Photoshop Portfolio

Photoshop Portfolio

(or My First Experiments)

This is a collection of the work I have been doing in Adobe Photoshop CS6 for my first semester back at IUPUI. This will also be the last blog update until the new site is up and running, so for the 2 or 3 of you who have been following this blog it shouldn’t be a difficult move….especially if one of you has a truck I can borrow.

Without further delay –

Boggy Monster

Boggy Monster

This fine fellow is one I like to call the “Boggy Monster.” The original photo was the trunk of a tree I saw at Anderson Falls.

Boggy Monster

Boggy Monster

In the original I was trying to make the monster look all natural, with a leafy mustache, but I didn’t like the way it turned out. I think I am better at using layer masks anyway, so I found a cool beard online and blended it in using a layer mask and the healing brush to blur the edges.

"Party Animal"

“Party Animal”

This is Tammy Jo, the “Party Animal.” I am working on an idea for a 3 panel comic strip called “The Youth Group.” I guess the idea is sort of like Monster High, but set in a church youth group with adult themes. Tammy Jo is the first character design (unless you count Stainglass Jesus -hehe). She was created primarily using shapes in Photoshop. For the portfolio assignment we had to create an image based on an adjective of our choosing, so I chose this “party animal.”

"Rock-n-Roll Outlaw" by Clutch

“Rock-n-Roll Outlaw” by Clutch

Clutch is my favorite band (next to Pearl Jam and Faith No More) and one of my favorite songs is “Rock-n-Roll Outlaw.” I originally wanted to do a paint brushed/Clint Eastwood style image, a lot less cartoony, but I was pressed for time (and you’ll understand when you see some of the other images). The flying V guitar image was snagged from ProductWiki without permission.

"The Ten O'Clock People" by Stephen King

“The Ten O’Clock People” by Stephen King

This was an exercise in typography. Stephen King is my all time favorite author and “The Ten O’Clock People” is one of my favorite short stories primarily because of this single paragraph quote. I quit smoking over two years ago. I’ve been able to pick the habit up and put it down with relative ease, but I know it’s a hard addiction. However, I also know that life is 100% fatal and regardless of your faith there is no magic cocktail for immortality. I used levels on the image then a layer mask to bring back the color in the center of the ashtray. The rest was merely curving the type.

My halloween pumpkin

My halloween pumpkin

Halloween is my Christmas. It was the first holiday I remember celebrating. I don’t go all out like I’d like, but this year I dressed up in a chemical suit (thanks baby) and put on some zombie make-up after I carved this jack-o-lantern (note: next year I have to help the kids carve theirs first). For this image I simply adjusted the levels. I played around with some other blend modes, but none of them had this effect. “No words” to describe this image.

The Youth Group

The Youth Group

This is another image made completely in Photoshop and is part of “The Youth Group” comic strip I am working on. These are the first images of Stain Glass Jesus, Big Daddy Jesus and Suffering Jesus.

content aware

content aware


original

original

The first image is based on the photograph below. I was trying to work with content aware fill and the healing brush. Not sure if I like how it came out, but that is the extent of my skill thus far. :/

"I see a red door and I want to paint it black..."

“I see a red door and I want to paint it black…”

Black is my favorite color. I love the sight of big, bold black ink on a white page. I’m not as morose as this character, the typical goth I guess, but black – the absence of color (like the blank page) – represents me, always waiting to be filled.

John Locke

John Locke

I used to write for a LOST fan site, that’s how much I love that show. I never done that before, nor have I done it since. The show changed the way I saw film and television and what it could do. Terry O’Quinn is one of my favorite actors, despite the poor shows he’s been cast (666 Park Avenue?). This image from the show stuck out for me because it summed up his character, completely misunderstood.

LGBT Clones

LGBT Clones

One day I was goofing off at home and took a photo of two of my wife’s figures arm and arm. This is their second appearance online. Fans of the famous work of art known as Star Wars might recognize that the names are of actual characters (note: I’m not that big of a Star Wars geek, I had to wiki those names).

masculine

masculine


feminine

feminine

The first image is one of my favorites because it was a happy accident that I created a face using the male body. The images are based on how men and women are typically drawn in super hero comics. The muscles of men are drawn with sharp angles and the women are drawn with soft curves. The backgrounds represent how I see the two sexes, one in constant contrast, the other in flowing rhythms. There are three female images to represent the muses…I guess. 😀

The cure for the zombie apocalypse

The cure for the zombie apocalypse

I like the butterfly, because they seem to appear in almost every ad for anti-depressants.

