Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George’s Creators

The Orchard has released the official poster for Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George’s Creators! Featuring a narrow escape from the Nazis on makeshift bicycles, Monkey Business explores the extraordinary lives of Hans and Margret Rey, the authors of the beloved Curious George children’s books.
Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George’s Creators will be available on demand and digital August 15, 2017!
—————————————–
Monkey Business: The Adventures of Curious George’s Creators
Documentary
Release:  August 15, 2017
Directed by: Ema Ryan Yamazaki
Animation by: Jacob Kafka
Narrated by: Sam Waterston
Produced by: Ema Ryan Yamazaki, Emily Harrold
Executive Produced by: Marc Levin, Eric Nyari, Paul Davidson, Danielle DiGiacomo, Brad Navin
SYNOPSIS
Curious George is the most popular monkey in the world. Since his introduction in the first publication in 1941, the beloved series has sold over 75 million books in more than 25 languages. MONKEY BUSINESS explores the lesser-known tale of George’s creators, Hans and Margret Rey. Originally from Hamburg, Germany, the Reys first met when Hans was dating Margret’s older sister. Years later, having heard that Hans was wasting his artistic talents as a bookkeeper in Rio, Margret traveled to Brazil to persuade him to marry her and do something creative together. After their four-week honeymoon to Paris turned into a four-year residency, they accidentally became children’s book authors when a publisher suggested they create a book out of a cartoon Hans had drawn. Being German Jews, however, their life in Paris abruptly came to an end in June 1940 when the Reys were forced to escape from the Nazis by riding makeshift bicycles-a manuscript of the first Curious George book was one of the few possessions they could smuggle out with them. Arriving in New York as refugees, they started their life anew and over the next three decades they created a classic that continues to touch the hearts and minds of children around the world.

3D Artist (Generalist)-Rough Draft

3D Artist (Generalist)

NOTE: This is a LOCAL job in Glendale, CA. and we have nothing to do with the hiring here. We post these only as a courtesy to our readers.
Do NOT post in the comments, follow the link HERE to apply.

Description

Award Winning Rough Draft Studios, the animation studio behind Futurama, The Simpsons Movie, Clash-A-Rama, and The Maxx is gearing up for its next big project, a new series for Matt Groening.

We are looking for talented CG Generalists to join our team of artists. If you can do it all (model, texture, rig, AND animate), we would love to hear from you!

Requirements:

2+ years professional experience with Maya.

Must have modeling, texturing, rigging, and animation expertise.

Working knowledge of Mental Ray a plus.

Good communication skills and organization.

Ability to respond positively to direction.

Need to work well as part of a team.

Strong artistic sense and technical mastery preferred.

Responsibilities:

Timely completion of CG shots from beginning to end.

Manage the progress of multiple shots simultaneously.

Model, texture, rig, animate, and render environments, effects, props and incidental characters.

Work with technical supervisor and episode director for approvals.

Handoff final rendered layers to composite group

Submission:

Please provide us with your resume and a link to your CG reel (3-5 minutes).

Please include a breakdown that indicates your involvement in each shot.

Please show us only the BEST examples of your work.

STORYBOARD ARTIST – THE LOUD HOUSE

STORYBOARD ARTIST – THE LOUD HOUSE

Apply HERE

# of Openings
1
Job Locations
US-CA-Burbank

Overview and Responsibilities

SUMMARY:

  • Nickelodeon Animation Studio is looking for a full-time Storyboard Artist for its hit animated series The Loud House! This positions is looking to start as quickly as possible (summer 2017). We are looking for someone who can easily grasp The Loud House’s style – cartoony, comic strip-inspired. Great staging. This show is script-driven. A brief test will be required.

RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Meet with creative supervisors to discuss objectives of storyboard; what is desired or to be achieved.
  • Create storyboards by implementing storytelling objectives.
  • Follow instructions of creative supervisors.
  • Address any problems with creative supervisors; ask necessary questions.
  • Communicate progress of work to creative supervisors and to appropriate production staff.
  • Ensure quality and style of show is consistently achieved in storyboard work.
  • Follow proper document management requirements (i.e., file naming and storage) according to the production’s guidelines.
  • Meet all deadlines as determined by Line Producer or Production Manager.
  • Attend and contribute to relevant meetings and pitches as needed.
  • Will required to pitch Storyboards.
  • Ensure all storyboard notes are added.

