Monday, 19 December 2016

Merry Carpool Christmas

James Corden's Carpool Karaoke has very quickly become one of Youtube's favourite things for people to watch and he really hit the high note with his Christmas Edition!

The only thing more synonymous with Christmas than Santa Clause is Mariah Carey's Christmas album and especially her top chrismas tune All I Want For Christmas is You, and she and a few other guests join James in one of the most epic carpools ever.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

War for the Planet of the Apes (TRAILER)

Forget Trey Songz, Ceaser looks like Mr Steal Yo Girl in almost every picture/frame grab I see of him. The Planet of the Apes re-reboot is lowkey one of the best reboots out there, and they have not only made one successful reboot, but a whole series of them. Kudos to everyone involved.

Andy Serkis has made a career of being an awesome performance-capture actor and has brought life to so many fantastic characters with magical performances. He really doesn't clown around does Mr Serkis. This time looks no different and I really can't wait to see where him and his ape-army eventually end up after Woody Harrelson's antagonist gets hold of him, as it seems that death-to-Ceaser is the main thing on his mind.

All movies seem to be Imax-3D-ing it out, but I think this one might be a miss for that format, although, I'm always happy to be proved wrong though. 2017 so far is shaping up to be a blockbuster year with so many epic movies set to be released!

Monday, 12 December 2016

The Fate of the Furious (TRAILER)

Mind-control, turning on your team for whatever reason, this seems to be ALL the rage in movies these days. That and blue sky-beams.

It seems the new transformers movie is going to have it, and it seems the new Fast and Furious movie is going to have it as well. Showing they've now truly run out of ways to combine 'Fast' and 'Furious' the film now is titled the Fate of the Furious, not to be confused with the Japanese title for it: Wild Speed: Ice Break.

Both of these movies are deeeeep in their franchises already so I imagine that's the only place left to go to? The main protagonist turning on his team, only to find out he was mind-controlled or pushed into the situation and he had no choice but THEN, helping save the day, anyway.

BORING? Of course. But anyone who watches a Transformers or Fast/Furious film expecting a good, realistic story line is dumber than any plot of those films can ever spew out!

This film will be a skop, skiet and donner for the ages as the Fast/Furious budget just keeps on getting bigger as each film makes more money and it even features our very own (we can still claim her right? RIGHT?) Charlize Theron as the villain. It's gonna be lit.

Friday, 9 December 2016

Spider-man: Homecoming (TRAILER)

Marvel has long since ceased to be a comic book company or a film studio. Nope, it is officially a money printing factory. And with Spidey getting his own MCU-juiced up movie, you can bet your bottom dollar they are gonna print a ton more of that sweet, sweet Marvel money.

I really think on the hype of the MCU since Ant-man, Civil War and Dr Strange that even if this movie is a bit of a let down that it will still do well.

But that's just the thing, I don't think it will be. Marvel have perfected the formula and they might finally do Spider-man justice.

Only time will tell. Here is the first trailer of probably a plethora more to come. 2017 is gonna kick ass!

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Transformers 5: Last Knight (TRAILER)

When the first Transformers movie came out, I said, wow, they could really just keep making these movies hey, I love the characters and there's enough material to source from!

Michael Bay obviously heard me and said: Hold my beer!

Transformers has gone on to be a super profitable franchises even though critics keep panning it and fanboys keep finding plot holes and problems in the story, the general fan seems to really, dig them, and why not. One needs a LOUD, MINDLESS, ACTION, ADRENALINE-PUMPING METAL ROBOT fest every now and then...for control!

Fake, over-the-top explosions aside, I really enjoy these movies, and hope this one will also be released in Imax 3D, because if done properly, it will be pants-poopingly good to watch!

As for the what this trailer shows, it looks that somehow Optimus is going to be fighting his own kind, whether through mind control or witchcraft, or maybe it's a doppelganger? Anyway, this last while has been a time for teams in-fighting (Captain America: Civil War, Batman Vs Superman, etc) so Mr Bay would just be following the trend.

Where will he go next after this? Who knows, maybe he'll reboot BeastWars...my favourite type/version of transformers from the past.

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

ARTICLE: Is the CHORUS dead?

I know for the most part, people who consider themselves music connoisseurs do NOT listen to radio and do not indulge in pop music (even though they're lying and do have those few catchy pop songs they enjoy!) but I've been noticing an alarming thing happen in pop music recently.

I am one of those who consider themselves music connoisseurs, but the problem is that music is subjective. Very subjective. And as much as mass media will have you believe. There is actually no best type of music or artist because everyone perceives differently. I believe that EVERYONE has slightly different music tastes. And if you had to list their 100 most played songs over their lifetime, EVERYONE would have vastly varied and different top 100 lists to everyone else. Music is just that powerful and each person experiences it differently.

