Eon (Trailer) Entry: Wade White


OK so you like crits- Well, hope you don’t take it wrong but there’s no air at the singularity and the tuberider moves by accessing the directional pull of the singularity, which I take to be a modified black hole. Which would give great speed to reaching other universes. So the vstol’s props would be folded. I’m just lucky I can’t find my twirling propeller ducks. See why I don’t crit too much? Big party pooper. But with artistic license and all, the shot looks cool. So there!Congrats on the work!


Software: Lightwave 3D

Phil put this shot together today. It’s the zoom in on the book which follows closely on the heels of the other two library shots. Still a few compression issues. Hopefully all will be resolved soon. :shrug:

This is probably it for our coloured storyboard milestone posts. The final audio pass will be done in the next day or so, then colour-timing when we’ll post the full version at that point, then the final product.

Play Video >>


userBrian - heh, we knew it was only a matter of time before someone pointed that out. Phil and I had that very conversation while he was working on the shot and sent me an early render. He had tried without the props, but felt it just didn’t work visually that way. It seemed too dead/static. So in the end he did take the “artistic license” route and made the shot he felt looked the best, which included propellers. And I think it’s the right choice, even though it does stretch “reality” a bit (“reality” in terms of the book, that is). But thanks for keeping us on our toes!

Ducks and giant mushroms–these are the things I shall remember from the Eon Trailer challenge! :scream:


Good work, guys!

Well put together breakdown of the heavylifter shot - quick to learn… always a huge plus! :thumbsup:

I like quite alot of the Vstol -scene even with the props on - as you said - it’s artistic.

But if you’d allowe me to throw in an idea out of the box, just for future reference:
The idea of the propeller-type engine works fine even in the terms of realism, when you add a little twist of plasma flow through the engine. Make the engine itself open up into a propeller from both sides of the holding arm useing the outer shell as a revolver around its axle. Just extending out the engine shell + the plasma particles might work - you never know untill you sketch it out - just a crazy idea I had looking at the model, feel free to dismiss this. :smiley:


oooo ooooo some updates. Is the book sitting on marble? If it is, the texture looks like it needs to be a bit more sharp and the shader shouldn’t have as much specularity.


Cofiction - Thanks for the encouragement! That’s an interesting proposal regarding the engine. As you said, good for future reference. It’s too bad we couldn’t have posted some of this stuff a bit earlier in the going to take better advantage of people’s suggestions, but I certainly appreciate the feedback. We plan to continue on after the challenge is over with some personal projects (and maybe using some of the models we built), so your suggestions will be quite helpful for that.

blueglitchman - Thanks for the feedback! If time allows, we’ll take another look at the settings for that shot in the color-timing stage (which will basically be tomorrow :slight_smile: ).


Haha… no problem. Good luck in the final hours.


Software: ACID XPress 5.0, Adobe Audition 2.0, Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0, Digital Fusion (DFX+), Lightwave 3D[8], Mirage 1.5A, Painter IX.5, Photoshop CS2

Well, we’re very near done. The audio needs some work tomorrow, and there are a ton of things I’d like to change and will hopefully find the time to make at least a few adjustments, but the deadline looms large and I promised myself I would submit a final entry for this challenge, so it’s time to move forward.

Play Video >>

Edit: I should note that the three other people mentioned in the credits are the other voice actors (friends and family). Phil and I did all of the actual work on the trailer itself.


Thought I’d offer a short personal review of our team and the project as it now stands:

We entered this challenge with no formal background in either fine arts in general or animation in particular. Phil and I both, however, share a life long interest in animation, and have over the past number of years done a fair amount of reading and some playing around with certain software. But we’ve been looking for a project to finally get us doing it instead of just reading about it, and the EON trailer challenge seemed like just the thing (although I should say our working together on the trailer evolved a little more organically and haphazardly than that, but in hindsight it has proven to be the catalyst for a collaborative effort we’d been talking about for some time now).

