View Full Version : BlastOff! A 3D Animated Short Film

10-30-2006, 12:41 PM
I've posted the finished version of my first 3D animated short film, BlastOff!, on Telebites.com (http://telebites.com/telebites/welcome.html)

Thanks to all those who provided comments in the BlastOff! WIP threads (http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=53591) during the production. All your comments definately helped me improve the short! It's certainly not perfect, but it's time to move onto my next project...


Safe Harbor
10-30-2006, 12:50 PM
Very nice! I was hoping for outtakes at the end LOL!

10-30-2006, 01:06 PM
That's a great piece, the character animation and facial expressions are spot on, and that stuff is at the top end of difficulty. I'm not sure if it was deliberate, but the first person perspective shots really gives it the feeling of an n64 zelda game when you go first person, and the music also reminds a little of that.
Well done for seeing it though, I'd never have the patience to work on something for that long.

11-01-2006, 08:01 AM
Safe Harbor, Thanks!

I was originally going to have the character watching the credits go by, making faces all the time of course... ;) but I ran out of time... Thanks for all your comments in the WIP threads (http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=53591) during production, it really helped!

oDDity Thanks!

Since this is the first full 3D character animated short I've done, I spent a lot of time on the character animation. It's not perfect, but I've learned a lot about rigging and animating characters in LightWave that I can apply to my next project. Thanks for your comments during the production too. I kept reworking the character animation to get rid of most of the "mushiness" that was there at the beginning.


11-06-2006, 08:24 AM
If you're interested in the real BlastOff! Bed that I designed & built for my son and featured in the BlastOff! 3D Animated Short Film, it's coming up on HGTV.

The first episode of HGTV's "Look What I Did!" debuted last night. It's on Sunday's from 6:30-7:00pm ET/PT. The first show looked like it was part of episodes #101 & #102. I'm not sure if they'll continue mixing the episodes together or start showing them in order.

The making of the real BlastOff! Bed should be in episode #106 so it should be coming up in the next few weeks or so. If I can get more information about the actual air date the segment will be in, I'll post it.

Otherwise just stay tuned to HGTV's Look What I Did! (http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/episode_archive/0,1783,HGTV_24156_562,00.html) Sunday's 6:30-7:00pm ET/PT


11-06-2006, 08:47 AM
Great job Scazzino! The facial expressions are really good; kudos on the volumetrics also.


11-06-2006, 11:58 AM
Thanks Mark (AVKills) :thumbsup:

The character's facial expressions were all animated using morph maps and morph mixer. The volumetrics used for the space ship's rocket fire and exhaust were done with hypervoxel sprites. Some of them took quite a while to render...


It seems our Telebites.com (http://telebites.com/telebites/welcome.html) server is having difficulty handling all the traffic viewing BlastOff!, so I've mirrored it on DreamLight.com (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html). Hopefully between the two sites they can handle all the traffic...


11-06-2006, 02:31 PM
Yes I bet it did! Just out of curiosity, what is your renderfarm setup comprised of? (machine specs, etc etc). I have been thinking about setting up a low-cost one (if that exists).


11-07-2006, 09:20 AM
Yes I bet it did! Just out of curiosity, what is your renderfarm setup comprised of? (machine specs, etc etc). I have been thinking about setting up a low-cost one (if that exists).


My render farm's getting a bit old, and will soon need to be upgraded to Mac Intel machines when all the software is finally Universal Binary.

To produce BlastOff! I ran 11 LWSN nodes on the following render farm non-stop over the course of six months for everything from rough texture/lighting/and character animation tests to final rendering.

1 dual processor 2GHz Power Mac G5 with 4GB of RAM
3 dual processor 1.25 GHz Power Mac G4's with 1.75GB of RAM
1 dual processor 1 GHz Power Mac G4 with 1.75GB of RAM
1 768MHz PowerBook G4

ScreamerNet Controller for Mac OS X (http://dreamlight.com/insights/10/advanced_network_rendering.html#screamernet_contro ller) to run the farm.


11-12-2006, 09:57 AM
I just found out that BlastOff! has won its first animated film award.

It has been awarded a 'MERIT' Award for Digital Media Production at the "2D OR NOT 2D Animation Festival" in Everett, Washington next week.


According to the festival website: "Golden Pencil" awards will be presented to the best entries in each category, and "Merit" awards given to any runners-up who significantly impress the judges.


