4-26-PPJ Valentina Feldman

Goals for This Week: 

  • UV / texture assets
  • Be mean about deadlines
  • Prepare presentation for final project check-in

What Happened: 

This week went more or less as planned! We really had to crunch to get our trailer up to speed in time for the final project check-in, but we met our goal of having an animatic with all shots animated and at least 1/3 locked. I spent a lot of time working on the timeline, talking with Gabe and Josh about the status of the animatic. I also prepared the presentation for our midterm / final project check-in.

I assisted with some of the camera animation for the animatic, talked to individual team members to find time-constrained solutions for everything that needs to get done, and did my best to keep everything flowing smoothly so we can meet our deadlines. I also looked into off-site rendering solutions, sold t-shirts, made a Facebook page, redesigned our website, recruited a new audio effects guy, and did all sorts of other small miscellaneous producer tasks. I was also succesfully mean about deadlines.

I also UV’d all of our environment assets (recently finished by Ethan, Josh and Anthony). The Interior airplane scene in particular took forever, but I maximized the UV space so it should be really easy for Ethan and I to texture. All textures will be done by 5/10, so I have my work cut out for me!

Total hours: 20ish

Next Week: 

  • Draft 1 of final presentation
  • More texturing!
  • Various producer stuff

Team Progress Summary: 4/19/2015


Team Spooky back with another status report! We’re chugging along towards the final delivery date and making steady progress. There are no more storyboards allowed in our edit, and we’re excited to be wrapping up environment modeling this week!

We’ve all finally rebounded from our various illnesses and are working full steam ahead. We have a final environment geometry deadline this upcoming Friday on 4/24, so next week you can expect to see our characters interacting with real objects! Our character animation deadline is 4/26, and even at this state we’re very happy with the state of our shots. The weekly critique sessions with Dave are definitely paying off.

For our Final project delivery, we intend to show renders and comps for each of our environments, a playblasted version of the animation, and a schedule for finishing it all on time. As always, the biggest hurdle standing in our way is the inconsistency of the render farm, but we’ve been constantly bothering Westphal IT to track down all the errors and get it reliable again. As of right now, the render farm is *mostly* working… but Josh knows all the details on that end. If the farm keeps up the good work, we should have no problem getting it done on time!

4-19-PPJ Valentina Feldman

Goals for this week: 

  • Polished compositing for all rendered shots (BUT ACTUALLY, THOUGH)
  • Get shirts printed
  • Wrangle timelines

What happened: 

I realize that I’m going about this the wrong way.

For the past three weeks, my main goal has been to get our compositing up to speed. We have a master comp for our Interior Tower scene (IT140) that’s up to date and a workable version for our Exterior Mountain Pass shots, but without the most recent renders I have no way of translating this work over to the OTHER shots. The old renders are missing render passes that have proven vital for the master comp, and there’s no point in trying to replicate that look with outdated and missing assets. It’s a waste of time, and I have better things to do.

So, until our Sprint 1 deliverables are re-rendered, I’m putting a freeze on compositing. All of my efforts for the time being will be focused on cracking down on scheduling and assisting with textures and asset creation for our environments. I’m tired of beating a dead farm, so I’m reappropriating myself to environment team. After the animation is done and rendering, everyone’s’ bandwidth will be free and I’ll be able to delegate compositing to the whole team.

I spent my time this week being a pain in the butt and pushing hard deadlines, redoing our Trello and schedule, assigning tasks, designing a logo and taking t-shirt orders, taking notes at critique meetings, and doing producer-ly duties.


Hours: 14

Next week: 

  • Texture assets
  • Be mean about deadlines
  • Prepare presentation for final project check-in

4-19-PPJ Ethan Miller

This week I focused primarily on the edit and score due to falling behind on the other credits I’m taking this term. I went through our entire cut and wrote two pages of directions and notes for our composer as well as updating our edit with the latest playblasts.I also planned out our new motion graphics sequence with Craig Whitaker. This next week I’ll be doubling down on everything and spending just about every moment in the labs working on environments. Hours Spent – 4

4-19-PPJ Josh Hollander

This week I was supposed to work on the city buildings.  I started working on them, but was distracted by (surprise!) issues with the farm.  We were experiencing really erratic render times, with identical frames taking between 20min and 20 hours.  I worked for a while on a contingency plan, cutting down render times to the point where we could render locally in a worst-case scenario.  Thankfully, though, after talking to the Drexel IT department the farm seems to be stable again.  I’ll be monitoring it in the coming weeks and submitting jobs to feel it out while wrapping up the city.

Team Progress Summary: 4/12/2015


This week, several members of Team Spooky came down with another bout of the plague. It was Sick Week: Part 2, and we ended up falling behind on Environment work. Nick was understanding and let us recover instead of meeting, so next week we intend to kick this project’s butt and make some solid progress to catch up!

Animation polishing is coming along, and we’re well on our way to finishing the animation. It’s going to be tough and we’ll be working up until the very end, but we’re still confident and optimistic. The biggest hurdle in our path this week has proven to be the render farm, which is still acting erratically. Oftentimes on the same farm machine, render times will fluctuate between 8 hours and 18 minutes on almost identical frames. It should go without saying that we need the farm to be stable in order to finish our project on time. Both our team and Jura have been in near constant communication with Jay about it, and this week we plan on meeting in person to talk about the farm.

Other than that, Anthony and Pat have made some awesome progress with environmental asset modeling, our characters are finally updated, and the new renders are kicking out passes that will allow for greater flexibility in the comps.

We’ve had our sick week, and now we’re officially at the point in the project where we can spare no more mess-ups or illness. This week is going to be tough, but look forward to some awesome visuals in our next PPJs!

4-12-PPJ Valentina Feldman

Goals for this week: 

  • Polished compositing for all rendered shots
  • Asset lists for environments
  • Logo / t-shirts

What happened: 

This week largely ended up being a faiure for me. I spent roughly a week and a half bedridden with a lung infection (which I believe to be bronchitis, but my roommate had pneumonia so I’m not sure). I missed all my classes, could barely stay awake for more than a few hours, didn’t even submit PPJs on time, and composited absolutely nothing.

Now that being said, I’m FINALLY feeling better, and a week of inactivity has left me desperate to make some art. This week I fully intend to kick some ass and get back up to speed!

Next week: 

  • Polished compositing for all rendered shots (BUT ACTUALLY, THOUGH)
  • Get shirts printed
  • Wrangle timelines