Saturday, 13 December 2008

main website back!

now on free hosting

Saturday, 6 December 2008

rigging hamster in Bolt movie

quite interesting article about tackling common problems with rigging walking mouse-type character. Mainly about rigging deformation of the model. Conclusion - more muscles or fat = more difficult :)

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

3 week Maya classes in Prague for 200 Euro

just send email with your reel and CV for chance to be chosen for discount classes:
Spafi website

Monday, 24 November 2008

nVidia physX demo

really cool demo of nVidia PhysX hardware accelerated engine for dynamic simulations like cloth or rigid bodies in upcoming Mirror`s Edge game:

Thursday, 13 November 2008


Reusing Cars`s Mater and Lighting McQueen characters, small team at Pixar led by Victor Navone made 3 funny episodes in less than a year production. I wish CARS movie, although it`s quite good, had more of this silliness and surprising things like here:

Friday, 24 October 2008

XSI becomes Autodesk asset

well, even though I`m Maya user I always liked XSI being Maya`s competitor but also inspiration. As XSI would be under Maya selling company, I`m not sure how this competition would work in future:

Autodesk states, they want to preserve XSI product line:

Petit commented: “As we have demonstrated since the acquisition of Alias in 2006, we’re committed to giving our customers choice when it comes to their 3D tools. We plan to maintain and grow the Softimage product line, and through Autodesk FBX provide better interoperability between Softimage products, 3ds Max and Autodesk Maya.

Definitely technologies will merge once again and data exchange between the two packages could be better with new versions of FBX. Welcome to the club XSI users! :-P
I have to admit that before Alias was aquired by Autodesk, Maya was missing proper modeling tools and major updates of animation tools. Waiting for this was endless, but under Autodesk these tools got much improved.

Friday, 17 October 2008

travel to U.S. without visa soon for Czech Republic

Czech Republic might soon become part of Visa Waiver Program.The estimate date speculations are on historic day 17.11., which reminds the end of communistic regime in former Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic and Slovakia) in 1989. Read more in this article in czech or this one in english.
Other countries to be accepted are Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Slovakia and Hungary, as well as South Korea.

Animation Mentor Industry Report

Animation Mentor has recently released Animation Industry Report, which covers
  • job satfisfaction
  • carreer outlook
  • and salaries

I`ve quickly checked it and it seem that the industry is getting bigger, which sounds good in recent worldwide financial crisis and that people generaly like what they do, which is great. What`s interesting it shows only 3% of participants were Technical Directors. I think too few TDs were involved in survey or they signed as Other (21%) otherwise there would be lack of TDs. I think they should have broken down types of jobs more and add lighters, fx, riggers etc. Animator is equal to lighter, but I think Animation Mentor was a bit biased as it`s focused on animators, not lighters or other jobs.

Petra Štefánková

Petra, artist/animator, originally from Slovakia, has been awarded EXPOSÉ 6 Master Award for Abstract & Design. Congratulations! :)
I like advances in abstract art in 3D and Petra`s work is one of my favorites. Here is interview with her on Cg Society.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Kozí Příběh

First czech cg feature "Kozí Příběh" hits cinemas 16.10. Obviously it doesn`t reach the quality of current movies like Kung-Fu Panda or Wall.E, but made by 10 people and for the first time in czech environment it`s an achievement that such project made it into a cinema. Hopefully it will not be long until a work on next movie starts again and this time with more experienced team.
This is a link to trailer of Kozí Příběh.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

2 riggers of the week ;)

there are lots of talented people in the industry, I thought I would point out two of them here, as my friend sent me this demo of bi-directional constraining from Andrea Maiolo, who with Tim Nailor also released 2 DVDs about this topic (partI, partII):
html with quicktime video (sound goes off few times)

Then I found Maiolo was nominated Maya Master 2008 and here`s some info that surprised me, it says he built new skinning paradigm in Maya after ILM converted to new software (I guess Zeno) and that he also programmed simple 3d spinning visualisation of a car before going to college. Well done! :) More about ILM skinning in links below...

Tim Nailor`s perspective of rigger in ILM (2003)
It looks like, meawhile he moved with few other ex-ILMs over to head Character Development in new Lightstream Animation Studios, siggraph link.

If you want to see both guys under bright Californian sun talking about their excitement for their work and some interesting thoughts, download this quicktime from 3december 2005 archive.

And this is really nice portion of links on Maiolo`s website, some candy for riggers, check it out... plus Siggraph 2005 class about Starwars EpIII character pipeline pdf...

