Sunday, December 30, 2007

Guest Comic to bring in the New Year

I'll be on planes and my internet status is unknown to me for the next few days, so if you're sitting at your computer hitting refresh you're rewarded with a comic a day early!

Another year has come and gone, and another Johnny Nguyen comic original is laid before your comedy yearning eyes.

One thing that I've come to understand as the maker of a comic strip is that the majority of ideas spawn from some sort of real life events. It's pretty rare that an idea just pops into your mind from out of nowhere, with no prompting as you sit idly watching TV, (although many ideas do spawn while sitting on the toilet, at least in my case. (No "idea" is not a metaphor for "poop" Ben)). So with Johnny's latest offering I have to assume that this situation or something similar to it happened somewhere along the line.

You gotta find a new place to go dancing bud.

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Hope everybody had a merry Christmas, Kwanzaa, or Hanukkah, and has stupendous 2008.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Miracles Do Come True

Well another holiday, another wonderful experience in the world of commercial airlines.

Really though. Not even being the least bit facetious.

Admittedly, my flight was delayed getting into my connecting city, about an hour or so - which meant we touched down the same time my connecting flight should have been taking off. Fortunately though, that flight was delayed as well, allowing me just the right amount of time to get on board before it took off.

On top of that, one of my buddies from Full Sail was on the same flight, in the seat next to me - so I had some company that wasn't crazy or odorous. Plus, he had been given two drink vouchers for moving seats on the previous flight, and since he didn't drink he gave them to me.

In conclusion - made it to Omaha without being stuck in another city, plus a free drink. Honestly the best outcome I could have hoped for.

Well, maybe not the absolute best I could have hoped for.

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Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

What Writer's Strike?

I'm as surprised as you are that I haven't mentioned anything with regards to the whole writer's strike thing that is going on. I've kind of been avoiding it since the rest of the internet is completely ablaze with talk, but recently I was made aware of a movie trailer that had me thinking about the future of Hollywood. Ever hear of 10,000 BC? (The movie, not the year). Me neither, but check out this trailer.



I'm not sure what history books Warner Brothers is reading, but last I checked Dinosaurs, elephants, and Egyptians didn't really go together. I'll be the first one to admit that going to the movies requires a suspension of disbelief, but you gotta wonder how that movie was thought up and who was behind it.

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Don't forget to check out my latest animation if you haven't already. Thanks for all your comments (via messenger or official commenting methods)! It's encouraging to hear that you guys don't think my stuff is garbage.

Might not be Pixar quality yet, but I'm really enjoying it. Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Steve Martin as ... Tobias Funke?

I've wrapped up my animation class for the month and, as promised, I have a new animation for you.

For this final project we took the same character we've been working with and animated him to a sound clip. We had a handful of clips to choose from, and we were supposed to choose one that we didn't immediately recognize. I chose one that I thought was funny but didn't immediately recognize as any particular actor. After listening to it for about the 900th time (literally), I finally figure out that it was Steve Martin from "Planes, Trains, and Automobiles", but I didn't remember that particular scene, which is the whole idea so that Steve's performance didn't influence my "acting".

That's right. Steve.

We're tight.

So here it is. Hope you enjoy. Check back for a new comic sometime tomorrow.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Two Weiland Originals

Hi everybody. I'm not going to bother making up excuses today, I have no Wheezy original ready for you, again on account of school (ok - I did make an excuse). It seems like this month all my deadlines are hitting early in the week, and so I've had to just push things off a little tiny bit.

But don't worry, this week is PACKED with goodness from the ol' blog. Look for a new 3D animation on Wednesday, as well as a new Wheezy comic on Thursday. Not only that, but as the title of this blog might suggestion, today you are getting 2 never before seen on the internet Weiland original comics, done my very own mother!

Back when my cousin Heather first began college, she wasn't enjoying things quite as much as she had expected (not all colleges give you homework involving watching cartoons and playing with juice boxes). My mom, being the wonderful person that she is, decided to create a series of comic strips that she then sent to Heather to lift her spirits a bit.

This was quite some time ago, but I remember when I saw my mom making these comics I thought it was awesome. So after she discovered my little comic endeavors online, I asked her if she still had the old "Heather" comics. She did.

So here you have it - 2 Gail Weiland original comics for your reading enjoyment.

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Keep checking back for more stuff later in the week.

3 comics and a 3d animation?
Show me a blog that gives you more original stuff than this one and I'll eat my hat.

Luckily for me my hat is made of fruit roll ups.

Did I mention that this is my 100th post?

Friday, December 14, 2007

Learning to Walk Again....

Well I promised you new animation and that you shall have.

The last two projects involved an actual biped character, so I've had to move on from juice boxes.
The first involved making this character (The Blue Guy) get up from one chair and walk to another. He was also supposed to convey some sort of emotion - in my case I chose "fear"... but really this was all about getting the mechanics of a walk down.



In the second project we were supposed to show a change of emotion. We were given a certain selection of scenes to choose from, and I chose the one where the blue guy is on a blind date. In my scene, he's not excited about his blind date, as it was his mother who set him up on it. (Thank goodness for mother's who don't subject their sons to blind dates)



I took a little from some old Tex Avery cartoons for inspiration on that one.



One more project to go for the month. I'll be sure and post it up here for y'all once it's done.

Have a good weekend everybody.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Guest Web Comic

Today I've got a special treat for y'all. Johnny Nguyen has been kind enough to make a guest comic for me to post today, as my current school schedule has kept me pretty busy of late.

