Posted On:May 2009 | Greyscalegorilla

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Five Second Projects Part 10: “Something Good, Something Bad”

May 29, 2009 - By 

This time, it’s all about constructive criticism. The theme for the week is “Something Good, Something Bad.” Submit a short project based on the theme. Then for the project you must comment on AT LEAST three other videos in the “Something Good, Something Bad.” Vimeo Channel. In the comments, say one thing that you like about their entry and one thing that could be better. Something Good and Something Bad.



After watching a piece, people have a tendency to say “Nice Work” (guilty) or “Wow, you animated that?” And, while it can be nice to hear encouraging words all day, it doesn’t do much to push you forward into better design and animation skills. Use these constructive comments to make your work better and better every time. Hopefully constructive criticism will continue though these Five Second Projects.



What is constructive criticism?
DON’T say “That Sucks.”
DO say “Great colors! The animation towards the end gets a little too fast. Try slowing it down.” Keep in mind, criticism can include ideas on how to make the piece better, not to insult their work. With that said, don’t be afraid to state your true opinion. Pulling punches isn’t helping. Expect me to be



What Are Five Second Projects?
We all want to make cool shit for our reel right? Sometimes you just need a theme to get you started. Use the theme “Something Good, Something Bad” to make a five second motion piece and link it in the comments of this blog post. “Shout Box” submissions will not be found and will not be added to the channel. Please be sure to post a link in this post’s comments to ensure me seeing it.



It’s really great to see so much participation. Tell a friend about the five second projects and get them involved too. Don’t forget to push yourself to try something new every week. What about a new piece of software or technique you have wanted to try?


DONT FORGET TO GIVE CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM!


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Five Second Favorites – The Winners

May 27, 2009 - By 

We have come to a decision. Graymachine and GreyscaleGorilla went days deciding the winner of the “Type Only” Five Second Project. We had lists of criteria and pages of notes. There were so many great entries, but in the end we just picked one that we both thought was SUPER DOPE. The winner of the contest and the entire series of Graymachine training is this classy gem from zka11 called 5 letters for 5 seconds. Great stuff!

Grand Prize Winner…

The raffle winner is Kevin Snyder. He wins the Digieffects Megasuite just for entering. Check out his animation too.

Chosen By Random Winner…

Thanks to everyone for entering. And, Thanks to graymachine for sponsoring! Stay tuned for more contests and more Five Second Projects.


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Camera Bag Full of Gear – All of my Best Nikon Cameras and Lenses

May 21, 2009 - By 

We have all seen it, but now it’s my turn. Watch me do that thing where people pull all of their gear out of their camera bag. People always ask what gear I use. Here is a easy way to show you not only all my lenses and accessories, but also talk about some quick tips and how I use each piece of gear.

My Gear
Nikon D700: My photos taken with the D700.
Nikkor 24-70mm 2.8f Review
Nikkor 85mm D 1.4: Review
Nikkor 50mm 1.4f Review
Nikkor 20mm f2.8
Nikkor 300mm 4.5
Nikkor 55mm Macro
Ray Ring Flash: Review
Nikon SB-600 Flash
Nikon MB-D10 Multi Power Battery Pack
Lacie Rugged Hard Drive
Lowepro Flipside 400 AW
Nikon MC-36 Multi-Function Remote Cord
Gorilla Pod
Flip Mino HD

In the Buying Mood?
Like something you see? Check out more of my gear and recommend products and gear over at my Gorilla Goods – Amazon Store. Yeah, I get a small cut of anything you purchase, but if you’re gonna buy it anyway, help me support my growing bandwidth bills will ya?


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Gary on Resumes

May 20, 2009 - By 

If you have a resume… you’re a dickhead.

I mean, who has a resume now?

You don’t think they google your name?

– Gary Vaynerchuk



Check out the full video here


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Why More Doesn’t Equal Better – The Art of Overachieving

May 18, 2009 - By 

A student wrote in telling me that he turned in a spot that was over a minute long for a project that asked for only a 15-second animation. His teachers insisted on giving him a failed grade. He was wondering why he would be punished for what he considered was “Overachieving as an artist.” This is an excerpt from my reply…



First of all, I think it’s great that you put so much energy and passion into your projects. Your drive to be better and better will be the most important part of your journey.



However, you must think about your teachers as real clients in the real world. You aren’t just learning After Effects. You are learning how to create within their limitations and make great work within the client’s constraints.



Think about this: When you leave school and get a job, you will have limits. If someone needs a 15-second commercial, you can not deliver a 70-second spot, no matter how good it is. Right? True artists make the best of their limitations. If your concept needs more than a minute to make sense, then your concept is not right for this project. Re-concept the idea to play out in 15-seconds or consider shortening your current idea to fit the brief. Going above and beyond is great, but making something longer that is required is NOT going above and beyond. In fact, it is sometimes harder to make short pieces than long ones.



In any profession, there are rules and standards. If a builder was asked to build a one-story ranch for a family, he would NOT be applauded for making a six-story skyscraper. Again, think of your teachers as future clients. They asked for a 15-second commercial for a 15-second time slot and you gave them an unusable piece of animation. If they were your client, you would not get paid.



Anyway, don’t be discouraged. Overachieving is a good thing. Just spend time overachieving in things that ARE under your control. Make the colors perfect, make concepts more clear, make the animation tighter, write more interesting stories. Just remember, making a spot longer doesn’t make it better.



