Wednesday, 29 June 2011

A photo a day.

Well... the page-a-day didn't quite work out. I think the problem was that I got discouraged when I found I was having so many blank pages on days where I wasn't feeling in a particularly arty mood, and ended up losing track of the whole thing. Never mind, I still have the pages to doodle on when I want to.

Instead I've started a new 365 project. I take a photo of myself everyday for a month. And again the next month. And again and again until I make 12 months! But I don't just take a picture of my face like Noah did. Sometimes I edit them, practising and experimenting with digital tools to see what effects I can come up with and achieve.

Okay. I confess. It's partly an excuse to make pretty pictures of myself to put onto Facebook and to put into a book of my own for when I'm older or gone. A part of me wants to have lots and lots of sweeeet looking pictures, but I'm not a model... And I thought that since I'm not a model, then I shouldn't be taking or making pictures of myself and editing them like I wanted to put on display anywhere...

I think Alice Cat changed that belief. She wasn't a model. She was just a sweet looking little girl a couple years below me in school, and then a few years later, BAM! Now look at her. She's working away at a career she loves and she's looking pretty damn fine doing it. It's awesome. It's inspiring. It made me start taking a picture of myself everyday, and hopefully everyday for at least a year.

And sure, maybe I'm not doing it with a career in modelling in mind [or maybe I am.. I've never had a solid vision of a career path in mind], and maybe I missed one day and sneaked in a screenshot image of my sleep pattern diary, and maybe some of the photos are really lazy ones where I haven't even edited or colour corrected them, let alone tried to do anything arty.

But even the unedited ones still show something of who I was and where I was that particular day in the series. Not to mention how I really like how a few of them have turned out. If I can, I'd like to keep this up for the rest of my life. Join me! Feel free to post any links to your similar projects in the comments :)

Friday, 17 June 2011

I forgot to mention, there was a little ginger girl/toddler and Gen, both sat in my room where my piles of clothes should have been.

Oh man. Oh man, oh man, oh man. It's been a long time since I last had an open eyed dream, but this morning, I had one. I think I went to bed between 3am and 4am; I had stayed up writing and painting some business cards for today's Grad Show. I think I woke up and grabbed my phone to check the time a few times, one being at around half 11am, and finally waking up at half 12ish. This one had it's frantic moments.

The Dream

At some point, I'm at a party in a room with tables. It feels a bit like a cross between Revs and my old school Art classrooms. Dave Ware is there and we're talking about something, except we're talking through the table like it's some kind of string telephone.

Leter, after he's gone and come back again, he sits next to me and asks me if I'm a lesbian. Hahaha. No. I'm not.

I don't remember what happens between the above and the below.

I must have opened my eyes. I'm in bed and I can't get up. It's light out, I left my curtains open, and I try to turn around or cover my eyes so that I can't see anything. That way, maybe my brain will stop thinking I'm not moving not matter how much I try to move. It's not working, however much I turn, even a complete 180, my vision morphs back into what I can see from bed. I try to at least get my phone and check what the time is, because I need to go to the Grad Show later. I accidentally knock over my glass from the desk beside me, and I hear glass break at it falls to the floor. Of course, I can't see it. I can't sit up.

I gingerly reach a hand down to see if it really it broken, and instead pick up a broken glass bong. And I'm like, wtf is a bong doing in my room? And then I remember the party that had happened just before in my dream. I freak out because I need to wake up, and I wonder if I actually will ever feel like I'm really awake again, and then I start to think I am actually just mental, that I lost my mind ages ago, because I get stuck like this for so long.

At some point it switches back to the party. I see some jackass playing my guitar. I'm on a square spiral staircase. I yell at him and the party quietens. Suddenly, I'm authority. I tell him the rules.
1. Don't break my guitar.
2. Don't let anything else break my guitar.
3. When you're done, put it back on the stand.
And then still make sure nothing else happens to it.

The party is dead quiet.

4., or is it 5.? - Make sure you enjoy it.

