Jul 10, 2011

Shere Khan

So, Milt Kahl was one of the most awesome animators ever, part of the famed Nine Old Men of Disney lore. Today, he's known both for being an incredible draftsman (many of the most famous Disney animated films' characters bear his marks--Robin Hood, The Sword in the Stone, The Jungle Book, 101 Dalmatians) and for having been a sometimes difficult character to have worked with. He had high standards and expected a lot from his colleagues. So, good for him.

I've copied a lot of stuff from him before, but mostly by individual drawings. For example, he's famous for having been able to draw uber-expressive hands:

My favorite Milt Kahl character, by far, is Shere Khan, the villainous tiger of The Jungle Book. Of course, I'm biased in favor of big cats simply because I think they're so cool. But Shere Khan, in character, in design, and in animation, is brilliantly done. He's a consummate gentleman, though twisted and vengeful. He's graceful but strong, evil but controlled. When my roommate saw a video clip of the tiger he said "He's so gentrified!"

It's true. I mean, who else could so brilliantly handle Kaa, the python:



Or give Mowgli a 'sporting chance' before being devoured:



I decided to try to do a little pencil test, totally robbing a series of images from Frank and Ollie's "The Illusion of Life" (p356-357). Like I said before, using others' art for education and inspiration is great. Copy, copy, copy!


video

Jul 7, 2011

History of English in Ten Minutes

So, English is really cool, right? I mean, I also hated doing worksheet after worksheet on gerunds and participles and non-dangling modifiers, but when push comes to shove, English has a wicked awesome story. It's like someone took a bunch of disparate items--a peach, a radiator, and Gary Coleman, say--and discovered that they actually go really well together.*

Here's a series of animations on the history of the English language (worth watching the playlist in its entirety!).





















*I actually don't think those three things would go well together, but neither would I think Old Norse, French, Latin, Shakespeare, and a bunch of other crap would result in a cool language.

Jul 6, 2011

I'm Back, With Math Jokes

Hello, blogosphere. I haven't seen you in a while. I've been cavorting around these United States for the past few weeks. Maybe I'll update on that, if I remember/have time? The first post after a while is always awkward, because you feel like you need to write something totally epic.

I'm not even going to try.

Instead, I will post an email chain that I exchanged with a friend of mine:

From: [Friend]
To: [Me]
Subject: I want your address

You will hand it over or I will send a waveform of hyperbolic ninjas at you.
______________________________

From: [Me]
To: [Friend]
Subject: Re: I want your address. OK!

I have one house in the real plane (\mathbb{R}^3) and one on the Riemann Sphere, but the directions to that one might be a little complex.

The real-valued address is:

Grand Marquis Joshua Sauerman KG, GCMG, LVO, KStJ
[address withheld]

Oh, wait. That's the imaginary-valued name. The real one should just read "Josh Sauerman". I'd lose my head if it weren't screwed on.
______________________________

From: [Friend]
To: [Me]
Subject: Re: I want your address. OK!

Thank you, Grand Marquis Sauerman.

You are too funny, let's be friends. Some people collect bottle caps. I collect bipedal humor spigots.
______________________________

From: [Me]
To: [Friend]
Subject: Re: I want your address. OK!

Friends it is! Keep me around and your spigot will gush forth milk and honey at a rate of  v = - \frac{1}{4 \eta} \frac{\Delta P}{\Delta x} (R^2 - r^2) .

______________________________

From: [Friend]
To: [Me]
Subject: Re: I want your address. OK!

You make me want to remember how math works.