Our goals have been fairly basic and straightforward: 1) finish the challenge, no matter what (and we’re nearly there! :smiley: ); 2) learn at least one new thing with every shot, even if it was only something like figuring out one more feature in a given program or how to draw a character in a new pose; 3) begin to develop a working pipeline for future projects; and 4) assess our current skill level in various aspects of animation and decide what needs the most improvement (and then go work on it).

Close secondary goals were things like making the trailer as cohesive as possible, tell a story, make the audio audible, stuff like that. Still very basic, but again we’re very new to pretty much all aspects of this.

Programs we had zero experience with before entering the challenge:
Painter IX.5
Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0
Digital Fusion (DFX+)

Programs we had very basic/introductory experience with:
Mirage 1.5
Photoshop CS2
Adobe Audition 2.0

Programs we had some experience with:
Lightwave 3D[8]

I’d personally never composited anything before this project, certainly never 2D and 3D together, and I believe Phil mentioned in an earlier post that this was the first time he’d really done much of anything with multiple-pass renders and the like. Neither of us has any real experience animating human characters (not that there’s much of that in the trailer really, but even the very little we managed to put in was quite a test for us).

When I originally entered the challenge on my own, I was expecting to end up with mostly coloured storyboards. Once Phil came on board, though, the possibilities increased. Although there are still quite a number of static images in our semi-final version, I’m pleased that both the number of animated shots and their quality are well beyond what I had hoped to achieve starting out. And while there are a few shots which I think are quite frankly downright terrible (essentially a number of my coloured storyboards; the Olmy shot tops the list argh :banghead: ), I think we agree that overall we’re quite satisfied with what we’ve been able to achieve as first-timers.

Also originally I had intended to do everything 2D, but when Phil joined that opened up some 3D possibilities since that’s the area he’s done the most with and me not so much. Certainly our top two or three best shots are either solely 3D or a composite of 2D and 3D elements, so making that change certainly raised the quality in that regard as well.

Overall this challenge has been good hands-on exposure to the various aspects of creating an animation from scratch, and I think we have a much more realistic view of what it takes to put something like this together and what skills we need to work on the most. In my case, that would most definitely include drawing and basic anatomy on the 2D side, although I can see improvement even over the course of the challenge.

So we’re almost there. We have a little time left to make some improvements (the list is long, oh so long …), and certainly invite feedback at this point to help us isolate those areas which need the most work. There’s only so much time left, so we’ll address what we can and simply learn for the future from the rest. Our thanks to everyone who’s given us input so far. It’s greatly appreciated and we have learned a lot from you. We’re extremely impressed by the quality and professional of the other entries, and it’s been a learning experience just being here with you all.

Now off to bed for me. Tomorrow I shall have no rest!

[this is just my take on things, of course; Phil may want to add in his own two cents worth as well :slight_smile: ]


Do you make all music in Audition? I like it.
On some shots you have no fire from shuttle’s engines.
You have no fuel? :slight_smile:


ittrium - The music was actually done mainly in ACID XPress 5.0 (that’s the free download). When I first entered the competition I didn’t have any software for doing music whatsoever. I had used the 30-day trial for Adobe Audition a year or two ago, so I couldn’t reinstall it on my system. And I was limited in the free version of ACID to eight or ten tracks or something like that, but I was happy with the results considering the limitations. Oddly enough once I did get Audition (which I used for all the voice over recording and to do the sound editing), I couldn’t duplicate the soundtrack using the same loops (I couldn’t get the timing to match up, something I think ACID did automatically). Obviously I still have a lot to learn, but at least I got a soundtrack out of it! :scream:

As for the shuttle engines, we ran over budget on the first shot and had to coast the rest of the way in. :smiley:

Seriously though, I guess in our thinking the first shot was breaking orbit so the engines woud be at full burn, but from there on out we figured they wouldn’t actually be using the rockets much. So it was actually done that way on purpose. Whether or not it reads well in terms of continuity from one shot to the next is open for question, I guess.

