Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A big long post

Hi all,

Well it's 3am and rather than sleeping like all of my roommates, I am up again as usual. I always get really tired at like 8 or 9pm, sometimes fall asleep for 20 or 30 minutes... and then I get such a huge crazy intense second wind that lasts me until around 4am... I get so tired in the early evening but the turnaround is almost unbelievable. I am SO awake right now it's nuts, and there are 100,000 things I want to do. Fortunately I've got lots of stuff to fill my time this late at night, (and no Jake it's not always looking for that Pixar Incredibles hawaiian shirt on Ebay, haha though I DID try to find it again today) - I have very quickly become busy finding old friends on MySpace and Facebook, those are both actually really quite cool and it's really awesome to see pictures of friends from high school who I haven't seen in years and years. That rocks.

I'm listening to Matt Costa again tonight. Man this guy is amazing. He's definitely got an amazing mix of styles here, I hear a little rock, a little folk, a little country, and the last song I was just listening too sounds like an old Jewish melody, maybe a little Klezmer even. Pretty awesome stuff. I reallllly love the song "Sunshine" by Matt Costa, he has a live version you can download here: http://www.mattcosta.com/music/outtakes/Sunshine.mp3

Man that is some amazing music, I am listening to it a lot for a couple of reasons... my buddy Joel Zimmer from Waterloo always recommends awesome music and this is one of the new things he recommended and also Matt Costa is playing in San Francisco in about a month and I pretty much have to go to his show due to his musical awesomeness.

Ok that's enough about the tunes lately, let's see what else is up. Lots of interesting times today. I met some Academy Award Nominees and they were really cool and saw some of the movies that are nominated for certain academy awards. I spoke to one guy who was very nice and was quite critical of his work (though it was quite an amazing film) and we chatted briefly about filmmaking and how people are always quite critical of their own work and their own artistic creations. Pretty awesome and I had a great time meeting everyone.

I had a great day at work today as well, just working hard on some new stuff. I managed to teach myself the programming language Python because I thought it would be useful and also because I hadn't ever used it and thought it was a great time to learn it. I did that a couple of weeks ago and after working on a couple of decent sized programs in Python I am feeling much more comfortable with it. It's pretty cool, and definitely a good language to know these days. I learned a whole bunch of really cool file management stuff in Python and managed to write a whole bunch of stuff really quickly today so that was great.

I wore my reaaaaaaaaaallllyy awesome new stripey Gap shirt today, and a few awesome people at work told me it looked good, so that just added to the awesomeness of the day!!

My friend Matt Parrott from the summer is coming back to San Francisco area tomorrow and is starting a job at LucasArts next week. He sounds pretty excited about it and I think he is working on some interesting games. He is going to be around this weekend for the Oscar festivities so that should be sweet, no doubt we are going to have a huge party here for sure and watch the whole thing. Jon Stewart is hosting and he is probably the greatest fake news anchor (or perhaps greatest news anchor) on the planet so I am pretty psyched for his performance. Haha I am not sure if I mentioned this but Pixar was on The Daily Show a couple of weeks ago, around the time of the Disney Merger announcement. It was really funny and he made up some new movie idea saying we were working on a movie called "Forks" and then had a bunch of people holding live-action forks and spoons and making them kiss each other and stuff, it was hilarious. Oh yeah we watched 24 tonight followed by a bunch of Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, and then Jon Stewart was on Larry King Live so that was pretty interesting too.

