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View Full Version : Half past Human, The Godwhale, TJ BAss



dickbill
01-10-2017, 06:50 AM
Has anybody read these books in his youth ?
Anybody interested to do a collaboration for an illustration/semi-animation/other, something doable and reasonable, aka not a fully CG animated adaptation of the story ?

ianr
01-10-2017, 09:43 AM
Has anybody read these books in his youth ?
Anybody interested to do a collaboration for an illustration/semi-animation/other, something doable and reasonable, aka not a fully CG animated adaptation of the story ?

LOVE IT LOVE IT, it is on my 'todo list' in down-time.

I have a 1st edition hardback in my Library, just loved the empathetic thing with Trilobite.

it reminded me much in tone of a great titled piece called 'Watched over by Machines of Loving Grace'.

A mashup of almost a RoboWhale is surely in the Thor Movie & Our Nipponese Wavers have animated

briefly such a air swimming juggernaut.( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgCpPnid-XE)

Yes i'm interested but it needs a short(anim) at this point I feel to impact well.

dickbill
01-10-2017, 11:38 AM
Me too, Trilobite was the character who survived, hidden in the neural networks of my memories, somewhat like in the book. I read it ~35 years ago in French and re-read it recently in its original version. I am also a Molecular Biologist of formation and I can project easily in the CyBorg-like atmosphere conveyed by Bass.
It was written before the 80's so Bass had no chance to envision things like Internet and Smart phone addiction and also he was not sensitive to the political issues that most likely would shape a Hive of the Future, but his vision of the genetic engineering used to create the Cyborg/Biological hybrids, was right on.
The end of the Godwhale, namely gy=c, has literally obsessed me for all these years and I even contacted an astrophysicist (no, not NdeGT) to discuss some deep issues that Bass himself missed.

Regarding a small project, I could not do an elaborate animation because I don't have the skills for it. For example, Human complex animation with IK or genoma is above my head, but wagging a cetacean tail is, hopefully, in my capabilities. I have zbrush though, I am passable at it but good enough to produce some characters like the Godwhale, Trilobit or the Nebish. I also have AnimeStudioPro and Vue5-infinite. Vue5-infinite seems old, true, but it is an Infinite version, meaning that it can import Objects and most importantly can export a scene matching Lightwave camera and light scene, or just background matching perspective for composition with LW (important to render in seconds, rather than Hours, in LW). With these tools, something should be doable.
Perhaps a short anim is doable, yes.
I suck at music but we have the musics of Eric Matyas and Shawn Farrell here, so I won't sweat this issue.

If you are interested to do something with me Ian, I don't have a web site but I have a dropbox where i could put files to exchange. We could also use this thread to put renderings and stuff.

Let me think about a small script and a few still pictures to illustrate my thoughts now...

Others are welcome, don't be shy, the Hive won't eat you (OK, most likely it will).

pinkmouse
01-10-2017, 03:41 PM
Good book, need to dig out my copy. It's still in a box somewhere after the house move...:)

Spinland
01-10-2017, 06:19 PM
Huh. I know I read Godwhale as a younger lad, didn't know it was a trilogy. I've forgotten most of it apart from the curious jogger getting cut in two by the whatever-bin and ending up with the cyborg centaur body thing. Might have to unearth this memory and read the whole trilogy.

jeric_synergy
01-10-2017, 08:36 PM
Has anybody read these books in his youth ?
Anybody interested to do a collaboration for an illustration/semi-animation/other, something doable and reasonable, aka not a fully CG animated adaptation of the story ?
Yup, got the paperbacks right here. (It's 2 books, not 3.) To the OP, I say: go for it, storyboard style!!! (But, maybe do a short story first.... just saying...)

I can't imagine why Hollywood isn't mining '60s SF for original script ideas, instead of doing retreads. (Well, actually I can, but they shouldn't keep doing remakes/reboots/sequals.)

My top two:



NOVA, by Samuel Delaney --huge Hollywood production
WAYSTATION, by Clifford Simak --possible indie-production


Keith Laumer, before he became a hack (it's ok, a man's got to eat), wrote some quite surreal short stories. I suggest that one is MUCH more likely to finish a short story animation than a novel. Even doing a couple minutes of animation is quite challenging. It's like: before you build a house, you should build a doghouse. Then a playhouse.

If you can animate the joke "A horse walks into a bar: the bartender says 'Why the long face?'", you're on your way.

Roger Zelazny also wrote many poetic short stories. --Anybody else got short story writers to mine?

dickbill
01-11-2017, 06:38 AM
Yes as Jeric says, it's 2 books, not 3 : 'Half Past Human' and 'The Godwhale' all published before 1974. But you can get new copies from Barnes and Noble.

