Saturday, December 18, 2010

drawerings from life

Here's some life drawings I did of this great model called Ehrl. Sakura brush pens.  Ascending order of what i like best. Legs are an issue.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Another Testy-test

Test Shot- Paint on Glass "To Moss and Stone" from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

here's a test I did this weekend for my film. Still applying the paint on glass. I can't get the gold to work, which has me very frustrated. The "gustav klimt" element is almost entirely gone, and will be if I can't get the gold to work. I'm much more drawn to textures now, which i think works, because of the black-paint texture.

Very short-- the character model is a mock up, she needs finer details, and secondary action. Some issues with artifacting still, with the paint and not being able to get a super clean line. MUCH better second time around, though. all about keeping it clean beforehand.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010


... I am in love.

And being a really big nerd about it.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Tests and Nonsense.

Screen Test-- Bear from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

You thought I was slacking off. Prove you wrong.

and an oil pastel drawing I did for fun last night, along with a close up. I don't have a good handle on them yet, but I'll keep at it.
(Oil pastel painting based on Gustav Klimt's Water Serpents )

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Oh my Wild Woman, all is well.

Even MOOORE developmental stuff. Trying to open her mouth/ give her not simply seductive looks, since we need to get over that part of her. Yes-- she is inherently supposed to be sexual. But gosh darn it if she doesn't have a personality to boot! (I think I'm funny sometimes)

I'm still having fun with that hair. Although I will admit drawing in blue and making "happy" images was hard to do. She kept on wanting to be depressed, dangit.

The colors I animate in influence the moods of my characters.  Hmmmm....

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

More Wild Woman

With this film I've been really interested in and pulling inspiration from Rackham, Dulac, and Gustav Klimt. I'm thinking of ways of working/ replicating the gold foil-look in animation/ visuals in the animation. Paint on glass is a large possibility, working both with the female and the bear. I'm also trying to seperate from the story a little bit, to allow myself to actually make it a better piece, even if it means giving up on lovable characters (ie- characters that I love)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Life Drawer-ings

 I'm digging it.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

More of the Wild Woman

Some doodlin's. Her hair has been really fun for me, just thinking about this huge graphic and trying to capture her mood/personality with it. The foxes are providing a much more difficult time to design, but yes. Still nude. I'd rather her nude, it feels more natural-- though I expect arguments to ensue in the future class-wise. Who knows?  WOOSH-- back to drawings.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wild Woman

She's been haunting my dreams lately. More so than I thought-- A friend brought up a dream I had about two weeks ago, that I had mentioned in passing. I'm sort of feeling her and think I'm going to go with the flow-- possibly base my thesis off of her. This is all just doodling and drawing-- not designing for the actual film. But it's all good fun. And yes-- foxes. 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog

I pretty much love that short film. I think it's hysterical, and the song's are catchy. So, I made this little poster-type thing, trying to test out a few things in photoshop. Ehhh. Not 100% on it, but i'll keep myself working in photoshop till I'm happy.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Finished Kiki

So here's the finished piece. I tried out a few new painitng techniques, which in essence means I was trying to do everything like I've never done it before. Not so sure about how I feel about the image as a total, because of it, but I'm somewhat pleased with one of the brushes I made, and the overall mood of the piece.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

More j-popping -WIP

So here's some images of my WIP for the J-Pop culture show for The Autumn Society. Watching Kiki's on repeat isn't so bad, since it holds a special place with me (First Ghibli film I've ever seen) I'm feeling pretty happy with the colors in general-- it's all just blocked out color right now, for direction. It'll be more defined, but I'm going going to keep that no-outline Flash look (thought I'm creating this in Photoshop) I'm sure the pro's can tell, and right now you can't see some distinctions in her form (hands and knee) but they will be defined.

More background elements to come too. a little too barren right now. I like the clouds...but I'm not sure if they fit with the rest of the image... I'll keep working.

Lastly, greyed out borders to let me know where the cut-off is for my image. final dimensions are 11x17

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

J-Pop Culture

So. Yeah.

Here's a touched-up with photoshop picture I took of a drawing I did. Working on the Autumn Society's Japanese Pop-Culture piece, watching some ghibli and getting ideas. I think I've settled on some Kiki, if not a couple tribute pieces to Ghibli.

