Posts tagged trip

Tomorrow the Madness Begins

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Tomorrow I start work on creating an animation in 48 hours.  Yes, two days.  Me and and a bunch of other CGI artists will be working hard from dusk till dawn, twice over, to create the most stunning, whacky, incredibly-insane short animated movie you’ve ever seen.  And it’s the fourth year in a row that we will succeed.

Tomorrow I hit the road to go down to Richmond, VA, which is nearly 5 hours away, to work with the Hand Turkey Studios team to create a film in 48 hours for the Richmond 48-Hour Film Festival.  I’ll be at homebase, which will be graciously hosted by Hal Dowdy at Broadscope Media Inc., where we will be kicking off at 7:30pm on Friday, July 22, and start planning, voicing, modeling, animating, texturing, compositing, and rendering constantly until the deadline exactly two days later.

We will be given a few items to include in the short film (a line, a prop, a genre, etc.) to prove we made the animation on within the time constraints.

We’re bringing incredible talent onto the team this year, including Bassam Kurdali (Director of Elephant’s Dream,) who’ll be joining us from Team International; Sebastian König, Dolf Veenvliet, Beorn Leonard (animator for Sintel,) Jarred de Beer (winner of Suzanne Award for Best Animation at the Blender Conference,) Jonathan Williamson (author at CGCookie,) Lee Salvemini, Kernon Dillon (BlenderNewbies,) and Reynante Martinez, to name some.  And in Richmond, none other than Roland Hess (author of The Essential Blender and a score of other books,) Sam Brubaker, and our producer and mastermind, Jason van Gumster and his wife, Heather van Gumster.  It truly will be a magnificent team – and there is simply too many awesome exploits be each of these names and others on the team to write here, but let it suffice to say: we rock.

I’ll be down in Richmond, VA, this year to capture all the action first-hand and meet other real Blenderheads for the first time.  Last year I was on the team for my first time, heralding from the International Team, when we created the sensational Grey Justice: Puncher of Men animation.  This year, we can only top the awesomeness by getting closer to the source.

Let it begin.

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A Family Moved

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A Family MovedLast week I helped a family move from Berea, about 15 miles out of Cleveland, Ohio.  It was a pleasant trip that lasted about three days.  I went with Reverend Robert O. Morey and three friends, and we helped by packing boxes and loading the truck. (more…)

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Back From Florida!

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I’m back from a wonderful trip to Florida!  I was able to visit  friends and meet new ones, check out schools, and see the Gulf.  It was a great time and I look forward to going back in April to escort Charlotte to her senior prom.

Here is a quick overview of what I did during my visit to the Sunshine State:

My first flight was quite amazing!  The takeoff was exhilarating, I had a nice conversation with someone on the plane, and had a blast with the turbulence as we entered Orlando – yes, I was smiling :)

Smiling me :)

Smiling me :)

Full Sail was a sprawling, sunny campus set in costly sound stages, a converted stripmall, and buildings with fake fronts for films.  The equipment was unbelievably expensive, with rooms full of high-end soundboards and Mac computers.  They even get the latest RED cameras.  A good friend of the Lynns, Joseph Hancock, a Masters student at Full Sail, and a friend of his, toured us around the the campus.

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Joey, Ben, and Charlotte at Full Sail

DAVE School is set in a warehouse-like building on the backlot of Universal Studios, right next to Universal Resort Orlando.  The school is very small, with a few long rooms filled with students working on projects ranging from texturing a frog in ZBrush or texturing a commercial product to putting their face on a creature from their favorite feature film.  Andrew Kral kindly toured me around the rooms and introduced me to students and teachers.  The school only accepts about 30 students for each class.  Unlike Full Sail, which is a four-year university (with a two-year accelerated version,) DAVE School is a 1-year tradeschool.  I have been accepted if I choose to go.

Andrew Kral and Ben Bailey at the DAVE School

Andrew Kral and Ben Bailey at the DAVE School

The Acting Studio is an amazing, small studio where Dan and Vicki Watson teach teens and college students how to act, sing, and dance.  The studio performs musicals, such as Into the Woods, Little Shop of Horrors, and Return to the Forbidden Planet.  This time around they were doing Godspell, a comedic musical with a 70′s take on the gospel of Matthew.  I really enjoyed watching it (twice,) and loved all the students.  I look forward to joining them someday, if I move to the area.

Charlotte, Ben, and Vicki at The Acting Studio

Charlotte, Ben, and Vicki at The Acting Studio

The Fairs were fun!  We went to the State Fair and the Pasco County Fair.  Charlotte and I walked around and played a few games, such as throwing baseballs at beer bottles, and went to a big tent circus.  Later we went to the Pasco talent show and watched some 46 contestants, ranging from 6-16, dance, sing, or do both at the same time!  And oh, I had my first funnel cake.

The beautiful ferris wheel at night

The beautiful ferris wheel at night!

The Gulf of Mexico was awesome!  Joy, Chuck, Charlotte, and I all walked along the beach on Valentines day.  We also fed the seagulls some heart cookies as I filmed the birds racing to get the food.  After that Charlotte and I walked the beach and watched all the happy couples as they enjoyed a romantic sunset.

Charlotte posing at the Gulf

Charlotte posing at the Gulf

The Conclusion? Well, I definitely want to go back again!  Possibly even move there.  But I’m torn between all the possibilities and responsibilities that lay before me: finishing high school, get a driver’s license, and deciding whether I want to spend my life doing visual effects for movies and commercials, act and direct films, stay at home for another year, move to Tampa for a year of acting experience and worklife away from home, or just up and move to another country and make a singing career.

In other words, I have no idea.

Ben, Becca, Charlotte, and Shelby chilling!

Ben, Becca, Charlotte, and Shelby chilling!

Please remember me in your prayers and shoot me an e-mail if you feel like chatting.  I’ve got a hard decision ahead of me, one that will change my life forever.

Blessings be upon you!

P.S. I had a wonderful time with you, friends!  I look forward to seeing you again!  And a HUGE thanks to the Lynns for taking care of me while I was down there – giving me a place to stay, serving me food, driving me all over the place, and loving me as family.

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Off to Florida

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wv_to_fl6Yep, I’m heading off tomorrow to sunny Florida. Coming into Orlando on February 9, I’m staying for about 10 days and checking out the colleges down there, including DAVE School (1-year trade school) and Full Sail (4-year multimedia university,) as well as visiting some good friends.

I hope to gain a better insight into what to do with the rest of my life. I’d really appreciate your thoughts and prayers. I plan to do some filming on the trip, too. First time flying, to boot.

Anyhow, see you on the other side,
God bless

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