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Member Since 26 Jul 2006
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In Topic: Best platform/cms for a portfolio website?

20 April 2015 - 07:37 AM

Harry. Come back. Do want.

Stop playing with your kids or doing charity work or saving kittens or whatever you're doing. Rain down your glorious knowledge and cleanse the unwashed masses.

In Topic: Long Overdue

20 April 2015 - 07:22 AM

I have a cat avatar!

If I may say so, your intro is really lovely. It's personalized, stylish, and well-made, and I'm immediately sold that you have solid design sensibilities, a filmic underpinning to your work, good taste and the chops to execute it. But then you inexplicably follow it with something that breaks that expectation with this kind of messy, heavily compressed, harshly-colored design mosh that's reminiscent of commercial work that was trendy quite a few years ago now. Maybe that's because it's actually older work, and older work is in no way unwelcome, but this work doesn't hold up to the expectation set up by your intro. You're telling us we're about to see something artful, and then you're hitting us with paint splat mattes from '05. There's a momentum of inspiration built by your intro, so maybe there's a way to keep that momentum going instead of blasting right into the NBA 2K splat matte fiesta. I feel like I got my feet massaged in an art gallery and then someone dropped a stack of jpegged hip hop flyers on my head. :D


I also feel like your pacing is generally pretty good, and there's real intention behind your editing, like in the Land of Vree cuts and the Nick Jr. spot. And that kind of thing really brings this piece alive. Although there are a couple of spots where you're letting some cuts hang out and overstay their welcome, like the Deus Ex title, which has an interesting and active build, but is finished showing us anything about two seconds before you move on. And I think that comic book punch kid is timed out really well to the audio, but it's at a point in the track where it has no energy to back it up. The audio itself is a bit underwhelming for the pace at which you've decided to cut, which makes the piece a little dischordant, but I think the intentionality and playfulness of your editing makes it work in most cases. I will say, though, that either because of vimeo's poor audio sync during playback, or the timing of your cuts, most of the cuts are a frame or two early so you're not getting the full benefit of audio and visual dancing together. They're dancing real sloppy. You might want to first check your own render to see if it's any different on your site.


Lastly, does the CBS spot feel like it's what you want to go out on? I would assume you have a bucket of things to choose from after 8 years, whereas something like the bendy "argument" text doesn't seem as sophisticated as you're capable of, and that's the taste you're leaving on our mouths when this is all over. Sure we get a little after dinner mint with a throwback to your intro, but it's still there, lingering.


This is a pretty good presentation, overall. Site looks great too, cuts through unnecessary bullshit, and knows what's important. I'm citing the downsides, for the sake of betterment, but you should feel pretty good about it, and I imagine you do!

In Topic: Introduction via my Reel for 2015 - Alex Braddock

14 April 2015 - 09:52 PM

It IS a long road, an endless road. But thankfully, it's a road you like walking. So it's less of a burden, and more of a challenge.


One thing I'll say quickly, is what you're already coming around to realizing, which is that art and design are going to be hugely important to what you do on the production side of things. And when it's not, you're going to be unsatisfied and reeeeeeeal bored, as you've found. So start taking every opportunity to soak in as much of that as possible. Look to traditional sources of knowledge on those subjects, and look at everything that inspires you and deconstruct it to figure out what makes it so good. The tools are important, but you can know how to use all of the tools in the toolshed and still not know how to make anything you love, which is frustrating. The more you understand the design side, the more empowered you are to make the things you really want to make.

In Topic: How essential is a degree?

04 April 2015 - 09:43 PM

I'm currently one year into my bachelor degree in digital media design. So far it has been really basic. I basically do personal projects where I meet up with the lecturer once a week to get some quick feedback. I dont really participate in class, as we just went through what a keyframe is..

So you're saying you're not getting anything out of it, partly because it's beneath you, partly because you choose not to get anything out of it. Why are you in that program in the first place? Bad gamble? What were you looking for, and can you actually find it there or are you set against it? Don't waste your time if you're unwilling or unable to benefit from the expense and effort.


As for the degree, you'll find a few differing opinions regarding the value of having one in this industry. I've never found the piece of paper to be in any way useful, but would be nowhere without having had the education. But that's because the proof of my value is in my portfolio. It serves as my resumé, CV, and business card, but I wouldn't have my current portfolio without the education. I'd probably have a shit portfolio. But "motion graphics" is a broad set of disciplines, and there are lots of professions under its umbrella, some of which may be harder to prove your worth in via a portfolio solely. But honestly, I don't know what those professions are. Any position that involves making stuff is essentially a position where you're making evidence of your skillset and your value. Present that evidence, and who cares where you went to school?  


My perspective is that you don't ever want to be (as sbtread put it) "competing for the same job with a pool of other talented artists/animators" and NOT have anything that sets you apart. In the case where it literally comes down to who has what degree because there's no clear way to distinguish between you, you've already missed the boat. Because if a client or employer can't tell you apart from someone else, it means either 1) that employer has low visual acuity and you want to avoid them at all cost because you won't grow or prosper under their untutored direction or 2) you have no unique artistic voice to differentiate you. And if that's the case, then you're doing the same thing everyone else is doing, which makes you a tradesman, not an artist. And presumably you got into this because you like making art, not because you wanted a trade. That's just not typically why people get into this particular industry in any serious way. There are plenty of closely related professions that are more attractive as trades, like being a Flame compositor, that are satisfying and pay well, but someone like yourself who does personal projects in your chosen field is likely not going to be interested in engaging in that field as a tradesman. 


Bottom line: If there are cases where the actual degree has some value to you, that value is slight and probably orders of magnitude less than whatever you're paying for school. The reason you pay for school is for the guidance, the collaboration with similarly interested minds, and the resources, so that you can eventually do good work that subsequently evidences your value in the profession. If you're not getting all of that, then make a change. Either a change in how you use the resources you're paying for, or a change in the resources themselves. Either change your attitude, or change your education. Maybe both.

In Topic: New spot for music, ready for your next video

01 April 2015 - 07:38 AM

Oh buddy that's awesome. I'm doing these tutorials/videos/whatevers and I might just have to put 'em on there and get the word out.