I linked to Johnny's (mildly NSFW) digital comic book a few weeks back, and I asked him if he'd be interested in posting a guest comic sometime. He agreed. So without further ado, I give you the first ever Johnny Nguyen web comic original. Enjoy!


i guess what i was trying to accomplish here was perhaps give a little insight into a guy’s mind. i’d say, usually, a guy is overly optimistic about himself (how good looking he is, etc.) and girls the other way around. i find myself doing that sometimes and i catch myself, as it’s better to be humble than arrogant. but perhaps the only good thing is that it keeps guys from becoming depressive saps, who cry whenever they watch the Notebook. anyways, hope you enjoy the comic and thanks wheezy for inspiring me to get off my lazy butt.

thanks, johnny

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PS: Keep an eye out in the upcoming week for some more animations by yours truly.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Back to School

During the process of deciding whether or not to quit my job and go back to school, I would frequently bounce my thoughts off a fellow alumni from college round 1, as well as one of the smartest guys I know, one Mr. Cody Ebberson.

I wanted to hear his opinions on my possible change in career direction because Cody was also considering returning to academia. Instead of going back to draw cartoons however, he decided to go the route of seven US Presidents and get his MBA at Harvard University.

I know I've been slightly delayed in my comic efforts of late, and I'd like to say it is solely because of the large work load I've been subjected to at Full Sail. Then I talk to Cody, and realize how ridiculous that excuse really is.


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Hopefully putting him in one of my comics will net me a cushy job animating a stock market ticker or something once he's a bajillionaire.

Don't forget to check out my latest animation in the previous post if you didn't yesterday.

Monday, December 03, 2007

This Message is Cody Ebberson approved...

I don't have a comic for you today. Again.

I know what you're thinking. "This reminds me of dark times in days gone by when Wheezy's comics would have months... nay... years between publications. I feel the end of the world is near. All must repent!"

Please don't do anything drastic people, let me explain. This month I'm taking a class called Character Animation, and so far it has been more demanding than any classes I've had before it. It's also been the most enjoyable. I have a project that's due today, and instead of taking Sunday night to make a comic like I normally do, I continued toiling away on my animation in the hopes of getting it as finished as possible before the final turn in.

So I, once again, apologize for comedic delay. Your comic enjoyment will continue tomorrow - so please check back.

Unlike last week's delay however, you get BONUS comedy as sort of a stop gap to a new comic. I hope you enjoy, since, although I would have a hard time turning down a career in web comics (I'm looking at you Penny-Arcade), this is what I actually want to do somewhere down the road.

The goal of this project I've been working on was to take an inanimate object, in this case a juice box, and make it seem alive. I wrote out a scene, sketched some ideas out on paper, then started animating.

So here you go. I hope you like it.



YouTube is being a little finnicky today, so if that embedded video isn't working, you can download the file here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Overcast with a Chance of Miserable

As I mentioned yesterday, my trip home from a wonderful Thanksgiving was a bit of a mess.

Not surprisingly, the airline industry failed to deliver me to my destination in the same manner in which we had agreed upon when the ticket was purchased. It seems like any time I fly somewhere, my entire day is ruined by lots of horrible horrible things that stack up until all joy I had that day is crushed from my very being. In hindsight these terrible issues are usually just a bunch of tiny things that seem much much worse than they actually are because I'm stuck in an airport or a hotel.

On Sunday, however, I feel these grievances were legitimately catastrophic in nature.

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Monday, November 26, 2007

Slight Delays...

So I'm blogging from Atlanta, where my connecting flight to Orlando from Omaha saw fit to leave without me. Who doesn't love the airline industry? Honestly.

Anyway partially because of my travel delays and more partially because I've been lazy over this holiday weekend, this week's comic will most likely be delayed until Tuesday.

Sorry for the comedic inconvenience.

It's the Monday after a holiday. Don't you have work to do anyway?

Monday, November 19, 2007

Good for What Ales Ya

Now that I've been living in Florida for a while, I've had the opportunity to meet quite a few people. As some of you know, emily works for NASA, and because of this, I've attended a few parties dominated by employees of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Now that I've dipped my toe into the realm of freelance work - it's got me thinking about where the next opportunity might come from. Perhaps some of these new contacts in the government can hook me up with something down the road.

Heck. Maybe I can even drum up some more traffic for the ol' blog along the way.

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Thanks to Stephen for helping spur the idea for this one.

Monday, November 12, 2007

An Apple a Day Keeps you Employed


+



=

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Have a good week folks.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Chippin' away at the old salary

Since I'm currently a student that is in class or lab for about 40 hours a week, I don't really have time for a job on the side. That means that I'm not making any money. In fact, that means that I'm basically just spending money every month.

Occasionally, however, I do get some free lance work thrown my way. One such example can now been seen at Software Tiger.

See that tiger fella slashing prices? In case you couldn't tell, I drew that. And made a sweet $45 dollars in the process.

I told my dad about that job and all he could say was "45 bucks. Nice, son. You're really chipping away at the old salary you had with National Instruments, aren't ya."

He's always got the big picture in mind.

Love ya Dad.

Thanks to Brian Spears for the extra work. Go buy something on his site, wouldya?

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Hollywood Endings

For those who don't know, I'm a Nebraska Cornhusker and Denver Bronco fan. Which means this past weekend was pretty rough on ol' Wheezy.

Both of these teams were thrashed handily. My boy Mueller has already dealt with the pain using some old fashioned music video therapy. I, on the other hand, went to some big budget Hollywood magic to sooth my sports fan woes.