Basic Qualifications

BASIC QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Must demonstrate proficiency in style of show.
  • Strong staging and composition skills.
  • Understanding of subtext in character performance. Portfolio samples must demonstrate that all characters in a sequence do not behave the same. They are unique. Think about which character in a scene is dominant, which is submissive. What are the undercurrents? Whose scene is it?
  • Strong drawing and mechanical skills.
  • Knowledge of  applicable design software (Photoshop, Storyboard Pro) and hardware (Wacom Cintiq monitor and/or tablet).
  • Strong time-management skills.
  • Work well under pressure.
  • Ability to multitask a plus.

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Relevant drawing experience necessary.
  • BA preferred.
  • Minimum of 1 year storyboard experience and/or training on a similar show; or equivalent combination of education and experience.

The “deep paintings” of Warhammer 40,000K Dawn of War III

The “deep paintings” of Warhammer 40,000K Dawn of War III

Dawn of War III returns once again to the battle-scarred frontlines of Warhammer 40,000, bringing the conflict of Space Marines, Eldar and Ork to the lost planet of Acheron. Read on to learn how Axis Animation and director Abed Abonamous took inspiration from classical paintings to build the game’s brooding expository cut scenes, revealing a world where beauty and violence sit side by side…

Axis Animation first stepped into the ominous nightmare world of Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III in early 2016. Relic Entertainment – the creator of the lauded real-time strategy series – called on the studio and director Abed Abonamous to create an announcement trailer that would challenge the expectations of the Warhammer franchise, revealing a darker take on the universe and its characters.

The result was a haunting journey through visuals inspired by the forbidding work of painters like Zdzisław Beksiński and H.R. Giger – mysterious stone structures tower behind plumes of dust; behemoths clash across corpse-strewn battlefields; and lonesome soldiers face their ultimate end with a wry smile.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Axis and Abonamous were once again invited into the netherworld of Dawn of War III to further expand this atmosphere throughout the title’s in-game cinematics, imbuing them with the same tone and atmosphere as the trailer.

The team worked to create 14 minutes of compelling 2.5D “motion-painting” cut scenes, each exhibiting the scope and fury of Dawn of War III’s violent clashes with the same oppressive atmosphere that pervades the initial trailer.

Read on to find out how Axis approach each of these doom-laden tableaus, taking inspiration from the classical masters…

Deep paintings

As a team of Warhammer fanatics, Axis Animation stood as the studio of choice for Relic Entertainment, who knew the team would show due reverence for the beloved tabletop franchise.

Axis collaborated closely with Relic to ensure the cut scenes hit the right tonal notes from pre-production onwards, with Abonamous once again diving into the universe headfirst.

“Relic had a clear idea of the storyline; they gave us detailed scripts that covered all of the cut scenes’ narrative beats,” explains Abonamous. “They also gave presentations revealing how the scripts tied into the game’s narrative context, revealing what would happen between one cut scene and another. That was a kind of ‘narrative glue’, which we used to think of the cut scenes as part of a larger tapestry.”

Abonamous and Axis needed to make this “tapestry” feel as rich as possible, both narratively and artistically. As such the team chose to implement the cut scenes as a series of “deep paintings”. Each frame revealed an atmospheric diorama or character and environment, shrouded in the sinister atmosphere that permeates Dawn of War III.

“We broke down the scripts provided by Relic into storyboard sketches, and iteratively finessed them while discussing each with the developers,” Abonamous explains. “Relic’s scripts and briefings rarely mandated any specific compositions for each cut scene. We had a lot of flexibility in approach for the deep paintings we wanted to create, and could decide on compositions that allowed the camera to tell a story.”