All that being said, the thing I've noticed is that the chorus, in music, popular music that is, is dying and in many popular genres, is totally dead. I am a muso as well, and have written, produced, performed many songs in different genres, from pop to R & B, to rock, to house, bla bla bla, 90% of them have choruses, and while I've played with many different song structures, they almost always have a hook in their somewhere that is a definable chorus bit.

Intro, Verse, Chorus, Verse, Chorus, Bridge, Chorus refrain, Outro. That is a basic structure. One could argue that this differs from many songs, but this is a staple that used to be followed. I like choruses, they give you something to remember the song by, and they usually HOOK you in, either that or the bridge or a instrument solo where the bridge would be. But nowadays, it seems, it follows a very weird structure, something like intro, Verse, Synth 'chorus', Verse, random ramblings, Synth 'chorus' ad nauseum to end the song.

Haha, so when I say the chorus is 'dead' I mean vocal chorus. Because it has been replaced by a mindless, lazy, synthesised excuse of a chorus on so many tracks. Look at most of your 'pop' 'hits' and they all have this vacuous synthy chorus that is loud and pumpy, and sometimes mellow and chilled, but has no intellectual value and usually mashes up a phrase or word into non-descript splits to fill out a very lazily-structured synth 'chorus'. I actually don't mind if the chorus is replaced by instruments, like in trance/dance/electro, but in pop music these days they are lazy, kindergarten-sounding affairs with no real musical value or intellectual lyrical value.

Now I know I'm expecting much; pop music is supposed to be mindless drivel for the masses, right? But yikes, it's getting really bad now. For music to be on radio, it must be boring, mediocre and almost mindless. Originality is frowned upon, and creativity is not rewarded. It's a backwards system, but that's how it goes. Thank goodness for alternate platforms like YouTube and SoundCloud, where, although mediocre poppy crap still become popular, there are many more musical acts that shine and come to the fore without ever being on radio. And this is awesome.

One of my band's songs was labelled 'too musical for radio', which just lets you know how crapped up the music radio industry is. But this article is not about my music or my bands music, it's just about what goes for 'talent' and 'music' these days. It's actually just noise and not music. I don't mind noise every now and then, in fact, it's nice to listen to sometimes, but then label it as such. Don't front it as 'music' when it is not. Even synths can be musical.

Do yourself a favour and listen to big SA radio station's 'countdown' of songs on weekends. And wait for the 'chorus'...you'll be greeted by a boring A-B-C Montessori Barney The Dinosaur synth line as a chorus like 90% of the time. Catchy? Maybe. Musical? Not a fuck!

Monday, 5 December 2016

Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite

As someone who grew up on Street Fighter, and Marvel TV shows, I really enjoyed Marvels vs. Capcom when it first came out. Heck, I even still play it on my emulator I have on my laptop, it's a classic with simple but addictive gameplay and littered with awesome characters and moves.

Times have changed in the last 10 or so years and we've come a long way since Iron Man 1 started what is now known as the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Many other games have come and gone and are still around for both Street Fighter and Marvel, but it's great to see that there will be another instalment of Marvel vs. Capcom being released next year, and it looks frikken amazing.

I am currently balls deep (for the last two years or so!) in playing Marvel Contest of Champions, but this game looks like it's gonna be a good old skop, skiet en donner Fighting game, with just enough strategy and amazing characters we know and love to keep us interested, not to mention next gen graphics as well.

Check out the trailer and decide for yourself!

I'm not too well versed with Ms Danvers abilities away from MCOC, but she goes full on super saiyan in this gameplay trailer!

Sunday, 4 December 2016

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (Trailer)

Guardians of the Galaxy is one of those films I could watch over and over and over again. And in a world of reboots and sequels and rehashes it was a breath of fresh air not only in the Super Hero/Comic Book genre, but in film as a whole.

NOW comes the tricky part. The sequel is coming next year and this is the second trailer to be released. They have insane success to live up to as the first one grossed close to $800m and although money isn't always a barometer of the quality and (re)watchability of a film, it pretty much guarentees a sequel, especially with Marvel, but to be honest, Marvel could make a movie about a ant-themed hero or sorcerer and still make mega bucks!

oh wait...

So far this sequel looks amazing but my opinion might be sliiiightly biased. So give this trailer a watch and decide!

Monday, 18 July 2016

Selling 3d Models

I’ve been selling 3d models for extra bucks since 2008. It’s not the best source of extra income ever, but it’s not the worst either, and to be honest could be much more profitable if I just focused on it more. 

I’ve recently discovered a new place to sell my models (over HERE) and I’m keen to see the returns it brings. I currently only have 10 models on there, but I have a hat-ton more to load, and because this site isn’t as strict with regulations on what has to be in the 3d file and how it’s set up, and the way you present it, etc (like the site I’m currently using) it will be a lot easier to load more of my older (and newer) models to it. 

When I tell people about selling 3d models, they are often perplexed and ask me questions about it.  I’ve noted some of the more prevalent questions below, with easy-to-understand explanations , sans any heavy jargon.