The reason these old stories are not used in movies are perhaps the lack of compliance with modern standards of political correctness, which may require more or less editing. Also these books were all written in pre-Internet times. But adaptations are always possible. The 2011 adaptation of Tintin on screen was very nicely done, in my opinion.

I have no intention to make an animation longer than 3 or 4 minutes. Actually it would be likely less than 3 minutes, trailer style, and not following any of the 2 stories and their characters in particular (such as Larry Denver, amputated down the Chest and frozen for further medical treatment) , but instead presenting the general background :
(not in order)
The genetically modified Cyborgs Hybrids, such as the Harvesters (one of them is the Renegade Harvester in Half Past Human),
The Cetacean Harvesters (such as the Godwhale and his companion Trilobite, but without mentioning their particular role),
The dead Oceans and the Earth surface, totally harvested for vegetal food except for the highest mountains. Bass mentioned that all crops are actually genetically modified to be sterile and require pollination by the Harvesters
The fauna reduced to Nebish, rats, cockroach and low level bacteria and Fungus
The Hive and the 4 trillions Nebish in their underground Shaft Cities. The pestilence and miasma in the Shaft Cities. The Crowd and immediate return of the Nebish Citizen to the Protein Pool in their early thirties. Cannibalism is basically required to shorten the food chain as much as possible. The casts in the Hive.
The 5 Toes 'bucks' that survive as genetic fossil in a Neolithic society on the Surface, hunted for their flesh by the Nebish Hunter cast.
The Cyber/neural circuitry that covers all Earth surface and the Class One that rules them all.
The Mysterious Olga.
And perhaps the gy=c issue (not sure)

ianr
01-11-2017, 08:08 AM
THE RORQUAL MARU sounds lovely in japanese doesn't?

Hi DB,


Here is my book NOt very inspiring is it?
135566




SEND P.M. 2 me 4 DROPBOX stuff to UP,Please.

135567


see above LW & PSHOP montage 2.5D- ROBOEQUUS (2015) ianr.

I'm been heading there( Kit bashed Motorcycle Parts/RonNurnies/logic)

P.M. me

dickbill
01-11-2017, 10:55 AM
Nice cyber horse but you' re right, the cover of your Godwhale is not too inspiring. I am buried in zbrush right now, working on a decent Rorqual Maru. Not easy.

All right I PM you...

dickbill
01-11-2017, 11:06 AM
THE RORQUAL MARU sounds lovely in japanese doesn't?

Hi DB,

P.M. me

Ianr, I can't PMail you, your box is full and you need to clear some space.

Ernest
01-11-2017, 04:03 PM
I can't imagine why Hollywood isn't mining '60s SF for original script ideas, instead of doing retreads. (Well, actually I can, but they shouldn't keep doing remakes/reboots/sequals.)

There's a lot of great 60s (and later) SF that shot itself in the foot by not foreseeing that, in the future, there would not be a USSR.

jeric_synergy
01-11-2017, 07:50 PM
There's a lot of great 60s (and later) SF that shot itself in the foot by not foreseeing that, in the future, there would not be a USSR.
Turns out there IS a Russia though.

The one they REALLY missed though is cel 'phones' and all they can do.
+++++++

Mmahhhhn, "NOVA" would be so baroque!!! And y'know what? Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead role. Since "Gatsby" I totally believe he could do it.

wingzeta
01-11-2017, 07:52 PM
There's a lot of great 60s (and later) SF that shot itself in the foot by not foreseeing that, in the future, there would not be a USSR.

But, perhaps in the future there is a USSR.

dickbill
01-14-2017, 05:04 PM
But, perhaps in the future there is a USSR.Meanwhile there is a UST, I let you guess what the T stands for.

You guys Jeric and Wing are welcome to join the Godwhale team (Ianr and I so far) even intermittently, no attach no commitment, just some 3d work, glory and no money !

jeric_synergy
01-14-2017, 07:21 PM
You guys Jeric and Wing are welcome to join the Godwhale team (Ianr and I so far) even intermittently, no attach no commitment, just some 3d work, glory and no money !
My landlord LOVES glory! The grocery store too! ;)

I'll use an old USSR saying: "They pretend to pay us, and in return we pretend to work."

OTOH, sure, count me in: this is for storyboard work, right? It's not like I"m busy.

I might send you FBX files, it'll be good practice for inter-sw interchange practice.

BTW, here's the cover of the copy I have:
135635

dickbill
01-15-2017, 06:58 AM
It's funny all these different book's cover of the Godwhale. You had many editions in the US and UK. I can't remember honestly which one was used for the translated version in French since I don't have it anymore.
I hope that, providing that we can produce something decent (note that I didn't mention any deadline of any sort) we are not gonna run into some copyright issues. We will see.

