Monday, August 31, 2009

News - Disney + Marvel

Remember when Disney bought Pixar? Like Disney wasn't big enough already (in scale), it is now going to purchase Marvel Entertainment. That means they own the rights to at least 5000 characters from the Marvel lineup. Disney will now compete with Hollywood (and in particular, Warner Bros. the owner of DC Comics) by purchasing the entity for $4 billion dollars, according to Variety.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Learning Animation - James Sugrue

Here’s how James Sugrue makes cartoons in flash. WATCH IT!

Competition - Aniboom / Marvel

Another Aniboom competition! I think I'll stop linking more Aniboom competitions here for a while after this. You get the point - they've got many competitions going on especially for animators and people who like drawings. So here it is: Aniboom’s Marvel Motion Comics Competition

Download pages of select Marvel Comics and bring the stories to life using motion and sound

Total Prizes include 50 free Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited subscriptions, work featured on, and cash prizes totaling $20,000

Check it out here...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Competition - United Nations

The United Nations 'RANAN LURIE POLITICAL CARTOON' competition guidelines. First prize of $10,000. Submissions due by September 15th, 2009.

Competition - 9th Tehran International Cartoon Biennial

Mr. Massoud Tabatabai from Iran, one of the board members of the AYACC (Chinese convention) asked to spread word of this cartoon competition in Iran. "We need submissions from Pakistan. Please distribute them to as many interested Pakistani's as possible", he said. I have many hard copies of this brochure. If anyone is interested in taking one, please contact me on my email address (my email address is available on the main 'profile' page). Click on the following images to see them at a readable scale:

The form

Tags to attach with your artwork

Local Update - White Rice

White Rice (Islamabad,Pakistan) is lately working on an animated education series for Sahil. The concept teaches children the methods for social and financial savings. The product will have a combination of modules, games, songs etc.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Competition - Aniboom

Aniboom is having its regular Aniboom's History Channel Competition. There are FIVE first prizes of US$5000. The first stage submissions period ends in less than two weeks and they are still looking for the top five "Rough Cuts" (early-stage works ranging anywhere from basic sketches, storyboards, animatics to partial or full animations), which can synch up to the free audio provided exclusively at

The top five are awarded an automatic $5,000 so that they may be further developed into final animations. Those final animations then go on to compete for a $25,000 development deal and national television exposure in the United States.

Hurry - the first stage of this competition ends August 31st! Make it rough, but make it quick!

Link HERE for more competition details.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Rant - My Inspirations

Every time I think about it, the history of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe I'm inspired to produce my own animated television series. By today's standards the cartoon is not that great, but for it's time it was unlike anything else on television. And to me as a little child it was simply the best. It didn't have the fluidity of Inspector Gadget. And it didn't have the humor of Danger Mouse. But it inspired me more than any other cartoon could. It made me want to draw (muscles).

So what comes first? The toys or the show? The egg or the chicken? Read THIS article.

And before cartoonbrew removes their 'quote of the month', I'll repeat it here:
"It’s also worth noting that (Wall Street) analysts are always bullish about any studios whose production slates are loaded with sequels, remakes, and “re-boots”. This particular poverty of imagination is absolutely mainstream thinking when it comes to businessmen, who are all about recognizing patterns of success that they assume are repeatable… no matter how often that very approach fails. They always try to copy the original THING rather than the CONDITIONS that allowed the original thing to come into being." – Brad Bird

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Learning Animation - Animation Mentor

Animation Mentor is giving a free eBook online on how to get going in learning animation. Download it and check it out -> here.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Report - APACA Convention, CHINA (Guiyang) 4th - 10th August

The Board Members Meeting, APACA 2009

Last night I finally caught my last flight to my present 'home base', Islamabad. China does not allow blogging so I have only been able to update this today.

I had been invited as a VIP to represent Animation from Pakistan at the APACA (AYACC) Convention/Conference in Guiyang (pron. Qooie-Yang), 2009. I had the honor of being on the jury to judge from the short listed animation entries from all around the world for their annual competition. The grand prize winner for Animation was from Japan, titled, “Rebun” by Koya Takahashi. There were several other prizes in both Animation and Cartoons.

“Rebun” by Koya Takahashi

No doubt the Chinese like to do everything BIG. But what was most impressive about the whole 6 day activity was the conclusion that the Chinese government truly acknowledges cartooning and animation not only as a powerful medium but as a revenue generating industry. It goes without saying that it will connect China to the world. There were at least 13 government organizations supporting the event and two government organizations hosting the APACA and AYACC event.

Guests from overseas included senior professionals in the field of cartooning and animation. It was an eye opener to learn that there are so many other usages of cartooning and animation than even we had hitherto been aware of. It is being used worldwide in scientific education vis a vis understanding the research, discoveries and new information in medical science. It is also being used as a training tool when precise calculated movements need to be shown to masses of people such as in the training of the performers in the Beijing Olympics. It is also being used to teach so called ‘boring’ subjects such as history in schools where once students had a low attention span now they read their books as they would any other entertaining comic book or graphic novel.

One BIG step up on music videos - Animated film with choreographed live orchestra.

With the vision of the Chinese government to support this industry there will no doubt be future Chinese cartoonists and animators to trail blaze the globe with their excellence in this powerful medium and generate revenues for their country. By meeting accomplished professionals in this field from all around the globe I realized that, whereas other countries may not always have as enterprising governments with foresight, animators worldwide make their own paths and figure out a way to create their own markets regardless. By taking courage and lessons from our neighboring friends, animation is not such a big mountain to climb in our own country as well. It will require direction, focus and above all, pure and simple desire.

- Numair Abbas

Any interested cartoonist/animator may register for membership in CAAP (Cartoonists and Animators Association of Pakistan) by accessing the Gogi Studios website in order to avail the facilities of APACA and AYACC.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Music Video Review - "Dharti" by Usman Khalid

I received a link to the 'much-requested', anti-terrorism music video "Dharti" by Usman Khalid in my mailbox today. The story is told quite clearly; a terrorist walks through his community recalling all the moments, good and bad through his life, and finally comes to a mosque - his 'final' destination - where he must make his 'final' decision.
As the video started, I thought I was watching a regular live action music video but further in I realized there is a bit more experimentation going on. A lot of green screened effects, post effects (like smudges and splatters) on the screen, selective color, 3D environments mixed with the live action in compositing. Sometimes there is a little over-usage of the mixed media but it is all to an overall good effect and the singer melds with the background smoother than I have seen in other Pakistani green screen attempts. Good job on a semi-animated music video on a powerful and current theme!
The singer's choice of dress on the other hand; maybe best left for another critique some other day!