Media12 Dec 2012 08:21 am

Here’s the short form of the Prezi sales presentation I built for Leica Geosystems, announcing the release of Cyclone 8.0, their point cloud editing software. I designed the new logo and opening splash screen, and that will be the subject of another, more detailed blog entry.

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Media&User Interface29 Nov 2012 02:42 pm

Mediaspin.com, my very first website, has undergone very little change or update over the past 4 or 5 years.  It’s been online since 1996, and the home page has changed very little.  Media Spin Interactive, Inc. was dissolved in 2002, and since then the site became a kind of archive of various work in illustration, animation, photography, and blogging.  In order to build a new portfolio of my work, it was easier to create a clean, new website, ahgdesign.com and populate it with specific content on a limited number of pages, than to overhaul the mediaspin.com site.

Design concepts have been sketched out, but nothing has stuck as worthy of the effort.  The idea of a Flash animation, randomly spinning content and media appeals to me, but it would be sad to not have it appear on non-Flash platforms.  I want to be original, so website templates seem to be too stylish, slick and overly commercial for my taste.  The plan is to preserve many of the current pages and URL addresses, because hundreds of links and citations have been made over the years, and would not want to break them.



A modified WordPress template or Squarespace might work as a pathway to a website update.  I have to research the impact of these a bit further, and most of all put in the sweat involved.

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Illustration&Media29 Oct 2012 08:36 pm

Anaomy of Female Hand Muscles and Ligaments

I sprained my wrist trying an advanced yoga pose.  Imagine being in a shoulder stand and lowering your legs down while propping up your arching waist with your hands.  If done slowly, carefully and with enough flexibility, your feet touch the ground as your hands support your lower back in a sort of shoulder stand back bend.  I was able to do it, when I last tried it ten years ago, but I lost some flexibility, and the bending put a strain on my wrist.  So I decided to explore the anatomy of the hand in a series of recent illustrations.

I rendered these Zygote models in Maya in a variety of lighting and camera positions.  The detail is an anatomically correct female hand and wrist.  The fianl renders were 8K in the longest dimension.

I had another concept, “Breaking out of the Box”, an inspirational illustration of a struggle for freedom.  The figure was done in Poser, imported into Maya, where I added the lighting, surface texture, and added dynamic cloth to the cube faces that are being stretched.  The skeletal Facebook “like” sign, is just having some fun with Poser, which for me is always fast and simple for working out ideas with.

By the way, the wrist is fine now, but I’m not trying to do that advanced yoga pose again, for awhile now.

 

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American History&Politics04 Jul 2012 05:21 pm

The Affordable Healthcare aka Obamacare Debate

There’s been a lot of noise from some people who do not want affordable healthcare, in the form of the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare.  There are outcries such as “Get your hands off my healthcare!” which to me would only make sense if you were a CEO or shareholder of a crooked insurance company enjoying the benefits of gouging powerless little guys.  Of all the noise from this group, its unclear exactly what they are complaining about.  I’ve heard the complaint that the bill is too large and too detailed.  Well, sorry folks, there are many complicated problems that cannot be solved with a bumpersticker.  A space program that took us to the moon and back numerous times could not be calculated on the back of an envelope.  People who are employed are familiar with receiving healthcare benefits, and most employers assist in paying health care coverage.  So, these people would likely not even be affected by Obamacare.  So, where’s the rub?  It seems as though the dissonant voices are those who simply do not like anything our current President Obama and his administration does.

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Internet&Media&Money&Projects03 Jul 2012 08:39 pm
Facebook Quote Card #1

Facebook Quote Card #1

As Facebook grows and its users grow less daring and experimental, we now see cute little “thought note cards” appearing as posts.  These quotations are not original.  They are professional graphics that the user identifies with, selects, and posts.  Going deeper into this behavior, we see the evolution of the electronic Hallmark card, and beyond, which is huge.  The Internet provides gigantic opportunities as a sentiment pool which is primarily what Facebook resonates as.

There are many, perhaps most of us, who are unable to express ourselves adequately, and must find ideas, images, posters, banners, sounds, music, and yes, electronic greeting cards to enhance our intentions.  I like where this is going, and hope to see the craft of composing personal greetings, expand, grow and take off in more amazing directions.

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Art&Illustration&Internet&Mobile&Projects06 May 2012 06:39 pm

Nice Tweeting You

Due to the positive response and the editorial buzz around social networking themes, I’ve been motivated to design additional illustrations along these lines for my stock image agency, Superstock. Here are a few of my favorites. I’ve also continued making medical illustrations as well, the most recent series involve new treatments of brain and heart images.

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Internet&Media&Personal28 Oct 2011 11:58 am

In early 1994 I was working at the Time-Life Building, as technology lead for Time Warner Interactive’s East Coast office.  It was an exciting location, 22 stories above Rockefeller Center, in a building buzzing with Time-Life’s empire of magazines editorial staff.

One of my goals was to configure the TWI offices with the 1994 version of a digital media production studio.  This would enable our producers to create interactive television content for Time Warner’s planned Full Service Network deployment, scheduled for April in Orlando, Florida.

As I set up the studio, I received impromptu visits from editors of just about every magazine in the house who had heard about the new, cutting edge project: Sports Illustrated, Money Magazine, Martha Stewart (herself) Living, and others.  They had heard the hype about our planned digital TV convergence, and wanted to get the inside scoop.  These were journalists after all!

Late one afternoon Walter Isaacson, Time magazine’s Editor of New Media popped into my office.  He asked me how FSN was coming along.  I knew it would not be ready for the scheduled April 15th launch, and TWI management had me on gag orders.  So, reluctantly, I had little to give Mr. Isaacson.  In reality, two months from the proposed launch, there was also very little to even demo.  We were still waiting for the TV set top hardware and operating system to be delivered by our technology partners at Silicon Graphics (SGI).  If I had told Walter what was really going on with the ill fated FSN project, I would have been in serious hot water with my immediate TWI superiors.  So, zip it I did.

Looking back, I wish we had chatted on a more honest and realistic level.  I doubt that knowing the truth, the outcome of FSN would have been much different.  It was the wrong design at the wrong time.  Time Warner Cable was attempting to create its own interactive digital movie on demand network.  These were the early days of cyberspace, and the Internet was regarded with great suspicion and skepticism, especially by an established print media giant.

Isaacson is a contemporary of mine.  We are both born on the same year, so I enjoy following his career, and am especially impressed by his recent writing of the Steve Jobs biography.  Now we can carry the FSN in our pocket.

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Media&Technology12 Oct 2011 01:46 pm

I too mourn the passing of the brilliant Steve Jobs.  Many have wondered how long into the future will Steve Jobs’ creative spirit continue.  Since the new Apple corporate headquarters is designed for use in 2015, I’d say that’s the minimum time frame.

Considering the visionary Steve Jobs, my guess is that this workplace will be much more than the ordinary office space.  Silicon Valley housing is very expensive.  Therefore it is often impossible recruit and move talented candidates within comfortable commuting distance.  I have experienced this problem first hand, and know of many others who have left jobs because of inconvenient location and logistics, rather than specific work related reasons.  I believe the most successful corporations of the future, in order to retain the best and the brightest, will be the ones that create the familial environment of a small tribal village.  On campus corporate housing and apartment facilities, similar to universities, will solve expensive housing and commuting problems.

In this architectural plan Jobs connects with enlightened New Age thinking with a huge hogan in the round design.    “Round up your wagons into a circle,” the pioneer leader called.

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