Origins : P-Slice

P-Slice is the pepperoni pizza slice that was brought to life!

An ordinary man who lives amongst ordinary people on an ordinary street in an ordinary Victorian terraced house in London has the unbelievable ability to create life from inanimate objects, the only problem is that he has no control over this ability whatsoever! The man in question (we will call him Bob) has other amazing abilities, he is super-strong and he can fly, but nobody knows! He uses his superpowers for good (as Super Bob!) but generally just wants to live a normal life, so he keeps everything a secret. (but his back-story is not the one we are interested in..)

Having superpowers is great but whenever he sneezes he ends up accidentally bringing the objects he is touching to life! Bob is a good guy though, he feels obligated to the things he brings to life, and they see him as a father figure and would inevitably get into trouble without him – at the very least potentially give his identity away, so he is stuck with them! So they all live in Bobs basement, where they are safe and cannot get into any trouble! Well, not as much trouble anyway..

P-Slice is a slice of pizza that Bob was about to eat, when all of a sudden he was sneezed into existence! The little pizza slice grew a body and arms and legs and a face, oh and of course he gained sentience!

His first words were “OW! MY BUTT!?”

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Front and side views of P-Slice. He is wearing clothes that were made for him by one of the objects who he lives with in Bobs basement. Not all the objects wear clothes, but P-Slice wants to be Bobs sidekick and go on adventures! So he has to have a superhero costume, so he looks the part, and then surely Super Bob will take him on awesome superhero missions to save the world!

For now P-Slice will have to wait, Bob said he would take him with him when he’s ready. For now he must continue getting ready, practicing his sneaking and hiding stealth skills and his terrifying boo-scare tactics, ooh and his amazing dance workouts that are fun for everyone (EVERYONE!!) where his skin tight costume really pays for itself!

character turnaround

*P-Slice doesn’t have any bones so he can move in some really great ways, and of course stretch like pizza dough and melted cheese!

P-Slice is full of energy. Like so totally full to the brim right up to here it’s so full it’s overflowing full of energy. And he is very emotional, which can be difficult for those around him. He’s a drama Queen who takes everything way too seriously, but he means well, although he does do some silly stuff. Stuff that anyone with a brain would have seen was not going to work, but P-Slice doesn’t always think things through, which means he rushes into things like a maniac sometimes!

There are a fair few different objects that were sneezed into existence, some from when Bob was very young, right up to last week. There are new objects now and again, sometimes a fair few come in if Bob is unwell and sneezing a lot! Some don’t have to live in the basement, and there are even a few objects who have gone out with Bob before. (there is also a good chance that Bob has sentient objects in other locations, like lockers and car boots. He just hasn’t got around to moving them, and sometimes the objects living there are happy enough. Although Bob left one object alone and forgot about him- and that object eventually went looking for Bob, and found out he was abandoned. And now he has sworn an oath to destroy Bob for what he did, which as you can imagine is quite a nuisance, and fairly depressing for Bob. Luckily the object is not very clever and so far his plans all backfire or turn out to be harmless, so Bob basically allows it to continue..)

Anyway the objects all have different personalities, some are lazy and some are content with their lives. Fixed to the TV watching shows all day and night! Some are grumpy and some are happy, there is a good mix! P-Slice is excited about everything and gets on the others nerves from time to time, but they all get on well really, like a big family. They are all very loyal to Bob, and Bob makes sure he pops his head in as often as he can, which isn’t always that often because he is so busy.

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Did a little doodle of P-Slice at an awkward moment where he is desperate for a wee! Then i decided to do a few more of him in different moods and basically a doodled expression sheet.

Note that his eyes don’t have eyelids, so it is difficult for him to express emotions that way, and also its basically impossible for him to close his eyes.. (more on that later..) To get around his eyelidlessness P-Slice’s pupils morph a little bit to help convey how he is feeling, and he also has floating eyebrows, or at least I’m playing around with the idea of him having floating eyebrows..