Hmm let's see what else am I thinking about at 3:21am when I should be asleep. As nerdy as this sounds, I am actually pretty excited for the next big wave of computer technology that is about to start soon. A major change is the switch from 32-bit to 64-bit processors, which changes the amount of memory a program can index, which can result in much more complicated programs running faster. Also a big change is the switch to Dual-Core processors, which is essentially adding another "brain" to your computer. Interesting I just took Concurrency last term at school which taught me how to program successfully and in a way that is "Thread-Safe" for multi-threaded or multi-processor machines (like Dual-Core machines.) Awesome. Dell has some crazy stuff coming out, and they look like they are already selling a Dual Core machine. It is interesting to see the same processors now running on a Dell and on the new iMac. That begs the question that why can't I make a dual-boot (or a triple-boot, for that matter) machine that runs all 3 major operating systems, Windows, Linux and Mac OSX. That would be cool, and would be especially awesome for multiple platform development and for performance and regression testing for software across all 3 major platforms... man that would be awesome. But I think at the moment at least Apple wants to keep their own software on their own machines, which has been their style for a long time so I don't know if Apple plans to change that. But Steve if you're reading this, I can pretty much say right now that I would definitely buy a copy of Mac OSX if you make a PC edition. :)

Listening to some Dave Matthews Band now, and I won't go into talking about this for hours, because you all know how much I love the Dave Matthews Band.

Today I got some sweet books I ordered on Half.com, ohhhh man Half.com rocks. Anways I got some cool stuff, I got a book called Industrial Light and Magic: Into the Digital Realm and it is really amazing. It was $80 at the bookstore and I got it for $11 online, so not a bad deal! It's a little old, maybe from around 1995, but it's really amazing. It talks about a lot of the innovations that Industrial Light and Magic invented for the Digital Cinema world, so you can see why I love this stuff. I got the Making of Spider-Man 1, and the Making of Spider-Man 2 as well... those were amazing and Sony Pictures Imageworks is really nuts and has done some cool stuff lately. When I went to visit a few weeks ago, I saw some people working on Superman Returns and Spider-Man 3 which is pretty neat. I didn't get to see any frames from the movies but the people working on it looked like they were having a good time!!

It has been a pretty busy few weeks, even this weekend was busy despite the fact that I stayed around the house a bit. I did some cleaning of the house with my roommates and still I haven't cleaned my room, done the laundry or any of that other stuff I need to do. Ah well I'll get it done at some point.

I really want to start some work for my 4th year Graphics class next term, this is going to be a pretty tough class so I really want to spend some time on the homework assignments and getting to understand some of the material now because there is a lot to do in one class... OpenGL, Matrix Transformations (rotating a cube in 3D without using OpenGL), an OpenGL puppet, a Raytracer and an Extended Raytracer!! This is all for one 4th year class and at the same time I will be taking 4 other classes, so I really need to make sure I am prepared for it. I am going to take an easy Math class, maybe Logic or Number Theory or something like that. For my electives, I actually need to take 3 but I am hoping to just take 1 double-credit class and 1 more. That would be great and would really free up my time to spend most of my hours on Graphics. I am going to make a proposal to the Waterloo Fine Arts department, asking if I can be supervised for a 4th year Fine Arts 3D Independent Study program, where I would work on my own in Maya, creating some short animated films from concept art all the way to completion. This will be an awesome opportunity if I can organize it, because I will be able to essentially make most of the rules for my own course, and get credits for learning something I desperately want to (and need to) learn, and simply don't have the time to learn during regular school hours and with regular school commitments.

Well anyway it's getting late and I am almost done listening to another CD so that probably means it's time to send some more emails and then go to bed. I hope everyone is well and thank you again to everyone who is keeping up to date with my blog - it means a lot to me that you are interested in all the stuff I am up to over here!

Friday, February 24, 2006

My tux jacket for Cars Premiere/Party

Today I chose my tux jacket and vest colour for the Cars crew Premiere/Party. Pretty fancy eh!!

My tux jacket and pants

The vest and bowtie colour I chose for my tux

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Matt Lausch comes to California!

Today was sweet!! I finished my Pixar University course today and it rocked. I finished my 45 second film and it worked out very well.

