Is it really almost November?

Is it really almost November?  This year has been flying by, and will be over before we know it.  I guess that is what happens when you are having fun?  This year has been a very busy year with running the business.  I feel that I’m learning new things everyday, and there is always challenges to overcome.  To me the challenges are part of the appeal of running my own company.  There is no roadmap that will work for every company, and it requires you to constantly readjusting your strategy.  Below is a quick update on some of the things I have been working on lately.

Here or There: Outsourcing of Animation

I wanted to talk about outsourcing of animation that many US companies are doing.  The main reason to outsource work and make the experience of producing animation more challenging is because of cost.  In my previous roles I had learned the Salary for one US-based artist could pay for 4-5 artists in India.  Even if it takes the overseas artist 3 times as long to complete the task it will still be a cost savings.

Eric Miller Animation October 2015 Update

Is it really October already?  Wow this year is flying by.  I’m already starting to see Christmas advertisements online and in my email inbox.  I have not been doing the best job at posting every week.  It is challenging to find the time to think, let alone write a post for my blog.  I will do my best to keep posting, so I thought I give you all a quick update on what is going on.

Bink, Naming an Animated Character

Bink… Yes, this is the name I’m considering calling the cute creature in our animated web-series.  Trying to find the perfect name is a very difficult task.  It reminded me of when we were trying to think of a name for my son.  You realize they will have this name for the rest of their life, so you want to find something that they will like.  For a character you want to find something that has not been used before, but that only makes it more challenging.  When you find a perfect name you have to make sure there are no other meanings that are less then desirable.

Staying Healthy While Starting a Business

When I worked at DreamWorks Animation my co-workers would often joked about the DreamWorks 50.  Similar to the Freshman 15, it is the idea that new employees often would gain weight after starting working at the company.  DreamWorks Animation is known for its free food they provide for their employees.  With copious amounts of food for breakfast, lunch, soft served ice-cream machines, cookie day, and snack kitchens all around campus it is hard to resist the urge to fully take advantage of your new employee benefits. Many new employees inevitably pack on a few extra pounds.  Eventually the excitement of free food wears off, and they learn to be more reserved with their eating.

A Short Update

I wanted to give a short update on our short to let you all know where we are with it.  It is what I spend most of my time on, so I don’t have much else to talk about.

In order to discuss our progress lets break it down into two areas, asset creation and shot creation.

Asset Creation

MechanicalArm_WebFor the 1st short there are 3 main assets, the creature, the mechanical arm/hand, and the testing room or environment.

Techniques of Animation

While talking to clients I often realize they don’t know the different techniques in creating animation.  This can create confusion when trying to explain what my studio does and does not do. I thought I would give a quick overview of some of the main techniques of animation.

While there are many different types, styles, and techniques of animation I wanted to focus on only 3 of the techniques.  It is understandable for someone not in the industry to be confused about the differences, since I have often heard people in the industry talk about them in different ways.  I won’t go into great detail about each, but instead will give you a general overview.  To get a little more details look up Animation on Wikipedia, and they have a great breakdown which I actually used as reference while writing this post.

My First SIGGRAPH

IMG_6447I finally experienced my first SIGGRAPH conference.  I have always heard about SIGGRAPH, and while at DreamWorks Animation I would often have artists requesting time off so they could attend the conference.  While I had a pretty good idea about what it was I had never gone until this year.

SIGGRAPH is short for Special Interest Group on GRAPHics and Interactive Techniques.  It is an annual conference on computer graphics which you can imagine is pretty important for computer animation.

Introducing Our First Animated Shorts

I’m very excited to be introducing our first animated shorts to all of you.  I have mentioned it a few times in previous posts, but I know some of you have been dying to see some artwork, and hear more about it.  As promised here is a more detailed introduction to the shorts we are working on including some concept art.  Please let me know what you think in the comments below.

Eric Miller Animation Studios Incorporated

Eric Miller Animation Studios Incorporated!  That is right, as of July 24, 2015 my company has been reborn as its own entity.  I thought I talk a little about what this means without getting to technical and boring.

So now what?  You might be wondering what this means.  When I started my company it was a Sole Proprietorship, and basically myself and the company was one and the same. By incorporating it separates my personal assets from my business’ assets, and this basically gives me some legal protection and tax savings.