@Jeric, yes, this is for a story board introduction to the world of T. J. Bass. A short anim of a few minutes cannot encapsulate the full story of the books. I realize that I must work on a script/storyboard sort of thing, rather than finish my 'Godwhale' cyber in zbrush which gives me trouble in some geometry. I want to make a clean geometry of course, with a few thousands poly. Keep in mind that I am not a pro either...enough excuses, we want results. OK, but today is for a hand drawing script.

dickbill
01-16-2017, 06:48 AM
@Jeric, you private MBox is full too. I can't email you.
You should have access to the shared folder now.

pinkmouse
01-16-2017, 11:32 AM
Ian's is full too. :D

dickbill
01-16-2017, 12:37 PM
Hi pinkmouse, if you want to participate, just PM your email adress, that's all I need to give you access to the shared folder.

Guys, I made the storyline in 4 parts although the split in 4 is not important. I hope you can see them OK.
There are some basic drawings to illustrate in case your memory of the book is old. I split the entire story in what I believe could be 19 or 20 Lightwave scenes.
Sometimes the camera is external, sometimes the camera is actually Trilobite's eyes.
Some scenes (the machine to machine talks) look like we are reading a computer screen, so 3d is not important here. These scenes could be made with a 2d movie editing software I guess, perhaps even photoshop or AnimeStudio pro.
I'll try with anime studio to see what I can get.

With 19 or 20 scenes (depending of what is in the prologue : for laziness we could just use a short clip of a real feeding whale and superimpose the text, aka no rendering at all). I hope it is going to be easier to split work now, so we can each work complementary.
The mood and feel must show continuity so we must share the scenes files for that.
Ian, since you are definitively more experienced than me, I am going to follow you a lot on the technicalities. I can't wait to see our first rendering yet. On whoever's machine. remember I run LW11.6.

Ian, thanks for your drawings, choosing the right model for Trilobite is important. Perhaps you could post a few models/render here. I like the one with a long tail, since Bass described Trilobite as shovel like with a long tail of about 1 meter long (for scale, Trilobite therefore cannot be much bigger than that).
For the Agromeck harvester, a Nebish fits easily under its wheel according to the story, so the size of an agromeck must be about ~5 meter tall. In the story line I suggest the Agromeck has a frame that supports a transparent 'belly' where we can see its content through it.
I have to re-read doc3 you sent me...

For Jeric, read the story line and tell us if you are interested to work on a scene or a model in particular. I am still working on the Godwhale model.

ianr
01-17-2017, 05:05 AM
Good book, need to dig out my copy. It's still in a box somewhere after the house move...:)

Box cleared o' Pink One

Please reup P.M.

pinkmouse
01-17-2017, 02:50 PM
Just sayin' I'm in. And I am now. ;)

dickbill
01-17-2017, 05:21 PM
Just sayin' I'm in. And I am now. ;)
Welcome aboard.
You have posted a link to pictures in your own drop box, but I can't see it unless you share it. It's better to create a new folder in mine, and directly post your pictures there, since you can add and edit.
Ian had a good idea to create subfolders, otherwise it can quickly become messy.

so,
I am still working on the godwhale Rorqual Maru, (haven't had any time today...night is my friend)
Ian is working on Trilobite

Assuming all of us had a look at the storyboard and the 19 scenes, the other 'mecks' and 3d objects that have to be build are :
The shore scenes (waves and so on) I have to read on Fluids...
The underwater domes of the Benthics and all the underwater scene in general
The Agromecks, that should be simple.
The 'Garden' scenes (thanks God I have Vue, but I have the feeling that Ian is a bit more demanding...)
The City-shaft scenes. Here, all is artificial light and, since there is a lot of Fumes, miasmas and putrid exhalations (right, 10 millions people living underground like in a giant skyscraper going the other way) we can go crazy on Volumetrics and Atmospheric. LW should excel at that.
The Nebish and the scene in the operating room. Zbrush for the Nebbish should suffice...

The first to post a render here gets a special 'easter egg' like his name (discreetly) printed somewhere on the Godwhale or something of his choice, and the last to post a render will have his name printed on a Nebbish T-shirt 'I made you, my Nebish"

ianr
01-18-2017, 09:15 AM
The first to post a render here gets a special 'easter egg' like his name (discreetly) printed somewhere on the Godwhale or something of his choice, and the last to post a render will have his name printed on a Nebbish T-shirt 'I made you, my Nebish"


As joint concept artist I have rendered with my Multi-core Graphite Processors (HB, H & 2h pencils) in 'the Godwhale the Roqual Muru' Folder(copyright of the Estate of T.L.Bass)
Thus this exempts me from receiving or wearing such a Tee shirt, as Nebish is not a good word in Yiddish! Ovhay!

dickbill
01-18-2017, 02:15 PM
Ok, you're safe, although I meant here, in the LW forum.