First thing's first, I have been on an accidental vacation from animating for the past week not because I don't want to, but because Mark and I have been closing up with pre-production of the forthcoming short film and also I left my laptop and tablet in the Clear View Pictures studio office. Ordinarily, I could just waltz right in and retrieve my stuff no problem, but Mark has the key and he was on vacation since Saturday through Monday, or Labor Day. I will be back at it tomorrow morning!
In other news, I recently bought a second-hand Wii U from GameStop and I hooked it up to the internet only to discover that Nintendo made a social media platform called Miiverse where you can make little drawings using the Wii U's gamepad and stylus.
I thoroughly enjoy this feature.
This means that Darren and I can now play Wii U games on Totally Good at Games! We've recorded a few episodes of Super Mario 3D World, making Miis, and whatnot. These episodes will be up after the Newer Super Mario Bros. Wii set of episodes are released.
I want to start doing livestreams on Picarto and Twitch again. I used to do them months back when I still attended Millersville University (and by attended I mean I sat in the on-campus Starbucks and animated all day instead of going to my classes), but ever since having walked out from college, the thought of livestreaming left a salty taste in my mouth. I think I've finally gotten over the anxiety of having left college, though, and that associative thought process linking livestreaming and school may have been resolved, so I very well may feel comfortable with livestreaming again.
That is not the only problem, however. I am unsure of how well my laptop can handle livestreaming and Toon Boom Harmony, not to mention the possibility of having a webcam, too. One of the main reasons I never livestreamed after having left college—besides the associative anxiety issue I mentioned—was that my home's internet is that it's (A) got a set limit of how much bandwidth can be used per month and (B) the internet upload and download speeds are atrocious, especially after exceeding a certain threshold. There are periods where my home internet upload speed is quite literally one byte per second. One byte per second. Let that sink in.
"Over 14 years." – Evan Huber
However, the problem of internet speeds could very well be fixed now that I almost entirely work from the Clear View Pictures studio office! My home internet speeds are, according to Google's speed test and as of writing this, ~0.4 MB/s for downloads and 0.25 MB/s for uploads. At the studio, however, the internet speeds are 2 MB/s for downloads and ~1.33 MB/s for uploads. If my laptop is able to handle running OBX to stream at a decent video quality and Toon Boom to animate, I'll do my best to keep a regular streaming schedule.
The office hours are every weekday from 9 AM to 2:30 PM. So, I imagine that in most cases livestreaming would take place from about 10 AM to 2 PM every Monday through Friday. If possible, I'd like to also record the streams to an external hard drive so that I can upload them to YouTube as unlisted videos, as well, since saving them to my on-board hard drives would slow down my computer. I would have to talk to Mark about that, since he is the one who owns them and uses them the most frequently; these drives are important for filmmaking and video editing, which is his forte, and I wouldn't want to interrupt him needlessly for a nicety. Of course, I could simply get my own external hard drive.
On August 15th from about 6 PM to 3:30 AM the following morning, Mark and I filmed a mostly improvised comedy skit titled About Girls. It was intended to release as a sketch on Sunday Sketch Show, Mark's forthcoming YouTube series, but after I and some others requested it be released sooner, we decided it will be released as is! I will be releasing my first, rough cut of About Girls to $1 Patrons only!
The first episode of Sunday Sketch Show has been filmed and the remainder of the season will be written by Mark. I am expected to direct at least one episode, though! I look forward to doing that. In addition to that project, I am in the pre-production stage of writing and directing my own original live-action work for the ADE-Syndicate channel and Totally Good at Games.
Sunday Sketch Show will be released to the Clear View Pictures channel on Sunday, August 28th at 1 PM Eastern Time, or 10 AM Pacific Time.
INTRODUCING: The Fabulous Office Studio!!!
The Clear View Pictures studio office is officially up and running! This is where I do all of my animation and this is where Mark does all his scriptwriting, video editing, and planning!
This is my workstation. It's pretty neat.
I occaisionally do some video editing here, as well. For example, I worked editing together an impov short that features me and Mark called About Girls. I made the first draft and Mark finished up my rough draft. It will be released in the near future!
Mark's workstation. He has a lot of cables and books and stuff.
Public Service Announcement:
Don't Drink and Drive
I was in a PSA about drinking and driving! The video was filmed and directed by my friend Mark Swartz. He also played the law-abiding studmuffin in the video.
Mark's personal filmmaking channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCidcjaDRo2TopmqTS6Ph20Q
Totally Good at Games, my Let's Play channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCM1-pfmI67coNLHj5vW9OFg
Patreon, for supporting the artists!: https://www.patreon.com/adesyndicate
There has been more progress made on the current animation project! Right now, I'm still working on roughing out the whole animation, but I'm also beginning to work on more well-rendered keyframes for certain characters. It's far from done, though; the point where I'll be doing proper lineart is certainly in the future.
There are a few things that I still need to have prepared, namely the music and the background music. I will likely be doing the background music here, but I want to have someone more talented in this area paint the background art. The only obstacles to this end are (A) finding an artist who is willing to work either for little pay or even pro bono and (B) finding a talented background artist. I am currently saving up money for animation (and Totally Good at Games—Darren and I are both saving up for a Wii U or an NX when it comes out), however what little money I do make is used almost entirely for bills and car maintainance. As an artist myself, I understand the disdain around expecting cheap and especially pro bono work from artists as artmaking is a very expensive service. It pains me to have to resort to searching for free work and hope to split what revenue there could be after the fact.
This is where Patreon really helps! You have the option of donating to the animation, directly affecting the quality and production of the resulting cartoon! If you want to support my work, go to the link below and pledge an amount per month. On Patreon, there are frequent updates on the progress of the cartoon I work on, as well as a set of rewards for donating a certain amount!
Alex's Patreon page - https://www.patreon.com/adesyndicate
Pledging a donation is, of course, entirely up to you! You aren't obligated to do so; only if you want to help improve the quality of the cartoons!
II: Studio Office
In addition, my friend Mark Swartz and I have been meeting twice per week (on Fridays at 10 AM and Saturdays at 2 PM) in order to come up with ideas for live-action & animation and to plan out & budget these projects. This Friday, Mark and I talked about setting up a semi-proper studio office for working on our projects. This means that I will have a specific, designated place away from home to animate! The office is expected to open when the semester opens in a few months or so.
I'll post pictures of the office space when it's ready!
— Alex Emenheiser
Currently, I'm working on a brand new, original cartoon! It's in early production right now, specifically the storyboard stage. It features the voice of my good friend Darren Leeds, who is available for voice acting here on Newgrounds. Message him if you need a voice over for your cartoon!
I don't expect that this cartoon will take an incredibly long time. For more updates on the progress of this animation, check out my Twitter and Instagram. If you want to super support me with my work, become my patron on Patreon! If you pledge a donation there, your name will appear in the credits as a thank you!