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Have a good week folks. Good time to be from the New England area I guess.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Guitar Hero is First Class

I think most people probably know what Guitar Hero is at this point, but just in case - basically it's a rhythm based video game where you pretend you're able to play guitar by clicking along with scrolling notes on a plastic guitar with only five buttons. It's really easier to just show you than it is to explain - so here is a video of a kid who is way better than I am.




Yeah. He's much better than me. And yes - everybody makes that silly face with their mouth hanging open pretty much the entire duration of a given song.

Well it's one thing to make that face in the privacy of your own home, but with the recent release of Guitar Hero III they've announced that it will also be available on PCs and Macs (not to mention the portable DS).

Well since a PC and Mac port means I can play Guitar Hero pretty much wherever and whenever I want, I think air plane trips are going to be a lot more enjoyable. Well, for me at least.

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I figure it's only a matter of time until the FAA steps in.

Monday, October 29, 2007

End of the month sleepy time...

I have two final projects due at 6:00 AM today (Monday). Then I have my next month's class starting at 1:00 PM.

It should be obvious to anybody who has ever picked up an Encyclopedia Brown novel that this insight into my schedule is a precursor to me telling you that I'm not going to have a comic in on time. Sorry about that. This school stuff is a lot tougher than round 1 up at UNL. Mainly because a teacher can fail you by saying "No.. that doesn't look quite right... I'm not sure what it is... but something is off." Stupid subjectivity.

Anyway, I'll get a comic in tomorrow, don't you worry. And to make up for it, I have a couple of extra treats.

First of all, here is one of my projects from an animation class. We were given a Knight character and told to animate him either sneaking, or walking. I chose sneaking, cuz that seemed like more fun. So here's that





The final project for that class was animating the same knight going through an obstacle course. I've been meaning to get that up here as well - hopefully I can manage sometime this week.

The second "I'm making up for reneging on the promise in my banner" goody is similar to my normal Wacom / Photoshop comics, in that it is a comic BOOK, made with a Wacom tablet and Photoshop. Johnny Nguyen, one of my buddies down here in Florida, recently came out with his first comic book. You can find it here (mildy NSFW - sorry Kevin):

http://enliv.com/comic/

Good stuff. Also - check out the "Behind the Scenes: Extra" features at the end. You might recognize a couple of people in those photo references.

Again, sorry again for the lack of comic. Check back tomorrow.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Edward seems to have lost some weight

I'm not going to lie to you. This week I was blindsided by a bit of information that is rather detrimental to my day to day life.

Florida does not sell 40 oz malt liquor.

I know what you're thinking. "Who cares Dan? It's not like you ever really have a strong need for malt liquor or anything. Get over it." But I don't think you understand. Ever heard of something called "Edward 40 Hands?" If you haven't, it's a drinking game that's based on the Tim Burton movie "Edward Scissor Hands." Not only that, but it makes for a great Halloween costume.

Unless, of course, you live in Florida.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Nintendo causes Paresthesia

Going to a school like Full Sail, you tend to encounter a lot of people who are into video games. Typically, I don't get drawn into too many virtual adventures... I dipped my hat in World of Warcraft for a couple of months back in college round 1, but somehow managed to evade it's deadly vise-like grip. I enjoy Guitar Hero type games quite a bit as well, but let's face it. Playing guitar, virtual or otherwise, is just cool.

One thing that has really managed to addict me is the Nintendo DS. That little portable system is simply amazing - from it's WiFi capabilities that let me throw down in some Mario Kart with Mueller and Ross from across the country to it's simple and handy design that lets me start and stop play with a simple flip of the lid. I find myself carrying it around just about everywhere, and playing it in places and situations when I probably shouldn't.

One of these days it's going to get me in a bad situation.

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Monday, October 15, 2007

Just call me Henry Clay...

Ok ... here's the deal. I have a comic that's halfway done, and I have other things that I need to do this morning. I could finish the new comic quick and post a black and white version, OR....

I'll post a comic that some of you have already seen, and in exchange for your understanding, post the second comic later this week. Wednesday, let's say.

Sound good? Alright then. Glad we agree.

This comic was made for the JDE Alumni association newsletter. During college round one our dorm had an internet forum where we would occasionally hold surveys and the like. One such survey was the "Hot or Not" survey.

As I'm sure you already have surmised, considering my dashing good looks, I did pretty well in the competition. Some people, however, did a little better. Nowadays I'm finding that my success doesn't have quite the sparkle it once did.

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See ya Wednesday.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall...

Another month has come and gone, and a new set of classes has begun. This month I'm taking another character modeling class (like when I made Tobias a couple months back), but with more emphasis on proper proportions with regards to human musculature. If that weren't going to be difficult enough, we don't get to choose somewhat obscure comedians to model this month. We have to create a 3d representation of ourselves.

It's going to be pretty challenging. Not only because creating something that looks like a particular person (especially one as dashing as myself) is fairly difficult, but also because temptation to take certain artistic licenses with this sort of thing is pretty much unavoidable.


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Hopefully I'll be able to get my project from last month posted sometime this week, so keep an eye out if that sort of thing interests you.

Monday, October 01, 2007

It's Tired in Here...

It's October, Halloween time, and apparently that means one thing these days.



I truly and honestly hate those movies. Maybe I just have a weak stomach, but they don't seem to scare me as much as they make me want to vomit.

What did scare me when I thought about it five minutes ago when I was a little kid were the Urban legends about murderers outside my car with hooks for hands and mental patients that would escape their wards to write messages on walls in blood.