Don't ask what the original, horribly yellow photograph looked like. Besides yellow, no matter what I set it to. Gah.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


So, while I've not had access to a scanner, I've doodled and drew to much listlessness and to a building sense of inadequacy--which,as artists, we all face from time to time.  I've recently taken to watching movies and reading, instead of pursuing what I most desperately wanted to-- which was creating art and improving myself.  That being said, today I found again one of my many sources of inspiration, the artwork of Nico Marlet and the animation of Mike Surrey.

(Mike Surrey)

(Nico Marlet)

Many people probably know of these artists, so this time, I will not drone about them. Let me just say, I am thankful for amazing artists, for they are those who inspire me to be better than what I am.

Saturday, July 3, 2010


I made this little dude about three weeks back, and posted it up on the Autumn Society website. Check the site out, many awesome artists.

I've got a bunch of work to upload, my only problem is I need to find a decent sized scanner that actually scans correctly. Otherwise, I'm thinking of starting to work digitally for the remainder of the summer, so that I will actually have something to show you folks at home.

About the above image-- I used about 12 textures in compinations. I'm actually fairly happy with the end result of the earth itself-- some texture manip, and then matte paints over it, and some regular painting ontop (in photoshop).


-- edit--
Just tacking on that the image is a tribute to the Cartoon Network show Adventure Time by Pendleton Ward.

Sunday, June 6, 2010


Oh, how I pine for a scanner. Er... a better scanner. Or..a hooked up scanner.. since.. I have .. a scanner here... but.. I'm being lazy.


Updates coming soon. I've been working on several things, including setting up a webcomic site, so things have gotten all jumbled. It takes a while. Since I had to install, uninstall, then reinstall it on a different site, so I'm redoing everything.

I'll post up more magic when it gets there, dang it!

= >

Monday, May 24, 2010

My friend Gina taught me how to knit yesterday... AND IT WAS AWESOME. Darn it all if I wasn't so confused for the first half hour though. She may have had to explain things a ridiculous amount of times. BUT MY FIRST CREATION WAS A COMPLETE SUCCESS. No holes. Take that, girl side.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Just an update on the happenings and magic.

As of right now, I'm continuing to finish up my film "Silica" which is slotted at roughly 3 minutes even. The film will probably get slightly longer, with better credits and a few tweaks to timing between shots, to give some breathing room.

I'm ready to wash my hands of it and move on, but I will stick with it, and the film is scheduled to be finished in its entirety come December 2010.

That being said, I've placed it that far back because I am starting pre-production on my next film, my thesis film, already. This is an idea I've been keen about doing for years, and is my first film that I've not just "thought up on the spot". Therefore, I want to devote as much time as possible to this baby, but I know I've got commitments to finish "Silica" first.

She's got about 16 shots left to color, and two shots to tweak for better timing. That's a little less than half the film to color. Eek.

She'll get done. For now, hang in there with this very tiny, insignificant teaser scene.

Scene2 Shot 4 from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


So. I could update with some stuff from my film.
Because I'm more interested in this chap here.

Say hello to Grant, the heroin-addict drug-overdose ghost who towers over Logan at 6 foot 5 inches. He's got a penchant for schemes involving anything with hamsters and has a bit of a paranoid side.
He's very touchy-feely. Logan does not approve.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Birthday rendering

Slowly. But surely. I am conquering understanding Maya.

I've still only got down animating in the program, but I'm finding it easier to do things I want to do, and navigate to certain aspects in order to fix the hooza-whatsits with the thing-a-ma-bobs.


FlourSack from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

I have 31 minutes left to my birthday. =) It has been an amazing day, unlike any I have had in a very long time. THANK YOU EVERYONE! for being so wonderfully kind and sweet to me, and giving me loads of hugs! Good bye, April 13th! =) Come again next year! haha.

Saturday, March 27, 2010



(edit) Okay. So I have been dying to review this film for a couple months now. Then I got home, my mind buzzing, and breathless from spewing out a stream of incessant praises to a more than patient friend on the car-ride home at quarter to 12 in the morning. Finally I sat down to write a review, and nothing but the above statement could be written. Nothing. So, upon calming my geek-freak-out down a bit, I have returned to reiterate this:


Folks. I can sit here and tell you the finer points of why the lightning and atmosphere is wonderful, about the moments in this film which ensnare you, but no matter what I say, whether you go see it or not is up to you. But this is one film, that if you go see, you will never want your money back.