Questions people ask?

1) What is a 3d model?

A 3d model is a computer-generated object or set of objects that one sculpts in a 3d software programme. Once the model is sculpted, real-world textures, materials, lighting and effects are added to it to make it seem realistic or cartoony or however the look is that is needed for the project it is intended for.

2) How do you make it?

You create a 3d model in any of the many 3d software programmes out there. There are many ways to model something in 3d, but in most programs you build up something from scratch and take it from there. Almost like sculpting in stone. There are some programs where you use pre-existing models and edit them into what you want, but the basic way to do things is to take a shape and start sculpting it by adding more detail. 

3) What do people use it for? And why do you sell it?

The list is endless. You will be surprised at how many industries actually use 3d models in some shape or form.

Visualisations (Interior and Extrerior Architecture)

From architects needing to visualize and display their latest housing development to an interior designer showing their new high-end apartment design, 3d models are used to display new and updated versions of buildings, stadiums, apartments, etc to prospective investors or customers.

Film/TV (VFX and compositing)

Think of any Sci-Fi or Action movie or series and you can bet that there is ample computer graphics (CG) used to assist in telling the story you see. These crews usually have teams of people that do everything from 3d modelling to lighting to texturing but every now and then they will be in a pinch for time and won’t have time to model something themselves. This is when they will go to a 3d model site, and get the model they need to save time and money, to help get their deadlines sorted quicker.


Ah, advertising. It seems everything around us these days is an ad of some sort especially when it comes to online content, but 3d models are used extensively in ads. Those slow-motion product and pack shots you see, even some of the food ads you see, contain some form of digital manipulation and many times, 3d models. I was a 3d artist/animator and compositor for 4 and half years for a production company that specialised in advertising so many of my 3d models were in this theme. Used to bring to life anything from cellphones to alcohol bottles to full on 3d worlds.

3d Printing/Manufacturing/Design

Even before the dawn of public-access and easy-to-use 3d printing, 3d models have been used in manufacturing and designing things. Everything you see in front of you right now that is not food, was probably first sketched, then designed with technical drawings, then modelled in 3d, THEN made. Newer 3d sites now have sections where you can buy and sell ‘ready-to-print’ 3d models. This is a very exciting development in technology right now. Anyone with access to a 3d printer and just basic knowledge of 3d design (or access to BUY 3d models) can print out anything they can think up, from shoes to toys to sports equipment to jet engines?!

Game Development

The multi-billion dollar industry that is Gaming is one of the biggest users of 3d models. Gaming hasn’t caught up to film yet and uses slightly lower quality/detailed 3d-models (low-polygon models). Thus the need for low-poly models is always there for established and indie and up-and-coming game developers. From game characters to objects used in-game to full environments there is always a need for 3d models in games. 

This is just a short-list of uses for 3d models and why people would buy them from a freelancer such as myself, but there are many more industries that use and need 3d models, anything from Education to Forensics to Military to Medicine. It’s a wonderful skill to have in your locker and better yet, even if you don’t the internet is littered with freeware programmes to learn how to do things in 3d and jam-packed with tutorials on how to use these programmes. So if you’re interested in learning how to do 3d, go for it

If you’re too lazy or busy to learn how, you can just buy some of mine

I will discuss this in more detail soon in a video about this, but for now, if you have any more questions about my work or 3d work in general, send me a message or connect with me on my Twitter

Friday, 12 February 2016

Jetpack Some More

So it's been ages since I've blogged, last time was when I was in a prickly job situation and I might just tweet something like that soon again...no matter, there are more important matters at hand. Last year I recorded a studio EP; Jetpack To Space

I'm very happy with how it turned out but I feel that these tracks have a lot more to offer. And I need YOUR help to unearth this latent potential!

I've got the vocal tracks of all 3 songs from the master Producer Jo Ellis, whom I recorded these songs at, and this is my plan:

I want to release a mixtape of REMIXES to Jetpack to Space called Jetpack Some More, and I'm looking for any DJs/Beatmakers/Mixers out there to try their hand at making remixes of any of the three tracks (or all of them if you feel like it). I'm going to make remixes as well, and then when we're all done and dusted, I will choose 12 and pop it on iTunes for all to hear!

If you are game for this, or know someone with the skills to beast the beats, check out the shared dropbox folder below for 1) The original songs (so you can get a feel for the songs and what they're about) 2) The vocal tracks with their tempos.

Then go wild and remix the songs; any genre, any sound, any rhythm, as long as it's awesome!
Your Deadline is 29 March 2016 and then once I've chosen the setlist for the EP, it will go live mid-march on iTunes (and all other good online music stores!) via the awesome DistroKid!

If you're interested and would like to try your hand, get the stuff needed in the DB folder and then mail me on spenelo@gmail.com or hit me up on twitter @spenelo