Also, my friend Matt Lausch from Canada came to visit today!! Matt has an interview tomorrow at Apple in Cupertino, so he showed up this afternoon, shlepped all the way up here from San Jose, hung out with me at Pixar for a couple of hours, bought a Pixar T-Shirt, then we went for Indian Food and then Kevin dropped Matt at the BART station and Matt took the BART and CalTrain back to Cupertino. Haha man what a crazy day for Matt, I was tired just thinking about all of his running around!

Anyway here are some pics and also there are a few of my roommate Frank and also a few of me, we just decided to play with my camera tonight after Matt went back to Cupertino.

Good luck Matt for your interview! It was great to see Matt and show him around Pixar and also get a chance to chat about school for a bit. He sounds like he is having a good time but he is really overworked in the Waterloo Compilers course, that course sounds crazy. I am not super interested in doing more Compilers (since we did the Intro Compilers sort of course already) and Matt says it has been pretty nuts. But he's a powerhouse so I am sure he will do very well despite the insane amount of work.

Been watching the Olympics a lot lately, tonight was super cool and Canada is generally doing pretty sweet, tied in 3rd place with the USA and Norway! Awesome.



And another one

More self photo action

Good times

And another ridiculous photo

One more Me and Matt shot

Sweet graphics books

My sweet DVD collection

Nice 3D action

Frank chillin' out


Me on the couch

Doing the eyebrow thing

Cool perspective action

Frank doing the eyebrow thing

More sweet perspective vibe

Haha I need a haircut

Monday, February 20, 2006

Pixar homeys dinner in San Francisco

Tonight a bunch of us went to Gordon Biersch in San Francisco for some really awesome food. I got this crazy Hawaiian Teriyaki steak meal and it was awwwesssooommme!!

We got to hang out with a couple of the new interns too and they are a great bunch and Nathan from EA came out with us as well which was good times.

In other news I have totally boarded out my 30-second film I am working on, I think it should work pretty well but I need to spend a little while on it. I am going to do the set dressing and camera movements and then move onto animation by tomorrow night if I can get that far. Good times!

Katelyn congratulating Taylor on his sweet parking job

Mmm... Gordon Biersch brewery

Awesome pic of Taylor and Katelyn

Don't mess with these crazies

Haha Taylor and Kevin rockin' the one eyebrow up action

My Hawaiian teriyaki steak and garlic mashed potatoes

Great shot of Frank

Frank confused about something

Jon and Nathan with a new haircut

Angelique with a true American-sized beer

Frank with Veronica and Maggie the new interns

Frank commenting on how Thai spicy sauce is not cajun spicing

Me looking 'ol school

Katelyn taking a picture of Frank

Me and Katelyn

Nice one of Kev pondering something

Awesome group pic

Bay Bridge sweeeeeeet

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Hey, it's my own "Lazy Sunday!"

Haha what an awesome day so far. In my previous post I was talking about how I've been going to bed way too late for at least a week, (like 3 or 4am) and getting up at 8:30 or 9:00am, crazyness. But yesterday I guess I worked hard enough physically to ensure that I was going to get a good sleep last night!! A bunch of us helped Jon, Angelique and Jaime (friends from work) move to their new places in Berkeley.

We started yesterday around 10am (with lots of coffee of course) and buggered around for a bit because I found a whole roll of wrapping paper that Angelique was going to throw out so I was rolling around in it on the floor. The girls thought that was absolutely hilarious so they then unrolled the entire roll of wrapping paper on me, taped it all together and put this weird Trojan hat on me, then made me a cape out of more wrapping paper, so I was some sort of crazy looking superhero!! Haha good times. Later on as the guys were pulling up the moving truck I jumped out and scared them and said "You shall not pass!!!" in true Peter Jackson lord of the rings action. It was pretty ridiculous and the look on their face was priceless.

Taylor got some pics of this so I will post those once I get them.

So moving went pretty well and we managed to move all 3 of them in about 10 hours!! It was pretty hardcore and we were all pretty tired at the end so we came back to my apartment to eat a bunch of food, watch a movie and relax.