I will relay this, however. I had a moment, well several, but one in particular that I found myself just clutching at my mouth, astonished, fear-ridden, hopeful, and immersed entirely in this film. And around me most of the audience, adults and children alike, held that same expression. And that is exactly what a film should do: Capture its audience.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Some Links for you folks.

I just wanted to drop a quick word about a few websites that I'm adding to my sidebar because of their downright usefulness.

Animationmeat, ThinkingAnimation, and Don Bluths Animation Academy all have really, really wonderful pdf's (except the Bluth one, copy-paste, folks) on just so many topics regarding the more technical aspects of animation. The Nine Old Men series featured on both Thinking Animation and AnimationMeat is one of those gold mines you don't want to miss!

They've even got a great pdf on Planning and Timing your animation by Glen Keane- not that I have the seven essentials taped to my desk, or anything *ahem*

Also- DON GRAHAM NOTES! His Action Analysis classes were a huge factor behind Disney's characters becoming more solid, more believable in weight and volume.

I might be a little bit on the late train in posting these up, I usually am the last one to realize what great resources are available, but better late than never!!!

Feel free to send any more interesting finds to me, I'm always looking for more of these great tidbits!


Sunday, March 14, 2010

Glass Woman Style Frames

I should probably wait to post these, but I figure, to catch up to all the posts I've been missing, I'll just put up more frequently.

Style frames from my film. Progressions of color--

Scene 1:
Scene 2:
Scene 3:
Spring Break is coming up soon. I'm excited- 7 days to kick butt, take names, and get back on track with this film.

Updates- Sort of!

Wow hey folks. It's been almost a month since I posted last! Not very cool, on my part, especially with my promises of the "Reflecting on Greatness" series falling so far behind.

I've actually been feeling really tight and generally having a bad spell with my animation, but I'm pulling myself out of it, with the help of the great support and wonderful friends and artists I have here at CalArts. Plus some good old buddies, too! (Audrey you rock my socks).

So, in lieu of all this bad-feeling-ness, I decided to share two pretty awful pencil tests I've done on the side, to try to loosen up/ feel better. Sometimes, just messing around and allowing yourself to make the mistakes helps you feel better, because the pressure for perfection is off.

This girl started out fun, then I got too serious on her, and I ended up getting too tight with the drawing and the animation, and stopped paying attention to really what the feeling is... which threw my proportions and facial construction out the window! Haha. Well, it's bad, but I learned. Live and learn!! ^_^

Colette Keys and BD's rough from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

And this guy has his own timing problems, but it was fun, because I was just loose. I forced myself to be loose-- Had a stack of papers on the floor for every tight drawing I did, to get thrown away. This one's a straight ahead, which is a little different from what I usually do. I usually straight ahead the keys and Bd's then pose-to-pose the inbetweens, with a straight ahead pass on any flow-y bits. It's a nice change of pace.

Straight ahead fun from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

Soon there will be more bits of my film up. Style frames will probably be posted sometime tonight, or Monday.

I'm working on a research project /paper too, which is keeping me busy but has been a blast. Basically it's about character personality animation at Disney, exploring the pathos of those characters. I've always been a huge nerd and factoid, but delving into acting, narrative theory, and the animation of these people who inspire me is enough to just blow my mind. Intimidating, yes. Inspiring, heck yes.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Being Busy...

...As I generally am these days. Here is a test/ complete shot that helps to define the look of my film. The only thing that might/will change will be the unsteadiness of the pastel-water as it drips. I'm going to try experimenting with pastel-pencils to keep within the original lines and intentions of the animation. It frustrates me how much it flickers, because the rough animation is actually smooth, but once I played with the pastels and got them everywhere, that was the end of it.

I'm liking where it is heading for the moment, and I'm starting to be glad I didn't decide to go with the flat, more generic cell shading I was thinking of.

Pastel Shot Test (completed shot for GW) from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

Here are some samples of my backgrounds, too.

Friday, February 5, 2010


Monkey pass 01 from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

the first pass on my little monkey dude.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Dear my blog,

Do you miss me? I miss you. I miss posting things in your easy to use interface. I miss inflicting the world with my animations and animation-related finds. We'll start hanging out again really soon. Don't you worry.

Here's a teaser

Monkey flash from Vanessa Buldowski on Vimeo.

