Stay Cool is now online in HD

Hi everyone. This week I'm thrilled to announce two great news.
I've been asked to show my short film Stay Cool in public, one is at The International Festival For Cinema and Technology (coming this February in LA) and I've also been asked to show it on Openfilm (which you could watch it at 1280x720 px, and in smooth streaming).

The link to my channel at Openfilm:



My Biggest Drawing Project - An Update

As some of you may remember, I've decided to try and make a wide picture, to be printed on canvas and placed in my soon to be born - baby girl's room (once we'll move and have a room for her).
I've began working on the outer strokes and most basic colors (which isn't final yet either), and here are the characters after first pass of work on them.

Hope you'll like them ;)


Border - A Short Clip

Here's a short clip by a student of VFS named Bastiaan van Rooden.
I really liked the art and especially the music of the film (but I liked the animation too ;)

Watch it here:


Open Season 2 - A New Trailer

Here's the link to the new upcoming sequel Open Season 2.
I liked the first movie ,and after having the honor of having my class 5 mentor (Elliot M. Bour) working on it (you could find his storyboards on his site), I think it's going to be a fun movie.

Watch it here:


The Wonderful Richard Williams

Here are a few clips from an interview Richard Williams once gave about how he had done Roger Rabbit, and many other things, during his long career in the business.



A New Work In Progress!

I've been playing with the idea of making some serious painting work for a couple of months already. I mean, I've been talking to my wife about it; "I would like to make something nice, a high quality picture so we can have it in our little baby's room once she'll be born".
I've been wanting to do this for a long time, and now that my wife is moving into her 5th month of her pregnancy (it's a girl btw), it's becoming more real than ever! We both decided it would be nice to make a drawing with a train, which will be driven by cute and smiling little animals (I won't try to be unique here, I'm aware to the fact a few people had done this before).
So now that I worked for a few hours on the animals we had in mind, it's time to start working on the train it self (which I hope to start working on pretty soon).

Here are the pencil sketches I did for the animals, hope you'll like them ;)


Burn - E!!!

Here's the link to Burn-E which is about to come out as a bonus short on the new Wall-e Blueray (I hope they also have it on the DVD version).
It's not in english, but you can enjoy and understand everything just as much - Enjoy!



There's something beautiful about the shape of the octopus, in my opinion.... Here's the drawing I've done during the last two days (I've been ill and needed something to do), Sure he looks wicked but he's fairly calm and wonderful with children ;)

Hope you'll like it!


A Short Test I've done in 2D

I never really took the chance of trying to make a 2D animation, until this week.
Here's a little animation (very basic - took me about 5 minutes to do) of a bouncing ball I've done, just for the fun of it.

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Monsters vs Aliens Trailer

Here's the new trailer, I had posted something similar a few weeks ago, but this one looks a little better (I can't wait to see it already! It looks great ;)

Check it out here:

and Another HD version here:


A Short Animation Test - The Begger

Well, it isn't really a test. I've just wanted to go back to a less complicated rig and show some emotions, so I've decided to try and have a short animation test, showing a contrast in the emotions of the character (like we did in class 3).
I know I could of done it better, but I've decided to finish it quickly...


Just some quick little sketches

I love sitting in front of the computer, just sketching in Photoshop without something special in mind...


3 More Minutes From Bolt - The Chase

Here's a link to another part of the new upcoming feature by Disney - Bolt.
This movie looks really good, everything works well and it's pretty funny too.

Check it out here:


Happy Birthday!

My wife will soon celebrate her birthday, and I wanted to suprise her with a personal gift - her own giant T-shirt (Like most girls, she likes her PJ to be 10 times her size ;)
This is what I made for her and printed it on her new PJ.


Ironman breakdown

This is one of the most amazing breakdowns shots I have ever seen! There are stuff here I didn't ever doubt to be a CG. I even heard there was this one time the director of Ironman asked one of the SFX guys from ILM to change a part they did on CG, and after a long quiet pause someone told him quietly "actually, that part wasn't made by us - it was filmed and there is no CG in it" ;)

In short! It's amazing!