So yes that is my sweet sweet justification for my own "Lazy Sunday", I got up about 30 min ago (at like 3:30pm) - it was marvelous. My roommates just got home and have been out in Berkeley all day doing stuff, haha and I just got up. Crazyness. I'll post pictures from moving as soon as I get a chance.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Moving some friends, Pizza and staying up too late

I am up way too late again, I have been going to bed at 3 or 4am every night this week, and waking up at around 8:45am so I am rockin' a week of 5 hours of sleep per night for pretty much every day this week. Insane!!!!!!!!!!! Ahh and I am doing it again now! It's 4:10am and I am still up again, haha man I don't ever go to sleep at a decent time anymore. :)

Fortunately I do have lots of good excuses. My buddy Matt is coming up here for an interview at Apple in Cupertino, California next week and is pretty excited about that. I have figured out all this train stuff and times so he can come see Pixar and hang out for a while, so that should be sweet. Last night I decided at about 3:30am that I needed to get some more Special Effects books, especially I really like the author Mark Cotta Vaz, he has done pretty much all the "Art of" books for the Pixar movies so he is pretty awesome. Anyway I decided to score some more of his stuff, and I ordered the Making of Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 which should be super cool. I also bought "Industrial Light and Magic: Into The Digital Realm", which looks like an awesome book about the history of Industrial Light and Magic, one of the innovators of the entire Special Effects and Computer Graphics industry. Awesome!! I am pretty psyched for that book and I saw it at a book store for $80, and got it online for $11!! Not a bad deal eh!!

So other than late night book purchasing and Amtrak schedule planning, I've finally attempted to catch up on the (at least) 40 emails I haven't written back to in my Inbox. I have been pretty busy these past few weeks and haven't really had a chance to just spend an afternoon answering emails and writing back to friends. I better spend some more time on that stuff this weekend too.

Had some leftover deep-dish Pizza tonight, veggie of course and there was some pretty crazy tomato action going on there. Good times.

Anyway tomorrow (in like 6 hours) I have to be at Jon's apartment, we are moving Jon, Angelique and Jaime to their new apartments in Berkeley, and they want our tough bodies and rippling muscles (haha yeah right) to help them move their TVs and other crazy shaped/weird sized/heavy stuff. Should be fun to help these guys out and thank goodness we have an elevator at the first apartment for sure.

That's about it this week. Gotta spend some time "boarding" (i.e. "storyboarding" - drawing the shots and camera angles) for the short animation I am going to be doing next week, pretty psyched about that and I think it is going to turn out pretty well as long as I have lots of time to spend on it. Anyway I hope everyone is well and happy and I'll post more pictures again soon.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

A movie that is also a sandwich

We saw the movie The Count of Monte Cristo today, and I kept thinking about sandwiches.

I think there is a sandwich called a Monte Cristo sandwich. I have yet to determine the exact direct correspondence between this sandwich and the movie, but apparently the movie was really greasy... or the sandwich has a lot of plot twists and adventure. Not sure yet on how this will unfold, but I am excited to see the outcome.

Actually I think I am not going to be able to rock one of these famed movie sandwiches, I just found a recipe on a website for a Monte Cristo sandwich which said "Full skillet recipe using ham, chicken and cheese" so it's looking pretty hardcore in the "non-Kosher" department. Oh well. The movie was surprisingly good! Maybe I can get some Tofu bacon or ("Facon", if you will) and eat a remixed Monte Cristo sandwich if I watch the movie again. Marvelous.

At Pixar University this week

Work is really sweet this week. I am learning some tools that we use at Pixar this week so I am taking a course at Pixar University which is awesome. It's going really well and I did some little animations today, just a squishy bouncy ball kinda thing. Good times. So yeah this is really fun and I get to do a bunch of learning this week so it's all very exciting. There are some guys from Tools and TDs in my class and they are all an awesome bunch.

