18 January 2011

About Me, My Blog and Tips

Merci à Vous !

Since this blog has been online, it's been pretty successful for a nonexpert animator like me (meaning : I'm not yet at Pixar, and don't really want to, but that's another story !). So I would like to thanks the few people who have talk of this blog during the past two months as Animators Resource and the blog from Kenny Roy.com :
"HUGE props to Francis Jasmin for his astoundingly in-depth notes on animation. His walk cycle tutorial alone is epic [...]"
-Tim Sormin from Kenny Roy news feed
So those links have brought a few reader to my blog, which add more sense to all of this, even if being read is not my first or only motivation.  

So why a blog ?

The first reason that motivates me to make a blog was to have a space where I could put my finalized notes and though on animation. For me that was my first motivation. Because I have more than one hour in the metro to spend everyday for my transport, I just began to write a lot of stuff in my notebook during the route. And most of these notes were about animation because I had finish to animate something at work that was still fresh in my mind.

Also, I always love to write a few words when I had the chance. For instance, I've been playing a lot of video game in my spare time a few years ago (yea, a Lot To Much I would say now !), which had lead to be a "game journalist" on behalf of Zeden.net during a good ten months where I had wrote more than 150 news and articles on FPS.    

All of this to say that it is my hungriness of animation notes and desire to learn combine with my interest of words that had led me to write this blog. And spend a few hundreds hours on it as it is right now, mostly because of articles as my walk cycle tutorial, which had took me a huge amount of time to put together.

The positive aspect, is that even if I spend three to seven hours a week on my blog, it really help me to  consolidate my knowledge on animation with all the research I'm doing on different topics. Also, one other important aspect for me is that it help me with my self-confidence in animation as I can now say to myself : "Look Francis you've learn a few thing on animation !" (stay tunes for a post on the subject soon...).

We could also say that having a blog is a good addition to your animator CV, since it will show to your future employer that you have an interest in animation, even if the Demo always come first. 

Some tips to make a blog :
Anonymous said...
"If you could e-mail me with a few suggestions on just how you made your blog look this excellent, I would be grateful."

Ahh, that is a fantastic idea anonymous ! But with all you anonymity, you didn't leave me any e-mail to reply. But I will try to answer your question if you still read this blog  :P

Know want you want to talk about :

What kind of "Internet web site" do you want ? Well... you would say : I want a blog ! Good idea, but what kind of blog ? Will it be more as a news feed as Cartoon Brew (general) or Animators Resource (resources / tutorials), more personal work oriented as a few Animation Mentor student have as Krzysztof Boyoko or will it be more oriented opinion-tutorial like as Carlos Buena or Keith Lango ?

At the end of the day, you decide. But just be aware that competing with Cartoon Brew animation news feed for instance, is probably not the right way to get a few people over your blog. Because unless you are Nictor Navone and have an "internet celebrity aura", you probably won't attract much people just by writing two lines about these little fantastic movie !  

Get some interesting stuff in there

When I was a news writer on Zeden.net, I was reading quite a lot of video game news site. Generally, any video game news site is compose of three simple things : News, Previews and Reviews of games. The style and arguments that compose these articles is without a doubt an important factor as a measure of the editorial quality of these sites. But there is also what we could call the "side articles". The ones that moves away from the general news, previews and reviews pattern to approach others topics and provide an editorial identity to the site, while remaining address to a general public. Since we would exclude site as Gamasutra, as this news site target a more professional audience.   

So animation-wise it could be anything, from this interesting facial study, to this considered opinion or this more in-deep article. The key is just to have readable stuff that could capture interest, while keeping in mind your "what you want to talk about" objectives.

Customize your design a bit

You don't necessarily need to have a super nice design since the most important thing is what you say.  But still, we don't fall madly in love with someone because of the physique, yet it help to bring interest at first. Having an interesting design which is easy on the eye and easily navigable is just the basic of web design to keep people coming over from time to time.  

Then Have a bit of fun ! If you don't, why do you have a blog ?

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