Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I hate my damn eyes

I swear, if it's not one thing, it's another. Roughly a month ago, my eyes started to really go berserk and I went and had some tests done and everything, but things have been getting really bad. I definitely can't wear my contacts anymore; I can only have them in for a couple of hours and my eyes start to go buggy and I get bad headaches. I've been sticking with glasses, because when I need to read something close, I can usually just lift them up and read it. Now, I can barely see stuff close when lifting up my glasses, and if I try to wear glasses and see it, I have to hold it too far away before it's actually in focus. It's crazy. I don't even know if any of that makes sense. I can't really...look at screens of any kind for more than an hour now, too, without getting a headache or my vision going blurry, and even when I stop and just try to go do other things, my vision stays blurry for a long time. I finally go for surgery relatively soon (September 24, I think). Not laser...corrective surgery, but surgery on the muscle of my right eye. So my vision will still suck afterwards, but I just won't have an occasional lazy eye and double vision. As someone who uses computers a lot for both work and leisure, it's very frustrating, and kind of frightening, too.
Animation-wise, I'm going to hopefully finish up that Mega Man tribute video either tomorrow or the next day (depending on how much I can do at a time). I also got a homebrew DS cart thing and put both a storyboarding and an animation applications on there. I tested out the animation today, but unfortunately, I started...not saving often, so the last few seconds of the animation were lost. But you can see it here if you want.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Throwing in the towel?

It might just be me, or it might be because of the way my mind works, but have you ever thought really hard about what you generally say your dreams are compared to what they really are? I've been in that position for about a week--maybe longer--now. When I was in Florida I started thinking about how I haven't made a cartoon in over a year and a half. And then I think more and more about the subject till I get to thoughts like "do I even really want to be an animator?" and then "do I want to do anything with cartoons at all?" I don't know. Maybe it's a motivational problem? I mean, I think about my cartoons all the time. I think about different plots, character interactions, and how cool it would be to see my stuff come to life or appear in stores...stuff like that. Just thoughts. It's like, I want to make cartoons, but no matter how hard I try, I get stopped. I get to a certain point and then just hit a wall, I guess. So then I think about making comic books instead, but as soon as I think of that, my mind goes, "That would be a good thing to have alongside the animated cartoons." So I must still want to do them. I just don't know what's stopping me. And in a way, I feel kind of pathetic. I don't have a job, I don't go anywhere, I don't have the same interests as anyone around me, plans for college are changing, so cartoons are the only thing I really have going for myself and I'm not even doing that.
All in all, no, I have no plans of quitting animation. Or comics, or cartoons, or anything of the sort. But it's undeniable that I'm in some kind of funk, and have been for quite some time now. It's frustrating. I need to get my head back in the game. It's been long enough. But I don't know what to do.
Sorry, I just kinda had to get all that out.

Tara Billinger's "Dr. Scoops" at Dumm Comics!

Recently, Dumm Comics has been letting guests, such as Mukpuddy, do an original strip for the weekend. This weekend (and for the next three, might I add), a good friend of mine, Tara Billinger, is being featured with he comic, "Dr. Scoops," and I gotta say, I'm very excited for her!
Tara has done some artwork for me and my series in the past, including the cover image for Geoweasel: The Fine Thing Collection DVD, and she is currently working on a graphic novel with Chris Reilly for Slave Labor Graphics entitled Adora and the Electric Elephant.
So go now, and see the first installment of this amazing strip! Congrats, Tara!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Nar Show

Yes, it's coming back! Well, sort of. It takes place at the same time as "Nar's Daytime Gig," where his talk show originated, but it's an actual segment of the show where he interviews someone. But the question is...who's he gonna interview?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I'll never make it in New York

And I'll never even make it to California! Erm...well, lemme explain. I'm back from vacation, and don't get me wrong, I had a great time overall, as evidenced in photos I uploaded on Myspace and Facebook, but I gotta say, a lot of my vacation consisted of me having anxiety attacks, and even a couple full-blown panic attacks. Actually, the day we left, I started having a panic attack before we even made it out of New Jersey! It delayed us a bit, as I didn't really gain composure until we got to the Maryland When we stopped in South Carolina for a couple of days, I was okay, but there were a couple days in Florida that were just totally shot for me because I was perpetually anxious, feeling nauseous, woozy...that kind of stuff. And on the way home, I did have a sudden panic attack again, although a bit shorter and much later on.
But I makes me think. How the hell am I going to hold myself up if I want to go to and stay in New York to do animation when I can't even do it now? Yeah, sure, I take medicines to help this, but they do exactly that: help it. That's only part of the job. The other part is me getting myself through it. And while there are some times when I can, most of the time I can't. It's been more than two years now since this became really severe, and even though it's not as crippling as it was in the very beginning, it's still keeping me from a lot of things.
I don't know, I just had to kinda get that off my mind, I guess. I would post some Geoweasel-related comments, but I'm wiped out still, and not really in the mood. And to be honest, there's nothing important going on that I haven't mentioned before. I just have a big list of stuff to do alongside making the actual episodes.
Catch you guys later.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


