Grid Computed Render

A while back, I wrote(here) about online render farm options a while back, i'd also done a post(read it here) where i mentioned
a free service that used the same grid computing network that i'd been a part of since over 10years now(read my previous posts onBoinc here).

With one of the recent releases of Blender i discovered that it now had an integration of sorts with .. which let me directly send my model to be rendered via the and the Boinc grid from within Blender itself!

Well anyway i finally decided to try out for myself. The model i used was my recent batmobile model, which was taking forever to render on my pc.

the results so far have been less than spectacular.. for one, lets look at the log so far

As one can see i submitted my model on the 4th of October 2012.. but it didn't start rendering until the 1st of November 2012.. thats well over 3 weeks! My PC could have rendered it in a few nights.
You can check the render project's progress here.

So for a first time user it can be a bit of a dissapointment. However once i read through the FAQ on the site, you realise why this happens.

" receives its rendering power by distributing complex tasks for many computers across the world. This process makes it possible to achieve very, very big improvements in render time, but it comes with a delay. As an animation is put into rendering it must be sent to all the volunteering computers, rendered on those machines, and then the results must be sent back. All of this involves using the Internet, and this is slow business. If the submitted animation has very low render times such as 20 seconds per frame, then the animation will not gain any improvement in render time – it will get slower. When the rendering eventually begins on the volunteering computer the animation may have been initiated on the server an hour ago as the volunteering computers don't constantly ask for work, but instead do this with increasing intervals.

With this said, animations with long render times get the most out of the service. Robotcomplete by ludopencil was 114 times faster using the service than it would have been on a single threaded computer as each frame took long and there was a large quantity of frames submitted. We recommend that users submit animations with at least 50 seconds of render time per frame to be rendered. We accept all sorts of animations that fill the other requirements, but short ones won't be receiving any advantage in regards to render time." official FAQ

so now the wait begins..

will post the finished render as soon as its done!

(at the time of posting this, it had rendered 403 / 500 frames)

Verdict in a nutshell: Totally worth it if you have a massive load of complex rendering to do. If its a small job like mine.. you'll find it faster to just render it over a few nights.

Apocalypse-punk bike

Deus Ex Machina from Seth C Brown on Vimeo.

A documentary by Seth C. Brown about his mentor .. bike builder.. Jack Churchill(an ex film maker himself) and one of his prized creations, a motorcycle that looks like it was built by Mad Max using parts from hell’s junkyard. This Steampunk or Apocalypse-punk(as jack describes it) bike inspired Seth Brown's short documentary film Deus Ex Machina(seen above). more on the bike builder and his student at this link.

sketchbook project 2012 limited Edition Series

Just finished my submission for the Sketchbook Project 2012 Limited Edition Series

will be mailing it off soon(long overdue).. was not able to finish this sketchbook in time for the world tour of the Sketchbook Project this time. Various reasons are explained in one of the spreads of the book.

Didn't have time to do any origami either.. but did manage one 3d optical illusion(albiet a bit skewed).

Managed to do two rough comic strips narrating the stories behind Mulan and Rumi my dogs.

I might detail these out later.

see the sketchbook hereor below

This will be the third sketchbook that i've sent to the Sketchbook Project.
the other two can be seen here and here.

Interactive Storybooks with Blender and Kinect

Recording of the live presentation at Blender conference 2012(just days a go)

Basically these guys(Julius Tuomisto and the team at NI MATE)developed an addon(get it here) for Blender that allows you to use input from the Kinect sensor! Not only can you use the input to collect mocap data, but ther really freaky thing is you can also use it as a controller to interact with the Blender Game Engine! Heres one excellent example they have used it in – Interactive Storybooks

heres one of their tutorials for doing mocap

The Blender Game engine is quite fun to use.. i havn't posted much about it.. but have been using it.
heres one of my early attempts with the Blender Game Engine.. a simple drivable craft

Tears of Steel – Making Of

Ian Hubert and the Mango crew on the making of Tears of Steel

(skip to 17:30)

Fun Movie

Just finished watching this off beat comedy – Pete Smalls is Dead (IMDB listing).
Starring Peter Dinklage and a bunch of other fun people including Lena Headey, Steve Buscemi and Mark Boone Junior to name a few.

KC Munk(Peter Dinklage) is a former Hollywood screenwriter, down on his luck and running a dry cleaning shop in a small town somewhere.. living alone with his beloved dog Buddha. One rainy day a lone shark shows up looking for his $10,000.. Munk has no cash on him so they take the only thing they know he cares about — his best friend, Buddha.

His buddy Jack Games (Mark Boone, Jr.)in LA calls and tells him that their friend the famous film director Pete Smalls (Tim Roth) has died.. and begs him to come for the funeral. Finally when jack agrees to lend him the money for his dog, Munk takes a flight to LA.. and is picked up at the airport by jack on a moped..

thats when the bizarre adventure begins.

Blender 2.64

The last few days have been big for the Blender community. Tears of Steel(code named the Mango project) the 4th Blender short film was released.. you can view it here

HD download links are available here(direct download and official torrent sources).

Also released was the DVD set that in usual Blender Foundation tradition has all the production files, documentation and other goodies. Get it here.

And then finally Blender 2.64 was released just days ago and dubbed "the Open Source VFX pipeline"

Not only does it have major improvements to the compositor, motion tracker and sequencer(resulting from its use in production of Tears of Steel) but they also added some new stuff to the game engine and sculpting tool.. among others(OpenColorIO, Skin Modifier to name a few). For a full list of improvements and additions read this extensive release log.

You can also just download the latest Blender here and give it a whirl yourself.