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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Class recap, site navigation and homework

After the bombardment of information yesterday during our first class I just wanted to mention a few things again.

First off, if you have any questions regarding the way this class is structured, or how to present your work, etc. please check out the Class F.A.Q. If you questions that are answered on there, let me know and I'll add the answers to that post.

I recommend that you browse through this site in general in order to figure out what is where and how this site works. In general you will have all the new posts on your left and relevant links on your right. The posts can range from silly stuff to class critique to lectures. Check out the first few pages (there's about a post a day I would, average, sometimes more, sometimes less). Two posts you should check out no matter what are the Spring 2007 and Fall 2007 Class Summaries, specifically the posts under the "To-Do List & Lectures" and "Animation Techniques, Tools, Notes & Examples" because a lot of useful notes are in there that you need to soak up. For a general reality-check of this industry, refer to "Time and Effort".

First off, please scan or take a picture of your school ID or any other picture that you have of yourself, as long as I can see your face, don't send me any pictures of your feet... :) and email it to me. Please use animate (at) jeandenis.net. Every now and then you might get an email from me through my work account, but please reply using the animate address, because I can check that account all the time. If you send me something to work in the evening I won't be able to look at it until the next day, also emails with attachments (like .zips) will get rejected. If you have any nicknames, let me know as well.

Second homework is a bouncing ball assignment. Yes, yes, boring old bouncing balls. No matter how good you are, I'd like to see them balls. A heavy one (bowling ball), a medium one (generic bouncy ball) and a light one (either super bouncy or balloon). I prefer to get one clip with all three balls in it (don't forget the frame counter). The complexity of the shot is up to you, over achievers are always welcome. :)
You can have all three balls fall and bounce straight down. Or you can have them bounce from left to right. Maybe treat the edges of the video clip as walls and have the balls bounce off those walls. And maybe as they bounce back they collide with each other. Want to add tails to all the balls? Feel free. No matter what you do, try to push yourself, never settle for the average. I'd like to see a final version by next week, so think about how much work you can fit into a week. Whatever you do, have it polished, no blocking.

If you have (separate) clips from previous classes, you can send me those of course (which is the only exceptions for the rest of the semester, I won't accept homework from other classes - if you think that you won't be able to put in at least 10 hours a week for this class (which is the minimum according to the syllabus), please consider switching classes. I really encourage you to work hard and 10 hours should be daily input, not weekly. ... I'm kidding! ... or am I?).

As mentioned yesterday, the moment you are done with your clip, feel free to email it to me (with a link or an attachment, again, check out the F.A.Q. for file requirements). There's no need to wait and waste time. It's not a requirement though. I don't expect you guys to show me work during the week. The minimum critique is once a week during class. But I want to give you the option to move on at your own pace, so if you're fast, take advantage of that.

Next week we will all sit together and have dailies. I actually wouldn't call the class "workshoppy" because you won't work on your assignments during class with me walking around ready for questions. We will critique each clip together and I will provide lectures, just like any other class. The only difference is that I will combine critiques with lectures. Instead of doing an hour lecture and then moving on to critiques and then running out of time (although I do anyway...), I will go right into critiques and then explain shot fixes through mini lectures. That way I can cover a wider range and save more time.

But again, if you have questions, suggestions, recommendations, complaints, bribes, blackmails, etc. let me know. I want you to get the most out of this class as possible. Speaking of bribes. Top of the line Blu-ray player will get you an A. :)

Alright, enough drilling. Welcome to the class!


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