Sunday, 26 August 2012

Coding with Notch (From the making of Minecraft)


I found this little clip interesting, it's nice to see someone at work just doing what they do naturally. It's also encouraging to know that everyone makes mistakes, like here, when Persson  tries to fix a bug and ends up making it worse. It just shows that it's all part of the process.

Coding isn't my territory, but it's just nice to see a creative person at work.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

The Making of de_dust



It's hard to believe that the most popular Counter-Strike map was made by a 16 year old fan. 

To say the map was based off really early Team Fortress 2 screenshots isn't really accurate - it was flat out copied. The author admits to that. But, he managed to take a few demo areas (which never ended up in TF2) and use them as the basis for a map which is still popular to this day.

What also interests me about this article is that he mentions having absolutely no plan for the level. As you do when you are that age, you take everything as it comes, and fortunately this turned out well for Mr. Johnston. 

Johnston also produced two very successful single player missions for the original Half-Life, as well as multiplayer levels for Brink.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Mars Attacks!


I'll be perfectly honest, when I saw the Mars Attacks! film, I didn't think it was part of a long-running series. I saw it as this wacky, cheesy, comical film that was a homage to a different era of science fiction. However, I read an article about the original 1962 trading cards (and the subsequent comics and reprints) in ImagineFX, and it got me interested in the vibrant artwork and energetic composition of the original series.

If you look at Mars Attacks! from a serious point of view, it's a morbid idea. Most of the artwork is very graphic in it's depiction of the invasion, and most of the victims are civilians in an idyllic american setting. It's not hard to believe that this was controversial back in it's time. We're not so sensitive to this stuff anymore, but back then there wasn't an over-saturation of grotesque violence.

The artwork for Mars Attacks! is described as being pulp, or at least pulp inspired. I'm still getting to grips with how best to describe pulp as an technique, but from what I understand it isn't easy to define. It's not so much a style of painting as much as a mindset, and it evolved from the technical limitations and time constrains the artist's had to work around whilst producing the artwork.

"Pulp" isn't a style/genre/whatever that I've been interested in before, but I'm intrigued by the Mars Attacks! series. It's got a charm of it's own, and I can see how it could bring a nice visual flair to certain projects.

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