Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Empire of Complainery

It's out it's out it's out it's out i'ts out it's out it's out it's out 'its out

Warning: I'm extremely sleep deprived. This post has got to be the most tedious thing I've ever written, but that's entirely the point. You see, the tedium of reading it is a metaphor about how insanifying the last almost two years of production has been. Have been. But you probably won't understand that parallel without an art degree. Good thing I dropped out so I have no idea what I'm saying.

I started 'Empire of Sock' a long, long time ago. Decided to try my new compositing technique idea on the entire project to speed things up. Felt invincible because of the potential speed boost this process offered and overextended myself by making 'Empire' really complicated. Oh, it's Halloween already and I'm only beginning to color this? Hmm. I'll quickly compile a two minute preview and then go do 'Valentine's Day 2012'.

Click to enlarge. My revolutionary idea that I found out has been around for like a hundred years or something.
 Used a rough version of the compositing process on 'Valentine's Day 2012'. Took forever, it came out two months late. Huh. Wasn't this technique supposed to make me faster? A few more months coloring Sock. This sure is taking an eternity. Eternity thief. I begin to scan and composite the frames digitally (post-production) just to break up the tedium. I then notice how bad the earlier frames that I made for the preview look. The outlines are all jaggedy and have all sorts of problems. Waste a month or so  trying to fix them manually, to little avail.

Despair. Go back to coloring for a few months, occasionally stopping to scan in more batches of frames and struggle desperately to make them look nice in post-production. Slowly improving as the months go by. Things are starting to look up and then I realize it's December. Missed Halloween again. Time for 'Valentine's Day' again.


Spent a month on 'Spacelope', during which I finally figured out how to (relatively) quickly scan/composite/finish my frames. Go back to 'Empire'. Now that I've seen how good my work can look with this method, I see my old frames and how awful they look.

Despair. Spend several months going back over the entire project and using my now complete grasp on the compositing technique to make all the frames look pretty. Takes longer than it should because I have to correct my old mistakes along the way.


It's been over a year now. Frustration at only being 50% done with this. Decide to try out episodic releases to create the illusion that I'm getting more accomplished than I really am. It works. I feel invincible again. All the material for the first episode is ready to go.

But wait- since I'm retarded and think I'm ahead of schedule somehow, why not go back and add new content? Feverishly animate tons of new frames to scatter throughout the first two minutes that I already previewed. Animate an entirely new opening sequence. So much time has passed that my animating skills have improved noticeably. Now I have to go in and completely reanimate crappy scenes that I feel are below my current level.

Isn't stained glass cool? I should put stained glass shots in the intro. Draw them on full sized sheets of paper and everything. All of this is fine, I'll be done in no time and start pumping out episodes like nobody's business.

Seven months pass. Whoops. My computer pronounces that as 'hoops'. I finally dig my way out of the grave I created for myself, and for the first time in almost two years, manage to not hurl myself back into it on a whim. I've slept maybe ten hours in the last seventy-two. But it's done. Finally done.

Oh. Only a third done, actually. Well, that's okay. I have discovered things about sleep. It doesn't have to control us, it's just that as children, they condition you to think that it does. The good news is that in that convoluted, horrible mess, I've already completed significant chunks of the other two episodes. Because of the nightmare of Episode 1, I'm barely going to add any new content to Episode 2. Maybe. Can't control myself. It will probably be a little underwhelming compared to #1 because of this, but hopefully it's not too noticeable.

In closing, after 'Empire' is finished, animations will take a long time as always, but nothing like the nuclear train derailment that's occurred over the last two years.

Until next time!
(Various Sock pottery made by my mom)

1 comment:

Blibdoolpoolp said...

I'd be upset about a lack of updates, but... every time I come here and scroll through those pictures of the Sock pots, I can't help but smile and wish I could find that cookie jar on amazon or something.