11-12-2006, 08:41 PM
Very creative!!! :thumbsup:

I loved the modeling, lighting, camera work, etc =D

Great Job!

Safe Harbor
11-13-2006, 09:28 AM
I just found out that BlastOff! has won its first animated film award.

It has been awarded a 'MERIT' Award for Digital Media Production at the "2D OR NOT 2D Animation Festival" in Everett, Washington next week.


According to the festival website: "Golden Pencil" awards will be presented to the best entries in each category, and "Merit" awards given to any runners-up who significantly impress the judges.



11-13-2006, 11:31 AM
Yes, well done, it deserves a few awards.

11-13-2006, 05:33 PM
Congratulations, Mike! Well done!

11-15-2006, 08:30 AM
Thanks anim8r, Safe Harbor, oDDity & RudySchneider!

The 2D OR NOT 2D film festival program has been posted with BlastOff! screening in the Sunday 1:30-3pm awards segment...


I've also learned that the "real" BlastOff! bed segment is supposed to be on HGTV's "Look What I Did!" on Sunday Dec. 17th from 6:30-7:00pm ET/PT (episode #106). I don't have a high degree of confidence in the exact date though since the episodes that have aired already didn't match the episodes listed on their web site...



11-20-2006, 11:48 AM
Congrats on the completion!!!
Lots of great improvements along the way leading to a nice final piece!

11-23-2006, 08:57 PM
Thanks Jeff!

Thanks for your comments during the WIP phase as well, they really helped improve the short.

11-24-2006, 09:16 PM
I'm preparing some of the content for the BlastOff! DVD. I'll be including some of the actual LightWave objects, scenes, props and sets that I created for BlastOff! on the DVD for use in your own LightWave projects. Here are renders of the first few props from BlastOff! that I've prepared for the DVD so far.

More to come... :D

11-25-2006, 04:15 AM
Ahh, and that's lovely :D Just watched the video for the first time. That's absolutely lovely.

Top job, a good laugh, and very poignant.

Props for the LW logo on the wall :)

11-27-2006, 03:35 PM
Thanks Bog! :beerchug:

Here are a few more of the LightWave props I created for the short that I will be included with the BlastOff! DVD content files.

An updated version of the pirate toy chest with a pirate hat.
A collection of pens, paper, mug and pad of paper.
A kids coat rack with a few pirate hats tossed in.
A set of various size picture frames and poster frames.


11-29-2006, 09:46 AM
Here are a few renders from the RoomSet.lws that was used in the short and that I've prepared for the BlastOff! DVD content. This is a fully modeled and surfaced room set (including doors, windows, curtains, carpet, molding, switches and outlets) with a spinning light rig for fast simulated GI lighting. Many properties of the light rig are tied to the two main window lights for easy adjustment and animation of the overall lighting of the room.


11-29-2006, 10:49 AM
Here's what the room set's spinning light rig itself looks like.

It's made of all spinning spotlights that can use soft motion blurred raytraced shadows if transparencies are needed (as used in BlastOff!), or shadow maps for even faster rendering.

The entire light rig is controlled through the two main window lights and the sun light. Adjusting those lights' color and intensity adjusts the overall rig lighting including the ambient lights. This also adjusts the color and luminosity of the outside scene which shows through the windows. The sunlight may also be positioned independently to control where the sunlight hits the room through either window.


11-29-2006, 06:19 PM
I'd work with you anytime, Mike.

12-01-2006, 09:17 AM
Thanks Mark, I'll keep that in mind! :thumbsup:

12-04-2006, 09:29 PM
Wow, congratulations on creating your own short.
Nice job!
How long did it take?

12-05-2006, 09:09 AM
Thanks PixelFarmer! :thumbsup:

From DreamLight's inception in 1987, I had focused on digital design, 3D illustration and interactive multimedia with limited animation, since full 3D animation just wasn't very feasible without a massive amount of resources and budget. Now with LightWave 3D 9 and the current Macs, I felt that I could finally start to evolve DreamLight into the 3D animation studio that I had always intended.


I have a concept for a 3D animated web series of short-shorts called the Autiton Archives, but since my last full character animation was traditional cell & clay animation, while I studied animation/illustration at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) over 20 years ago, I had a lot of cobwebs to brush away first. ;)

As an initial test 3D animation project, I figured I'd first do a stand-alone short, based upon the space shuttle bed that I had built for my son. I'd use a 3D character that I had already designed for one of the interactive CD-ROMs that I created. Since the actual Blast Off bed was going to be shown on HGTV's "Look What I Did!" (Dec. 17th 6:30-7:00pm ET/PT) I thought that could give me a nice extra angle for the short.

