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Blog posts from October 2012

Happy Halloween!

Creepy things that creepeth, spooky things that spooketh, eerie things that… er… eereth.

All of these will be creeping, spooking and eerieing (I really should’ve chosen another word) on this day. Well, more to the point, a load of kids will be wandering around the globe asking for sweets. And some folks’ houses will get egged. Tradition, eh?

Anyway, to mark Halloween I wanted to draw a piccie for you to enjoy (well, I say enjoy…). I wasn’t sure whether to do a cute one or a slightly more unpleasant one. After some head-scratching, and the realisation that I had an excellent opportunity for some procrastination-from-Uni-work action, I decided to draw both. 🙂

The Cute One

Squmpkin

Yep, it’s Squage in a Pumpkin. The “Squmpkin”, as it is otherwise known. Pheel The Phear!

The Slightly More Unpleasant One

Slightly Unwell Gentleman

(Originally drawn with margin lines on the character, I took these away late on and rather enjoyed the look, and threw some textures over it all to add a bit more creepiness.)

Right, I’d best go back to designing app screens. Before I do, just a quick reminder that you can grab your eBook or audio book of Burly and Grum’s Halloween Adventure (it’s more along the lines of the first of my two pictures!) to read to or play to your kids!

Farewell… see you on the other side…

Pat

Posted on Wed 31 Oct in Creative,Fun with No Comments

Burly and Grums’ Halloween Adventure – Audio Book!

Hellooooooo!

Well, the spooky season continues today with the release of a free short story for children: Burly and Grum’s Halloween Adventure.

This is part of the fantastic series of Burly and Grum books by Kate Tenbeth, which revolve around their many adventures and mishaps. A cast of characters assist them through their adventures.

Burly and Grum’s Halloween Adventure sees them teaming up with their friend Max to go trick or treating for the first time… and things don’t quite turn out how they were expecting!

There’s a book and an audio book version for you to read/listen to. I recommend it – it’s really good fun. 🙂

What’s Your Involvement?

I am the voice of the audio book! Yep, it’s my first foray into the world of audio books (recording/editing in my studio), and I hope you enjoy what I’ve come up with!

How Can I Listen?

Either stream it here using the player below, or click on the “Download” button on the player to grab a copy to listen to where and whenever:

Is There A Non-Audio Book Version?

Sure is! You can read via the Burly and Grum web site or the Burly and Grum Facebook Page, both of which will let you find out more about Kate, the characters and browse through the existing catalogue of stories.

Let me know what you think!

Bye for noooooooooooooooooooooowwww,

Pat

Posted on Sat 20 Oct in Audio Book,Creative,Voice,Work with Comment (1)

Drawing a Creepy, Faded Picture

Hellooooo,

We are well and truly in the spooky season now: the supermarkets are full of Halloween tat, it’s Beach of the Dead in Brighton on Saturday and I walked past two girls dressed as zombies at Brighton station today.

To mark this, I decided to draw a slightly creepy face:

I then thought it might be quite fun to convert that into what looks like an old, faded picture that might be found on the floor of an abandoned mansion.

This was performed through some background brush painting, some picture smoothing, pattern overlays and brightness/contrast/hue/saturation/colour balance modifications:

Et voila:

An Odd Old Drawing

Not sure where those odd lines to the right came from, mind. Odd.

Happy Spooky Season!

Pat

Posted on Fri 19 Oct in Creative with Comment (1)

Sssh! Aliens!

[Whispered] Hi, thanks for popping over… now, as you know, we’ve got to keep it down because… oh no, HE’S RIGHT ABOVE US!

What on Earth am I talking about? Well, the second week’s homework for the awesome Adobe Animation Course I’m doing:

To explain: we were given the challenge of building on a brief animation we’d been taught to do, featuring a UFO shape motion-tweening towards the planet Earth.

I decided to expand on the tweening techniques, add a bit of humour to it and add some Scullion-Cartoon-Stylings to the UFO. It took just over 2 hours, and despite it not being the most amazing thing in the world, I’m pretty happy with it.

Hope you like it too!

More animations to come as I continue to learn extra bits. Oh and as an aside, I decided to animate Squage walking blomping on and off screen:

Yet another step in the “Squage Computer Game” prep, which is being helped by the continued work on the Adobe Game Design course I’m also on.

Fun times!

Pat

Posted on Tue 16 Oct in Animation,Creative,Fun with Comments (2)

Font EError?

Howdy howdy!

If you live in the UK, you’ve probably heard the rumblings about “4G” mobile coverage. It’s going to be fast and modern. Very fast and super modern, in fact.

Initially, a company called Everything Everywhere (a.k.a. “EE”; a joint venture between France Telecom (Orange) and Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile)) will be the only ones providing this service.

They’re ahead of the pack, super modern and offering something that’s very fast.

Super modern, it’ll be.
And very fast.

So, we’ve got these things clear, right?

Super modern?
Very fast?

Ok, good.

Now, next question:

Would you reflect this with a font for your brand that screams “OH MY GOD I’VE GOT MEASLES”?

No?

Oh dear.

EE Web Site

Eek.

Pat

P.S. I could provide a slightly more sensible critique of the font choice (the issues regarding readability of sans-serif, bobbly, ALL CAPS text with tight kerning between words, for example), but I’m feeling a little ill so instead I’m going to have some Lemsip. It’s very fast.

P.P.S. For the record, I would use blinking pink italic Comic Sans. Did I mention I’m feeling a little ill?

Posted on Tue 09 Oct in Fun,Review,Technology,Thoughts with Comments (3)

Online Games and Animation Courses

Imagine a Dingbats card, featuring the following:

D
R
O
W

Well, that’s my greeting to you today. I thought I’d counter any “attempt to be cool” through the use of a Dingbats device to convey it.

This week I’ve started a couple of online courses, courtesy of Adobe Generation.

How They Work

They’re 10 week long courses, primarily focusing of a weekly 1 hour interactive online lecture that comes complete with guest speakers, live chat room, on-screen tutorials and more. Alongside this are various resources such as weekly lecture notes and an online forum to share ideas and ask questions. It’s really very good!

You have weekly assignments, so it keeps you engaged in it – and the great thing with it being online is that if you miss a couple of weeks you can catch up (both using the resources and also a recording of the interactive lecture) easily.

These are largely introductions to the principles of each subject, but they seem to be going into enough detail to get one off and running.

Oh and the best thing? It’s completely free. Boom.

Games Design

As you’re probably aware, I’m working on making a Squage-based platform game in my spare time, so when this course appeared I jumped at the chance to get on it. We’ll be making a Flash-based (yeah, I know) simple platform game (oh, hello!), and learning about the many aspects of how to make a great computer game.

I’ve no examples to show you yet, other than a static screen with some rectangles on, so I’ll perhaps leave showcasing my work ’til a future week.

Animation

This is something I used to love doing when I was a kid, but for some reason I just drifted away from it over the years. Well, recently I’ve remembered how much I enjoy it (see the walk cycle animation post for more on that!).

So again, this course has come at the right time. In our first week we were taught about making a very simple stick man wander on screen, and learned about the term “boiling” to describe that Rhubarb and Custard / Salad Fingers effect of “shaky lined objects” in an animation.

Our assignment was to make our own “stick man walking on screen” animation, and to add our own little extra to it. So… I decided to do this:

Right, back to scaring myself with old Salad Fingers episodes…

Pat

Posted on Thu 04 Oct in Animation,Creative,Fun with Comments (2)

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