Apr
22

2011 Spring Humanities Festival Video

Here are the videos for this year’s College of Medicine Humanities Festival! Read the rest of this entry »

Dec
16

AMV Flashback: The Atoned

Back in late 2008, when I was on a Death Note swing, I felt like I was the only person among my friends who appreciated Light’s sense of justice. I felt like people were fixated on hating Light for all the horrible crimes he committed – and like many, I decided that Light had done enough and stopped watching after L died. (I did eventually go back and finish the series, but it was more watching to get it out of the way.) Even though he ultimately turned out to be a horrible person, I felt like his intent at the beginning was really noble, and that the world really would have been a better place if Light could have gone back to those ideals.

I made two Death Note AMVs after watching that series, a drama and a comedy. The Atoned is the drama AMV, and I think it is one of my finest creations. I took a cue from the original music video by Embrace and video forĀ The Scientist by Coldplay and decided to play with backwards time to answer the question that lingered at the back of my mind: what if we could rewind the clock on Death Note?

The video tells a story in reverse; the parts of the story that are in reverse are in color, and the parts that are told forward are in black & white. However, at the end, the forward and backward parts meet, and the ultimate conclusion of the story is reached.

Click through for the video!

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Dec
01

Woohoo! 20 Megabit Internet!

So this is a totally useless, kind-of bragging post, but Insight finally fixed my 20 Mbps service! Apparently the node I was on was having problems with the channel that 20Mbps service was on, while the 10Mbps service channel was OK – so when I upgraded to 20Mbps service a few months back, my internet speeds actually dropped a lot. No more, though! Insight recently repaired the node, and now I can download at 2.5 MB/s now. Here’s the proof!

An interesting side note: Speedtest.net shows slower speeds testing to the site here in Lexington than the site in Chicago. I actually have to get routed through Chicago to connect to the Lexington test site. At least it’s not being accidentally (?) routed through China!

Nov
21

Newport Aquarium

Went to the Newport Aquarium this past weekend. It was the first time I’d gone back since it opened back in 1999, and I was pleasantly surprised by how much it had grown!

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Nov
14

Ciel Phantomhive Shoot

I did a photoshoot with Marissa this past Thursday for her new Ciel Phantomhive outfit, which she debuted at Sugoicon 2010!

Ciel Phantomhive is one of the main characters in Black Butler (Kuroshitsuji), an anime about a child who makes a Faustian deal with a demon named Sebastian to exact revenge on the people who killed his parents. The photos were done at and around the Louisville Free Public Library. The neighborhood has a lot of Victorian architecture, which made it a great location! The weather was great, but unfortunately we didn’t have a lot of time. There are still a lot of great shots though!

Click through for the gallery! Read the rest of this entry »

Nov
14

Otakon 2010 Con Report: Better Late Than Never!

Went to Otakon again this July. Baltimore was great! Getting there, however, was not. From the get go, our flight was delayed. The plane flying the LEX to DTW segment was 3 hours late getting out of Atlanta. When we got to Detroit, we barely had time to rush to the next terminal and get to our gate… Only to find out that the flight to Baltimore had been canceled while we were in the air! After a few hours of running around the airport trying to find an alternate way to Baltimore, we finally gave up and spent the night at Embassy Suites (courtesy of Delta). Perhaps it was better that way though – the stay there really gave Kristy and me a chance to relax before hitting the con!

Sunset in Detroit

A sunset in Detroit

We get into Baltimore Friday morning at 9, are at the hotel at 10, and we had a great time! Kristy got a lot of ideas from the Dealers’ Room and Artist’s Alley, and I think she’s going to try making some crafts to sell at a con sometime!

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Nov
09

Tab and Greg’s Engagement

Congratulations to Tab and Greg on getting engaged!

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Nov
09

Charisma +2 Magazine Cover

My photo of Marissa and her evil (good?) twin made it to the cover of her modeling agency’s monthly magazine! Of course, this was back in July. But I’m just now getting around to posting it! Congrats, Marissa!

Charisma +2 Magazine July 2010

Nov
09

Sugoicon 2010!

Kristy and I went to Sugoicon 2010 this weekend – just on Saturday, at least. (We went hiking on Sunday.) Needless to say, as with any anime convention, we had a great time! Got a few more goodies from the Dealers’ Room, including a Soul Eater wall scroll to put on one of the many un-filled walls around the apartment.

We both did Hetalia: Axis Powers cosplays (again, since we did debut them at Otakon – I just haven’t posted about Otakon here yet!) Kristy was dressed as Hungary, and I was Japan. Since I was behind the camera, I don’t really have pictures of myself to show, but here’s Kristy:

We also saw a pretty awesomely awesome sniper from TF2:

It was great to get out of the house finally after a week and a half of hardcore finals cramming!

Nov
09

Defying Gravity AMV

Hi, everyone! I’m still alive! I’m going to be posting some catch-up posts from this summer’s activities. First up is my latest AMV!

Defying GravityI am a big fan of the musical Wicked, and my favourite song from that show is, of course, Defying Gravity. I thought it would be great to pair that song with the latest addition to my top anime list, Macross Frontier! I highly recommend it, if you haven’t seen it yet. The visuals are amazing, and the show revolves around mechas and music – two of my favourite things.

I wanted this to be a drama AMV, but I didn’t want to dive into the darkness within the human soul as so many drama AMVs I’ve seen recently seem to be. I wanted to create an uplifting, inspirational drama AMV that captured the spirit of independence that I felt emanated from Macross Frontier. I had initially wanted to use the version of Defying Gravity from the musical “Wicked”, but it had too many quirks: pauses, two vocal parts, too context dependent – if you didn’t know anything about the musical, you wouldn’t get the important parts of the song! But after looking elsewhere, I found that Idina Menzel’s single version was the perfect version to use here. I also added some of my own sound effects, including some Valkyrie jet noises, and chimes towards the end.

There are a few little special tricks I did in the video. In the “Unlimited” lyric, the original video flashed a big red “MAX” (because it’s a volume scale…) but a “maximum” is decidedly the opposite of “unlimited” so I had to adjust it to blink the infinity symbol. Towards the end, I also added in the feathers falling from the paper airplane.

Throughout the video, the thing that ties it together is the paper airplane. The paper airplane is supposed to symbolize Ranka’s independence, and this was supposed to be connected in the scene at the climax where she throws the paper airplane she has just made – it’s supposed to fade into the Valkyrie with the trail of feathers which shoots up into the sky – but I couldn’t get the video to line up perfectly.

The result was a second Otakon finalist AMV! It didn’t win the contest, but it was the contest coordinator’s favourite drama video:

There wasn’t a video in this category that I didn’t love. [...] Cyber Ninja Productions however made an UPLIFTING, well-edited drama video that stood out against all of the other livejournal sob-fests.

So, with all that out of the way, enjoy the video!

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