So I started working on the 3D animated short film BlastOff! Since this was my first full 3D animated short film, it took me about six months, much of which time was to teach myself all the tools and techniques that I'd need to pull it off.

I spent quite a bit of time rebuilding and rigging the toy alien character as well as working on the character animation, including having him get up, walk, and flip at the end. I had to work around some IK jittering problems. I also spent some time learning to use morph mixer for the facial animation. I didn't want to spend time on full lip sync yet, since this project was really just a test. I kept all the animation relatively simple.

I spent a lot of time to develop the spinning light rigs that would give me the control and GI look I wanted for the time-lapse lighting over the course of a day, while still being able to render it out in a reasonable amount of time.

And last but not least, I spent a lot of time working on the particle and hypervoxel special effects for the space ship's exhaust as it flies around Saturn.

Most of all I've learned how to do many things that I'll need on the series, as well as some things that I can do differently to avoid problems that I encountered. So, I'd consider it a successful "test" project... and launch pad for some "real" projects to come...


12-05-2006, 08:11 PM
Very successful.
That's great. I admire that you stuck with it.
Are they going to show it along with the bed on HGTV?
I look forward to seeing the next installment

12-07-2006, 04:53 PM
He Scazzino, congratulations with your reward! Well deserved man.
What does your kid think of the animation (starring HIS bed)?

12-07-2006, 07:25 PM
Thanks PixelFarmer, :thumbsup:

Nope, just the real bed. They came out to the house last year (well before I even started the animation) and shot all sorts of material which took about six hours. The segment will only be a few minutes though. I'm not sure which portions of the material they ended up cutting into the segment. They did a shot where I brought the bed up on the Mac and spun it all around. That was in modo though, since it was much faster at OpenGL viewport manipulation than Lightwave 8.5 was at the time.


Thanks Sarford, :thumbsup:

MJ loves the animation. He had a blast recording the vocals for his part. He loves to show the short on DVD when visitors come to the house. He gets so excited that he talks through the whole thing pointing out his voice and his drawing on the notepad at the beginning, explaining everything that's going to happen, and then pointing out his lines at the end.


More goodies! :santa:

Here are a few more renders from the DVD content I'm putting together. This LightWave scene file includes Saturn textured completely with animated gradients, a textured environment of space nebula, a set of twinkling star globes and the particle/hypervoxel rocket exhaust used in the short.


12-13-2006, 11:20 AM
Here's another version of the BlastOff! Saturn object, this one's set up for CGSphere...

It's textured with gradients and procedurals in Lightwave and rendered in FPrime with radiosity. I'll add the scene/object files for this version to the BlastOff! DVD Content as well...


12-14-2006, 12:58 PM
If anyone's interested in seeing the short segment on the making of the real BlastOff! bed, it should be on Sunday night on HGTV.

Sunday, Dec. 17th. 6:30-7:00pm ET/PT
HGTV's "Look What I Did!"
Episode HLWID-106

Check it out!


12-18-2006, 09:02 AM
The real BlastOff! space shuttle bed segment aired Sunday night on HGTV. :thumbsup:

If anyone missed it, it'll air again in January.

Tuesday, January 16th, 1:30 PM & again at 6:00PM ET/PT
on HGTV's "Look What I Did!"
Episode HLWID-106

Details are available on HGTV.com (http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/shows_hlwid/episode/0,2756,HGTV_24156_47120,00.html)


12-21-2006, 06:39 PM
Scratch that, HGTV changed the schedule again... :rolleyes:

Now it'll air as follows:

HGTV's Look What I Did! Episode #HLWID-106

January 11, 2007, 6:00 PM ET/PT
January 18, 2007, 1:30 PM ET/PT
January 24, 2007, 1:30 PM ET/PT
February 14, 2007, 6:00 PM ET/PT
February 21, 2007, 1:30 PM ET/PT

Check HGTV.com (http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/shows_hlwid/episode/0,2756,HGTV_24156_47120,00.html) for details.
It looks like they like to keep their schedule "flexible"... ;)


12-22-2006, 11:30 AM
HGTV included a couple of shots of me working on the bed on the Mac...

One manipulating the bed model itself in modo, and one placing the bed into the virtual room scene in LightWave 3D.


