Thursday, June 25, 2009

Red Dead Redemption

Red Dead Redemption Screenshot
Although Red Dead Redemption is Rockstar San Diego's follow-up to 2004's Red Dead Revolver, it has new characters and a new story. It is my current project, and contains an enormous world full of dangerous situations for your character John Marston. It will be on the Xbox 360 and the PS3, but currently doesn't have an official release date. You can read more about it on other websites, and here is the debut trailer:
I'll follow up with more videos and news about RDR as they come out. The official website is here:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Midnight Club: Los Angeles/South Central

Midnight Club: Los Angeles (2008)

I was the Lead Cutscene Animator for MC:LA. This put me in charge of coordinating cutscene assembly, mocap editing, laying down and polishing camera shots, importing and tweaking facial animations (the original files were from Image Metrics), placing/animating pedestrians in cutscenes, and script editing files associated with the cutscenes. The "What'you here for? Race some cars, man" shots were part of the first cutscene. In the beginning of the project I also animated and polished driving animation sets for some of the vehicles. The game was a 2008 Video Game Award nominee for "Best Racing Game."

Midnight Club: South Central Downloadable Content (2009)

For MC:SC, I was in charge of the new vehicle animation sets as well as setting up the character animations and cutscenes for the new "hangouts" and the new garage.

See all Midnight Club Los Angeles/South Central Videos:
Official site:

Rockstar Games Presents: Table Tennis

Rockstar Games Presents: Table Tennis (2006)

RSTT was my first project with Rockstar San Diego. I was mainly doing mocap editing of shots and navigation, with a combination of keyframing certain shots as well as a few short between-point cutscenes. The game was a lot of fun to make and involved many real-life table tennis games between the developers (after all, animators have to know these moves inside and out). The game ended up being nominated for a 2006 Video Game Award for "Best Sports Game."

See more Rockstar Table Tennis Videos here:
Official site:

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lady in the Water

Lady in the Water. 1998. Oil Pastel. 22"x28".

This piece was done on black paper with white oil pastel, and is a copy of a photograph from National Geographic magazine. It was of a statue that was just excavated, and it was bundled and lowered in a pool of water. This pastel drawing won a ribbon in a county fair art show.

Pope vs. Castro

Pope vs. Castro. 1999. Pen and Ink. 22"x17".

This was another piece taken from a National Geographic article and copied in pen and ink. If I could do it over again I would lighten up Castro's skin tone, since he's hard to recognize with the heavy hatchwork.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Kaiju Gaijin Kaijin

Kaiju Gaijin Kaijin. 2001. Maya.

Sony was a classmate of mine at the Vancouver Film School, and asked me to help out with the animation on the intro to his student reel, "Kaiju Gaijin Kaijin" (he handled everything else). It was fun to get more experience with Maya, since my reel was all done in Softimage.

Tao Feng: Lip Synchs

"I've been waiting for you, now let's dance."

"Forged by revenge and tempered by fire-the Phoenix will always burn bright!"

Lip Synch animations for Tao Feng were done using Lightwave visemes. These two videos show the Jade Dragon and Fiery Phoenix characters during a warmup and a victory cutscene scenario.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Tao Feng: Throw Cleanup

Raw mocap.

Cleaned-up mocap.

In Game capture.

My first job after film school was working as a 3D Animator for Chicago developer Studio Gigante. Their first project was Tao Feng: Fist of the Lotus, a fighting game exclusively for the Xbox. It was a great learning experience that gave me experience in areas like mocap refinement, cutscene animation, and lip synch/facial animation. This sequence of videos shows the raw motion capture progressing to cleanup, then to how it looks in game.

Robot & Pit Droid

Robot & Pit Droid. 2004. Maya.

Short segmented scenario using a couple borrowed models. I added a wet dog shake to the Robot as he reaches his master, the Pit Droid. I handled the Animation and Rigging.

LAISFF Commercial

LAISFF Commercial (Sci Fi Channel). 2001.

Along with Vancouver Film School classmates Ian Cumming (modeling, texturing) and Mark Driver (compositing), I worked on the storyboarding and animation for a promo and commercial for the Los Angeles International Short Film Festival. The festival flew Mark and I down to L.A. for the premiere and we got to hear David Hyde Pierce laugh from behind us during the promo.


Reference images of Obo-San character from comic "The Path." Art by Bart Sears.

Obo-San with battle gear. 2004. Maya.

I'd long enjoyed "The Path" and when I had some spare time to try out some modeling in Maya, I took some images of the main monk character in his armor and built him. The original idea was to make two other soldiers that he would fight in a short film, but my time was cut short before it came to rigging.

Bjork: Bachelorette

Bjork: Bachelorette. 1999. Oil on Canvas. 14"x30".
This is the first piece I painted with a synaesthesia motif, a phenomenon where music and text are assigned inherent colors. The condition exists for a small number of people, which I learned during my research on a paper in college. In making the Bjork painting, I would close my eyes, listen to her song again and again, and create shapes that represented each part of the song. After that, I would assign each shape a color that best represented the sound to me. The final piece is a straightforward portrait of the Icelandic singer Bjork surrounded by swirling colored shapes that each represent an instrument or sound effect in the song. Here is the key to each shape:

light blue line: vocals
orange lines: violins
green shapes: "scratchy" sound effect
red line: piano
purple shapes: bass
maroon dots: jingle bell

The shapes along the "song stream" were placed with respect to when they actually are heard during the song's timeline. It is my goal to do a series of paintings using this concept, through the lenses of different artists and songs.

I didn't have an easel or worktable in my college dorm, so I had to put the canvas on my bunkbed and paint it while standing. It makes me appreciate my current drafting table all the more.

To hear the song, click the link below. Try isolating each layer of sound in your mind as you listen, and see what shape and color appears for you:

Bachelorette (Family Tree Version) - Bjork