Also note that he has a bendy body and especially bendy floppy head, oh and also a really sweet round ass. its nicely toned and toight and in his skin tight suit its like he’s wearing nothing at all, nothing at all, nothing at all… Stupid sexy pizza slice!

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It must be hard enough being a superhero and trying to live an ordinary life, let alone when you keep sneezing your food or your toothbrush into existence. Oh God or your left shoe, I literally can’t even… and now of course the right shoe is useless, but then the left show bugs you forever for the right shoe, which you give him, but now he keeps bugging you about bringing it to life, and then you’re stood there with pepper in one hand and that right shoe in the other trying to Sneeze onto the shoe and just thinking where did it all go so terribly wrong in my life that I’m stood here doing this!

 

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Programming

I have been learning to programme this week using processing v2.2.1 (python) and i decided to design a pink elephant! He has a pretty sweet moustache (or maybe they are actually tusks, but he likes to at least pretend it’s his moustache sometimes, especially when he is role-playing as Dr Watson from Sherlock Holmes or Cogsworth from Beauty and the Beast and going off solving crimes).

(x,y,width,height)

I have included some screenshots of the finished script and the finished elephant. The elephant can move around by moving the mouse.

elepahtn poop

Without a background the elephant repeats across the background, which is actually kind of cool.

elephant burger

Automated Animation – Programming

Processing is an environment that allows artists to create work using code and programming as their medium. It is a form of coding and environment intended to help artists generate interactive visual work directly. This leads to a form of art often referred to as ‘Generative art’ or when it is moving image ‘Generative animation’. This is a new way of creating art and animation where the final image is not created directly but is the result carefully selecting and crafting new computer algorithms.

‘Conspiracy – chaos theory [HD] 64k’

‘Farbrausch & Haujobb’ – fr-034 [hjb- 104]: time index [HD]

Liquid Wen/ Haujobb (PC Demo)

YouShould by Haujobb[HD] – Evoke 2010 invitation

Polina Alexeeva, SCI-Arc 2015 Generative Animations with Ivan Bernal

Musicians with guns – Astroblast

Generative animations

Generative Art

The formula

Generative animation circles

Punkt (final version)

I created this animation when I wrote my bachelor thesis about generative animations a year ago.
It was entirely coded in Processing (processing.org), no cuts no keyframes. I can’t say this is the way to go when it comes to creating animations in general, but I definitely learned a ton when I created this.

Partitura

Foliage shoal

Decode: Recode

The decode logo is formed from 250,000 cubes which separate, swarm and flock like tiny futuristic cuboid fish.

The snail on the slope

The Snail on the Slope is a generative movie based on a book of the same title by Strugatsky brothers. The novel is set on an unknown planet, where humans have a base from which they are investigating and trying to conquer the Forest. The Forest, which is a huge single organism is constantly changing and fighting back. It is also dangerous and there are a lot of unexplained phenomena that they are discovering.

The movie is made of five chapters, which critically address the questions of artistic and scientific efforts to understand nature. The topics that arise in those chapters are: sublime view on nature, role of knowledge, ubiquitous bureaucracy, and destruction of nature.

In the movie, all the scenes are generated with Processing. They are created as abstractions and visualizations of the atmospheres in which all of the action takes place.

Tales of the unexpected

Piece commissioned by Ei’Kon store in Denmark

Interim Camp

Poor visibility; weather again unsettled today. Surreal rocks and riven lowlands, valleys fog-shrouded. Frightening depths, and emptiness. Rarity of air is noticeable. What are you looking for in this hostile stretch?

THATS NUMBERWANG!

The folks at Pixar are widely known as some of the world’s best storytellers and animators. They are perhaps less recognized as some of the most innovative math whizzes around. Pixar Research Lead Tony DeRose delves into the math behind the animations, explaining how arithmetic, trigonometry and geometry help bring Woody and the rest of your favourite characters to life.