12-24-2006, 08:35 AM
Very cool. I will try to remember to watch it. I still just love the whimsical feel of your animation. The facial expressions are spot on.


01-02-2007, 08:55 PM
Thanks Mark!

BlastOff! has just been selected to screen at the Dam Short Film Festival (http://www.damshortfilm.org/) on Saturday February 10th in the Drama F - “Family Time!” program (http://www.damshortfilm.org/dsff2007/films/familytime.htm).

I've also just posted the new BlastOff! Insight (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html#top) with behind the scenes content on 3D Character Animation (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/3DCharacterAnimation.html), LightWave 3D Props & Sets (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/3DSetsAndProps.html) and Building the Real BlastOff! Bed (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/BlastOffBed.html).

The BlastOff! Special Edition DVD (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/3DCharacterAnimation.html#dvd) is also now available...


01-03-2007, 02:27 AM
big props on the piece. except the lens flare, nothing screams cheesy like those lens flares! especially from a light bulb!

01-03-2007, 11:36 AM
Thanks Stooch!

Some of the lens flares could certainly use a bit more restraint. ;)
Since this is my first 3D short, there are quite a few things that I'd improve on, in my next one...

BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) has also just been selected to screen at the Gem City Film Festival (http://www.gemfilmfest.com/) in Florida, Jan 19-20 2007.


01-09-2007, 10:41 AM
It looks like BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) will open the show at 6:30 PM Friday Night on Screen 1 (http://www.theatergeek.us/gemcity/gemcity/frisched.html) at the Gem City Film Festival (http://www.gemfilmfest.com/), January 19th. If anyone’s in the area, check it out.


01-17-2007, 10:04 AM
BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) has also just been selected to screen at the 10th Annual East Lansing Children's Film Festival (http://www.elcff.com/index.php). Feb 23-March 1, 2007.


01-18-2007, 08:23 AM
Congrats on the your short's sucesses! That's great stuff, and very inspiring!

02-05-2007, 10:58 AM
Congrats on the your short's sucesses! That's great stuff, and very inspiring!

Thanks McFilms! :thumbsup:


BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) has just been selected to screen at a few more film festivals:

Foursite Film Festival (http://www.foursitefilmfest.com/) in Ogden, Utah, February 28 - March 3, 2007
Opening the Family Films Program (http://www.foursitefilmfest.com/schedule.html), Saturday March 3, 1:30 PM

31st Annual Cleveland International Film Festival (http://clevelandfilm.org/) in Cleveland, Ohio
March 15 - 25, 2007

And the link to the East Lansing Children's Film Festival has changed:
10th Anniversary East Lansing Children’s Film Festival (http://www.elcff.com/) in Michigan
February 23 - March 1, 2007


02-05-2007, 01:57 PM
Jolly well done, Mike!

02-05-2007, 03:07 PM
Awesome - it's clearly a labour of love and it's great your hard work is being appreciated.

02-06-2007, 08:29 AM
Thanks guys!

BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) was also just shortlisted for a Webby Award (http://webbyawards.com/).

It's also screening at the Big **** Film Festival in Minneapolis, Minnesota - February 17 - 18, 2007. It's scheduled for Sunday, February 18, 9:55 PM in Room 2. The forum won't let the name or link go through though, since one word [DAM N] in the name and URL is apparently on a list of blacklisted forum words.


02-07-2007, 09:23 AM
Here's another festival screening for BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html):

The Other Venice Film Festival (http://www.othervenicefilmfest.com/) - Venice, CA - February 15 - 18, 2007 :thumbsup:

02-21-2007, 08:40 AM

Any fellow LightWavers who are going to be around Venice CA or North Hollywood CA in mid march, check out the LightWave 3D Animated Short Film - BlastOff! which is screening at the following California film festivals, one of which is free.

The Other Venice Film Festival (http://www.othervenicefilmfest.com/) - Venice, CA - March 15-18, 2007
(Previous posted date was incorrect)

San Fernando Valley International Film Festival (http://www.viffi.org/official_selections.cfm) - North Hollywood, CA
March 16-25, 2007 at Beverly Garland’s Universal Studios Hollywood Hotel (http://www.beverlygarland.com/)
All film screenings are open to the public and free.

Check the festival sites for specific screening times.


03-27-2007, 11:56 AM
BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) The LightWave 3D animated short film has been awarded additional official selections for upcoming film festivals...
Any fellow LightWaver's that will be in the areas, check out these new screenings!

