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Specialization!

I came across this interesting quote from the late Science Fiction writer, Robert Heinlein. Something worth pondering upon:

A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects!

Video of My PADI Certification Dive @ Lakshadweep

It’s been more than three months since I completed the PADI Open Water Certification course in scube diving in Lakshadweep.

A couple of days ago, I completed making a film on my underwater experience. I had carried an adventure cam with me (Oregon Scientific model # ATK2000). The cam captures bit low res video, but this is one tough guy!

The official specs for the camera said that the camera is ‘water resistant up to 5 meters depth’. But I took a chance with it, and it actually worked perfect for a depth more more than 16 meters! I love this gadget.

So here’s the footage of my underwater dive in the pristine Lakshadweep lagoon. The actual footage was more than 3 hours, which I have edited down to less than 12 minutes of (interesting) video.

Click on the picture below to watch the video and enter a new aquatic dimension.

‘The Contract’ is published

My first independent graphic novel, The Contract has been uploaded on the website www.pothi.com. Pothi.com provides ‘print-on-demand’ service, i.e. the book is printed after it’s ordered, rather than the other way round as in traditional publishing.

This graphic novel is intended for mature audience only.

Below is the cover page of ‘The Contract’ followed by a few preview pages (Warning: NSFW material)

Synopsis:

Steve is a very ordinary guy, with very ordinary dreams (like reaching his school on time and making out with a hot girl in his class). But one bad day in his life turns his world upside down.

Now Steve is out on a suicidal mission of revenge, when he encounters a mysterious being. The mysterious being offers Steve something he had never dreamed before, and which would make his revenge so much sweeter.

Steve will go to any lengths to have his revenge. Little does he realize that every dream has a price!

This book is intended for mature audiences only.

The preview below contains pages 1-5 and 12-14.

Winds of Change – With a Twist!

Click on the picture below to see ‘Winds of Change’ in its full glory (on YouTube)

Nearly one and a quarter year had passed since I had made my last film, What If … A Love Story Gone Wrong. Making What If … was an experience which made me much richer in my film making skills. It also gave me enough confidence to try things out on my own.

So when the software company I work for decided to hold an intra-company contest in film making, I was one of the first to jump and take notice. As the themes were announced, one theme – ‘Winds of Change’ attracted me. As I heard the theme, the whole short film literally visualized in front of my eyes. Now it was just a matter of some time (and much effort) to bring it into reality.

Previously, I had made short films using 2 approaches:

1. Filming using camcorder, with live actors (Secret Desire)

2. Stop motion animation using clay models (What If…) – Taking pictures of clay models in various positions, animation style, and then ‘stitching’ the photos together to form a continuous motion.

This time I decided to combine the two approaches above. Making a stop motion animation using live actors!

Approach 1 above has advantages in terms of smoother motion, but has way too much dependency of live actors and there’s little scope for special effects (I am not an expert user of complex special effects software such as Adobe After Effects – YET).

Approach 2 has a lot of scope for special effects (Each frame can be easily edited using a photo editing software), but it’s a lot of hard work, and I mean REAL hard work!

The time given was very short, just 10 days (Actually it’s sufficient time if one is not doing anything else, which is not the case with yours truly).

I created the entire script in one hour. The ‘script’ was a series of rough drawings, storyboard style. It was my long time dream to shoot a fight sequence parodying ‘The Matrix’ , and I took my opportunity here!

We finished the shoot in 6 hours flat on a very hot afternoon, most of the shoot taking place on a very hot terrace. The ‘green screen’ used as background to the fight scenes was in fact a pinkish clothe held together by whoever was not participating in the fight scene.

The following pictures compare the 3 versions of photos. The original one, the ‘green screened’ one and the final result with a hand drawn background.

After the shoot was over, it took me more that 6 nights (and one entire weekend) to complete the editing (There were 250+ photos to edit!). By the end of editing run, I resembled a Racoon!

We submitted the film one day before deadline. The results of the contest are awaited, but I don’t really care. For me, the rush of creative energy is worth more than all the awards!

ComixIndia.com Magazine Vol 1 – Random Selection – available for sale

The ComixIndia.com magazine volume 1 (named as Random Selection) is out for sale on Pothi.com.

This volume contains 268 pages of comics action which was contributed by 13 authors/artists. It contains the full story ‘The Replacement’ that I wrote and illustrated.

The preview of ‘The Replacement’ is available here.

http://huesandtones.net/?page_id=264

ComixIndia.com Random Selection is the first of its kind of comics anthologies in India published on a print-on-demand site.

You can buy this volume directly from here

http://pothi.com/pothi/book/random-selection-comix-india-vol-1

ComixIndia magazine issue 1 - Random Selection cover page

Tour de Comics – A Guide to Making Comics

In the month of Dec 2009, I wrote and illustrated a 11 page guide to making comics. This guide is now published on ComixIndia.com site at the following URL:

http://www.comixindia.com/2010/02/24/how-to-create-comics-first-entry/

I have also compiled a color version, which you can download from here.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/27508700/A-Mini-Tour-Da-Comics-Color

You may have a page-by-page view of the Mini tour De Comics here

http://huesandtones.net/?page_id=581

Feel free to share this guide with anyone and everyone. Comments and suggestions welcome.

Let there be comics!

Yippi!!! I am a Scuba Diver!

I spent the last week in Agatti.

Agatti is a small island within a bunch of coral islands called Lakshadweep, in the Arabian sea in the south of India.

It was a dream since last two decades which has finally come true. I completed a course in Scuba diving, and that, too around the beautiful corals of Lakshadweep.

The course is designed and certified by Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI, for short). This certificate entitles me to scuba diving anywhere in the world in a PADI dive resort.

I will post photos and detailed diving course FAQ shortly.

Currently, I am basking in the glory of my new hobby 🙂

Going for open water dive.

The Replacement finds a home

ComixIndia.com, a comics enthusiasts site had invited entries for a comics anthology (collection of stories from various authors/artists). I sent my story ‘The Replacement‘ for inclusion in the anthology.

Now the comics anthology (including The Replacement) is complete and ready to be published on Pothi.com, a print-on-demand site. This means the physical book will be printed and delivered to the person who ordered it once an order is placed. No physical copy will exist until ordered.

This anthology will be published some time in the month of Feb 2010.

More information about the comics anthology can be found here.