Saturday
Jun302012

Featured on SketchBook News Blog

Wow - I was just featured on Autodesk's SketchBook News blog for my work as artist on The Lifecode Missions. I never dreamed my stuff would be featured on a genuine and respected site like that! Woo! Happy!

Chris Cheung from Autodesk is a big supporter of the art community. Big props to those guys (and again to the guys at Imaginism).

Thursday
Jun072012

The Popularity of Venus

As you may know, a big astronomical event transpired on June 5th, something that won't happen again for more than 100 years. Venus slipped between us and the Sun for a few brief moments.

Historically, this was an important event, as astronomers could observe the transit from different locations on the earth, and from that, determine the distance between the earth and the sun - one Astronomical Unit or AU. This was big news - so much so, that rather dangerous expeditions were launched to send astronomers to far flung locations just to gather this data... people were risking their lives for it.

Even today, we are still gleaning important information from this event. On June 5th, astronomers gathered data which will help them better determine features of exoplanets going forward - not just the existence of such, but potentially their size and the characteristics of their atmospheres. Pretty cool.

But even cooler was that there was so much interest in Toronto to watch this twice-in-a-lifetime event. Rocky and I live across from University of Toronto's Varisty Stadium, which is currently undergoing an ugly field replacement, so we were surprised to see a line forming. By 6:00, thousands of people were filing into the stadium.

Rocky looked it up and discovered that UofT was hosting a Transit of Venus viewing at the stadium, which was happily situated to allow for perfectly clear viewing of the sun at the precise time of day of the transit. They were also giving out free Transit (or Eclipse) glasses so you could watch it directly.

We were just so impressed with our fellow Torontonians for their interest in this spacetacular event. It's heartwarming to know that observing scientific events can fill stadiums. Good on ya people.

We were lucky enough to run over before they'd run out of glasses, so we got to check it out ourselves. I have to admit it was pretty hard to see Venus... it was like the head of a pin against the disc of the sun. But it was still cool to see.

Here are some pictures we took of the event.

And how cool are those glasses? Well, thousands of people suddenly wanted to wear them, so... very cool then?

 

Sunday
May272012

Schoolism: from Dumbfounded to Dumbremoved

As yesterday was my birthday, I gave myself a weekend pass to Schoolism Toronto 2012 featuring workshops by such famed greats as Anthony Jones (God of War, Magic: the Gathering, etc), Jason Seiler (Rolling Stone, TIME, Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, etc), and Alex Woo and Louis Gonzalez (The Iron Giant, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, etc). The event was sponsored by Autodesk (who also provided the swank digs along with probono copies of the awesome Sketchbook Pro) and Seneca College, and was MC'd by Schoolism's ridiculously talented Bobby Chiu.

Two words: Awe. Some.

If you ever get a chance to attend such an event, do it. You won't be dissappointed. In a few hours I feel like I've learned a year's worth. If you can't attend, Schoolism has an amazing online course system that sounds like it kicks - each week you learn from a professional, do a homework assignment, then wait while the instructor produces a custom video for you, where they draw right over your artwork and explain where to improve. It's like having a permanent copy of an in-class lesson (which, if your memory is anything like mine, that's good).

Many thanks to everyone involved, and a special nod to Chris Cheung from Autodesk and the inspiration himself Bobby Chiu, both of whom I hope to be working with again real soon now (it's kinda cool that all this is happening in my T.O.)

Friday
Apr272012

Claystone v1.22 Posted - With Amaz[on]ing Goodness

We just posted v1.22 of our hot Android Launcher App, Claystone. It's uber-sexy. This version includes Amazon content, right on your home page. Don't want to dig around to find a movie to watch? Just hit Home. It's all right there.

It's totally free, so be sure to check it out. And if you like it, please give us a good rating!

Sunday
Apr222012

Photo Editing - Before and After

Rocky is a kickass boxer, and was recently filmed by a friend while schooling some new guy at the gym. The stills from the video that her friend sent her were quite grainy so I thought I'd give them a Photoshop once-over.

Here she is, landing a solid hook on her hapless victim... before and after my Photoshoppery.

You see why I do my best not to get on her bad side!

And come on... camo boxing gloves.