Indeed, the similarity between storyboard sketches and final output can be witnessed in lead storyboard artist Paul Coulthard’s comparison reel, detailing the initial sketches alongside Dawn of War III’s final results.

A two-way street

Using Relic’s directions for the cut scenes’ narrative elements, Axis worked collaboratively with the studio to define the look, feel and approach of each short composition.

“We approached this very much in the vein of classical painters, who guide the viewer’s eye through use of composition and lighting,” explains Abonamous.

“Relic provided high-level designs for locations and characters, as we had to make sure that the cut scenes corresponded visually to the players’ in-game experiences. This wasn’t a one-way street, however, as the cut-scenes required higher resolution assets, which meant that sometimes we would design details on characters or locations, and then send them back to Relic for signoff.”

Once the rich, tactile designs were ready, each conveying the painterly style the Warhammer 40K franchise is known for, Axis worked to give the images subtle motions and a delicate seasoning of effects, then meticulously planned the camera movements through each diorama.

“Using the animated storyboards we had prepared as reference, we translated the nuance of the camera movements to the final images,” says Abonamous. “Relic gave us high-level feedback, giving us an idea of the important narrative beats. But otherwise we had a lot of creative freedom to explore visual and compositional options on our end.”

Fans first and foremost

Axis’ animated paintings were ultimately delivered as eight separate sequences, comprising 14-minutes of beautifully brutal narrative. Concept to delivery took six months, with Axis engaging in much technical and creative thinking along the way.

“The biggest challenge we faced was how to add a sense of depth to these paintings,” Abonamous recalls. “Our tech gurus came up with an approach that allowed us to use a ‘thick’ atmosphere of smoke, fog, and haze inside 2.5D compositions.

“We also had a lot of content to render, which always poses a challenge on projects of this scope,” he adds. “We streamlined the pipeline to a point where we saved time by rendering assets just once for an entire shot, regardless of the moving camera. That saved huge amounts of time and enabled us to focus on getting each sequence feeling right creatively and rhythmically.”

Beyond the technical innovations, the final animated sequences represent a deep pool of artistic talent: the sweeping panoramas glide past in amber and copper chiaroscuro, fetid Orks and bulwarked Space Marines held in moments of frozen bloodshed. It’s static poetry – taking the viewer through fragments of captured time.

“The Axis team on Dawn of War III are fans first and foremost, so they really put their all into this,” concludes Abonamous. “We’re the guys who played on tabletop for years, and now we get to find new and exciting ways to cast light on the characters and concepts we know so well. The excitement we feel for Warhammer 40K is evident in every frame.”

 

 

 

Proofs of Concept from Exit 73 Studios

Cool little bit of animation from my friends over at Exit 73 Studios

The First one is called #BLUD:
It follows the adventures of Becky Belmont, who has to balance the perils of middle school by day and fighting the undead at night.  All of which serves as an allegory for what it’s like growing up as kid in this modern world.

The last one is called Duke and Darryl:
Darryl and his imaginary friend duke find ways to make mountains out of molehills in this Cartoony adventure!

Prashanth Pandurangaiah

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

What is your name and your current occupation?
First off, please allow me to thank you for doing this interview with me. I really appreciate the opportunity.

My name is Prashanth Pandurangaiah and I currently work as a Technical Director in the Assembly dept at Blue Sky Studios.

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
Before getting into Blue Sky Studios, I worked in the IT industry for a few years as a programmer. This was right after my Bachelors and at the time I did not know that animation could be a career for someone who has no art background, so I pretty much went with the flow without realizing my heart sought something else. I worked there until I found out that I could actually work in animation with my background.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Our curriculum at Carnegie Mellon University’s (CMU) Entertainment Technology Center (ETC), where I did my graduate studies, was not quite what we’ve come to expect from a master’s course. We worked on semester-long projects and learned on the job rather than sit through classes. This also helped me take on different roles in the team and worked as an FX Animator for a project, in which we had to create animated videos of traveling in space. This was a very cool project and I learned so much.

Apart from my school projects, I would have to say my first animated film (also my first at Blue Sky Studios), Epic, is my most favorite project that I’ve worked on. I worked with amazing people on Epic and it felt really great to finally have my dream come true.

Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I’m from Bangalore, India. Ever since I was a kid all I really cared about is the kids hour and cartoon network on TV. It was mesmerizing to be carried away to a magical place, be it about a silly little mouse being chased by a cat, or seeing a dog owned by an anthropomorphic mouse getting entangled in funny business or watch a duck in a sailor’s outfit throw temper-tantrums. It was then that I decided I wanted to be one of those behind the scenes, whose work would put a smile on my face, and wanted to do the same for others. After getting my bachelor’s in computer science, I worked for an software company for a few years and then decided to do my masters (at CMU) in the US, which then served as a gateway to the industry. I was given the opportunity to work for Blue Sky Studios right after I completed my master’s degree and haven’t looked back since.

What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
With my computer science background being put to good use, I primarily develop tools (or software) for the team. If we’re doing something more than twice, my department looks for ways to automate the process. There may be some processes that, when done manually, are tedious and might lead to errors that are easy to overlook. That’s where I come in, and after discussing with my supervisor, I develop tools that will simplify the workflow. In addition, I also work on the digital sets and environments in the animated movie.

What part of your job do you like best? Why?
The best feeling is when I see my name on the big screen at the end of the movie, when the credits roll. Also, seeing the happy faces in the audience while watching a movie I’ve been a part of is extremely humbling and that’s one of the things we try hard to achieve here at Blue Sky Studios.

What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Sometimes things don’t work the way we expect it to and we don’t realize that until it’s quite deep in the pipeline, and we have to finish and deliver our work while maintaining the original deadline. It can be exhausting, but in the end, it all works out, and we’re always happy with the result.

What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis, how has technology changed in the last few years in your field and how has that impacted you in your job?
We use Autodesk’s Maya for most of our work. Maya is used by every animation studio and is a very important software to learn if one wants to work in animation. Some of the tools that I develop are developed to be used within Maya. With computers getting faster and more resources at our disposal we’re now able to do more in less time. This has resulted in improved technology being developed to be able to “see” something better way before we need to render, so that render cycles are not wasted, allowing us to work more efficiently.

What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
A lot of people from outside the industry do not fully understand how 3D animated movies are made and to explain the process can be challenging as the lingo used in the industry is not easily translated over to the natural language.

If you could change the way the business works and is run how would you do it?
I’ve always been intrigued with different departments and how they achieve their output, or how they solve the issues that they encounter. Most of the time there’s a communication gap because we may not clearly understand each other’s work-flow. I have found that there could be more opportunities for inter-departmental exchange, so that those interested can work in different teams and gain more varied experience.

In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
Yes!! It’s curious that Ice Age was the first ever 3D animated movie that I saw as a kid and now I work here at Blue Sky Studios. Co-incidentally, the first movie I worked on was directed by the same director (Chris Wedge) who directed Ice Age. When I saw Chris Wedge in the hallway and he said “Hi”, I was pleasantly surprised and mumbled something in an alien language. I often also run into the director of Rio and Rio 2, Carlos Saldanha, and both, Chris and Carlos are amazing people. Once on a school tour to Walt Disney Animation Studios I got to see Glen Keane.

Describe a tough situation you had in life.
I once got stuck in an elevator and pondered life and its meaning. The elevators at work were going through a rough patch this one time. We decided to risk taking them, got stuck with just enough space to see the hallway, but not enough to get ourselves out. Firemen had to be called in. It was a long evening.

Any side projects you’re working on that you’d like to share details of?
I’ve been learning different technologies that could be useful at work, and I constantly try to improve myself and keep myself updated on the latest technologies.

Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
I like playing the guitar and play it occasionally. I can only play the intros to a few of my favorite songs though.

Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
I know it sounds cliché , but from my experience what I’ve learned is to never give up. Also make contacts, reach out to someone on the various forums available. People in the industry are generally very helpful and usually don’t turn down requests for advice and feedback. There are also tutorials available online for basically everything today, so utilize them to learn something that may not be taught at school.