The last five images are all images of my own choosing. We were supposed to create a vector based image in illustrator (I just never had time to get my illustrator skills up to snuff) and one aimed toward children (all I could think of was creating an image of something throwing images at children).

Blend Modes

Blend Modes

We were working on blending modes and I, for some reason, never turned this assignment in. I missed the deadline and thought, I’ll keep it for later I guess. I like how the overlay and darken effect worked on the blade, giving the blood a jelly like look, but it didn’t work so well on the glove. I tried using puppet warp and should have used the healing brush.

blood pool

blood pool

This is the first of three images from the storyboard I was working on most of the semester as a personal project (one of the first productions for frogfish this spring). It will most likely not make its way into the final storyboard, primarily because I will rework the images using more shapes and less paint brush.

Halpin Frayser

Halpin Frayser


C.M. Punk - photoshop model

C.M. Punk – photoshop model

This was the first image I painted based on the figure I used. I have found that these wrestling figures are far more articulate than manikins. I’ve been looking for the fully articulate spiderman figure, but I have only found it online. That’s a cheap Christmas gift if any of you are…you know…thinking of that sort of thing.

Ghost

Ghost


model

model

This is the first image I painted using an image I found online. I like the way it came out, I’m just not a big fan of the brush strokes. I need to develop smoother, thicker strokes.

Olaf

Olaf

This is one of the first characters I created using all shapes and layers so that I could animate her in Flash over the holiday break. Her name is Olaf, based on my beautiful baby, and she is part of frogfish.

And here is the official first look at the frogfish cartoon logo –

The Merlboroman and Olaf

The Merlboroman and Olaf

I hope you enjoyed this little gallery. I can’t understand why wordrpess threw some of the text off, but…there you go. Have a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Leave your thoughts and comments below and I will see the two of you at the new website in January.

“Engineer the future now…Part 2”

Rough First Panel for “The Death of Halpin Frayser – Storyboard”

Today, we’re back to posting about what’s going on in the classroom and for this assignment we’re supposed to discuss what our “dream job” may be or where we see ourselves employed after we graduate from IUPUI.

First, I see my self as self-employed or freelancing. I am attending IUPUI for three reasons only, resources, networking and new skills. For example, as a student at IUPUI I was able to purchase Adobe Design and Web Premium CS6 for $20 and access to lynda.com. Those two resource alone would have cost about $750 (about $375 each, with a one year subscription to Lynda.com). There is also access to video production equipment that I have yet to use, so overall that’s at least worth the cost of one semester. Then there’s the networking.  I’ve recently joined a group of young film-making students. We’re all passionate about film and excited to build our portfolios together. This Friday will be my first opportunity to actually meet with the group in person. Finally, there’s the new skills. While I’m learning a lot from the tutorials on lynda.com, film making is a collaborative medium. There are many things you can by yourself, like writing, storyboards and even animatics but if you into to create video all the tutorials in the world will not make up for actual on the set experience. Therefore, through the resources, networks and new skills at IUPUI I should have not only an impressive portfolio, but the foundation for my career in video production and storytelling.

Upon graduation I will have to complete a capstone project my last semester at IUPUI and my goal is to use the resources, networks and skills to make a feature film. I will have, by the time I graduate, made several short films (I am lining up at least 3 for the upcoming Spring semester alone) and developed a website/production company with my wife, Laura, called FrogFish.com, where Frog Experiments (my videos) and Asterias Media (her written stories) come together to display the projects I’ve developed during my time at IUPUI, promote local authors and entertain audiences. This website and the content created while in school will lead to a long career as an independent producer. FrogFish will use both private investment and crowdsourcing to raise capital to continue production after I have left IUPUI. The portfolio I create at IUPUI, the short films and the feature, will be the base I use to fund new projects. And rather than attempt to compete with the flawed Hollywood distribution model, I will increase the opportunity to repay investors through targeted self distribution using ideas and models from other independent filmmakers like Jon Reiss, and friends  Eric Anderson, Zack Parker and Joshua Hull, because I believe that in order to have a sustainable career as a filmmaker you have to make money for your investors. However, my goal, and what I hope to achieve after graduation, is to develop a strong fan base that enjoys the stories I like to tell and how I like to tell them.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog then you already know the type of stories I enjoy. You’ve read the original version of the story mentioned in the image, “The Death of Halpin Frayser” and you’ve read my screenplay adaptation. The image is the first panel of the storyboard (which I intend to animate through Photoshop and After Effects…once I get a better handle on them). I am targetting March as the goal for principal photography on the short. I am also still working on the (animated?) graphic novel “The Wet Grave” and have many other projects (like building the website) to complete before graduation. Therefore, while I am blogging today as part of an assignment to discuss what my “dream job” will be when I graduate, I am really trying to remain focused on what I need to accomplish over the next 2-3 months.