And then the party continued, as if I had finished some kind of speech. I went up the stairs, I think with Lucy Liddell, and there was some kind of display space up there with glass cabinets. After some kind of conversation I don't remember well, I end up with a purple and orange tamagotchi.

And then I wake up.

The Reality

Well. Bryony was on the phone in the kitchen yesterday and a tamagotchi was mentioned when Daisy thought that's what they were talking about.
I don't know why I had a bong in my mind, or why there were parties in a place like Revs crossed with my art classroom.
On the first night I met Dave, he did tell me and Jess Pearce that we were lesbians with each other. It was also the first night I'd met Jess, and I'm pretty sure we weren't doing anything lesbianish. I'm not sure why exactly in the dream he started seriously asking if I was a lesbian. Maybe it was because his girlfriend and I "kissed" for a photo at the last party they threw.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

How NOT to stand out with your advertising.

Quickly went onto IndieDB today to accept an invite to join the group Flying Bones [the team name for our final major project], and lo and behold, what did I see?

I'm guessing those adverts on the edges are supposed to be in the background - but they're not and have ended up covering a fair portion of the screen's edges. I can't read any of the numbers on the side. I'm not amused. Especially since Ctrl scrolling doesn't do anything to help it.

I don't even know what they're advertising precisely, but already I've probably developed a subconscious link between it and the feeling of rage it's giving me. F.

Monday, 6 June 2011

Quick Prototype Development

Today I registered at IndieDB.

Then I read through this article by the people from the Experimental Gameplay Project on how to prototype games in 7 days.

... A very short post today.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

I win!

Last night's dream was interesting. And also kind of fun. And slightly worrying. But mostly fun.

The Dream

I don't remember all of it right now, but I remember taking a trip in a minivan with back packs, and I think I was going with Gen or someone like her, to make a documentary. We went to this place with lots of hot hip hop people, it was like their club, and I wasn't sure if shit was going to go down or not. They had a bar. It was more like a pub, if all the patrons in the pub were hot hip hop people.

I remember a hole in the floor and some graffiti on a wall. I think the people were okay with us, except for this one blonde girl. She was one of them, but was styled kind of emo. She didn't like me, didn't like how the others liked me, and got kind of territorial on me, passively so. Passively, that is, unless she crept up behind me and tried to attack me, possibly trying to throw me into the hole next to the wall. I sensed her coming and somehow managed to force her own strength against her, and as I was balanced against the wall, used it to help me push her into the hole instead. It was bad-ass. I didn't really see what happened to her after she fell, there were girders and things down there.

Next thing I know she's back up in the club, and the others are aware of her dislike for me. She turns out to be insane, gets up on this stage thing, breaks a bottle of drink and sprinkles it around her on the stage, and then tries to light it...

Except it doesn't take. She scuffles about for another bottle of drink to set fire to, but that one's not flammable enough either.

Show's over.

I turn to someone at the bar and say something. Then I have to pick up all my heavy bags to shove back into the minivan so we can go.


Before that section of dream, I think I had another one. It involved something like a cross between a pirate crew and a bunch of cowboys, but they turned out to be dead, but they didn't know it. I went to go steal their treasure, and succeeded, but then it turned out one of them wasn't a ghost and was still alive. I think I decided I'd give him the treasure, but wasn't sure whether to give him all of it or half of it, seeing as I was the one who managed to retrieve it from the ghosts.


I also have a vague recollection of Rob, the manager of the place I first worked at, but I don't know if he was in these dreams or one from a previous night in which I had to do some work.

The Reality

I can only assume the documentary part was inspired by Tom and Sam, although I haven't seen them for a good while since I left 21. As for the rest... The bar layout kind of reminded me of a mirror-imaged Murrenger [a pub in Newport]. I also have a vague recollection of Rob, the manager of the place I first worked at, but I don't know if he was in that dream or one from a previous night where I had to do some work.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

It's been a while. I've been working.

This morning / last night was a weird one. I'm not sure I can even explain it. I can only remember different sections of it. I don't know how they transition between each other or what order they go in. I assume they're partly inspired by the cleaning I did in my room yesterday...