Thanks for the feedback!


So here’s the final audio edit. It’s not too different really from what played during the previous animatic (i.e. the color-timed storyboards). I’ve kind of been playing with the audio all along, so it’s been constantly improved throughout the course of the project.

I did add in a little more Foley stuff today and tweaked the levels in a few places to try and get everyone’s dialogue heard. Not sure I was 100% successful in all cases. I have a newfound respect for everyone who works in the recording industry. But I only have tonight and tomorrow night basically to make a few more improvements to the overall trailer, and then I have to submit the final. Wednesday’s pretty much out for getting any work done, and anyway I don’t want to take it right down to the wire and risk missing the deadline.

Play Video >>


Nice—who’s playing the guitar?


Software: ACID XPress 5.0, Adobe Audition 2.0, Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0, Digital Fusion (DFX+), Lightwave 3D[8.5], Mirage 1.5A, Painter IX.5, Photoshop CS2

So here it is, our final entry! Our sincere thanks to everyone who gave us feedback and encouragement throughout the course of the challenge. Our finished trailer is much stronger for having had your input. And best of luck to everyone else as they complete and upload their entries over the next day. It’s been a lot of fun and a tremendous learning experience!!!

Play Video >>

[Edit: Along with the software we used, I would be remiss not to also mention Ryan Church’s Gnomon Workshop DVD “Hi-Tech Architecture.” I picked it up early in the challenge along with my copy of Painter and I found it absolutely fantastic. I’m sure watching Church on that training DVD several times over advanced my abilities well beyond what I would have achieved simply on my own (not that I’m anywhere near his ability, mind you). There are only a couple of landscape shots in our trailer, of course, but I’m positive they are the better for having made that investment.

Now if I could just figure out a way to get my hands on their whole Analog set …]


userBrian - Not sure who’s playing guitar there. You’d have to ask the guys over at Sony who make the loops for ACID XPress. Glad you like it though. :slight_smile:

[note: I actually do play some guitar, but I had enough things to learn about audio this time around without trying to record my own soundtrack :scream: ]


Congratulations- I think the integration of 2d and 3d worked out fine, especially with the fun lip sync. The cell shading fit in great. Now to work on your own project, that will be interesting.


Congratulations fifty3dragons! It’s really an amazing job your team has done! The first part is somewhat reminding to 2001. Maybe the B/W ship, maybe the slow paced sequences, but it’s lovely. It’s also fantastic to see how much you’ve taken the chance to learn by joining the challenge. Also, as UserBrian has pointed out, the 2D/3D blending has worked great.
So, good luck for the challenge and for all your things!


It’s really a good story here. I was surprised to see it catchs me. You did Wonderful job, Wade!

You are the only guy here asking so many questions and who want to learn so much. This is the right thing to do, the right way! I wish you good luck(I believe in it!)!


userBrian - Thanks! And thanks for all your support and encouragement, right to the end here. It just wouldn’t have been the same without the ducks and the giant mushrooms. And yes, I think the projects we have ahead of us will prove very interesting.

ThE-ShiFT - Thanks very much for the kind words! I’ve appreciated both your interest and your valuable suggestions. And I’ve personally learned a great deal just from watching your own entry for the challenge come to life. It’s a fantastic piece of work, and I’ve found it very inspiring to to watch you put together such a fine trailer. Perhaps we’ll cross paths again in a future challenge. :thumbsup:

shearerludmil - Hey, thanks a lot! I’m glad you enjoyed our entry. I learned a tremendous amount both in putting it together and also from watching everyone else work on theirs. And yes, as you say, I asked many quesitons (if it’s true I asked the most, it’s probably only because everyone else already knows what they’re doing :scream: ).


Good job! Congratulations! I really like it!
Music and voices are cool!