Math and Movies (Animation at Pixar) – Numberphile

Pixar: The math behind the movies – Tony Derose

https://www.processing.org/

Processing is a flexible software sketchbook and a language for learning how to code within the context of the visual arts. Since 2001, Processing has promoted software literacy within the visual arts and visual literacy within technology. There are tens of thousands of students, artists, designers, researchers, and hobbyists who use Processing for learning and prototyping.

Superficie – Possible, plausible, potential.

Traces, Physical Programming of Freeform Folding in soft matter

Research Group – Dana Zelig, Ido Bachelet, Hadass Jessel
Music – Ire’ne Schweizer, Piano Solo Vol.1 – 08 Look In

Traces project explores the concept of programming everyday materials, a form of “physical programming”, where objects are “made to act” by re-forming following a set of specific instructions.

To explore this idea, I developed 12 processed-folding objects series, using custom built software in Processing and various physical techniques – printing, twisting, laser-cutting, knotting and framing. Both the digital tools and the physical techniques were used systematically in order to explore spatial, structural & geometrical conditions, leading to the emergence of prototypes. I used sheets of “Shrinky-Dinks”, a shrinkable pre-stressed polystyrene sheets that are used commercially in kids’ creativity kits. After creating various black and white patterns in Processing, she printed them on the sheets in black, using a simple desktop printer, and then induced folding by placing the sheets under an IR light bulb at a set distance. The printed sheets folded repeatedly within seconds upon exposure to the light, according to the black-line patterns. The energy from the light gets absorbed preferentially by the black line, which acts as a hinge because it converts the light effectively into heat. The heat relaxes the polymer directly under the hinge region in a gradient across the sheet thickness.

Letter size polystyrene sheets 8-1/2” x 11” were used, and the experiment sizes that were cut from the sheets vary between the size of a business card to the size of a postcard. In order to retain clarity, legibility and consistency, she used a minimum size of 12% the width of the format (A5, A6, 5.5*8.5cm). The optimal thickness of the black line varies between 0.5mm – 2mm. A thinner line is usually not effective, while a thicker one demands more time under the light which eventually causes the polystyrene to burn.

I used Processing as a drawing tool, working with primitives (lines) and more complex curves. The patterns were then exported as vectors in Adobe Illustrator to eliminate unwanted glitches/errors. Variables include Size, Location, Area Symbols, Orientation, Thickness, Leading, Texture, Lightness, Time, heat. The effectiveness of this limited palette was used to depict light and space, mimic 3 dimensionality, and allow for a greater focus on form and line.

This research is based on the article “Self-folding of polymer sheets using local light absorption”, Michael D. Dickey et al. The Royal Society of Chemistry 2011. The code originates from the Generative Design publication examples available on GitHub.

Alter Ego – final film

This is the final animation for the Alter Ego project, my first project using Maya dn working in 3D!

I found that i had some issues trying to get the lighting right, in the end i didn’t manage to get shadows coming from all the objects either. It was supposed to be a darkened basement and overall i think that i managed to get the feel of the environment right, but i could have done with some more lighting to just highlight certain things, and had i enough time i would have lit the vent section much more appropriately. I managed to get the vents to open and close properly, which was a massive boost having something animated in the scene as the camera was moving around, as i had decided that the doors would not be animated.

I think the perspective was really successful, it really feels like a small character is moving around the environment, but i was unable to make the camera bob up and down which would have simulated the walking of the character.

In the end i decided that the environment was going to be more homely, and the characters who lived there were a mixture of different things, so i furnished the basement with the sorts of things that reflected the characters that lived there (in the vent bedroom for p-slice) but also the never-seen superhero who created p-slice. I would have liked to have put a lot more objects into the environment; like books, shelves, magic eight ball, sports gear, plates and cutlery, a fridge (that opened with food inside!) games, a beanbag, a glowing night light, and a bunch of other things. But when it came to managing my time i had to consider the more important objects and then reign myself in as i was working. I hope to revisit this basement anyway as i improve my Maya skills with modelling and stuff. It would be really cool to actually model a suit of armour!

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