The Dream

I'm looking through an old notepad with loose sheets in. It's my auntie's. The work is amazing but they are all doodles and tests. I try to figure out how she made a bit of yellow light drawn in chalk pastels three sheets of tracing paper look like it was emanating light for real by fiddling with how they go over each other. They work best when separated.


My sister Gen is in bed. I'm folding clothes. Something about sorting out some stuff. Are we moving house? Two pianos instead of one, my youngest sister plays the left one and I try to play along on the one on the right, asking which note she was playing then. I think it was an A. Something about Owain being around, but Gen's still napping. I've still got clothes I need to sort out.


I'm looking through photos. Very old photos of one of my aunts, and they come to life in my mind. I'm seeing her as a teenager, and she swears at my grandma the way one of my sisters has sworn at my mother. It was weird. Now that I'm awake, I don't know which aunt it was supposed to be. She just had long dark curly hair. And the whole scene seemed too modern. The place reminded me of the house I lived in when I was just starting school.


A house. Dad's building and extension, a little toilet/conservatory. It didn't occur to me how odd that combination was, seeing as anyone in there would be seen by anyone outside. At least it was double-glazing. There was something weird going on in the interior as well; walls/sections that moved to access the door or drain-work.


Fish tanks hanging outside the back door as if they were a plant-hanger/shelf combo. Photos of my youngest sister asleep in one [they are all empty otherwise] turn into her actually being there, asleep there. Before I see my aunt swear, I see her try to sit on one of the tanks, and she does. But then it breaks - she was too heavy for the attachment between the tank and the fabric holding them up in place to hold her. It breaks, but doesn't smash the glass. That's when she hears herself being called and goes back into the house, swearing.


I'm riding a bicycle with racing-handle-bars and a very wide tread along the section of road I used to walk along to get to primary school. Instead of gravel, along the side is turf, and when I ride the bike on the turf it "mows" or clears the turf away... I was hired to do it. Three people come up to me. I know them in the dream, and as I ride back and forth along the little stretch clearing the grass I joke about running them over. I also wonder when the last time I rode a bike was.


There are lots of men. Gangsters. I think we're in the same area as the place I was riding the bike, but now there are big black ornate gates on the property. Some kind of back-chatty banter/conflict/taunting ensues, like in a movie where one side might say "I'll get you next time, you won't get away with this!" I think I get into a slight tanglement with one gangster. No biggie. I think I made him bleed. They came out worse on the other end.

The Reality

I woke up thinking, "Hah! I showed them."

Hand in done, presentation on Tuesday!

Turned out pretty alright considering neither of us are supposed to be programmers. We changed a lot of the textures in the house to something a little more old-looking and realistic over the past couple of weeks. I've also managed to squeeze in a couple of extra levels for a bit more gameplay time. Here are a couple of in-game screen shots showing Tim's texturing and light mapping skills.

3D Mode

2D Mode

Fuck it, I'm in.

Okay. I know. I've ranted and raved and then gone back on my word and then gone back on it again about whether or not I wanted to make games. But after the challenges, the expected failures but also the surprise successes of working on this final project, I'm up for it. I have been extremely inspired by the success of Q.U.B.E., but I have no idea where I want what I will do to go. Probably into my collection of stuff I have done for myself.

Over the next month I'm going to work on the mechanics and the code we used in our final major project and make myself a new game. It won't be FP[3], but it will come out of that. It won't be all fancy and story and AAA style animations and look beautifully like real life. It will be extremely simplified, extremely basic, it will not try to be arty; it will just be a game. A tidy, efficient, well executed game. Maybe with some funky colours and a feel of abstractness about it. Maybe. Who cares. I'm in charge on this project and the only one grading it will be me.

Do I sound angry? I think I sound angry. I'm not angry... Just very, very determined to do what I want, and get what I want, when I want it.

... Although, I have also been listening to Queen's I Want It All all day, which may have something to do with it.