I always thought that it would take a lot of patience for those killers to hang around in the dark so that they could set the just right mood, you know, really scare the crap out of somebody. I can't imagine that I'd be able to pull something like that off with the same ambiance that the legends manage.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Internets has (have?) Spoken

Aaaaand apparently my shirt isn't fit for print. 1.2 average score out of 5 after 24 hours of voting.

Not completely surprising, but there ya have it. I'm going to go ahead and assume that everybody was confused like Mueller and gave it a 1 when they meant to give it a 5.

Let me continue living in my own little fantasy world.

Thanks for voting everybody. I'll let you know if I try out any other t-shirt designs. Maybe I should slap a comic on a shirt and see what happens.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Immodest Alternating Current Connector

Hey there everybody.

Recently I was tasked with designing a shirt for an upcoming JDEdwards Alumni event. JDE is the honors program which I was a part of during college round 1 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The idea behind the program is to give students the knowledge to become managers who understood not only the business requirements of a given task, but also what was going on with the technology side of things as well.

I created a couple of different shirt designs, and the one that wasn't chosen for the Alumni event I decided to submit to Threadless.com. Well the shirt has made it to the voting stage, so this is where I ask you to vote for my stuff, because if you read my comic you obviously care about everything else in my life, right?. Here's the design:

My Threadless.com Submission

One of the things I see more often than I'd like is the overuse of Powerpoint in business. I really dislike Powerpoint, not because it's a bad product but because it's so easy pick up that people tend to use it in horrible, mind numbing ways.

The idea behind the shirt is that Management + Technology is more than just Powerpoint, which I thought tied in nicely with the goals of the JDEdwards Program. So if you have a moment, click on the thumbnail above (or on the sidebar for that matter) and give it a vote.

The reason it wasn't picked for the JDEdwards Alumni event is because it's a little obscure, and requires some explanation, which I kind of like in a shirt. From the comments on Threadless that people have posted so far, seems like others agree.

Thanks everybody.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Ages 3 - 25

During last weekend, I attended a 2 year old's birthday party. No, I wasn't trying to meet Mariska Hargitay, from Law & Order: SVU, this was the child of one of emily's coworkers. Before the party, we had to get some sort of gift for the little guy. As we wandered through the toy aisle, scanning for something the the kid wouldn't choke on, I began thinking about toys from my own childhood.

My parents pretty much spoiled me rotten, so I typically didn't go wanting for toys (I had one of these, remember?) Probably my only disappointment was never actually owning a Power Wheel. Those things were awesome. I wanted one of the Jeep off-roading kinds so that I could cruise around the construction sites near my house, helping the workers with my sweet front end towing winch.

We ended up getting the birthday boy something along the lines of a Hot Wheels racing set, but the temptation to pick up something for myself was fierce to say the least.

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Monday, September 17, 2007

Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen...

This last weekend I once again found myself in Austin, TX for the one and only Austin City Limits Festival. Let me start off by saying that it was fantastic. I highly recommend if you can make it. Happens every year. With three days of music to listen to - in all honesty I wasn't even sure I'd be able to get a comic done. Luckily, I had the help of one Ross Mau.

And so without further ado, a guest comic to cover for my laziness. I believe Ross would like to say a few words of introduction.

I was very pleased that I had the opportunity not only to help out my buddy Wheezy, but I also got to experience something unique when two artistic minds collaborate to create something truly original and ground breaking.

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So I feel like my comic strip debut went well. I'll be answering questions in the comments section if anyone has any questions on some of the artistic liberties I took in recreating a true life story. For example, you may notice I included my dog Coco, but not Mario. If you were an illustrator you would already know that sometimes an illustrator is physically limited by his chosen medium, but one must strive to overcome those limitations. I have achieved that here by putting Coco's bark in black, which happens to be the color Mario is. The more astute readers may also realize that black was one of the predominant colors in the scheme I chose. Well, I'll leave the tips up to Dan, I don't want to start stepping on his toes in his blog.

Before somebody (I'm looking at you Ben) mentions it in the comments, I already asked Ross why he drew a sun in what I assume is our old living room. Apparently he felt that his artistic talents were best utilized when recreating large orbs of burning hydrogen.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Is A-Ha still hiring?

Hey there folks. Just thought I'd give you another quick school update, since I know that's the real reason you come here. Sorry you have to suffer through so many comics to get to the good stuff.

In the event that both the movie industry and my gig with Dire Straights don't pan out, for the last month I've been working on some 2D animation skills during my aptly named "2D Animation" class.

This isn't Flash or anything like that. This is drawing on pieces of paper, lots of pieces of paper, then flipping them back and forth over and over again (like a flipbook), all the while erasing and fixing the horrible mistakes you made the first few times around. Once you've got to a point that you think looks good, you take digital images of all of your drawings, then make it into a video. The purpose of this class was to give us a good solid background in traditional "animation", that we can then carry over to the digital 3D world.

My teacher, Kathy Blackmore, was an animator for Disney for around 8 years, working on projects such as Brother Bear, Lilo and Stitch, and Mulan. Pretty amazing credentials in the 2D world. During the class, we did small projects that demonstrated various principles of animation.

So here's what I've been working on and although they look pretty simple, they took quite a bit of effort. I've looped all of the them because they're so short. Some are meant to be looped, others will have a bit of a jump when they go back to the beginning. Hope you enjoy!

Facebook viewers - click here to see the videos.





