And seriously, I do respond to comments. I’d love to hear your thoughts on anything I’ve discussed (particularly if you’ve read Jon Reiss’s book)

“Engineer the future now. Damn tomorrow, future now! Throw the switches. Prime the charge. Yesterday’s for mice and gods.”

English: The new Informatics Building on the c...

English: The new Informatics Building on the campus of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) at the corner of West and Michigan Streets. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The suck-thing about being a student is you’re constantly looking to the future when you need to be focused on the here and now (save it, Yoda).

For example, today I met with one of my professors to discuss my resume. We discussed how it would be best to focus on my education, computer skills, work/projects, work experience…and so on. The good news is that we realized I have developed quite a few marketable skills, but the bad news is that there is still quite a ways to go yet.

So today I thought I’d tell you about where I am and where I plan on going in the next 12 months.

Family Life

Michael is our new babysitter

We approve of Michael’s tactics

 

I’m less than 21 days away from marrying the greatest woman on the planet, Laura Ann Fisher. We’ve been living together for almost 8 months and it almost seems like we’re already married, but I still cannot wait to make it official. We have two great kids, Cameron and Tommy, who I hope to adopt soon after. We have six children if you count Chance “McPants” and Stephen King (our German Shepherds, two guesses on who named the latter) and Oscar & Moose Kitten. And there’s eight if you include Chester Rabbit and the fish(es?), but I don’t. Fish aren’t really family members. F@#$ you if you’re a fish (I know you slimy bastards can read, it’s just no one will turn the page or scroll for you, so if someone is doing that for you now then they should be ashamed of  themselves. Human traitors! Close the page!).

FrogFish is about family. My family. Me, Laura and the kids.  We are a unique bunch with strong opinions, likes and dislikes, but we’re very compassionate and easy-going as well. We love everyone on principle alone, but we realize not everyone feels the same way about us and, for the most part, we don’t lie awake at night crying over that (Stephen King is a bit of a neurotic). FrogFish will not be for everyone. It’s not that we don’t want everyone to like us, it’s just that there are way more of you than there are of us and no matter how friendly we try to be, some of you are going to take offense. We can’t waste our time worrying about that. We want to tell stories. Scary stories. Funny stories. Stories that entertain first, and cause conversation later (“You mean like how George Romero’s ‘Dawn of the Dead’ was really about consumerism, but I was too busy trippin’ out on the zombies to realize that the first time I saw it?” Yes, observant reader. Just like that).  Stories for you to take and do with as you like. Like using as an excuse to hate us.

I’m cool with that (but seriously, don’t make stupid threats. I don’t respond well to stupid).

School

I am currently in my first semester at Indiana University – Indianapolis (IUPUI) as an undergrad in the Media Arts & Science program. Because of my previous BA in Liberal Arts (English), I do not have to take a single course outside of my program, but I still have to take some seemingly meaningless prerequisite courses like:

  • N100 – Foundations of New Media: It’s the marijuana to the school of Informatics’ hardcore drugs of Media Arts and Science. It gives the student just a little taste of what to expect should they pursue the degree, specializing in areas like Storytelling Fundamentals, Gaming, Web Design and Development, Programming, Audio/Video or 3D graphics. This blog post, right here, is actually part of my assignment for this class. It’s free too. But the next one will cost you.
  • N101 – Multimedia Authoring Tools: This class is all about Adobe Dreamweaver CS6. There is a lecture/lab component of the course and I enjoy both. This is the class that will help me develop the website for FrogFish.com (the end-zone to this hail-mary pass of a career).  I also use Lynda.com to support my lab work. It’s free to Indiana University students and I will be using it the entire time I am a student. The entire time. I’m using it now. And always.
  • N102 – Digital Media Imagery: Adobe Photoshop CS6. Same as N101 just different software. IU and their campuses love to let the students know that this software is free to them. I love them for that.
  • N199 and N299 – Directed Study I & II: How to use your education to find a job. It’s very helpful to freshman straight out of high school. It’s a good aid to those entering the job market. It’s a good tool for those starting their own company while using a school program as their main resource (do we know anyone like that?).

