Thoughts

Short Break per “Baby Izzy”

So, I had planned on catching up on some over due tutorials this past weekend… However, my first-born had other plans (showing up 30 days early).
Born November 1st, 10:23 pm EST, meet my daughter, Isabella Danielle Ross “Izzy-D” for short. I will return to tutorials soon… she is just too cute to ignore 🙂

By |November 3rd, 2009|Awesomeness, Thoughts|0 Comments

David Allen : Getting Things Done

Hey Campers – Ran across a YouTube video from a guy who’s book I’m reading. The guy, David Allen, the book, Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity. Check it out!

By |October 1st, 2009|Awesomeness, Thoughts|0 Comments

Thought for the day…

…lie still for 60 seconds and think what you could truly accomplish if you knew that you literally could not afford to fail.

By |March 22nd, 2009|Thoughts|0 Comments

10 things to do for 30 minutes a Day

Do you realize that 30 minutes a day turns into about 15 hours every month – but what the heck can you do in only 30 minutes?

1. Post in your Blog

2. Start reading that book you’ve been putting off for two years

3. Start writing that book you’ve been putting off for two years

4. Learn to juggle, or learn to juggle better
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6366713757585864298&hl=en

5. Learn to draw, or learn to draw better
“But I can’t draw, not even a straight line!”
Well skippy, you can’t do what you don’t do, so instead of spending the next 30 minutes convincing yourself why you shouldn’t learn to draw that straight line, pick up pencil and paper and just do it!

6. Learn at least three new words from a different language (or your own language ).

7. Start learning to play an instrument… no instrument handy? Sit down, get your hands on the table, feet on the floor, and learn to play drums.
http://www.studydrums.com/dapp01.html

8. Learn to build a web page. Use HTML, CSS, Flash, php, MySQL, whatever it is, do something new, or polish up on the stuff you’ve forgotten about.

9. Exercise

10. Spend 30 minutes writing down 30 reasons why you don’t have 30 minutes to do something.

NOTE: If it took you less than 30 minutes to read this… GO DO SOMETHING 🙂

By |March 22nd, 2009|Thoughts|0 Comments

The Essential Need for an Honest Critique

I believe we all are the sum of our positive and negative experiences, and the people we’ve encountered in our past and present lives. As a teacher, I know that both my good teachers and bad teachers helped to shape my teaching style and methods. There have been instances when one of my teachers would do or say something, and I would think: Wow! I gotta use that when I teach! With other teachers, I would make note to do the exact opposite.  It is with this in mind that I would like to publicly share what I feel was the defining moment in crafting my teaching style—the hallmark of which is proving direct, brutally honest, critiques of student work.

It was my senior year at the Atlanta College of Art and, as was the prerequisite before graduation, I was required to have several members of the faculty, as well as my department head, provide final critiques of my portfolio, an exit review as it were. My reviews were going well and, if my memory serves me correctly, I had only one review left, that from my department head. I had this gentleman as an instructor once or twice and, to be fair, I was not a fan of his teaching, or his lack of knowledge about what he was teaching. It was either that, or I was a typical, arrogant, slack student at the time, aspiring to be a professor.

At any rate, back to the review. I presented my work, and his critiques and suggestions for improvement were good—actually they were better than good, they were awesome! So much so that it led me to say to this professor:”I […]

By |December 6th, 2008|Thoughts|0 Comments

Clients & Budgets & Artists… Oh My! (cont.)

The response on this post has been great! Please keep the comments coming. I also encourage everyone to read the responses from the Creative COW business forum where I placed the same post.
http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/17/860161

Thanks, Tony Ross

By |February 25th, 2008|Thoughts|2 Comments

Clients & Budgets & Artists… Oh My!

From time to time when doing freelance work, I have encountered potential clients that have projects, ideas or concepts that are much greater than their budgets. Now, the type of client I speak of is the client that never mentions their budget. Usually during the course of our initial conversation, whether from experience or intuition, I get the feeling that my rates may place this client into irreversible sticker shock. So, I insert the following: “Wow, that sounds great, did you have a budget in mind?”

The response is usually along the lines of, “Well I don’t know what something like this would cost”. Now, this statement is probably true, but it also throws up a red flag in my book. I usually will negotiate for a few more minutes searching for the ever illusive “potential client budget“, then I will succumb to their request, and submit a proposal/ estimate. For me, my initial red flag has already told me, this is the last I will hear from them. Oh well, no harm no foul. However, I am an educator first and foremost, so I am writing this post in hopes to initiate healthy conversation, and educate both the client and the artist.

I have purposefully sent this post via email to a few of my past “potential clients”, as well as current clients, and colleagues. I invite you all to leave your comments and thoughts on this matter. So with that, I will start.

I believe when a PC (potential client) says “Well I don’t know what something like this would cost”, it is most likely true. However what is also true is the client usually […]

By |February 23rd, 2008|Thoughts|2 Comments

A Funny Tale of Plagiarism

I think time has passed enough that I can share a story from my teaching experience. A funny story (now) of when circumstances stopped being a coincidence, and, even from the outside looking in, seemed to have the hand of God involved.

OK, so here goes. A few years back I was teaching at ACA. One of my former students asked if I would teach him in what was called an Independent Study, a one-on-one course of a unique curriculum not offered in a normal class. The assignment was simple, take the entire semester (14 weeks) and create 1 3D/2D animated video 30 seconds to 1 minute long. I requested that by the end of this project I wanted to be blown away by the result, this piece alone should be strong enough for them to get a job.

As the semester progressed, the student presented storyboards, rough sketches, and screen shots, and we discussed possible directions for the piece. The student even discussed with me how their grandmother would handcraft puppets to be mixed in with CG animated parts of the video.

The semester was drawing to a close and the student was almost done with the project. They felt it didn’t need sound, my response was “even silent movies were presented with sound, add some music or something, maybe sound effects”. The student complied.

The last day of the class was here, and I brought my colleagues over to help me critique the piece. We all agreed, it was a stellar piece, well worthy of the A I turned in for their grade.

One week after the grades are turned in, a rather supernatural turn of events occurs:

By |January 3rd, 2008|Thoughts|2 Comments