Now at least I've got A-Ha as a backup.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Money Well Spent

As anybody who knows me can attest to, I'm rather adept at spending money. Especially when I'm actually collecting a paycheck. I mean come on. I own one of these for goodness sake.

Since starting college round two, however, I've had to take a closer look at my day to day habits and try to decide why I spend money on certain things. I think just analyzing the reasons behind a purchase before actually slapping the money down has helped my wallet quite a bit.

I'm not saying that I'm perfect by any means, but obvious financial pitfalls are starting to become painfully obvious.


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Monday, September 03, 2007

Say Everything

I often find myself marveling at the amazing technology that's at my finger tips on a daily basis. I'll be sitting there - watching TV while chatting with a buddy halfway across the world, reading Mueller's blog while simultaneously working on a comic. All from one magical little machine.

It's mind boggling. And of course it's only becoming more incredible as time moves on. Back in the day, I remember sitting at my IBM 8086, turning on the ol' 1440 external modem, dialing up and listening to what sounded like a family of cats dying in order to connect to my local BBS. Now it's possible to do about a thousand times more than that on your way to work.

And as awesome as all of this is, there are moments when I yearn for a simpler time without all the advanced tech. I think things would be a little less complicated for your day to day life. At the very least it would be easier to plan grand romantic gestures without the possibility of complete and total disaster.

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Monday, August 27, 2007

TWSS

I suppose it's only natural to become a bit more mature as we progress through life. One area which I've found this to be true is in the classroom. I tend to be more attentive than I was in college round 1, and I make a concerted effort to get as much as possible out of the lectures I'm attending.

That being said, there are times when I simply can't help myself. In this respect I think that my boy Mueller has me in the area of self control. Other friends of mine, however, I doubt could contain themselves.

(Touch to Enlarge - TWSS)

One of my professors actually said those words. Well, some of them anyway.

Who am I kidding. I'm not mature. I loved the movie Superbad (ANSFW) and I could watch this video all day long:

Monday, August 20, 2007

Phallic Status Symbol

Now that I'm trying to get into the movie industry, I've started to think about all the different jobs that need to be filled in order to make a film. I've often said that I'd take just about any job in the business, because even as the coffee runner on the set of Half Past Dead, I would've at least had the opportunity to tell Don Michael Paul, "Seriously. Did Steven Seagal just say "a'ight" to Ja Rule? Really? That's how you're ending your movie?"

That being said, there are certain jobs that carry a little more clout than others. For example - anybody seen SuperBad yet? It's terrific - I highly recommend (as long as your aren't easily offended). Here's a clip from SuperBad:

(NSFW Embedded Video)

As I watched that scene, I found myself wondering how many people were required to film it, and more importantly... what was their job title?

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Monday, August 13, 2007

Dante had it all Wrong

A couple of comics ago, the subject of hell was brought up in the comments area of the ol' blog. Interesting stuff in there, you should check it out from time to time.

At any rate, my dad, an avid golfer who plays at the very least twice a week, even in the coldest of Nebraska winters, made what I believe was his first ever comment on my blog. And of course, it referenced golf.

"Dear Old Dad said...

There's no golf in hell.....that's why it's hell....
August 4, 2007 11:01 PM"
Well Dad, you very well might be right. But after years of playing golf with you and hearing your thoughts on the game, I think there might be something you would consider to be even worse.

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Before you ask, that's not supposed to be my dad. It's just a generic dude who found his way to hell. Probably the guy who invented red arrows for left hand turns at traffic lights.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

I just ... blue myself.

School update for those that are interested.

Last month I was in a class called "Character Design and Creation." As the name would imply, we are just in charge of ... designing and creating a character. This character could be based on whatever we want, so long as it hadn't already been created in some 3d form. Like a video game, or movie or whatever.

So I chose one of my comedic heroes, Mr. David Cross. Known to many as Tobias F√ľnke. If you aren't familiar with him, let me introduce you.



Well, here's my attempt at creating him in 3d. Sorry for the poor quality of the video.



Have a good week folks.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Mogwai on your Face

Today I offer a challenge to you, the users of the internet.

Some time ago, I was searching for an image on the internet. Usually when I go to find something on the internet, I have absolute confidence that I'll be able to find it. As my boy Mueller has proven time and time again, just about anything can be found out there on the world wide webs.

But on this fateful day, some time ago - I could not for the life of me find an image of the flying sun proof gremlin from Gremlins 2: The New Batch.

I tried searching for hours. "Bat Gremlin", "Gargoyle Gremlin", "Flying Gremlin".... to no avail. The closest thing I found was this image in Wikipedia:


Which isn't actually an image of the gremlin, but rather an image of the director holding up a cardboard standin for the actor to react to, since they would later add the flying gremlin in post processing.

Never mind why I was searching for the flying gremlin image online, but what I ask is this. Can any of my readers find it?

I guess maybe it's a good thing the gremlin I'm seeking has proven so evasive. After all, those little green monsters are notoriously difficult to get rid of.


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Monday, July 30, 2007

What Would Bob Barker Do?

I dunno if you've heard. But Drew Carey is officially the new host of The Price is Right.

Oh come on. My boy Mueller was running a campaign for Chuck Woolery to replace my hero and yours, Bob Barker, earlier this year. Unfortunately, the internets don't appear to be as effective as previously suspected for this sort of grass roots campaign.

At any rate - we'll have to just wait and see what happens with Drew and TPIR. I'm hoping for continued good things. Who knows.

