Character Designer for Mobile Suit Gundam Sketches Char

Yoshikazu Yasuhiko was the original character designer for Mobile Suit Gundam. In 2002, he was commissioned to produce the definitive One Year War manga, Gundam The Origin. Watching how effortlessly he sketches Char is damn inspiring.

The O, None More Yellow

Angry Zen Minion Elliot Fox returns with more pictures of his Master Grade 1/100 PMX-003 THE-O build. This time, he paints!

Elliots weapons of choice! Nice selection of Tamiya mini cans.

The yellow plastic that’s used for the armor is quite a bit muted in color than the show. Here, you can see the difference between the painted and unpainted plastic. I like the brighter Tamiya yellow.

And now they’re all painted!

Remember, kiddies, always use cardboard or newsprint or something to make sure none of your overspray gets on the concrete.

Ah, a gorgeous yellow glow.

Time to spray the internal parts.

I really love that gun metal finish.

Looking good so far. I think the brighter yellow really makes the armor pieces pop. Can’t wait to see them panel lined and assembled. More as they come!

UPDATE: I asked Elliot why he paints the parts on the runners before snipping them out for assembly.

I spray first to get as much coverage on everything rather than taking the time to individually paint everything. This helps in getting an even coating and colour. It took a number of coats for the yellow because the yellow paint I got wasn’t as pale as the yellow plastic of model. This The O will actually be a bit brighter than intended, but that’s half the fun and makes mine a little more unique. What I should be doing about the rail cutting marks is a bit of sanding and re-painting before assembly, but for the most part, Bandai does an awesome job that like 75-80% of them are hidden with assembly.

Makes sense to me. Now get back to assembly 😉

Future Screens

The technologies demonstrated in this video represent the possibilities of 2014 as envisioned by design firm The Astonishing Tribe AB (TAT). Now while all of these scenarios brilliantly demonstrate how easy it is to integrate touch technology unobtrusively in our daily lives, what it doesn’t show are the massive amounts of greasy finger print stains over every touch surface. Maybe by 2014, we’ll have developed a touch surface that doesn’t capture every oily finger stain that touches it, but I have my suspicions.

All joking aside, this is some excellent work. I really love the office segment which gives new meaning to a working desktop. I would love to have an interactive desk that I could art all over. And I terribly covet the transparent screens. It’ll be interesting to see if any of these proposed technologies come to pass. 2014 isn’t all that far away.

Source: TAT

What Do You Do With Those Leftover Gunpla Sprues? Make a 1.8 Meter Tall Gundam, Of Course!

Spru Gundam

This is quite meta but also quite awesome. AZM Ally deepfreeze sent along photos of a Gundam made entirely out of gunpla sprus, those runner things that are left over once you snip out all the parts to your gundam. The 1.8 meter tall Gundam constructed by modeler Hirotyun was revealed at this year’s Chara Hobby 2010 convention.

It’s just so massively beautiful! They should have sent a poet!

There are some really impressive build-up photos over at Hirotyun’s site and more from the festival from Ngee Khiong.

Source: Ngee Khiong and Hirotyun

In the Land of the Free, Who Controls the Content?

Captain Copyright

At this past weekend’s Harvey Awards at the Baltimore Comic Con, Mark Waid delivered a heartfelt wake-up call to the print comics industry. Now since this is third, fourth, fifth hand since I wasn’t at the show, I can only base my assumptions of Waid’s main point from the various reports online. If I understand correctly, Waid intimated that protecting your ideas is not as important as profiting from them. It doesn’t sound like he was advocating piracy, but since this age of internet has made everything free, time would be better spent figuring out how to make money off of rather than jealously guarding our ideas.

I can imagine the gasps in the room from traditional publishers who depend on their copyrighted characters for licensing revenue and such. But for us webcomic folks, this is old news.

