Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Shirt Design

For a while I've been interesting in designing shirts, but since the majority of my work takes place behind the keyboard I never quite got around to doing it... until now. I had been sketching a few ideas for shirt designs and eventually decided I was going to use this one:

The sketch had a sort of cutesy Japanese feel to it, a style I'm a fan of. I decided it would be fitting to ink and color the image as a vector in Adobe Illustrator. After inking, coloring, and choosing a stylized brush, the resulting design came out like this:

The next step was getting the design out of the computer and onto a shirt. I looked into screen printing, fabric printing, transfer paper, and I even checked how much it would cost to do it through a printing studio and what methods they used. I ended up deciding to use transfer paper was the most accessible and reliable for a design with this many colors, even if it wasn't the most durable of options.

I had printed a shirt using transfer paper before and I had learned a number of things. First of all, there are two kinds of transfer paper: transfer paper for white or light colored shirts, and transfer paper for dark shirts. The difference between the two is that the transfer paper for white shirts transfers negative space onto the shirt as a transparent print, while the latter transfers negative space as white. I decided to go with a white shirt and the appropriate transfer paper in order to assure the cleanest edges for the design.

It's important to understand with transfer paper that just because you print a design onto it, does not mean just that part will be transfered. Transfer paper is made up of a layer of film stuck to an ironing paper. Whatever film is ironed will be transfered onto the fabric, even if it is blank, will transfer either as white or a transparent film. This lead to the second thing I learned: cutting out your design in order to assure only the areas you want are printed.

The problem with this though is that you still need a way of gripping the design so that you can peel the paper off once you have ironed the design on without tearing the edges. To solve this problem, I left a tab on the side of the design, but carefully cut the transfer film off the paper. If you are able to separate the corners, the film peels off like a sticker, even without being heated.

I ended up printing a little self-emblem logo as well, just to add to the overall design and make the shirt look a little more professional ;)

After that it was just a simple mater of ironing the design on according the package instructions, letting it cool, and trying it on. And voila!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Robots on my desk!!

For DESMA 156B, the advanced 3D class, I decided to do a motion tracking experiment. I got a simple point and shoot camera and took some footage of my desk, using some tape to mark where i wanted to Rubrik's Cube to be. I then used Autodesk Maya 8.5's Maya Live tool to interpret the footage into 3D space, creating a 3D camera in my scene that would match the movement of my hand cam. After that it was simply a mater of modeling and animating some robots and putting them in the right place in the scene. Below is my first pass render of the animation!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I am The Laughing Man

This is a small sketch I thought I would post just for the fun of it. I am taking an artificial intelligence seminar this quarter and our discussion on augmented reality inspired me to try my hand at OpenCV. I have been having trouble getting the sketch to run efficiently, but I have seen some fantastic OpenCV programs done in Processing, so I know it's possible. Something for me to work on once I have the free time. In the meantime, here is my super awkward screen capture!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Louis C.K. Speech

I know I was planning on doing another couple of programming posts, but this quarter all my classes are animation and motion graphics and that has me pretty swamped. So instead I'm going to post one of my projects. This is a project from DESMA 155: Typography in Motion. The assignment was to find a speech by a famous person and edit footage of typography together to illustrate the speech. I chose a stand up comedy sketch by Louis C.K. talking about how frustrating it is to explain things to his two year old daughter. The resulting project is below!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

And then there were bubbles!

I oftentimes find that most of my projects are very spontaneous. I think this is why I like Processing so much; I'll be doing whatever I'm doing and then suddenly be like "oh hey I want to program x!"

And then I do.

My latest spontaneous Processing shenanigans were inspired by my motion graphics professor Rafael Macho. He was showing us some of his work and a design from his Aptera Car project caught my eye.

I thought "Wow, a design like that would be incredibly tedious to illustrate, but probably really fun to program" so I pulled up Processing and got to work.

My First attempt was very simple: Create a simple set of rules for how the bubbles look and then for every vertical coordinate create one with a random x coordinate. It ended up looking something like this (or click here to try the applet for yourself):

I liked the result from a visual standpoint, especially since the pattern scrolls infinitely, but I decided I wanted to try and see if I could prevent the bubbles from overlapping. I wanted to try incorporating physics. I found some code in the Processing examples library called "Bouncy Bubbles," by Keith Peters. I tweaked the code to incorporate my aesthetic and ended up with this:

The new bubbles, while amusing to watch, didn't create a pattern I liked as much as the previous attempt. So I returned to my previous attempt and reprocessed it in a different way so that the texture generated statically, without scrolling down the screen. I then decided that since it was a texture, it was important for it to be tileable, so I added a couple checks to make sure the bubbles continued on the opposite side of the screen if they went over the edge. In the end, I was rather pleased with the result:

The difference is not very obvious from taking a snapshot of the program, however when running the program (which features PDF export in the application version) and using the texture, it is now seamless and can be duplicated infinitely in any direction.

