) Practicing photography
4 ) Shooting Video
5 ) Drawing / Sketching
6 ) Oil Paintings
7 ) Learn Guitar
8 ) Master Motion Graphics & Visual Effects
9 ) Get involved in my community
10 ) Reading Technical Books, Taking Notes, Writing Reviews & Doing Problems
I’m sure this list is bound to grow epically longer, but I need to narrow down as much as possible, so starting with a short list is probably best.
As I wrap up the final few pages of the RenderMan Shading Language guide, as well as finish up the final two lectures of the fxphd RenderMan course, I look forward to spending the next while sitting down and actually programming some example shaders (which I’ve been and will continue to post on TDSRC).
Unfortunately at work, even with all the requests to buy a handful of licenses, it seems we’ll be stuck with Mental Ray for the foreseeable future. As such, I don’t want to pass up a great opportunity to gain experience in production shading, so I’ll be starting the dig into the Mental Ray Programming and Mental Ray Shaders books next week.
Monday, August 16th, 2010
So it looks like a I’ve got the weekend to myself. Sounds dangerous doesn’t it?
I drafted a list of to-do’s to accomplish over the next little while. Some long term, some short. The shorts (aka. this weekend) seem to have amassed into quite the list. Realistically, I won’t even be remotely disappointed if I can’t pull everything on this list off, but the thought that I could possibly fuels me to keep pushing on. I feel like the only thing that will hold me back is sleep deprivation.
I mean, who wouldn’t want to accomplish over a month’s worth of course work and then take an entire week off? So here we go! Diving into a sea of fxphd lectures, readings on renderman, vfx tutorials, article writing, and other such nerdy, yet awesome things.
Alright, without further ado, here’s the goal-sheet:
- Finish “The RenderMan Shading Language Guide”
- Chapters 13 – 17 ( p. 415 – 637 )
- Write book review for TDSRC
- Complete fxphd RND101: Introduction to RenderMan
- Lectures 6 – 10
- Get caught up on fxphd BKD217: Background Fundamentals
- Lectures 1 – 5
- Watch the latest fxphd MSV201: Massive in Production: Lecture 5
- Finish the NUK102 Course in viewing lecture 10
- Start both NUK204: Intermediate Nuke and NUK211: 3D Relighting in Nuke
- Lectures 1 & 2 for each
- As described in my “Week of the RenderMan” post, publish 25 RenderMan shaders to TDSRC
- Publish article re: the Autodesk Stereoscopic White Paper
- Publish article re: PyQT / Maya setup
- Publish article re: Creating your first Massive Agent
- Complete first two VFX tutorials of the “100 VFX in 100 Days” challenge
- First reading of a SIGGRAPH ’10 for “Paper Analysis” article
- Author Backgrounds, Summary, References, Analysis, Applications / Examples
- Watch RFL202: RealFlow 5 Project Workshop: Lectures 4 & 5
Friday, August 13th, 2010
RenderMan has been a bit of a mountain-climb over the last couple months, learning it as fast as possible without bleeding from the brain. Fortunately, it looks like I’ve got enough of a basis now to really get into a study crunch and get into the details.
So, for the next week I’ll be taking on a few daunting goals for the purpose of rounding off my basis for further study. Here’s where I’m heading:
- Finish off the final 6 chapters of “The RenderMan Shading Language Guide” by Rudy Cortes & Saty Raghavachary.
- Complete the final 5 lectures of the fxphd course “RND101 – Introduction to RenderMan”.
- Write 25 different shaders covering the gamut of topics covered in both the book and the course. Post all on TDSRC with code and example renders.
- Write 5 articles for TDSRC covering different BRDF Illumination Loop models.
- Compile a list of RenderMan learning resources on TDSRC.
- Create a RenderMan global variable cheat-sheet.
Saturday, August 7th, 2010
Welcome to the stomping ground of Neil Victor Grey (that’s me!). This site is an on-going’s of sorts, tracking the day-to-day challenges of living in the world of Technical Direction for Film & Animation.
Since I’ve been doing quite a bit of independent work recently I figure there better be somewhere to keep track of it all. If you’re reading this and are wondering “Are his other posts this dry?”, well, I did warn you with the title.
Anyway, my focus recently has been on expanding my base knowledge in a few different directions so that one day, hopefully not so far from now, I can work as a Visual Effects Supervisor on a major feature.
Lately, my studies have taken me into Massive Prime, Nuke, and RealFlow, but I am digging more in depth into Maya, RenderMan and general dynamics simulation on an ongoing basis.
Well, that’s all I’ll say for now!