It is absolutely essential for artists to use the internet to promote their work. The catch is that as soon as you put something online, someone is going to steal it. You could spend ages trying to find new ways to prevent digital piracy, but you’ll never really deter the practice nor really stop it. That’s not to say that there’s no value in copyright. But it’s time to start thinking differently about our ideas. Creative Commons is a forward thinking licensing standard that responds well to the digital download era and it has benefited many artists. It gives would-be pirates a legal means to download and remix content while protecting the rights of the content creator.

Creative Commons is a good start. And it’s groups like these who provide these forward thinking tools that will help ween us off traditional notions of copyright protection that may be too antiquated to respond to a modern sensibility. I think Mark Waid was incredibly brave for sounding the call and I think once the dust settles a bit, the print comic industry might actually start moving forward along with the rest of us.

Cee Lo Green Creates the Best Breakup Song Ever

Yes, I realize that I’m the last site in the universe to post this. Hell, NPR did a story on this song before I got around to posting it. But whatever. Cee Lo Green’s “Fuck You” is the best breakup song ever, and here are six magical reasons why:

  1. No Apologies
    Breakup songs usually include lots of “I’m sorries” or “it’s my faults” and other emo bullshit like that. Not here. Though there is that one stanzas where he whines that he still loves her, the majority of the song is unapologetic. It’s not my fucking fault! You’re just a gold digger!
  2. Expressed Rage
    Besides the title, Cee Lo expresses anger at the woman in question, “Ooh, I really hate your ass right now.” That sentiment usually gets buried during a breakup, but sometimes you need to just let it out.
  3. Upbeat
    There is a mile long list of breakup songs that are really down and depressing and completely devoid of anything resembling happiness. Guess what. Sometimes you need to breakup. I certainly did. And now we have an awesome song to celebrate a proper breakup. I would have blasted this jam 24/7 after my divorce.
  4. No Autotune
    Okay, so autotune isn’t really a mainstay of the breakup song genre, but it has definitely cut a swath of ear pain across pop music of the 2010s. Thankfully, we’ve got some real vocals and real instruments in the mix.
  5. Clever Use of a Racial Invective
    If the N word is to be used, let it be in a clever, thoughtful manner, not as a punctuation to each stanza. Cee Lo’s background singers kind of sneak it in there so stealthily that I almost missed it the first time they sing, “(Oh shit, she’s a gold digga) Well! (Just thought you should know, nigga).”
  6. Classy Music Video
    According to the notes on the YouTube page, a “full video” is coming soon. I prefer this version. It’s rare that an artist will let the music speak for itself. Music videos have become overblown circus acts that sometimes have little to do with the lyrical content and very rarely enhance the listening experience. By just throwing the lyrics up there, “Fuck You” is allowed to shine as the perfect breakup song it truly is.

Thank you, Cee Lo Green, for giving us the perfect breakup song that we’ve always wanted.

“With feelings of gratitude for all that is good in this world, I put down my pen. Well, I’ll be leaving now. Satoshi Kon”

From a homeless transvestite to a rollerskating bat boy to the woman of our dreams, Satoshi Kon pushed the boundaries of animated film to remind us that really, you can do absolutely anything in animation. I always felt a profound sense of joy and wonder after watching one of his films and while it saddens me greatly to know that I will no longer get that feeling from new works, I can return to the body of work that he left us to recapture that feeling.

My favorite Satoshi Kon film is Paprika. The interplay between dream and reality was beautifully executed. And it had the voice of Amuro Rei doing a fat Amuro Rei! We had the fortune of seeing it subtitled in a theater in Shirlington and I just remember having a gigantic stupid grin on my face the entire movie. It made me excited to see more of his work, but it also inspired me to continue to push my own work further. I really hope that other animators take inspiration from Satoshi Kon and push the bounds of what’s possible in animation, especially American studios who keep churning out the same 3D crapola. There’s more to explore with 3D and I think American studios would do well to take some lessons from Satoshi Kon’s direction.

If you have a fond memory of a Satoshi Kon work, please leave it in the comments. I feel it only fitting to celebrate the wonderful work he left behind.

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