Rebel Planet Short Film Festival of Hollywood (http://www.rebelplanet.com/schedule.html) - North Hollywood, CA
April 20-22, 2007 at Beverly Garland’s Universal Studios Hollywood Hotel

Bare Bones International Film Festival (http://www.barebonesfilmfestivals.org/) - Muskogee, OK - April 23-29, 2007
Animation Program (http://barebonesfilmfest00.tripod.com/schedule/id8.html) - Saturday, April 28, 10:30 AM at the Roxy

Danville International Children's Film Festival (http://dicff.org/) - Dublin, CA - May 18-20, 2007

Check the individual festival web sites for specific screening times.


04-10-2007, 09:41 AM
BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) has just been awarded a 2007 Official Honoree Webby Award (http://www.webbyawards.com/webbys/current_honorees.php?media_id=97) for animation by The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (http://www.iadas.net/).

DreamLight is thrilled to be selected within the top 15% of over 8,000 entries and honored to even be mentioned along side such esteemed fellow Webby Honorees including; CBS, NBC, BBC & MTV.


04-12-2007, 02:16 PM
Rock on!

05-16-2007, 09:30 AM
Thanks Bog! :rock:

BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) has just received a Best Animation Nomination from the Danville International Children's Film Festival (http://dicff.org/) which is screening the short at 10AM Saturday, May 19th and again at 10AM on Sunday, May 20th.

Any LightWavers in the Dublin, CA area, check it out. :beerchug:

05-20-2007, 03:11 AM
Outstanding work ! It can only strenghen my conviction that I made the good choice by buying LW !
Everything is fantastic in your movie : congratulations !

05-20-2007, 04:01 AM
Great work and congrats on the acclaim!

06-19-2007, 09:41 AM
Thanks CaptainMarlowe & musick! :thumbsup:

If anyone missed the HGTV segment on building the real BlastOff! Bed (Including a quick shot of manipulating the BlastOff! room from the short film on screen in LightWave 3D) and would still like to see it, it's airing again this Thursday, June 21'st, 2007 at 6PM ET/PT on HGTV's Look What I Did!

Check it out! :D

10-24-2007, 01:57 PM
DreamLight’s BlastOff! Wins Silver W3 Award (http://dreamlight.com/studio/pr/pr-blastoff-w3award.html) at the 2007 W3 Awards for Web Video - Animation :dance:

The making of the original BlastOff! Bed is also scheduled to air again on Look What I Did! (http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/shows_hlwid/episode/0,2756,HGTV_24156_47120,00.html) on Halloween night, Oct 31, at 5PM ET/ST on HGTV. Check it out if you haven't already, see if you can see the appearances made by both LightWave 3D and modo in the segment...


07-22-2008, 09:33 PM
I’m pleased to announce that I’ve just signed a book deal for Creating a 3D Animated CGI Short: The Making of The Autiton Archives - Fault Effect to be published in the Fall of 2009 by WordWare (http://www.wordware.com).

The book will follow the entire production process of creating a 3D animated CGI short, from concept to completion. I’ll be writing it as I go through the production process of my latest project, the pilot episode of The Autiton Archives titled Fault Effect.

If you’ve been following along in my various WIP threads about the project you’ll have a good idea of some of the topics that will be covered in much greater detail in the book. If there’s something you’d like detailed in the book, be sure to ask questions in the WIP threads (http://www.spinquad.com/forums/showthread.php?t=22321).

Stay tuned! :thumbsup:

http://www.dreamlight.com/media/graphics/insights/autitons/previews/DLI-Autiton-CoverPrev.jpg (http://www.dreamlight.com/media/graphics/insights/autitons/images/DLI-Autiton-Cover.jpg)

07-23-2008, 03:44 AM
Congrats man! :)

07-23-2008, 06:10 AM
Congrats, I've always enjoyed the unique visuals and it will be great to see this spring to life :thumbsup:

07-23-2008, 08:07 AM
Thanks guys! :thumbsup:

The publisher offered me the book deal based on how my first short, BlastOff! turned out. BlastOff! was really just a test that I did before starting production on the pilot episode of The Autiton Archives series. There'll be a chapter about BlastOff! in the book too. I'm looking forward to applying all I learned on BlastOff! to The Autiton Archives (http://www.dreamlight.com/insights/autitons/) pilot episode - Fault Effect, and beyond...