Maybe he'll finally put an end to all of the shady bidding tactics we've seen over the years.

Monday, July 23, 2007

If I had a Multi-Million Dollar Contract...

So I don't know if you've heard, but Michael Vick is an idiot.

A little while back Michael was accused of trying to sneak weed onto in airplane in the secret compartment of a water bottle. This is post 9/11 people. A water bottle? The idiotic nature of what he was doing should be fairly obvious. But just to drive the point home, here's an SNL clip that sums it up pretty well.




Vick was acquitted of those charges, but recently he found himself in some more trouble with the law. Last week he was indicted for training and fighting pit bulls. Pretty horrendous stuff, especially for a self proclaimed dog lover.

Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia was particularly displeased with this recent turn of events and made sure to announce this to the Senate, who apparently wasn't busy with anything else that day. I'm not sure if he was making arguments against dog fighting or for term limits, but Senator Byrd hates dog fighting just as much as he loves repeating things three or more times. I wouldn't recommend watching this entire thing, but check out when there's about 5:10 left in the video.




We already know what I'd do with a million dollars, but I guess Vick is having trouble finding ways to legally spend all that green.

I fear that dog fighting is just the tip of the iceberg.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Just Doing my Civic Duty

Not often, but every once in a while I get a little burnt out on this whole "comic" thing. I'll have days of comedic writer's block, when even Carlos Mencia seems mildly humorous, or I'll spend 20 minutes trying to draw something really simple before I get anything that actually looks good, and even that is sometimes debatable.

There are a couple of things that really help me put my head down and power through those moments of doubt. One of which is my blog statistics. I have a couple of utilities that keep track of how many people read my blog on any given day, the majority of which are usually visitors from Mueller's blog, since he tends to link to this site more often than Arrested Development won critical acclaim.

The other thing that gives me motivation to keep at it is when people leave comments on my blog. I figure if somebody takes the time to actually type in a comment, then they must have enjoyed it a little bit more than the average item they find on the web.

Apparently, this motivation boost is a two way street. In case you don't read the comments people leave on my blog (and you should, Mueller usually leaves a smattering of hilarious links), last week yielded a fair share of good ones. There was one I found particularly interesting:

"Matthew Johnson said...
Your comics make my Tuesdays worth living :-)
July 10, 2007 10:56 PM"

Wow. With responsibility like that - I really have no choice but to keep saving people's lives.

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Thanks for reading everybody.

Monday, July 09, 2007

McDonald's Meets the Eye

This is gonna be a fairly short post, as I'm currently sitting outside of a Motel 8 with free wifi somewhere along Interstate 40. I'm on my way back to Orlando after visiting friends and family in Austin and Arkansas, but since I made a promise in my blog banner, which as I understand it is legally binding in all United States and principalities, I had to make sure and get a comic up today.

Anyway, while in Austin we decided to celebrate the independence of our country by watching computer generated robots demolish a small portion of it, by which of course I mean I saw the Transformers movie.

Although I like the idea of driving a car that has a mind of its own, I think that its motivation may differ from my own occasionally, which could become problematic.

I suppose the only real requirement I would have for such a vehicle would be that it's easily duped.

Mild spoiler alert. The movie Transformers involves cars that turn into robots.


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Feel free to gimme a ring today if you get bored. I'll be driving for a while.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Family Values

I'm not going to lie. I love television.

Just like my boy Mueller, I watch a lot of TV. I'll be flipping the channels, and all of a sudden BAM! - Wheezy gets sucked into a weekend marathon of Law and Order: SVU. These things happen.
And if it's in HD? Forget about it. I'll watch anything in HD. UFC, dolphins (the football team or the aquatic mammal), guys getting tagged in the family jewels, doesn't matter. If it's in High-Def I'm all about it.

Once in a while though, I'll accidentally hit something that churns the very soul. If I had some way of avoiding these shows without sacrificing TV altogether, I would.


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If you didn't catch my Show and Tell post from Saturday, check it out quick.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Show and Tell

Well, as promised I have some school work to share with y'all, and as per usual with school work I managed to find a way to incorporate Flash into things.

Over the last month I've been in a "Shading and Lighting" class. Basically, we were to create a scene from scratch, doing all the texturing and lighting ourselves. We could borrow the 3D objects from a stockpile they had available at school, but usually some modification was required.

The recommendation was to pick a scene that you had images for, so as you would have a reference to try and match. For my project, I picked Andy Dufresne's cell from The Shawshank Redemption. Not only did it seem like a decent challenge, but it gave me a good excuse for watching Shawshank about 20 times in a row.

Here's the result:



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In order to make this, I applied a series of 2d textures, images in other words, to the geometry, as well computer generated patterns, or "procedurals." Just to give you a better idea of the work that was involved, I put together a little Flash presentation to show you the process from start to finish.

Feel free to click anywhere in the Flash app to advance the image, although it will move on automatically if you don't do anything (after pressing start of course). I recommend clicking the Full Size link below to really see what's going on.


Monday, June 25, 2007

If I had a Million Dollars

Well, it's the end of the month again, and since every month is basically like a semester, it's once again crunch time. A midterm every month, a final every month, and a final project every month. Pretty insane.

So that paragraph was all about excusing myself for a hand drawn, late Monday morning comic. I'll understand if you want to spend your internet time somewhere else from now on. (Seriously, click on the image in the middle of that link).

Anyway, I often find myself pondering what I would buy if I had a million dollars. Most people think of houses, cars ... that sort of thing. But I have grander plans.