Also. Everyone (or nearly so) knows that I've been tossing back and forth doing a webcomic for a while. I'm still tossing it around. Maybe you'll see some work of it up soon.

I've got a couple ideas on reserve in my brain. My huge comic still isn't ready to air, though. So...I think I'll use this web-comic idea as a testing ground/learning ground for the bigger piece. Check back on that larger comic in like...twenty years.

Meet the Monkey King.

Well? Go on. Say hello.

Edit approx. 2 minutes after posting:
-Lawlz. He's defying gravity with his pose.

BBC OLYMPICS ©2008 Passion Pictures from Stephane coedel on Vimeo.

(this is one of my favorite monkey-king takes. Jamie Hewlett meets Sun Wukong.)

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Several people have allowed me to watch flight of the concords this week more than necessary. Curse you. I've been drawing them non-stop.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Reflecting on Greatness 02

Hey there boys and girls! So the holidays hit me pretty hard, with illness and with overbearingly awesome family fun time. So I'm back to formally announce my apologies for the hiatus, and to introduce the second installment of REFLECTING ON GREATNESS!!


"An animator is basically an actor...He would probably go stiff, if he has to talk to anybody, because he can't act... talking to anyone else... But on paper!" -1967 interview with Lousie Beaudet as found on Didier Ghez's Disney History blog.
(Image referenced from the ASIFA Hollywood Animation Archive Website)

Take a moment to think a bit on these films, and see what you come up with: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinnochio, Fantasia, and Dumbo. Now ruminate a while on more specific characters filled with such personality as to make them memorable throughout the years: Characters like Grumpy, Stromboli, Dumbo and his Mother, and Chernabog. Each of these creations was brought to life by one Vladmir (Bill) Tytla. He was a man who felt everything strongly, and let all those emotions find outlet into his animation. In their seminal book, Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston described Tytla as having a " big mop of coal black hair, heavy black brows, and very piercing dark eyes. But more than that it was what was under the surface that made him stand out. He had great feelings churning around inside of him and tremendous nervous energy."

In a 1968 interview conducted by George Sherman, Tytla reveals some of his personal history. He was born on October 25th, 1904, and by 1920 Tytla started his career, claiming the nickname "Tytla the Titler" at the Paramount animation studio in New York City, and by 19 he was hired to work for Paul Terry, Brother of John Terry, at Terrytunes Studio. He started at Disney in 1934. He attended the 1941 strikes against Disney when Art Babbit joined in, and though he eventually returned to work for the studio, his assignments where less challenging and he left the studio in 1943. He moved back to New York in 1944, spending the next 25 years of his life attempting several businesses with his farm, and his own studio in 1958.

( Directed by Bill Tytla)

Frank and Ollie also comment on how "Bill loved and believed in the characters he was creating, but he was concerned whether he would animate them as well as he should. He need not have worried, for had the sensitivity to understand his characters' motivation in terms of acting, and the ability to interpret that into drawings and staging."

In the interview with Sherman, when asked if there were any special moments he remembered from working on Pinnochio, Bill responded " I had to do one sequence in Pinnochio, and I gave it everything I had. I showed my animaiton to the other animators and they all said "great" or "nothing else is needed"... I felt pretty good about it. Walt came to see it... we ran the sequence, the lights went on, and we all waited.. He said, 'That was a helluva scene but- if anybody else had animated it I would have passed it. But I expected something different from Bill.' " He goes on to say how though nothing mean was meant in what Disney said, he was still crushed by the weight of falling short of what Walt had expected. It was weeks before he could pick up a pencil, but when he did, it hit him and he just started drawing the scene again, naturally different. " This time when I showed it to Walt, he said, 'Great. Just what I was expecting!' He never did explain what was wrong. It was as if in some magical way, you would know [what was wrong]."

In his book on the master animator, John Canemaker notes how Tytla's time in Europe taking classes, exporing cities like London, Bologna, and Nice, and simply creating painting after painting helped to hone his already superb draftsmanship.

Some wonderful drawings/ frames of Tytla's work can be found on Michael Sporn's Splog-- here, here, and here. These wonderful posts are so incredibly helpful, and I highly recommend them to any animator out there-- I don't know how many hours I've spent scouring the tests on his blog, stepping through them to try and glean some of the genius within.

Here are a few tests David Nethery has posted. Wonderful stuff.

Bill Tytla - Stromboli Pencil Test from David Nethery on Vimeo.