06-23-2009, 01:09 PM
Anyone with children in Detroit might be interested in seeing BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/insights/12/welcome.html) and other children's shorts being screened by the Detroit Windsor International Film Festival in their Children's Film Festival (http://www.dwiff.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=121&Itemid=123) at the Detroit Public Library on Saturday, June 27th 2009 with free films, workshops and crafts to introduce kids to the world of Film. BlastOff! was selected for screening based upon its previous screening at the 10th annual East Lansing Children's Film Festival (http://www.elcff.com/) in 2007.

Enjoy! :)

09-17-2009, 08:18 PM
BlastOff! was just selected as one of 60 films to screen out of 700 entrants at the New Hampshire Film Festival '09 (http://www.nhfilmfestival.com/index.html) in Portsmouth, NH during the weekend of Oct. 15-18. Anyone in the area, come on out to see BlastOff! (http://dreamlight.com/webshop/entertainment/blastoff.html) and many other films at the festival.

11-09-2009, 11:59 AM
BlastOff!'s NH Film Festival Screening (http://newhampshire.bside.com/2009/films/blastoff_newhampshire2009) went well. It was fun to actually attend the film's screening in a festival since this was the first (of 15 festival screenings) that was within driving distance. I gave a short Q&A session after the screening, which was fun as well.

Here's a promotional one-sheet about BlastOff! that I had prepared for the festival screening.

And here's a promotional one-sheet about my new short, Fault Effect along with my upcoming book: Creating a 3D Animated CGI Short scheduled for Jan. 2010, that I had also prepared for the festival.


CGI Addict
11-09-2009, 12:06 PM
Congrats Acazzino! Glad for you.

11-09-2009, 12:20 PM
Congrats Scazzino! Glad for you.

Thanks Michael! :thumbsup:

How's your short coming along?

CGI Addict
11-09-2009, 12:25 PM
It's on hold for the time being. I'm switching to Maya and Modo now and will be back on track a bit down the road. I've got other projects ahead of it right now though but I'm glad to hear you are doing well.

11-09-2009, 12:44 PM
Sounds good. I'll keep an eye out for it since I really liked the direction it was going in.

One of the primary things I focused on all the way through the book was how to actually get a short finished, since it's often much more work than anticipated, that's really the most difficult aspect of the entire process... staying on track and getting it done...

I used my own variation of the KISS principle... Keep It Simple and Stepping-forward. Keep simplifying the process, avoid chasing ever increasing tangents that take you off-track, and above all, keep making steady progress, no matter how small, until you're done... otherwise many such projects often stall out before reaching the finish line...

I also outlined a more streamlined, shotgun style, guerilla filmmaking process that's quite a bit different than the normal process used on large-scale productions.


CGI Addict
11-09-2009, 01:01 PM
A big part of the reason I started the short was to learn proper character animation. Along the way I've had to deal with the fact that studios are using Maya as a standard more or less. I decided that I would head over to Maya for this as it would allow me to learn CA and learn Maya at once.

I understand your points, coming from this as an eight year news artist I had to get work out rapidly and this is serving me well as I've learned to pick out and ignore distractions which could potentially become a drag on the project. I bought LW wayyyy back in '97 but really got into around '02. Recently I decided to go with Modo 401 for the rest of my modeling as it has pretty much everything built into it (paint, sculpting, cool modeling and selection tools, sweet renderer with close to real-time previewer, very easy and cool UV tools, etc.).

And so I've more or less been learning Modo and Maya these last two months. Check out my first go with Modo 401 at:


I'm building up my portfolio as I speak as I've become one of the unemployed. And yes, that has a bit to do with not spending too much on the short. I've got to get a gig first and I'll be back to it.

11-09-2009, 02:02 PM
I hear ya! :thumbsup:

One of the chapters in the book deals with funding a CGI short project through freelance client projects to both supply funds as well as to acquire hardware and software that you can use on both client projects and the short.

Sounds like you're following the right approach and I'll look forward to your project updates once you pick it up again!


12-18-2009, 01:40 PM
For any fans of BlastOff!™ still out there, I've finally gotten around to posting a full line of BlastOff! merchandise (http://www.zazzle.com/telebites?rf=238232057726282146) including T-shirts, hats, mugs, mousepads, prints, posters and a 2010 calendar. Check it out! :beerchug:
http://www.dreamlight.com/media/graphics/icns/BlastOff-MerchThumbSm.png (http://www.zazzle.com/telebites?rf=238232057726282146)