Coming soon - "And then there was JavaScript!"

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Album covers for The Pillows (fun fun fun ok!)

During my senior year of high school I took AP 2D design. I had been messing with digital graphics for many many years, but this was my first experience with real graphic design, although I did not realize it at the time as I was striving to do digital illustration. For the AP portfolio I was required to do a concentration: a series of 12 pieces that followed a theme. I decided I would do album covers for my favorite band - The Pillows.

I wanted to do this not only because they were my favorite band, but also because their song titles were just so bizarre and made fantastic titles for art pieces. I did covers for songs such as "Instant Music," "Waiting at the Bus Stop," "Robotman," and "Little Busters." It was incredibly fun and I learned a lot - I had never done anything quite like it.

Now I'm in my third year of design school and such things come so much more naturally to me. I just finished two quarters of visual communications with Henri Lucas and decided I would try to make a new album cover, one with more focus on typography. I decided to try the song "Fun Fun Fun OK!" because I felt like the music could inspire some fun typography. After designing the cover, I took a live-trace of the pillows logo and added it to the cover (the vector is a little sloppy, but almost unnoticeable at low resolution).

You can listen to the original song here.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Another text RPG part 2

So as I mentioned in my previous post, Another text RPG, I had really hoped to make my text RPG more than just a choose your own adventure website. Well for another project in the same class we had the assignment of creating a situational simulation that incorporated some kind of skill check. I created an RPG style battle system (yes there seems to be a pattern here). This is basically what I wanted to add to the previous project, aside from a more interesting GUI, but they ended up being separate. Maybe someday I will have the time to combine them, but for now they are what they are.

So here it is, Magical Gladiator! I hope you enjoy it :)

Friday, March 26, 2010

Another text RPG

Near the beginning of my Artificial Cultures class we had the assignment of making some sort of "branching simulation," basically another choose your own adventure project in JavaScript. I had done these before, it's a pretty common homework assignment for learning if-else statements, so I decided I would try to add a twist to this one. Unfortunately because I procrastinated and did the project the night before, the twist only went so far as adding a dice roll to certain events where your character selection affected your chance of success.

If I were to continue working on this assignment, which I most likely will not, I would try to be rid of the alert windows. Because they are easy to learn and quick to write, many of our simulations in this class utilized these prompt windows. I would be interested in creating a browser-based interface for something like this in later projects.

So here it is: An Adventurer's Quest

Monday, March 8, 2010

Shoyu Ramen

In high school I would eat ramen all the time. Sure I lived with my parents, we had real food, but for some reason I still couldn't stop eating instant noodles. When I finally had real, restaurant ramen, my whole world turned upside down.

Now I live on my own and I've been doing a lot of cooking. My good friend Jon suggested that I add cooking to this blog, so here we are. My first attempt at making real ramen, no more of the instant stuff.

I followed the recipe for Shoyu Ramen from and I'm very pleased with the result. If you try it, I really suggest using less salt. The soy sauce already adds a lot of salt to the broth, and the consumer can just add salt to their own tastes anyway. The cooking time is a bit long because you have to let the broth boil for a while (that is, if you boil it on low as the recipe suggests), but it's really quite easy.

It's a very basic recipe, so I'm sure it's easily modifiable. If you do try modifying it, let me know how it goes, I would be curious to hear! Happy cooking! :D

Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Golden Rule (Prisoner's Dilema)

So I wasn't going to publish this, but I found an article that sparked my interest. The article discusses the known golden rule and it's role in a simulation known as "The Prisoner's Dilemma." The thought process can continue into the grounds of computer decision making, but I'll let you read the article and think on it yourself.

I did a recreation of the prisoner's dilemma in JavaScript for my artificial cultures class. It was thrown together in one evening, so it may not be perfect, but it should give a feel for the simulation.

The computer's strategies consist of: cooperate (computer always cooperates) compete (computer always competes) tit for tat (computer optimistically cooperates first, and then does what the player did on the previous turn. the golden rule) tit for two tats (computer has a memory span of two turns and always cooperates unless the player competes for two turns straight).

Friday, February 26, 2010

Hello and Welcome!!

Hello and welcome to my blog!

I created this blog near the beginning of 2010 with the intention of it being a sort of sketchbook. I oftentimes found myself wanting to publish my works in progress, but of course they were never polished enough for my portfolio, which lead to them sitting in an FTP folder collecting dust. A blog just seemed like the logical conclusion.

Here I intend to post the progress to my programming experiments, as well as all the other things I find myself doing such as animation, graphic design, and, just for fun, cooking. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy!