Saturday, July 10, 2010

Ninja Mountain Episode 72 - The Birds

Dare you enter the terrifying, spine-tingling world of Ninja Mountain? Masters of suspense Socar, Drew, Jeremy and Patrick lead you into the dark passages of death and mayhem, as the very forces of nature marshal against them.

Thrill as a seemingly normal podcast is surrounded by deadly flocks of wild birds, waiting just outside the door to devour the flesh of the humans within!

Cower as Socar and Patrick actually disagree about something for only the 600th time!

Scream in fear as Jeremy attempts to host this deadly mayhem!

Flee when Drew attempts to say things that might actually be of use!

Don't tell your friends the exciting and shocking ending!

Also, we discuss realism in illustration, and critique a sketch by Socar. Refreshments available in the lobby.

Subscribe now on iTunes and maybe the birds won't peck your eyes out... though they probably will anyway. We make no promises.

Other great podcasts can be found on the Visual Artist Podcast Network!

Here's the sketch we discuss from Socar

And here's Drew's idea


Jan said...

I lol'd reading the shownotes. :D

Download, you slow mp3! (18 minutes?! What's with the internetz today?!)

(The sketch links don't work. (404 and all that.))

Ninja Mountain said...

Hey Jan - glad you liked the show notes. That's what happens when I'm tired: stream of consciousness notes and broken links. Links which are now fixed! Hope you enjoy the show! :D


David Michael Wright said...

Really enjoyed this weeks show!

The discussions on the incestuous nature of progress in genre art, limitations, not pushing boundaries, were really interesting.

I tend to think overall, progress is cumulative – An aspiring plumber doesn’t become a better plumber by rejecting the history of plumbing knowledge/technique and starting out raw, (we would all be born again cave-people if this were how progress worked). Although they might advance their field a little if they still consider each pre-existing problem with an open mind toward possible improvements.

I think in many fields of work each new practicing individual can always potentially change or advance their field due to their very uniquely ‘exposed’ and diversely filled brains affecting the decision making part of what they do.
As for Genre, or more widely Occupational boundaries, I think there are definitely natural limitations – Sure, there are only so may ways a runner can run, but that is not to say there will never be more great runners without innovative new ways to run being developed in the future (the forward flip hop hop lunge technique or such :).
I think thankfully the way that we do a thing is only ‘so much’ in our own control anyhow, in that you learn to develop and tailor a technique that appeals to your inclinations or objectives, perhaps drawing inspiration from the back history of previously explored methods and maybe in part innovating this or that element a little to suit your needs. But as for the actual expression or real-isation it is always going to be a reasonably individual process (unless you actively seek to imitate) as each action is always going to be filtered through the mind and the mind is itself an uniquely individual filter that seems to randomly catch onto bits of life (memories, cadences etc). So an individual’s collective mental state will always determine the best part of how their work will become. I tend to think most decisions are emotional at core with added intellectual constructs supporting and propping them up. I really liked Patrick’s example of an image being quite legitimate and justified in (for him) being simply about how the light hits the rocks.
I think it’s the inspirational driving force, the engaging spirit (in a non religious sense) of the creator’s character somehow imparted into the thing (like in handwriting) created that ultimately counts for most. I’d site Frazetta as a good example of this – Technique wise arguably not entirely new (and why would/should it be?) But for balls out, no fear, passion and character burned into everything he laid his hands to, I think we can all consciously or subconsciously read that in the work very clearly.

Shaun Patterson said...

Good show this week. Regarding your question about the most bizarre/worst crit that people have ever gotten. I once had a boss that would routinely disregard the role of the companies AD and take it upon himself to crit peoples 2D and 3D work on projects. Unfortunately for him and hilariously for us he was a salesman and not an artist and thought (in salesman fashion) that if he just threw terminology at us he would sound like he knew what he was talking about. So my co-workers and myself would constantly hear that we needed to "make our pixels more rounded" or "that image needs more Flash macromedia".... We would always nod agreeably with a straight face.

I think in the general art community there is no shortage of bad and very unhelpful crits. I have found in Art as it is in other aspects of life that insecure people think that knowledge and mastery of a subject is relative to amount that you can rip something apart in a negative fashion, peppering it with five and ten dollar words along the way.

Keep up the good work, I look forward to your podcasts every week.


Ninja Mountain said...

Shaun and David - props for the great comments!

Shaun, I love "needs more Flash". That's classic.

David - it's truly a rewarding thing to read so much thought based on our conversation. Thanks!


Mike Burns said...

Great episode! It was interesting to hear you all talk about realism in fantasy/sci-fi. It's something I've definitely picked up on but haven't really examined before.

I really liked hearing the discussion about Socar's drawing too. Listening to an artist's reasons behind the decisions they make in a piece gives me a better sense of how to make decisions in my own work.

I'll also be attending Illuxcon this year, and I couldn't be more excited! I haven never been to a con before and I've heard nothing but amazing things about the past shows. I'll be sure to keep an eye out for you ninjas ;)

Patrick said...

Thanks Mike! I'd like to make it to Illuxcon some time in the future too. Have fun!

Razwit (Preston Stone) said...

Hey hey ninjas! I was wondering if you'd do something totally awesome for me. I was fortunate enough to be chosen by Jon Shindehette [JON SHINDEHETTE!!!] as one of the 20...finalists? I don't know what to call, people that he fight to the death for a wizards of the coast contract in his latest challenge on art order. Anyway, I was wondering if you wouldn't mind critiquing what I have so far on the show?

here's a link to the picture if you decide to critique it :*RM9VpoM2SYKlDb2DvOvk7lknDz3TcQy1nPDqIOK2puACO5XI-7bnFdSx-b/dwarfSketch2.JPG

In response to the realism question. I'd say, I'm half way between realism and cartoon, but not on purpose. I'd love to be able to paint a totally believable photo-realistic scene, but am not that good yet. I'm drawing and painting my little heart out everyday though, so someday maybe I can improve to the level of the artists I idolize, like Michael Whelan and Alex Ross.

Thanks ninjas.

Jan said...

Finally got to this episode. And it's a good one!
I really enjoyed the larger group of ninjas and the length (I think that's what SHE said!).

(Seriously, both the discussion about realism and critique of Socar's sketch were both very nice.)

Patrick said...

Hi Preston!

Picture looks good so far! I'm a bit worried that the focus is not centered enough on the main action. Is part of the assignment that it's all sepia tones? If not, I'd add more color in the center where the two main characters are located.

However if it's not supposed to have color I'd work on adding more highlights to the dead guy's face, and lowering the highlights to the far right, which seem to be drawing attention away from the center.

Also I don't know how far you plan on taking the detail in the cave, but it could use a bit more reference when you get to that point. Just to vary the shapes and all.

I do like the overall composition and sense of depth, and the actual drawing is also very nice.

Oh, one more thing, and this may be crazy, but I'd perhaps play with tilting the whole thing a few degrees clockwise, to add a bit more dynamism. Somehow I think that would look pretty cool here (These extra wide compositions sometimes benefit from that sort of treatment).

Good luck with the challenge!

Patrick said...

Hey Jan, glad you liked it. And yes, she DOES like the extra length, wink wink.