Check it out here:


A Big Bird

This is a drawing I done a few months ago and since I accidently found it right now, I've wanted to give it a finished look by coloring it in Photoshop.
Hope you'll like it ;)


Timing For Animation

After reading Acting For Animators by Ed Hooks (Which I loved, by the way - I recommend it!) I've just finished reading the book Timing For Animation by Harold Whitaker and John Halas. I found it to be a pretty book good even though it was more for the old school animation (I mean the traditional, 2D classic animation) but it was pretty interesting to read.

If you like you could find it on here, on Amazon:


Pantomime Exercise!

Since I'm no longer a student at animation mentor, I need to keep my self busy so I won't go bad and if possible, keep improving.
I've decided to go back to my earlier exercises, starting with pantomime and give it a try - this time I'll do a begger in the street which would try to earn a coin, but after 3 tries (the rull of 3) he would be disappointed and desperate, THEN he would recieve the coin he wanted at the point when he leased expected it and be happy (thus the contrast in his feelings).
It would also be a good chance for me to go back to modeling (I'll model a street corner, with a trash been, the walls, etc) and it would be fun!

I've made a video reference and then chose the best parts and combined them to make the (what I believe to be) the most interesting poses.

Here are the thumbnails I've done... and I'll post the animation test as soon as I'll have something decent to show.


Kung Fu Panda 2 Set For June 3, 2011

I really REALLY loved KFP, but I hope they won't ruin it with a sequel like they did with Shrek 2+3 which just wasn't as good as the first one...

Read more about it here:


I like stop motion animation, but usually I find it hard to see a piece I really liked and that is why I'm happy to recommend this piece of animation by Carlos Lascano.
I think the job he did on this piece works wonderfully and I really enjoyed watching it, and hopefully - you too.

A SHORT LOVE STORY IN STOP MOTION from Carlos Lascano on Vimeo.


I've decided to try my luck and participate in the competition!

Since I'm already a member on Aniboom.com and posting my animation there anyway, I've decided to try and see the impact my short film could make.
It's a competition between many other animators through out the world and since anyone could compit, I thought "why not try?"

You could see my short here, and please do feel free to vote if you like ;)

Watch more cool animation and creative cartoons at aniBoom

A Tutorial For Painting In Photoshop

This is something I said I would do a long time ago, and finally I had the time to do it - it's a tutorial to s how my method of working in Photoshop, to better explain the way I'm painting the vector like style.
It's pretty new style I've tried and I'm not well experienced in, but since a few people had asked me to make it, so here it is...
By the way, before I begin, I'm working in CS3 but besides one feature I use, the same could be applied to any older version.

Phase 1 - Ok, so if I don't have a pencil sketch already made, I begin in making a sketch, a random doodle until I kinda like what I got (it's all in the muse, sometimes I just don't "feel" it and in those cases I like to leave it for a while and then come back to it).
I begin in an RGB document, 300 DPI (Dots Per Inch) so if one day I'll like to print it, it would be in a good printing quality and around 1,500 px up until 3,500 px - you decide what aspect ratio you would like to work in.

In this case I've made some spanish looking guy, which was pretty general looking:

Phase 2 - I create a new layer and making new strokes over the old layer by using the pen tool and a simple brush (the color isn't very important right now):

Phase 3 - I begin cleaning the strokes and making them pointy around the edges to make it look really nice, especially around the crowded places like the eyes, inside the ear and in the clothing. Then I'll begin to color the strokes by selecting the checker board icon above the layers window:

Phase 4 - I begin to color the parts, each one in its own layer (skin, hair, clothing, etc):

Phase 5 - Now begins the real fun (if you into coloring at least)! I duplicate each layer, and selecting the areas I would like to be highlight (again, by using the pen tool), changing the volume of the brightness of the layer (ctrl+U/command+u if you are working on a Mac) and usually 10 units are enough. Then I'll do it again, this time I'll choose the shadows and lower the volume in 10 units instead. I've found it much more easy to work in an organized way and keep it in different folder for each part so it would be easier later on to go back and fix stuff I missed earlier. I also added a little frame, but it's just because I think it adds some extra value to it, you don't have to do it of course if you don't want to.