One last thing: If your goal is to be only an artist, none of this matters. Do anything you want that makes you artistically happy. But, if you are looking for a job in this industry, you have to learn to accept constraints and create great work within them.

Keep up the passion!


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5 Things We Wish We Knew Way Earlier – Tips for Creatives and Creators

May 15, 2009 - By 

A few quick tips from a presentation that my friend made at the Illinois Institute Of Art. Great ideas. Learn them now before it’s too late!!


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Five Second Project – “Type Only” – Now With Prizes from Graymachine

May 15, 2009 - By 

UPDATE: The contest is closed and the winners are announced. Thanks for some really great work everybody. Our biggest turn out yet!



Oh boy, it’s the moment we have been waiting for. This week’s Five Second Project is sponsored by Graymachine. You know what that means? PRIZES! Harry has graciously offered up prizes to get you in the motion making mood. Submit your entry and Harry and I will pick a winner whose project epitomizes the theme and shows and abundance of “overall-awesomeness.” THAT winner will win our grand prize, the entire Graymachine training series, including Trapcode Form Design Techniques, Trapcode Form Training, After Effects Expressions AND, Complete Training for Trapcode Particular!



But wait… there’s more.
Thats right TWO TWO TWO chances to win. Submit your Five Second Project, prize. We will pick a random Five Second Project entry to win the Digieffects Megasuite! This includes: Aurorix, Berserk, Delirium, Damage, Depth Cue, and Simulate Iluma & Simulate Camera.



Submitters: don’t forget to add a link to this post on your Vimeo video, so everyone can play along. Please add this link to your video to keep everyone up to date with the rules and deadlines: https://greyscalegorilla.com/2009/05/15/five-second-project-type-only-now-with-prizes-from-graymachine/


What Are Five Second Projects?
We all want to make cool shit for our reel, right? Sometimes you just need a theme to get you started. Use the theme “Type Only” to make a five second motion piece and link it in the comments of this blog post. “Shout Box” submissions will not be found and will not be added to the channel. Please be sure to post a link in this post’s comments to ensure me seeing it.



It’s really great to see so much participation. Tell a friend about the five second projects and get them involved too. Don’t forget to push yourself to try something new every week. What about a new piece of software or technique you have wanted to try?



Bottom line… MAKE COOL SHIT!



Need some more help getting started? Check out my After Effects and Cinema 4D tutorials. Also check out our sponsor’s tutorials at graymachine.com.



Submit Your Entry Now…


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GSG Cast – Flip HD Mino Wide Angle Adapter and LA Update

May 13, 2009 - By 

I found this cool little wide angle lens for the Flip HD Mino. It has a magnetic ring that attaches around the Flip’s lens to make attaching and removing a simple process. It’s a little blurry in the corners, but I really like the wider view. Check out the video to see the lens in action.


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ShakeItPhoto Photo Winner: Ron Lemise

May 4, 2009 - By 

Congrats to Ron Lemise! He’s the May 4th Winner of the ShakeItPhoto Contest. Take a look at his posterous site “As Seen By Ron” or his flickr account. In a couple shots, Ron took his photos one step further by using this protective iPhone case that has a built-in close-up lens along with the ShakeItPhoto app. Together they produced really great images. Ron has some really outstanding photos but the one that stood out the most was the one of his daughter sliding. I chose “Eliana Enjoys the Summer Like Weather” as the winner. Ron has set the bar pretty high with this colorful shot. Don’t forget to post your best shots to the ShakeItPhoto: Best Of flickr group to be eligible for future contests.

What’s this all about anyway?
Every now and then I will be featuring a ShakeItPhoto photo that I think is outstanding by posting it on greyscalegorilla.com/blog as well as ShakeItPhoto.com. I will also feature the winner’s website on my blog . This will be a fun way to get a little more exposure for ShakeItPhoto and for you – whether you’re a photographer, designer, or pornstar.

To enter the contest:

  • Get ShakeItPhoto (if you haven’t already)
  • Take some great pics with your iPhone using the app
  • Submit them to the ShakeItPhoto: Best Of flickr group (Only one photo per person, per day)
  • I will notify you if you’re the winner and you will get your website and winning photo featured on GSG and shakeitphoto.

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GSG Cast: Blog Update and “TWOday List” Productivity Tip

May 4, 2009 - By 

Just a quick update about what’s going on in GSG Land. I have been a bit busy lately at Digital Kitchen working on a really HUGE job. I’m really excited to tell you guys about it when it wraps. My dad had a great productivity tip he calls a “TWOday List.” Write down two things you HAVE to get done today and only worry about that. I’m going to give it a try and see how it works. There are a few more comments in the cast, so make sure to watch.


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New Five Second Project – “I’m Drunk”

May 1, 2009 - By 


This week’s Five Second Project theme is “I’m Drunk”. Need an excuse to make something cool this week? Well, now is your chance. Use this theme to make a short motion piece and link it in the comments of this blog post. “Shout Box” submissions will not be found and will not be added to the channel. Please be sure to post a link in this post’s comments to ensure me seeing it.

It’s really great to see so much participation. Tell a friend about the five second projects and get them involved too. Don’t forget to push yourself to try something new every week. What about a new piece of software or technique you have wanted to try?

Bottom line… MAKE COOL SHIT!

Need some more help getting started? Check out my After Effects and Cinema 4D tutorials.

Here are all of the entries so far…