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Watch Me Draw: The Far Green Country

I originally made this short drawing video over a year ago, but here it is again, slightly shortedned and re-branded. It’s got one of my all time favourite pieces of music on it,  Gymnopedie No. 1 by Erik Satie.

I hope you like it. Please like / subscribe to it on my YouTube channel, if you like this kind of thing. Another Watch Me Draw video will appear on Thursday.

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Blender and Video Editing

Blender VSE

Although I pay a monthly subscription to Adobe CC and so can access tools like Premiere, if I’m putting together videos I’ll usually choose to use Blender’s built in VSE (Video Sequence Editor). That’s because once you get to know Blender, you grow to love it and it’s overall approach to creating stuff. The VSE is a fairly bare bones video editor and does have some limitations. Its text tool is particularly lacking and I sometimes struggle to get it to play back the video footage in the view port at 30 frames per second. However, if you simply want to cut sequences, add sound and music, apply overlays and such like then it’s a great tool. You can change the appearance of clips with effects layers, animate properties such as opacity / position / rotation and volume in the usual way with keyframes. Render settings are handled in the usual Blender render properties windows.

Of course, if you work on an Apple Mac you can use the free iMovie programme to edit content and I guess that there’s something similar for Windows 10 users. However, if you want to use something that works well, isn’t limited to a particular brand of operating system, is open source AND allows you to make low poly birds wearing hats, then give Blender and its VSE a whirl.

If you’ve got this far and like the look of my videos, then head over and subscribe to my Froststuff YouTube Channel.

🙂

 

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Watch Me Draw: The Sea Dog

I’ve created a new YouTube channel where I’ll be posting some of these “Watch Me Draw” videos. They’ll be short and fun, and if I get enough likes / positive feedback then I’ll continue to post them up. So, why not head over to the Froststuff YouTube channel and hit SUBSCRIBE.

🙂IMG_20180412_130529

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It’s a dirty job being a Test Duck

Test Duck-01.jpg

But someone has to do it…

This is a work in progress, and mainly an exercise in getting textures and meshes at the right size for a small side project. Next step is to look into bump mapping the duck, and rigging for animation, of course. This version of the duck is relatively low poly. Below is a render with a sub surface modifier applied to the little fellow. The background textures are hand-drawn and coloured, scanned into Photoshop. They’re imported into Blender as planes. The duck is the usual combination of cubes, spheres and cylinders.

Test Duck-02.jpg

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A few words on Bitsy

Screen Shot 2018-04-03 at 13.02.31

Bitsy is a free-to-use game making tool by Adam Le Doux (here is his twitter). Most people in my timeline know about Bitsy’s many charms, but if you don’t then here’s a few words about it:

Bitsy is a very simple to use tool for making small (and not-so-small) narrative games that run in a web browser. There are limitations regarding the level of detail you can put in your game’s graphics and also in the interactions between your sprite and other game objects. However, Bitsy does allow you to set up useful things like conditional dialogue for characters, exits to and from different scenes and collectable items. It’s great for making little worlds where a player can walk around, explore, talk to characters and collect stuff. Understanding and working with Bitsy’s limitations encourages you to solve game making problems in subtle and creative ways. There’s a lively Bitsy community over on Itch, which is a good place to look for ideas and solutions to problems.

There is almost next to no coding involved in making a Bitsy game, making the experience an ideal playground to quickly try out some game / story ideas.  It’s also a great tool for novices (children, middle aged accountants etc) to see if they like the game making process. I’ve made a few bitsy games, but I haven’t put them online as I don’t think they were up to much. I did start a new one a few weeks ago, intended to only to take a couple of days but as ever I’ve been distracted by work and other projects. However, I’ve been tinkering with it in short periods of spare time, and it will probably be finished in a couple of weeks.

Check out some other people’s games on Itch. Go give Bitsy a go, it’s wonderful.