Thursday, April 24, 2008

Cintiq has arrived

A very exciting day. I purchased the Cintiq 21UX tablet a couple of days ago from Wacom Direct website. That same day I received an email from UPS giving the details of transport and delivery date. I even received a recorded message from them telling me to expect the shipment arrival between the hours of 8:00AM and 7:00PM - isn't that amazing? They narrowed it down to 11 hours!!! And the message also said that an adult above the age of 21 must sign for it otherwise it will be returned to the warehouse for further instructions. Believe me, I am not about to miss the delivery, so I played hooky from work ;) I checked the UPS tracking yesterday afternoon and saw that my Cintiq has arrived at their South San Francisco distribution point. I was so excited I wanted to just drive there (40 minute drive) and pick it up myself - but that was just a thought. So, today was the big day. I was so excited I could hardly contain myself. I was also so paranoid of the driver missing my house (even though they have delivered here a hundred times) I am not about to ake any chances, what if the driver was new and isn't familiar with my neighborhood? AT 7:30AM I posted a note on my door to let the driver know that not only is he at the correct address but that I am present to sign for the shipment.
And I waited, and waited. Every time I hear a truck driving by I run and open the door to see if it was the delivery. Every 15 - 20 minutes I'd be at the door, adjusting the sign so that it can be seen directly from his vantage point. Anyway its 8:30AM and my palms are sweaty. I thought I'd better distract myself, so I read my email, visited Animation Mentor to see if anything is new in my box, posted a couple of replies at the 11 Second Club, and the Animation:Master forum. Then went to Netflix and watched a movie online, all the while going to the door and checking.
Finally at 2:00PM a loud knock is on the door.....and there it is; a 36lb carton box in all its glory!

I think the smell of a new electric gadget is as intoxicating as that of a new car, don't you agree? And what is up with all the warnings from Wacom? "DO NOT lift the stand...", "DO NOT remove the foam...", " DO NOT operate the display...", "DO NOT plug in the USB until directed to do so.." What the hey man? Don't they know that people are going to be on pins and needles to use their tablet than to be reading so many DO NOTS? Especially when there is so much to be done? But, considering how much it costs I didn't take any chances and agonizingly read and followed all their instructions to the tee.

So get this, I assemble the unit (heavy) and hook it up to the computer, but lo and behold my electrical strip is full!! DOH! Evil ideas started creeping into my head "You don't need that other computer?" But I answer myself "it has files on it that I haven't used for years, what if I need them???". "You don't need that other monitor?", "But I do, that computer has dual monitor capability, it would be a waste of a plug not to use two monitors!". So I kept going back and forth with myself and finally, FINALLY, discovered a free socket behind one of the computers that I rarely use !!! Guess what, that is the Cintiq socket!

Ta daaaaaaaaa

That is one beautiful gizmo. And ifyou think I am going to let a bare hand touch that pretty screen, you bette think again. I dug out from my days of photography a genuine, 1976 Kodak cotton glove and modified it so that I can feel the pen but protect thescreen from my grubby hand ;) Clever huh?

And right away I went to work on Jason Ryan's ramp up tutorials

And there you go, my first Flipbook movie brought to you by Cintiq :D

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Trying out Maya 2008 (or 9.0)

I purchased the Boris rig from Jason Ryan just so I have something to experiment with in Maya while waiting for the Animation Mentor Maya Springboard to start with the Maya section (we're being introduced to the web site for now). I must say that not only is the Boris rig awesome and fun to use, but Jason, his (I presume) wife, Susan, and Lee (Boris rigger) are most helpful when I needed help. Jason even called me by telephone to make sure that he understood my trouble (which was mostly my lack of understanding Maya). You don't get service like that nowadays. Lee resolved the issue and that is my first rendered pose of Boris - I'm pretty happy with it.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

My birthday my blog day

Hey there, so this is the birth of my first blog which happens to be on my birthday (April 19). I am currently in Animation Mentor Maya Springboard class an am hoping to use this space to publish my progress. We'll see how it goes.

I did this pencil illustration back in 1982 at a cartooning class that I attended at Golden West college in Huntington Beach, California. My teacher, Tom Shannon, has been a great influence on me. I miss you Tom.