Friday, 26 September 2008

Bohemian 3D, 17.-22.11 Prague, Czech Republic

animation workshops with guests like Isaac Kerlow and Kyle Balda (animation mentor, ILM, PIXAR)

porn & animation

porn video with animation layered over, very funny!

first 3d animation school in Czech Republic

Apart from old style animation or multimedia universities in Czech Republic there is now SPAFi Animation Academy in Prague for learning Maya and related software which opened 25.9. with software support by Autodesk.
It offers 3 different courses ranging from
6 weeks for 3290 EU ~ 81.000 Kc to 12 weeks 5690 € ~ 140.000 Kc.

I think it can be quite expensive for a czech student, but maybe attractive for those coming from abroad as they are cheaper than competition. Although the quality of courses will probably be lower level as well.

For comparison:
Gnomon School "Maya Fast Track" 9 weeks $9425 ~ 6870 € ~ 170.000 Kc
Escape Studios `most courses` 12 weeks £8500 ~ 10.633 € ~ 260.000 Kc
(online) Animation Mentor "Class 1" 12 weeks $3000 ~ 2210 € ~ 54.600 Kc

Gnomon and Escape are more expensive but they offer instructors of very high level and high chance of getting hired in top industry studios. Also Gnomon and Escape names are well known schools.
Also Gnomon together with Animation Mentor offer
online courses with feedback from instructors at even cheaper prices.
The advantage of Spafi Animation Academy could be czech language of some instructors for czech students. But as mentioned, it`s mainly lower price of lessons for students who could consider Gnomon and similar schools. Also lower expenses taking lessons in Prague and not having to travel far compared to London area or U.S.

It`s a first school of its kind in Czech Republic - good luck!

Monday, 8 September 2008

How Pixar Fosters Collective Creativity

nice article written by Ed Catmull, Pixar/Disney executive. I think it`s worth reading for anyone who is interested in 3d animation production, studio management and human recources.

Saturday, 23 August 2008

GDS 2008

I`ll have a talk at GDS 2008 in Brno, Czech Republic on 13.9. Organiser asked me to cover mostly the problematics of moving to a different country for cg artist job. Later I might outline general character animation pipeline workflow (not MPC specific).
This will be open to questions from audience anytime.

Here is inteview with the founder of GDS (czech)

90 degrees

I`ve met some guy this week in pub and friend told me that he did 90degrees short film. I didn`t pay much attention since there are lots 3d artists who did their short films. Today I found out that it`s the animation which has blown me away more than 2 years ago, one of the best artistic use of 3d animation I`ve seen so far. Genius stuff. Also the use of music and its connection with motion is pretty good. So this is just little reminder of that movie:

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Wednesday, 23 July 2008


as a big id software fan I`m posting this link to the trailer of their latest game project RaGE
The design looks like mix of MadMax, Blade Runner and Star Wars. Maybe other films I can`t remember now. It looks really cool. They moved from alien claustrophobic coriddors (and HR Giger design), being long time inspiration for the guys from Mesquite. But I think they will still keep it close to their satanic-cyber roots as well :) It would be a shame if they wouldn`t.
More stuff: trailer 2

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Autodesk Maya learning tool updates

quite interesting page on Autodesk website I found accidentaly, at the bottom there are 4 complete 2004 Maya Master Classes for download...

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Framestore`s Desperaux

Trailer for Framestore`s first full cg feature The Tale of Desperaux is here!

It seems they are aiming "ratatouille" high. Design, shading and animation look really nice. Let`s see in december if the story is good as well and how it will do in box office (which in the end matters the most). Fingers crossed!

Tuesday, 24 June 2008


I`m excited that my friend Roman Vrbovsky spent his first day in his new job at Glassworks, London. All best for your future Roman!
This is links to some of his work: - contributed as lighter

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Monday, 19 May 2008

maya 2008 extensions

No big news for those who are using Maya. Still very exciting stuff to see coming from Autodesk these days when you are a rigger :) This is link to documentation of Maya Muscles and some really useful additions. I think it was time to make muscles and other more advanced skinning techniques available in Maya as standard toolset to any production. I`m sure it will raise the standard for quality of character animation.

autodesk link

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Tippet Studios animation pipeline

I thought I would add this link to some bits from recent Tippet Studios animation pipeline

It was used on Spiderwick Chronicles (2008).

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

ILM pipeline

this is interview with Cliff Plumer, Lucalfilm CTO about recent changes and updates in ILM pipeline. Quite interesting for those involved in TD work. Interview doesn`t go too much into details obviously, but gives good idea. Cliff also mentions ILM new proprietary software Zeno and explains why did they need something like that.

Monday, 31 March 2008

Friday, 28 March 2008

funny 10,000 B.C. review

the good thing is, even those guys like vfx, apart from the tiger which MPC didn`t work on. They add "what a waste of effects for such movie", yep that happens very often in vfx :)