Life in the Ancient Middle East

I actually have been working this past week, I’m just nowhere near ready to share any animation yet. Here though is a still from a work-in-progress. Everything might look different in the final thing, but at least this is evidence I’ve been doing something.

I actually have been working this past week, I’m just nowhere near ready to share any animation yet. Here though is a still from a work-in-progress. Everything might

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Crazy Little Thing

I interrupt this series of Ziz iterations to tell you about a new book you are likely to enjoy.  It’s called Crazy Little Thing: Why Love and Sex Drive us Mad, by Liz Langley. Why are you reading about it here on my blog? Because there’s a whole chapter about ME, that’s why! Apparently I am a paragon of how not to kill your ex in a tormented rage, and make a work of art instead. Most of the other profiles in the book are about people killing/maiming/permanently damaging their exes or themselves after breakups, but an alternative is to make a feature film, which is what I did and how

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Brown Outlines FTW

See, this is why I leave myself open to comments, even though they can cause discomfort. Sasha Rubel made an excellent suggestion. On areas that were already brown, I used gold outlines.

See, this is why I leave myself open to comments, even though they can cause discomfort. Sasha Rubel made an excellent suggestion. On areas that were already brown,

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Ziz of a Different Color

Two Zizzes, actually. The first has black outlines, which are thicker in the animated gif than the source file:

The second has no outlines, reminding me of 1930′s travel posters.

Maybe this Ziz is on its way to visit Palestine.

Two Zizzes, actually. The first has black outlines, which are thicker in the animated gif than the source file: The second has no outlines, reminding me of 1930′s

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More Zizzy color

Slight improvements? Or exprovements? Either way, I’m still fiddling and posting the Ziz as it develops.

I’ve only just learned that if you post a work in progress, everyone wants to tell you how to change it. Not once did I request advice, but advice is clearly what I’ll get if I post unfinished work (or finished work, come to think of it). I’m free to ignore any or all of it; everyone on the interwebs is just talking, they don’t have any power over me unless I give it to them. I can “take what I like and leave the rest” – and sometimes someone offers something

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Ziz color test

This is a test. This is only a test.

This is a test. This is only a

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Birdy Ziz II

I can’t stop! And I haven’t even added color yet. This one replaces the sin-wave wings with the stiffer wings I made before, adjusted for a 24-frame cycle.

I can’t stop! And I haven’t even added color yet. This one replaces the sin-wave wings with the stiffer wings I made before, adjusted for a 24-frame

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Birdy Ziz

This one has a beak and a different mane, a whole new head design actually. Also: dotted lines everywhere.

In case you’re wondering, all these modifications aren’t in pursuit of the Perfect Ziz. Any of the ones I’ve made so far would be plenty adequate for storytelling, and my motto is, “Adequate is Good Enough.” No, I’m just pulled along by curiosity right now. “What would happen if I did _______?” This kind of open-ended fiddling gets a lot of us artists in trouble – it’s addictive, and also “safe,” not risky like designing a whole new character, or actually telling a story, or moving on and getting a project finished. Hence

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Another Day, Another Ziz

This one’s for Ravi Swami. It needed a little movement in the neck and head, but I thought the feathers were too much. Of course I might redesign the head, so all this will have to be re-done, but who cares, I’m crazy.

This one’s for Ravi Swami. It needed a little movement in the neck and head, but I thought the feathers were too much. Of course I might redesign

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The Ziz With The Feathery Mane

Can I spend all day doing this? Without showering or leaving my apartment? Yes, yes I can. Now you know.

This one has a feathery mane.

Can I spend all day doing this? Without showering or leaving my apartment? Yes, yes I can. Now you know. This one has a feathery

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Ridin’ a Fast Ziz

Those previous Zizzes are 36-frame cycles at 24-frames-per-second; each cycle lasts 1.5 seconds. Above is a faster Ziz, on a 24-frame cycle. Because I left various components spaced per the 36-frame version, this one’s a lot more “active” – curvier, wavier, more energetic – as well as being faster.

Those previous Zizzes are 36-frame cycles at 24-frames-per-second; each cycle lasts 1.5 seconds. Above is a faster Ziz, on a 24-frame cycle. Because I left various components spaced

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Building a Better Ziz

Do you have any idea how many versions of these I generate in a day? A lot. I can’t possibly post them all. But here’s another one that I think improves upon the last one, by adjusting the timing of the legs and synchronizing the pairs of wings.

Do you have any idea how many versions of these I generate in a day? A lot. I can’t possibly post them all. But here’s another one that

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Progress of the Ziz

So many details, so many things that can be tweaked in animation. This version is sinuous and sin-wavy, including trunk and tail. It took a full day to make these changes that may hardly be noticed by some. But, I am curious, and I’m into the kinds of wave animation that are possible in Flash, that I didn’t fully explore in Sita Sings the Blues because this learning takes time.

So many details, so many things that can be tweaked in animation. This version is sinuous and sin-wavy, including trunk and tail. It took a full day to

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Ziz-In-Progress

This Ziz is in progress, people, as in not finished, so go easy on me.

This Ziz is in progress, people, as in not finished, so go easy on

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Now Even More Infinite

Some infinities are bigger than others. This Leviathan has a few extra receding loops, making it more infinite than the version I posted earlier.

Some infinities are bigger than others. This Leviathan has a few extra receding loops, making it more infinite than the version I posted

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