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I've got a week off for summer vacation starting Friday - look for some posts with regards to what I've been up to at school.

Monday, June 18, 2007

I'm in ur browzer...

A few weeks back I made a post with regards to a picture that had been wandering around the internet for over a year or so called "I has a bucket". Basically it's a picture of a walrus that, by itself, is pretty hideously ugly and disturbing. However, some pioneering internet user added words to it, and it instantly became hilarious instead.

This practice is pretty common place on the ol' internets and The Google, in particular with cat pictures. Probably due to a well known scientific fact with regards to cats.


(Courtesy of xkcd Comics)

Here's a montage of the kind of images I'm talking about.



At any rate, it just so happens that the house I'm living in at the moment has 6 cats, 4 of which are kittens. When these little miracles of mother nature came into our house, naturally my first thought was to exploit them for comedic purposes. Unfortunately this was more difficult than one would think.


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Monday, June 11, 2007

Mario Part-ay

Well, last weekend was my birthday. I turned 25, which, according to my brother, is the last truly "happy" one. I just hope my car insurance actually lowers a bit. Thanks to everybody who dropped me a line, whether it be via the internets or other means.

This year, I didn't do anything crazy in the way of celebration, just a nice relaxing weekend. I think that means I'm officially old. emily bought me Mario Party 8 for the Wii, so a good chunk of the day was spent playing that.

For those of you who aren't familiar, Mario Party is basically board game put into video form, and is quite fun as long as you don't take things too seriously. All the former grudges are forgotten, and the denizens of Mario universe get together and have a good time. I'm just glad that I got to share in the fun on my birthday.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

Webster ain't got nuthin' on This

As many of you may have noticed, whenever I use a word in a comic or as part of my blog that has an obscure definition, I like to provide my readership with a credible source as to the meaning of that word.

One such credible source, is Urban Dictionary.

Now I know what you're thinking. "Just because it has 'dictionary' in title doesn't mean it's credible Dan." Well typically, I would agree with you. After all, Dictionary.com thinks that "inflammable" means the same thing as flammable.


in·flam·ma·ble – adjective

1.capable of being set on fire; combustible; flammable.
2.easily aroused or excited, as to passion or anger; irascible: an inflammable disposition.
–noun
3.something inflammable.

"Something inflammable." Gee, thanks Dictionary.com.

Urban Dictionary, on the other hand, is community driven, like Wikipedia. Anytime somebody suggests a definition, users can vote it down or up, therefore validating it before the masses or shaming it to the realm of "inflammable." (NSFW Audio)

Want more proof? Look no further than the definition of "Wheezy" on Urban Dictionary.

I know, right? It's like God himself made those entries.

As a testament to UD's absolute truth - I've decided to illustrate all the definitions therein, beginning of course, with my own moniker. And if I see anything incorrect or missing, I'll just go ahead and add it as I go.




Monday, May 28, 2007

I has a Comic

Well, it's been a pretty hectic couple of weeks for me, since the end of every month is basically like the end of a semester. This month has been dedicated to creating hard surface objects in 3d, basically anything produced in a manufacturing type setting (such as home appliances or video game controllers), as well as traditional art projects. You know, the kind with a pencil.

I plan on sharing a lot of last month's stuff soon, but this week in particular, we did some storyboarding. I've already shared my storyboard from last month when I made my first 3D animation, but this storyboard was just something to practice the art of storyboarding. I realize this is a bit of a cop out, but I'm submitting this as my comic for the week.

Oh yeah.... I busted out some Flash skills to make it a bit more interesting. Hope you enjoy! (It might take a little while to load on certain internet connections).



If you're not familiar with the image that inspired my storyboard, check out these sites.

Thanks to Ross for introducing me to this glorious image, and to Mueller for introducing me to the titular URL.

Hope everyone has a good Memorial Day.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Moore of the Same

First of all, I want to preface this post by stating that this is NOT a political blog. I'm fairly out of the loop when it comes to politics, nor have I ever claimed to be a part of said loop.

Moving on, Michael Moore is coming out with a new dramedy documentary, "Sicko". If you don't want to click on that link, "Sicko investigate[s] health care with a focus on large American pharmaceutical companies and of corruption in the Food and Drug Administration."

From what I've read, Moore is up to the same old sensationalist tactics to entertain audiences while simultaneously presenting his view on a given subject. At one point Moore even takes soldiers injured in the Iraq war over to Cuba in an attempt to get them better health care than they've received in the United States.

I'm not going to try and argue the finer points of the United States approach to health care, nor Michael Moore's artistic license when it comes to presenting his case. All I'm calling into question is Moore's true motivation behind attacking the health care industry to begin with.

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While I was having my editor look over today's comic, we started discussing the topic at hand.

He put this question to me. If you were to rate the amount of Truth vs. Propaganda in Moore's documentaries, and compare that to the ratio of Truth vs. Propaganda that's come out of the Bush Administration's Press Office, how would they stack up next to each other?

Well, when it comes this stuff, I have no idea what I'm talking about, but what I do know is that this was the most interesting Michael Moore clip I could find on the internet.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Because "Plagiarencia" doesn't Have Quite the Same Ring to It...

It seems like I've been hitting the topic of comedy plagiarism quite a bit over the last few months in my Interesting Internets feed, and not in small part because it's already happened to me once in my fledgling comedic career. In case you didn't see it or just plain ignore all the stuff on the right hand side of the blog page, here's an example of what I'm talking about.



