Thursday, November 13, 2008

Keeping Track of What I've Got

Well over this last month I have continued to dedicate my computer to rendering animations. I have gotten queue manager for Poser Pro to work across the network. This means I not only have my Gaming Desktop rendering, but, now our laptop is also busy spending it's days and nights rendering my animations. I now have a couple of minutes of video "in the can" for my Halloween video that will now be the 2009 Halloween video since I missed the 2008 deadline. So, after this last couple of animations I have had in work are finished I plan on putting this project on hold until sometime later next summer.

So, the question is what will I be working on next? One of the things that I have discovered is that I have downloaded so many free models that I am having a hard time finding anything. Poser does a pretty good job of having a hierarchy structure for the models. The problem is that it is much like looking for something in Windows. If you know where it is, you can get it. Unfortunately it doesn't have a search capability like windows explorer. It has the ability to somewhat categorize it using the concept of categories. But, again it still is in a hierarchy and is hard to find things.

With this set of limitations in mind, I decided to start looking at software that manages and categorizes images. This type of software has become very popular since the introduction of digital cameras that makes it very easy to shoot hundreds and thousands of photos. As you would expect, there is all kinds of software at all kinds of prices. I had narrowed my choices down to iMatch and Microsoft Expression. At this point, I think I will use iMatch mostly because it is $60 versus $200. It will allow me to "tag" and categorize my Poser images and has a very powerful search engine to find what I am looking for. I also plan on using this to organize the family photos.

The Microsoft product was part of a bigger Development package for people making multimedia applications and web sites. While I would really like this software as it integrates the whole workflow associated with making web sites and apps, it probably is an overkill for what I am interested in doing. The price is also an overkill for the Suite of Expression Products at over $600. I would rather buy the $60 package iMatch image manager and use my $50 Namo Web Development software, leaving more money to spend on 3D modeling products (Vue) and movie making software (upgrade Vegas Movie Studio). I got a $1200 Special Recognition Award from work that I plan on using to fund this all anyway.

I plan on taking off the week of Thanksgiving and I will spend some time organizing myself while listening to Rock 'N Roll. It is not a very creative outlet, but, I think it will end up making me a lot more efficient in future creative projects. Speaking of future creative projects, here are some of my ideas:
- Do landscape visualizations in Vue
- Do architectural visualizations (houses, street scenes, etc) using 3D modeling tools and rendering in Vue
- Do avatars of my family
- Finish my 3D model of our house
- Play around the special effects in Poser
- Create some still pictures in Poser associated with Christmas and put together a video with models and real photos using some of my electronic Christmas Carols from a couple of years ago
- Upgrade to Painter Essentials 4 and get back into digital painting (again of family events and landscapes)


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