Documentary Christmas

I saw two great documentaries over Christmas Break.

The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness was a great peek into Studio Ghibli. I loved it. It’s on Netflix. Now I’m dreaming of the Miyazaki box set that just came out.

I watched Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films (the guys who made all the Chuck Norris action films in the 80s. They also made Breakin, Masters of the Universe, Over the Top and about 400 other crappy films. But I remember going to the theater and watching a ton of them. Check out this documentary on Netflix too.

Anaconda. Me Love.


while teaching my python class I had decided I wanted to try out a Jupyter notebook perhaps. So I downloaded Anaconda because that’s what the site says. I love it…. It can switch between python 2.7 and 3.4 with a few keystrokes. I can demonstrate the way iterators are different in each version of python super quick. ¬†LOVE IT. I’ll be able to test pyqt or pyside at the same time. Anaconda totally manages the environment and allows you to download and install packages off the web like pip does. it’s pretty amazing.

Using ffmpeg and pymel to convert videos for the hell of it.

So I guess .m4v video is the way to go for the web and everything. All of my old quicktime embeds are failing on chrome and edge.

Fortunately .m4v is the same as .mp4 and ffmpeg will convert them. All you need to do is put all the stuff you want converted into a folder and launch Maya!

Once you launch maya change the variable to point to your video folder


Working on My New Workshop for CGCircuit


Class Description

  • Do you want to learn Python in 8 weeks?
  • Do you want to learn how to create a PyQt/Pyside GUIs in Maya in 8 weeks?
  • Can you commit to doing a weekly assignment for 5-10 hours that builds on the previous week’s assignment?
  • Is NOT knowing Python holding you back in your career aspirations?
  • Do you not know a single thing about python?
  • Then sign up! This is the workshop for you!

Python is everywhere.
If you learn the basics here you can take them with you to other industries like web site development, game development, statistics and data analysis, science animation, etc.

In this course you’ll learn Python fundamentals that can be used in any python setting but also specifically using it inside Maya and PyQt/Pyside.

I consider myself a visual thinker-learner and it was difficult for me to grasp python initially. This is why I think Maya, a visual playground, is the perfect place to see objects when you are talking about learning an object-oriented scripting language.

It’s been awhile

It’s been awhile. I’ve been working at ILM for the past year and a half now. I’ve worked on Pirates 4, Super 8, Avengers (1), GI Joe 2. Lot’s of great shots to work on and lots of IMDB listings.

I’m in the training dept when I’m not working on shows so I get to document and teach all the new techniques and software. Pretty awesome. So many smart people here.

I’ve also been moonlight rigging for friends and coworkers. Soon (… yeah right) I’ll post some rigs I’ve made. Maybe even make the available for purchase so you can have some new rig to animate with (I’m talking to you AM Bishop lovers).