Phase 6 - This is it! Now I rap it all up. I duplicate all my layer and then hide it (it's always good to have the original) because now I take all the layers and combining it into one layer, by converting it into a smart object (so when I would add the filter later on I'll be able to edit it until I'll get the right result). If you don't work on Photoshop of the CS3 you won't be able to use this feature so it would be even more important to keep your original work to come back and change it if the filter doesn't look good. I've chosen my favorite filter - the canvas look.

That's it! You're done! By the way, is it just my imagination or do you find the resemblence to Grimsby from Disney's classic The Little Mermaid?

Let me know if it wasn't clear enough, or if you found it to be useful and interesting so I would know how to improve it for the next time I'll post a tutorial ;)


Pixar's going to re-render Toy Story 1+2

I've just read an interview which reveals Pixar's plans of re-rendering Toy Story 1+2 in 3D (for IMAX) and also give new shaders and a pretty new rendered look.

Read more about it here:


My Student Reel

Last night I finished editing my updated student reel. All of my animation exercises I've done during my studies at Animation Mentor are here (well, actually only those I thought were the most succesfull of them all).

I really hope you'll like it! and if you have any comments, plase feel free tole me know what you think of it - good or bad ;)

Did you ever notice the Disney's similarities?

I guess this isn't new to most of you, it wasn't new to me neither. A few years ago I came across an article about how Disney used to "save" time and money in their animation by using an allready existing animation in order to make a new one.
I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing, but I was quite suprised to see so many things I didn't know from before.


Stay Cool!

Finally! I've finished to render and edit it all. My short, the final project I've been working on during classes 5+6 in Animation Mentor is finally done!
I think it came out all right.
I would like to especially thank for the amazing help my class 5 mentor gave me - Elliot M. Bour (yes, he is "Dr." E. M. Bour ;)
He's not only a great mentor, but also multi-talented and a super positive guy, and an amazing person to speak with (and he also has a terrific sense of humor).
Thanks Elliot, I couldn not have done that with out you!

Stay Cool - A Short Film from Ziv Ariely on Vimeo.


Shana Tova!!!

For those of you who read this blog and can't read hebrew; we celebrate Rosh Ha'Shana (new year) ,by eating apples in honey and greeting each other (hopefully without the worm ;)
so, Happy New Year everybody!!!


Happy Birthday Grampa!

My grampa is about to become 80 years old (he's being married to my grandmother for nearly 60 years!!!), so we are prepering a big party for the occasion and I've decided to try and make a caricature of him, which would be on a presentation we'll show to the entire family.
I got it pretty close but I didn't want to make it look "too clean", so instead I wanted to try something else - a totaly different workflow in PS I've never tried before and keep using the pencil sketch instead of copying it, just keep painting above it.

Anyway, here it is :)

Oh, and by the way - yes, he does have all this hair ON his nose ;)

Here's an update, I've put up an old picture which was taken sometime during 1980 I think, showing both my grandparents with me (I was such a chubby Budhaa ;).


While I Render...

Since I had to render all my shots in a full high definition quality, it takes too much time to do (actually, the entire week).
I've decided to continue doing some doodling with a pen and a pencil.
I've came up with some weird series ouf similar creatures which some of them looks a little like Sid the sloth combination with the pleasent citizens of Whosville ;)

By the way! I'm trying to make some changes in my blog, and as from today you could easily be updated with everything new going on with it, so try it and let me know what you think!


