Getting Ready For ChristmasGetting Ready For Christmas12/22/2005
Christmas is right around the corner. I still have a little shopping to do. I think this will be a great holiday this year. Everyone around seems to be happier than the last couple of years. The kids are starting to recognize what all the celebrating is about or at least that they get to tear stuff open and get new stuff too.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Revenge of the Sith DVDRevenge of the Sith DVD11/8/2005
I got snookered at Wal Mart. The folks that work there had no idea about a special deal the Wal Mart has for the release of the DVD. An extra DVD is supposed to be available to Episode III DVD purchasers, but they didn't mention it at the time I bought mine. As far as Battlefront II, Wal Mart had mis-stocked the PS2 version under the Xbox cabinet. I asked for one and absent mindedly purchased a PS2 version. I was only able to correct this by waiting around for the clerk to inform me that she couldn't find any Xbox version, returning the PS2 version and then purchasing the Xbox version at Best Buy. Plus Best Buy had their own promotion, which was readily available and easy to acquire. I guess the scheckels they toss in the hats of Wal Mart employees is not enough for them to take an interest in their stock.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the SithStar Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith5/23/2005
I've seen it twice now. This is a great movie. It takes the questions I had about how do we go from Clones and wind up at A New Hope and not have to contradict or twist previously accepted facts. All of the bad stuff that I knew had to take place, does take place with even a little more cold resolve than I thought Lucas would show on screen. I could not recommend that a family with young children go and see this movie without parents previewing it. Expecting singing Ewoks and fluffy pod-races out of this film would be a mistake. It is dark, it is scary and it makes me a little sad when it's over.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
I Should Remember To Do This More OftenI Should Remember To Do This More Often2/20/2005
Well, what's been up...

First, the kids. Jack walks and can do a lot of things since I last logged in. He can open doors, go up and down stairs and find anything and everything that we thought was too hard for him to reach. Elizabeth is still our little Bit. She doesn't seem to want to get very big on us. She likes to hug and gives kisses. She is a very sweet little girl. Lauren is not walking yet, but she is very close. She has the tools, but no reason to do it yet. She cruises along the walls and does a lot of climbing, so we know her balance is good. She is also a very good hugger.

My talking Chef's hat is almost done. Tokie has taken a while, but the project is almost over and the clients seem happy with what they are going to get. It's been so educational for me trying to manage my time with the family and try to put out a product that I am happy with.
I have also gotten a contract for another talking inanimate object. This time it's a disembodied foot telling about the trouble with diabetic foot ulcers. This one will come out quick.

Another project that's been plodding along but is now urgent is Larry the Lesion Guy. I am building a model for a friend doing a project with a group of his fellow med school students. I'm not sure how much more I should say about it right now, so I'll leave it at that.

I have been reselling webspace under the Daley Digital banner and have a few websites I'd like to mention:
Daley Celebrations
Mariachi 2000
Bows and More Galore
The Children's Closet
Smokin' Lights
Kingwood Area Mothers of Multiples
Kate and Alex Longo
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Been a Long TimeBeen a Long Time11/16/2004
This is not a dead website! This is a website maintained by a busy guy.

Movies I've seen recently:
Team America: World Police - foul but funny
Sky Captain - Instantly one of my top 5 favs
The Incredibles - Pixar's best

Stuff I've been doing
Mariachi 2000
Bows and More Galore - I just helped tweak the interface. Client created catalog.
Daley Celebrations - my wife's business. Huge Yard Sign rentals for every special event!
The Children's closet - Local Enteprenuer Tracy Woodard opens Kingwood's only resale shop focusing on baby clothes.
KAMOM - Kingwood Area Mothers Of Multiples. Group that Caroline is a part of.

Current Gigs This is top secret stuff, but I'll tell you.
Tokie, the talking toque
Modeling and Rigging a human male for a medical multimedia project to show the effects of various brain trauma
Medical animation of the begining stages of cancerous cell growth

Free Time
Pixel Corps - This is an online guild focused on teaching people the how's and why's in creating visual fx for film and tv. Highly qualified instructors offering techniques combined with access to professional software make this group a lot of fun.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Hating the HomageHating the Homage9/17/2004
I have watched many MANY dvds and their accompanying commentaries. I think I know where you can seperate the men from the boys: homage.