Otherwise I have been just busy working, I learned the Python programming language last week and it's pretty awesome. Oh my buddies Matt and Alex are doing very well for themselves and are getting great interviews for full time jobs, and I am really proud of those guys!!

Anyway better get some decent sleep, I keep going to bed too late. I finished Harry Potter last week and it roooocckkkkeedd oh maaaaaaaaan it was amazing, but now I am not reading late at night so I keep staying up too late bloggin' and making myself nerdy MySpace pages, haha. Oh well, good times. I want to go into San Francisco again this weekend, I am about due for some sweet Chinese food again I think.

Oh yeah I think the Aerial Freestyle Skiing is going on tomorrow at the Olympics and that might be the awesomest thing ever so I best be watching that. I think the O.C. and Scrubs are all delayed until the Olympics are done so that is good cause you all know how I feel about those awesome shows.

I'll post some pics from the weekend when we help move some friends from work (Jaime and Angelique) to their new apartment. Me, Taylor, Frank and countless other moderately muscular Pixar folk shall be workin' the pipes pretty hard this weekend carrying TVs and the like for Jaime and Angelique. I hear news of Pizza, so that will undoubtedly make the moving experience quite awesome. Oh yeah, and we need some Dave Matthews playing too I think for optimal moving performance. Word.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Made a MySpace page!

Some friends told me to join MySpace so I've just made a page there, seems like there are lots of people from high school on there so it's always cool to reconnect with old friends... good times, hehe.

Here's a link to the MySpace page I just made... http://www.myspace.com/mikejutan

Well I am up way too late again, hehe anyway off to bed, I hope everyone is well and happy.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Curious George movie is AWESOME!

Hi all,

Quick movie review of Curious George, I just saw it today. Oh man it was amazing!!

Here are a few reasons why it roooocckks:
  • The whole soundtrack is done by Jack Johnson, one of my favourite musicians - he has some songs collaborating with Ben Harper, G. Love and Matt Costa, a great set of musical goodness.
  • Will Ferrell, Drew Barrymore and David Cross are voices for the movie - what else could you want?!
  • The dialogue is hilarious, my favourite part was when Will Ferrell's character opens a bag of peanuts on a boat on the way back from Africa, and the boat is really shaky and all the peanuts go flying, and he says, "Oh no!! The honey roasted goodness!!" as the peanuts fall down some metal grate and they are gone, haha. That was awesome.
  • The monkey is reeaaaaaaaaaaalllly cute and smiles all the time during the movie, it's really awesome.
  • Did I mention the soundtrack is AMAZING?!?!?!
Anyway I was super impressed. It rocked. It looked like it was all 2D, there might have been a few parts on the rooftops that looked a bit like they might have done some 3D toon shading or something, or whatever technique was used for Futurama, but for the most part it looked like a very nice 2D style and I loved it. Fantastic.

Party at Pyramid Brewery and at our apartment

Yesterday was pretty sweet. We got up and went to a nice cafe for breakfast, which was pretty good and it's always fun to have breakfast at 2pm on a weekend. :)

After that I got some sweeeeeeeeet pants at Banana Republic for $9.99 on sale from $88.00!! I love going shopping and only ever buying stuff on the sale rack, it's fantastic. These pants are super fancy and I would have never bought them otherwise, but $9.99 isn't bad!! They were such a good deal that I got my Dad a pair of them too!!

We played some frisbee and in the evening we went to the Pyramid Brewery in Berkeley and it was fantastic. I got some really good Fish and Chips and then we headed back to our apartment for some good times and noisy times, we spilled cranberry juice on the carpet (see pictures below), and other such good times documented below.

Jon cleaning up the spilled cranberry juice


Spilled cranberry juice

Thank you Club Soda!!

Gangster Kev

Manish workin' it on the couch

Me in a cowboy hat

Partying in the kitchen... niiiccee

The messy kitchen

Taylor in camera mode

Nate from EA Redwood Shores having a spot of tea

Katelyn was asleep on the couch within 5 minutes, haha