Next semester I hope to take N202 – Digital Storytelling, N256 – Digital Composition, N261 – Storyboarding for Multimedia, and N300 – Digital Media Production. Some of those may change. One of the biggest obstacles in having a set goal and a clear path is that there are other drivers on the road, and sometimes construction, and things do not work out as planned (which is why you will often hear me say, “God willing”). By the end of the semester I should have a stronger portfolio and, God willing, I will have not only my own projects to work on, but some friends who need a strongly opinionated, intelligently compassionate writer/production assistant/storyboard artist/cinematographer

Projects

While in school I have had several projects completed thus far. Here is one of them:

Student work with lots of room for improvement, but I’m proud of it.

I’ve worked on a few other projects since my first school stint. You can find them through my imdb.com page. I give lots of credit to the Indiana Filmmakers Network and cool people like Zack Parker, Veronica Diaz, Brian Pearce, Joshua Hull and Jim Dougherty for those opportunities (my first “thank-you-speech” and I’m sure there are those who feel left out…damn!).  I look forward to working more with IFN and a new group I just met called Quadrivium Media; fellow Media Arts & Science students focusing on Video/Audio.

Some of the projects I am currently working on are…

  • Short Films – Next semester I will begin adapting several short stories into films. My first three our adaptations of Ambrose Bierce’s short stories: “The Death of Halpin Frayser”, “A Watcher by the Dead”, and “The Suitable Surroundings”. I’d also like to take a crack at Arthur Machen’s “The Gread God Pan”, M.R. James’ “The Mezzotint” and H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Tomb”. I think there are a lot of stories that audiences today don’t even know exist or the version they know is far from the original author’s intent. Whether my adaptations are faithful page-by-page renderings (and they’re not) or completely new imaginings (and they’re not that either) I hope they lead audiences to the source material that I fell in love with.
  • Graphic Novels – I use the term graphic novel here because I am not writing an ongoing series comic (yet) and the project has a limited run. The story is called The Wet Grave and is an action, horror story that explores what we are willing to do for safety, security and freedom. It’s set in 1750 New Orleans between the clash of the French, African and Native American cultures and is about a young slave girl who reanimates her murdered lover to seek revenge on her oppressors. I have found a talented new artist to bring the webcomic to life (she’s working on the FrogFish logo as we speak…I said, “She’s working on the FrogFish logo as we speak!”…so, I’ll be premiering that soon). I am writing the second issue right now (literally, I have four hands typing).  I will reveal more soon, but this is something to look for next summer.
  • Feature Film Screenplay – I am working with my good friend and sometimes reluctant witness, Eric Anderson on a horror comedy. The only thing I can say about it right now is that it is actually a two-parter, so the sequel is already built into the original. At this time, we intend to market the project to other producers when it is finished (thus “Screenplay”), but you never know. It could be the first Corn Bred/FrogFish collaborative production.
  • Others – Far too many to name here, and most are in the synopsis/outline stage (come on people, I’m a full time student, part-time employee, part-time SAHD, I can only give so much), but there has been a recent leaning toward 2D animation. A series in fact. I love animated horror. And this Halloween animatic at Horror-Movies.ca (one of the BestF@#$ingWebsitesEver that I will be talking about next week) got my heart racing like it did when I took Shakespeare a few years ago and decided creative performance was my true passion (and politics, yeah…you might want to avoid me on Facebook).  There is also a lot of Feature Films (God willing, my senior capstone will be a feature film project), more comics, more shorts…and that’s just the stuff I’m working on. Laura has got stuff for AsteriasMedia (the Fish side of FrogFish).  We’ll be publishing new, talented horror writers on our site. In fact…there should be a call for submissions coming up soon. Yeah…soon.

So there you have it. An eye on the future and a leg in the present with thoughts in the past and limbs in an alternate universe and…damn this was a long blog. What was I talking about? Hit me up on the comments to let me know. Follow me on Twitter. Find me on Facebook. Visit me in Indiana. Stalk me from the other side of the fence (remember, two German Shepherds. They’re sweethearts…when I have their leash). Until next week.