How do you do it? Is there something I'm missing? Every time I try to convert my SWF file into an acceptable filetype for these kinds of sites, something always goes wrong. The video skips, the audio doesn't sync up, etc.etc.
I use Flash 8 and animate at 24 frames per second. To try and fix the sound issue, I have a silent sound file that is set to "stream" and loops throughout the entire movie while every other sound file (voices, music, sound effects, etc) are marked as "start."
You'd think the easiest option would be to just publish or export the movie as a Quicktime (.mov) file, but I've never been able to do that; my computer doesn't let me. I always get an error at the last minute saying that the Quicktime and Flash versions aren't compatible and I should put the publish settings to export as Flash Player 5, but I still get the same message. Exporting as an AVI doesn't work at all for me.
So I downloaded a program called Magic SWF2AVI. You load the SWF file and you can convert it into just about anything. MOV, AVI, WMV, MPEG, M4V, iPod, PSP, whatever. And yet, I still have a problem no matter what I try. I've tried all different types and settings, and what seems to happen most is that the audio starts before the movie does, making it about a half-second behind for the entire video.
Basically, I want to be able to convert my files to put on Youtube and iPod at a somewhat decent quality, but I'm totally at a loss of what to do. What methods do you guys use to go from Flash to other filetypes?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I'm doing nothing

Aside from drawing that picture, I really am not doing anything today. There's too much family around and stuff we're doing and I feel awkward sitting here and working. At least for today, since they all just arrived. Actually, I'm the only one inside the house right now; everyone else is out by the pool, and they keep asking me to come out. I miss animating, and I want to get back to it, but I guess, as per usual, it will be postponed for now. I think I may even be homesick, heh.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

OK, who didn't see that coming...

Alright, I have to say I am really angry with myself, and I apologize immensely for getting anyone's hopes up for there being an episode today. I think I got a bit ahead of myself; I had more to do to get ready for vacation than I thought and I just couldn't finish. The whole way down here (we're stopping in South Carolina for a few days), I felt really bad, and not just because my damn IBS decided to kick in right after we crossed into Delaware.
So here's the deal. I am going to try to finish this cartoon while I'm here (when I'm not doing stuff with family and whatnot). I may finish it here in SC, or I may finish it when I get to Florida. But I know that there are going to be many days where we're just hanging around the beach house and I'll have plenty of time to animate. I have all my stuff, and we're gonna do this!
On another note, I did quite a bit of sketching in the car, and I THINK my uncle has a scanner here, so I would really like to post some of those. If not, I can take a picture then update them with scans later.
Right now, I'm pretty wiped out from the trip and from my stomach, but I will keep updating and again, I apologize.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

I got a REPLY from Capcom

Regarding the message I sent them a couple days ago (which you can find here), I actually got a reply:

Hello Niko,

Thank you for contacting Capcom! We appreciate the time you took to write us your comments and suggestions. The idea you are suggesting is not new to us, in fact we had joked around the office saying we should release the game to consumers in cartridge form but unfortunately it not possible for us to do so.

CAPCOM Customer Support

Eh, oh well.

Monday, August 4, 2008


I am really trying to scramble to get things done before I leave for vacation, which is Wednesday. I have to get everything done by tomorrow night. I've been set on having a new Geoweasel episode to launch the new site before I left, but I've been hitting roadblocks. I started making an episode that I thought would be simple enough to finish before I left, but it ended up being too long, so I'll save it for later. Then, I decided to do something even shorter and include live action stuff in it so it wouldn't have to ALL be animated, but then I started hitting some dead ends with the live stuff. I did, however, get it working. I am determined on finishing this cartoon in time, and if I have to work into the early hours of the morning before I leave, then so be it; I can sleep on the way there. Things are just so hectic though. Aside from the cartoon, I'm still waiting on a couple things for the site that I would like to have for the launch, but in the meantime, I still have to gather all my stuff, pack, and to boot, I have one more eye appointment later today. WHERE'S MY HAPPY PLACE!?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

I wrote a letter to Capcom

I've never really sent an email/letter to any kind of company before, for a couple reasons. One, I'm too timid, and two, I know I'd never get a response. I mean, hell, I have sent messages to friends and never even got a response! But because I seem to be on a Mega Man binge and I've had this idea in my head, I decided to drop Capcom a line, whether or not I'll get any acknowledgment at all. So, for the sake of...well, for the sake of nothing really, here's the letter:

Hello! I first heard about the upcoming WiiWare game
Mega Man 9 about a month ago in Nintendo Power and
since then, I have been watching many different
trailers, gameplay videos, etc. and I am very excited
to not only see a new Mega Man title in the original
series, but an 8-bit game! I've been playing Mega Man
since I was very young (my first game was Mega Man 2
for GameBoy) and since then, I have played through
all the titles in the original series as well as many
in the X series. I still pop one of the old
cartridges into my NES pretty often, and even though
I have the games down pat, I still enjoy playing
them. So when I heard about Mega Man 9, I could not
stop thinking about it. Now, I don't know who this
should really be directed to, and I don't even know
if this will warrant a response, but I'm hoping that
this message will send me in the right direction if
need be. I was thinking that it would be a great idea
for promoting Mega Man 9 if there were actual limited
edition Nintendo or Famicom carts of the game for
hardcore collectors like myself who still own the old
systems. Now of course, I don't know if this is even
possible, mainly because I don't know if the game is
just being made to look 8-bit but has advanced
programming that can't be done on an actual NES. If
it is possible, I think it would be a great thing to
have, maybe for a contest or something special; there
are many people who still own classic systems. To be
honest, I would by the game on WiiWare AND on a
cartridge, no matter the price! Just a suggestion.
Thanks for your time,
-Niko Anesti

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Show some support!

THIS is how you support Nite Fite. Not the little tiny packs with what…12 candies in them? Ya gotta buy the big ones! I’m not gonna lie either. This is my 3rd or 4th bag (my whole family’s been partaking of them though).

I love how I'm promoting Nite Fite more than my own cartoon, hahaha. I promise you will see something soon.