This word gets so used and overused in dvd commentaries, it makes me wonder if an original thought ever comes accross the minds of younger filmmakers. When I listen commentaries it seems that these filmmakers figure that every other decision they made on set is a result of tipping their hat to one influence of thiers or another.

Like Monsters Inc. I love Pixar. LOVE them. But they use homage for about every other piece of art direction and background art on the picture. In the case of Pixar features, I can believe that they are really talking about homage in things like Harryhausen's restaurant or referencing other Pixar movies with the toys in Boo's room. Other things are just visual references or 'in crowd' jokes, not really homages.

Another filmmaker that gets a pass is Tarantino. His style is entirely based on other people's styles and putting them together into one. While he'll make mention of an homage or another in the way that he frames a shot or action sequence, what's really happening is that his whole movie is built around many MANY such 'homages' and that occasionally a savvy movie watcher may recognize an apparent similarity and he feels like giving props to where he got that idea from. OK. This might be an homage, but like I said, I think his entire style is an amalgam of homages of his favorite directors.

When I listen to the Godfather (Coppola) or Star Wars (Lucas) you NEVER hear these guys say homage. People 'homage' them, not the other way around.

The most recent commentary I listened to was Resident Evil. It's a fun commentary because Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez act like girls, but it definitely confirms that Paul Anderson (the director) is a complete hack and I have no idea how he keeps finding work. I don't buy his use of 'homage'. Comes off a lot more like 'un-original' and 'stealing from older movies'.

I had just heard him use the word homage for about the seventh time on the commentary when I decided to write this and see if I can get an AMEN.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Tokie's DebutTokie's Debut9/13/2004
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
SIGGRAPH 2004 just got overSIGGRAPH 2004 just got over8/13/2004
Neat Stuff from the big convention this year.
The first big piece of news was that Alias bought Motionbuilder. This is pretty interesting to me on a couple fronts. First, as a Beta member of Alex Lindsay's Pixel Corps, I have a permanent license of Motion Builder 5.5. I have started learning it and am really impressed with some of its features. If you don't know, Motionbuilder is a program designed to animate characters. It can take motion capture data and tweak it, add keyframe animation, or just build keyframe animation from scratch. It's big deal feature is that it works off of an interchange format (.fbx) that can work seemlessly between many of the major 3D apps. With this acquisition, Alias claims to want to develop both products (Maya and MB) independently, but I thinks it's only a matter of time until MB's functionality is built into Maya and MB is just discontinued. Interesting move for Alias. It's almost like saying, "We admit it! Our animation tools are too hard! We need some other way of doing it!"

The other big headline was that Softimage (a child of Avid) has changed its previously infamously high pricing to a range that now almost anyone in 3D (from hobby, to one man studio, to big studio) can now afford. Their lowest price 'Foundations' package is now $495. This is big, BIG news in 3D. A lot of very famous studios already use Softimage. Even though Maya is currently recognized as the 'it' app in film and games, Softimage was already re-gaining market share before the price-drop. Now, MAX users want to convert because discreet doesn't want to drop its prices, Lightwave users are wondering about the future of Newtek in general and Maya users want to see what Alias will do in response. Smaller companies, like my beloved Hash and Messiah creator pmG will definitely feel repercussions of this in the new user arena. How can they not? With Avid as the corporate parent, Softimage has more money (and more programmers) than the smaller companies can ever dream of. A typical major release of Animation Master will have 1 or 2 big time features and maybe 6-12 minor improvements and tweaks. A new Softimage release can have 3-6 major features and like 200 minor improvements and tweaks. Plus there's the uninformed, "Well what do they use in Hollywood," factor for kids and students. Many new users won't get past that part, no matter how much easier AM may be to learn.

Softimage calls this move the democratization of 3D. I think its going to be more like the thinning out of the 3D herd.
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
I think it's done...I think it's done...8/4/2004
-GO!- (again)
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
Mariachi Sneak PeakMariachi Sneak Peak6/30/2004
We have Paul Daley to thank for this bit of news.
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