Mr. Gunther - A Blast From The Past

Here's a little something I've "raised from the dead".
It was a few years ago, when I've needed to make a character and build it in Maya as a 3D model.
Well, The model was nice, but I liked the sketching process much more than the modeling process.
Since the pencil sketch looks pale and isn't very interesting, I've wanted to see if I could give it some colors and breath some life into it(and stil, not too much - I would like to leave him scary looking and green).



Bolt - A New Clip

Here's a new clip from the upcoming movie BOLT.
The animation looks great, and I just hope the story would work well enough (or else it would be like Chicken Little).

Watch it here:


Testing, Testing, 1...2...3...

Here are af few quick renders I've tried to do in order to see how it would look like.
I've spent way too much time on this and still I don't feel I'm quite there yet.
Oh well, I'll have to take it easy and keeo working on the rest (some last polishing stuff on the animation).
I've decided to render it all in HD (I'm trying to think ahead) so I'll need some more time to finish all of it in a resolution of 1280x720 pixels.

By the way, I've recorded a few sounds FX at home in order to edit them and use them on my short. It's amazing how much it contribute to the animation!

What do you think?



Here's a little something I've done to free my mind of animation a little (I've been working on refining and tweaking my short for the last two days), just before I decide I won't touch it anymore and start the rendering process.
Anyway, the sketch/doodle was done by pencil on paper, and the rest was done in Photoshop.

Hope you'll like it!


Class 6 - Session 611

This is it! The last assignment! I can't believe it after doing it in such an intense way for the last 18 months!
It's weird, I can't really remember how it was before AM :)
I don't really know what to say, I was thinking about it for so long and had so much things to say, but now when the real moment of truth had arrived, I'm a little confuse.
Well, maybe I'll have a rain check on that, since it really isn't over. I mean, I have more things to tweak and polish (there are always stuff to keep refining) and besides - I have to make the rendered version and edit my complete AM reel!
Anyway, this is my final version for now. I don't think there would be a lot of changes to it since I've been working about it for the last 6 months - it's been too long :)


Oh Bubba!

Don't get used to it ;) but since I could manage a few more minutes of spare time, I've decided to make another drawing...
Again, starting from doodling random lines, until I could find something I like enough to start refining.
Anyway, here it is.

I'll be happy to make a tutorial about how I work in order to make these drawings (Benny, that would be for you and for Avner). But I'll do it only in a few weeks from now (I still have so much stuff to animate on my short!).



Another day, another drawing

I had some time off at work, thought about doodle straight into Photoshop.
Eventually, this is what I got.
I kinda had my grampa in mind while making it (with the Romanian mustache, the loose hair and the shirt).



Here's a little something I've done during the evening.
I had a few spare hours on my hands so I've decided to try and do something different.
I'll be happy to hear what you think!


Class 6 - Session 610

It's almost here, I can't believe it... I can see the end coming, and I'm beginning to feel confused.
Why? Because the last 18 months were such an amazing journey for me, I can't really remember where I was before beginning it. Pretty soon (two weeks from now) I'll have to say goodbye to my classmates; some of them I've had the honor of sharing all my semesters (and even when our ways had to split into different classes with different mentors, we kept visiting each other workspace and to be in touch).
I don't want this to be the GREAT AM ALUMNI SPEECH but when we are so close to the finish line, it's hard not to think of it.
Of the other hand, I can't wait to finish my short and not working on it anymore (after 6 months of work on the same 1 minute short, a guy could really use a break or at least - something fresh and new :)

Anyway, this week we had to continue our polish and upload our first half of the short. I added some new stuff to the 4th shot. I've never used eye darts before, and only in the last couple of months I've came to realize - adding eye darts is HUGE! (it's my new "thing" after adding the slight overlaps in the fingers :D) and It's amazing how much life it breathes into your character and helps in keeping it alive!



I know it's pretty old stuff but what can I say? I love Ardman's work and I love Star Wars, so how bad could it be to mix them together? Any way, I think it's funny :)

And here are some more sketches I've done while listening to this week's great lecture about the studios and the industry. Hope you'll like them :)