Pretty blatant, if you ask me. Ned Holness Carlos MenStealia Carlos Mencia has been hit particularly hard by these various accusations of late, and I have to say that I can understand where he's coming from. I too know what it's like to have the constant pressure of creating comedy gold, and as quite a few people are aware, (in particular the proprietor of a little blog called Skeet Throwin' (SFW)), I often turn to friends for help with new ideas.


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Now Mr. Mencia certainly isn't the only famous comedian who has been caught using other guy's material, but I think the main reason that he is getting more flack than some is that when he isn't telling other people's jokes, he couldn't even make these people chuckle.

Monday, May 07, 2007

I wonder if Bea Arthur will go that way...

Since I've move to Florida, there's been an interesting variety of wildlife in the residential areas that I've never had to deal with before. Of course when you think of Florida you think of alligators, and they do occasionally come near homes and golf courses around here. I luckily haven't had any encounters with the scary beasts.

What I have encountered, however, are plenty of anole lizards. (Not anal lizards. I'm looking at you Ben). Big ones, small ones, ones that climb on rocks... just tons of the buggers. When I walk from my front door to my car I literally see five to ten anole lizards dart for the bushes. For the prices they go for in pet stores ($5 usually), I should be able to pay for school with a little effort.

When my roommate Donny told me about a giant spider he'd found in his room, I thought maybe I could just dump a couple lizards in there to take care of the problem. It occurred to me that somebody may have taken this approach in the past, and I'm worried that course of action could escalate a little too quickly.

Friday, May 04, 2007

This should at least get me a job with Dire Straits

For those of you keeping up, the beginning of May marks the end of my first 3D class, and thus ends my introduction to Maya. I believe y'all were promised an animation...

Well I thought I'd take you through the steps, from concept to final cut. This is the same pipeline major animation studios use, and since I'm now familiar, I'm expecting to start interviewing pretty much any time now.

For this particular project, each group was tasked with making a 6 second animation. Each member would contribute 2 props and 6 seconds of character animation for one character in the scene. My group, named Monkeys Out of Nowhere (Thanks Andy!) had five people, thus our animation has five characters.

The concept our group came up with was a western motif involving a gun fight between two poker players. My character was the bartender. To start with, we each made a storyboard that showed the timing, camera work, and overall action. Basically, it's a comic strip, so not surprisingly, this was the most straightforward part for yours truly.


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Once everybody had their storyboards finished, I created an "animatic". This is basically just a real rough animation using simple geometry and coffin-esque shapes for characters. Each group member would use this as a basic blueprint for animation, ensuring that nobody would walk their character through a wall or something. Just to give you the overall gist; two cowboys are playing poker. One gets up, shoots the other through a window. The sheriff busts in with a shotgun, and blasts the shooter over the bar. There's also a piano player, who runs away. Ready? Aaaaaand action!




Now that we had the basic blueprint, animation could begin. Everybody saved a personal copy of the animatic, brought in their rigged character (which I believe I shared with you in another post) and started animating. After each person was finished animating, everybody would share their animation for use by the rest of the group. Also, some environment detail was added (thanks JR) so that things didn't look quite so bland.

When creating the final scene, each group member was in control of their own camera work. The idea would be to "film" with an emphasis on your character, meaning that we would be producing 5 different videos. Here's my initial cut after animating and importing in the other characters.




Once that was finished, all that was left was texturing, lighting, and rendering (finalizing). We were limited to flat colors for our textures, so don't expect anything fancy. Of course if you have been expecting fancy - you've probably jumped ship to another blog by now. So now that you've suffered through the entire explanation of how I made it, here's my final animation.



Pretty nifty eh? Well, I think so anyway. In addition to that, we also had to do some individual work. For mine, I chose to do another 6 second animation. No lighting or coloring, this was just focusing on basic animation.




That's it for this month in Full Sail. Next month I'll be in a more advanced modeling course - so hopefully I'll be sharing some 3D models of ninjas, pirate monkeys, or maybe a T-Rex Who knows.

Oh in case you were wondering if this is how it's done in the real world, check out this and this. Admittedly, we skipped the voice talent part.

Monday, April 30, 2007

Spidey-Sense is Tingling

Anybody else excited for Spider-Man 3? I know I am.

I've been a Spidey fan for as long as I can remember. I owned comic books, trading cards, and tons of posters. I definitely went as the costumed Peter Parker for Halloween on more than one occasion. I think between my TMNT post and that last statement I have officially convinced anybody who used to think I was even remotely cool that I am, in actuality, not. If that doesn't do it - I used to own one of these. Talk about absurd super hero paraphernalia.

Speaking of absurd super hero marketing, I was walking through the super market the other day when I saw this:


So... Spider-Man lactates from his wrists now.

Into my breakfast. Ew.

After a little further examination it appears as though Spider-Man is actually just webbing the bowl, not shooting anything into the cereal itself. So now he's just stealing my breakfast, which I suppose is a little better than webbing it. Still, it makes me wonder what other cross promotional ideas the geniuses over at Sony thought of lately.

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On a side note - whenever I make a post to my blog, I do a significant amount of internet research before dropping my many humorous insights on the avid "Why Not" readership. For today's post, I found an interesting variety of limited edition cereals created to help promote movies and TV over the years. I thought I'd share.





I fed Pac Man cereal to a turtle I found along side the road once when I was little. We eventually donated the little guy to the Great Bend, KS zoo. I guess turtles like Pac Man cereal.




Yeah I totally ate this cereal many many times. I recall it being extremely sugary.

Ok, that one probably isn't real.