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How to draw really well

by Trevor May | 25th October 2006 | Animation Asides Illustration | Comment on this

How to draw really well: I can’t draw really well, but there’s one way to try to remedy that… by drawing!

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Space shuttle launch from the International Space Station

by Trevor May | 25th October 2006 | Asides Photography | Comment on this

Shuttle launch as seen from the ISS: A superb photo, on Warren Ellis’ site, of a space shuttle launch from Earth as seen from space. (via Kottke)

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Sony force Lik-Sang out of business

by Trevor May | 24th October 2006 | Gadgets Video games | Comment on this

Lik-Sang.com Out of Business due to Multiple Sony Lawsuits: “the popular gaming retailer from Hong Kong, has today announced that it is forced to close down due to multiple legal actions brought against it by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Limited and Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.”

I’ve just read about this on IGN, and I’ve got to say that Sony really aren’t doing themselves any favours. After yesterday’s news of them blocking imports of the Playstation 3 into Europe I honestly believe they’re digging their own grave. I certainly won’t be buying the vastly overpriced console when it’s released, and neither will many others.

If there’s a Sony boycott happening, I’m in.

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Kodak: A Thousand Words

by Trevor May | 24th October 2006 | Asides Photography | Comment on this

A Thousand Words: “is a place for stories from the people of Kodak. We love what we do, and we want to share our stories about imaging and its power to influence our world. We invite you to join our conversation with stories of your own.” (via Kottke)

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Remember the magic: EPCOT Center as it was

by Trevor May | 19th October 2006 | Architecture Disney | Comment on this

Another favourite blog of mine is EPCOT Central. Like, the Re-Imagineering blog, it borders on the cynical “they don’t make them like they used to” side of critical journalism, but often raises some very important points on Epcot’s current lack of direction.

They also uncover some fantasic gems, like these brilliant videos from a more enthusiastic age. Sure they’re a bit cheesy now, but they only emphasise how revolutionary Epcot was back in the early days when Disney didn’t feel the need to pump the park full of Disney princesses, thrill rides and inappropriate merchandising.

Why EPCOT Center was so special.
Seeing into the future.
When enthusiasm was enthusiastic.

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The Nightmare Before Christmas: 3D

by Trevor May | 19th October 2006 | Animation Asides Disney Movies | Comment on this

Amid has a mini-review of the new version of the classic Nightmare Before Christmas 3D re-release over at Cartoon Brew. It’s out in the US tomorrow, but we’ll have to wait until December 1st to see it over here in the UK. I love this movie, and it’ll be good to see it in a theatre again — and in 3D!

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Turn your office wall into a garden

by Trevor May | 19th October 2006 | Asides Gadgets Home | Comment on this

Plantwall from Green Fortune is a new way of integrating greenery in public spaces. Fantastic, I want one!

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Why I stopped playing World of Warcraft

by Trevor May | 19th October 2006 | Asides Video games | 1 comment

An interesting article on why one guy stopped playing World of Warcraft. I stopped playing after about level 50 because I just wasn’t prepared to put in the many many hours necessary to progress. I’m not the kind of person that can dedicate such long stretches of time to a game (and these raids can take hours!), if I can’t dip in for 30 minutes for a quick play I’m not interested anymore. Don’t get me wrong, the game was great fun for the first 40 levels, but just became another job… that I wasn’t being paid for! So I quit.

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Kingdom Hearts 2

by Trevor May | 18th October 2006 | Disney Video games | Comment on this

Kingdom Hearts II screenshot

I’ve finally started playing Kingdom Hearts 2 on the PS2. It’s been out in the US for six months (and in Japan for almost a year) but for some reason Square kept Europe waiting. I have no right to complain, if I’m brutally honest, as I never actually got around to completing the first one and, as I never had a a Gameboy Advance, have only just got hold of Chain of Memories (a kind of portable Kingdom Hearts 1.5) to play now I’ve got a DS Lite to play it on.

Still, as a fan of the original that I never played properly, I *needed* to see KH2!

If you haven’t heard of the series, it’s kind of a mashup of characters from Disney and Final Fantasy (mostly the former) in a story lead by a number of characters unique to the plot. Wikipedia has much more information than I could ever care to provide, so I won’t bore you with all of that.

Anyway, to cut a long story short (and it *is* a long story, with many many cut-scenes), I’m loving the game so far. Yes, it’s rather easy (so far) in standard mode but this, to me, isn’t really a bad thing. The problem I have is that if I find a game too hard I’ll end up giving up. I never completed Devil May Cry because I just couldn’t get out of the castle within the time limit on the very last level! It’s not so easy as to be boring (and if you fancy more of a challenge, there’s always the harder mode), and the story and visuals are fascinating enough for me to see the game itself as almost secondary to the plot!

That said, I’m only eight hours into the game (we don’t meet the lead character, Sora, again until the titles kick in at around 3 1/2 hours into the game!) so my opinion could very well change.

One thing I realised, possibly too late, is that Jiminy counts the treasures you’ve discovered in each of the lands, and I don’t have all of them from the first, Twilight Town. This isn’t a problem with the others, but Twilight Town has disappeared and I can’t go back to it! I hope this doesn’t mean I’ll get the “bitch ending I deserve“.

My verdict? I love Disneyland and videogames with a plot, and I’m really enjoying it. Take from that what you will.

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BBC animation competition

by Trevor May | 18th October 2006 | Animation Asides TV | Comment on this

The BBC are running a competition to find new talent for an upcoming animated comedy sketch show. Entrants have until the end of the year to submit an animated short, in any medium, of up to 2 minutes in length that “capture the imagination and, more importantly, make people laugh”. (via PixelSurgeon)

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