May 29, 2010

Fester's Nephew

Here's the Fester Fish cartoon. It didn't really turn out that great, but now that I'm finally done with it I can move onto something else.

May 28, 2010

Introducing Fester Fish

Presenting a new cartoon star -- Fester Fish!!!
He walks! He talks! He'll knock your socks!
... Off.

His easygoing temperament and suave voice will have audiences rolling in the aisles. Look for Fester's first cartoon very soon!

May 20, 2010

More delays

Well, suffice to say I've run into another delay. The exported video I mentioned in the previous post didn't turn out well, and Premiere has stopped working due to a weird codec I tried to use. Again, the cartoon itself has been finished for a few days; all these delays are just in trying to get a reasonably high-quality video file.

I'm thinking of buying Adobe Premiere Elements 8, to replace the old 6.0 version I have. It's very affordable, and seems to have all the features I want. It also seems to have more exporting options, which is exactly what I need. Even if my older copy of Premiere hadn't stopped working, I'd pretty much run out of things to try with it. Every video codec I've tried so far has either resulted in horrible quality or an unusably large file (I think Youtube has a 1GB limit, which should be more than enough for such a short cartoon). With the Space Goose cartoons I've used the DivX format, and that seemed to work fine for them, but for some reason when I use DivX on this cartoon, it looks atrocious.

Anyway, sorry that I'm getting into such boring technical detail. The cartoon should be uploaded any day now. It's 5 minutes and 2 seconds long, which I'm relieved about. I was worried it might end up being seven or eight minutes, which is too long for such a simple story.

Last night "Fugitive Goose" was screened at the Revue (thanks for coming, Zoran, Lee, Leah, Bruce and Louise!), and the audience reaction was pretty good, but I kept thinking to myself 'man, this is way too long'. And yet at the same time, I think, now that I can look at it a bit more objectively, the story moves too quickly, and is probably difficult to follow for many people.

Well, this new Fester Fish cartoon probably doesn't have either of those problems. If anything, it's too slow-paced and stupid. But I think the animation's better. You can decide for yourself soon.

May 18, 2010

Exporting Even As I Type

I've finally got that damn cartoon finished.

Well, I was finished with the actual content a couple of days ago, but I've been having a really tough time figuring out how to export it best-- transferring the Flash files to the Mac and exporting them there only to find that the Mac can't handle the backgrounds properly... trying out every codec possible in Flash on Windows... transferring the exported files to the Mac to put together in Premiere and finding out (again) that the Mac sucks and only likes Apple formats, etc... Finally I decided to just use the older, slower version of Premiere on Windows. That seems to be working okay, and it's exporting from there right now. By the time I get home, it should be done.

I tried to add a very slight blur and some grain to the footage to hopefully avoid getting that overly crisp, cold Flash look. I guess we'll see how successful that is.

The cartoon will be viewable very soon, but before I upload it I also want to finish a small "introducing Fester Fish" teaser thing I was working on. I realize that at this point it's a little late for a 'teaser', but I think it's kind of funny, so I'm going to do it.

Anyway, look for the introduction and the cartoon within the next few days!

May 13, 2010

Almost Done, But...

Well, I didn't end up finishing the Fester Fish cartoon for last night. I was pretty close, but I ran out of time, and decided to just submit the first episode of Space Goose instead, since I just had a DVD copy lying around.

I'd been hesitant to submit Space Goose to previous Drop Your Shorts festivals, for a few reasons. I feel like the other film-makers, who probably comprise most of the audience, might be annoyed that it's a cartoon, like "hey, that doesn't belong with our serious angsty black-and-white dramas!" They also might be put off by the fact that it's science-fiction. More than anything else, it's clearly not intended as a short film, but rather as part of a TV-style episodic series.

Oh well. The guy who runs the festival seemed happy to see another submission from me. He liked Slick Nick when I submitted back in 2008, and he even used it again at a "Best of" special screening.

The Fester Fish short will still be done soon, because I want to submit it to another show tomorrow at the Toronto Animated Images Society, but this time it'll actually be ready. I've only got a couple of hours of work left to do on it.

"Fugitive Goose" will be screened at the Revue Cinema on Wed. May 19 at 7:00. Admission is $2.

May 12, 2010

Wish me luck...

My new Fester Fish cartoon should be uploaded within the next week. I'm submitting it to the Drop Your Shorts Festival at the Revue Cinema this evening, but it's not really ready yet. I've still got a couple of minor shots left that I forgot to draw, some scenes still don't have sound effects, and worst of all, I still have to export the scenes from Flash and put them on a DVD. No telling how long that will take... It's gonna be a stressful day. Luckily my boss is letting me leave work early so I can get as much done on it as possible.

I'm pretty tired right now. I only got four hours of sleep last night, cause I was (unsuccessfully) scrambling to get it done for today.