Today, I looked back at the work section on the site and realized the last piece we shared was from Christmas of 2016. And it begged the question, where the hell did 2017 go? I know we created work...a LOT of work actually. But again...where the hell did it all go?
2017 - The Year of the NDA
To start, a large portion work is out in the world anonymously because of NDA's. We had a couple things that were very long term commitments that may or may not ever see the light of the day. It's always a strange pill to swallow in an industry where you live and die by the quality of your last project. This is also a situation we find ourselves in more often as we find more direct to client / corporate work.
It's a pretty restrictive thing to be told you'll never be able to share something you've put so much time into, and as animators, illustrators, and creatives in general we had to find a way to get some stuff out into the world. Our solution was to just spend a good amount of time pushing content to our own personal Instagram accounts instead!
But with that all being said, one of our best clients of the year has been Farah & Farah. We've created several semi narrative animations for them to explain legal concepts. We will eventually be able to share those pieces when the series is wrapped up. They're pretty fun. Fun enough that a 5 second clip from one of them pulled in over a million views on Instagram!
(Honestly, I'm still trying to figure out how...)
2017 - The Year of New Toys...I Mean Tools
A few of the projects that came through this year demanded some relatively realistic 3d work for an engineering firm. Long story short we had to import and manipulate heavy duty CAD files, and it forced our hand into upgrading our gear and shifting some of our tools to Windows. So for the first time in our history, we built custom 3d workstations that run Windows. Its a weird transition, but it did allow us to easily beef up our GPU power significantly. Two 1080i's handled everything we threw at it pretty easily.
With awesome GPU's came the ability to move our workflow toward GPU rendering. On the Cinema4d side, we picked up Octane and used that as the workhorse of one of our largest projects of the year. On the Maya side, we made the decision to go with Redshift. I'd love to say we've put Redshift through the paces on some jobs, but so far the opportunity hasn't arisen. However, I've been getting some awesome imagery out of it for some of my personal experiments and it's quickly become my favorite GPU renderer.
2017 - The Year of Scripting
From a custom Python node for Maya, to a character art layer namer script for After Effects and Toon Boom, I found myself dealing with code and scripting almost as much as I found myself animating. And let's be honest...it's not exactly the stuff people are dying to hear about. Unless you're like me, and it gets your nerd gears turning. Which is why, there may be a post at some point to talk about those things separately.
So yeah that's why it's been so quiet around here. We haven't been able to share a lot, we've had our heads down getting to know our new tools, and we've been making our own custom tools that just aren't that exciting (for anyone but me).
Time to get after 2018!