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Unread 01-16-2014   #1
Vengeance1701
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An Interview With Mr. Daniel-san...geo

My name is danielsangeo. Just what the heck is a "danielsangeo"? Well, it's actually in three parts. Way back when the World Wide Web was just getting off the ground, I first got on the Internet through a local dial-up BBS. They required a screen name to set up an account and I wracked my brain to try to come up with a name. Unable to come up with a name, I started to watch TV. One of the stations had Karate Kid on so I decided to watch that. Mr. Miyagi would continually call the main character "Daniel-san". My name is "Daniel" so I thought, hey, why not? Let's go with that. I signed up with the screen name "daniel-san" and away I went.

I created my first website on Geopages. Soon, Geopages became Geocities and I had a Geocities email address for ages. Finally, Yahoo bought up Geocities and then closed it (curses!). They had me make a new email address on Yahoo so I tried to register as daniel-san, but they disallowed it; someone already had that name. I tried danielsan, but someone already had that name, too. I decided to say, "Screw it" and just tacked "geo" onto the end of the name to create unique name and to harken back to my Geocities account. It worked. So, now I became danielsangeo... a name no one can spell correctly!




1) I've followed your work for quite some time now (since the days of Siren Song, at least). Have you ever considered having your own site like BSB, Arania and the like?

Thanks for following me! At one time, I did have my own website. When the Siren Song shuttered, I tried to bring it back in spirit under a new name: Gynomorph. I had Mako and company's support and Gynomorph opened with all the videos and such. Unfortunately, that too went the way of the dodo--I had some financial problems and handed the reins over to someone else. And soon Gynomorph was closed, too. The Siren Song opened in earnest on Second Life, but I think that, too, has disappeared.

It was an ambitious idea and something that was, I think, ahead of its time because the technology just wasn't ready for a website hosting many videos. I have been having serious thoughts, however, of working with Mako and company to bring the Siren Song back from the ashes, like a phoenix, now that the technology for streaming video and broadband is becoming much more prevalent.

I also had a website dealing with Body Inflation and Expansion Process. It was called the IC/B2E and featured stories, pictures and links to various websites that catered to inflatable clothing and body expansion. I might bring that back. We'll see.


2) Why TG? What level is your interest at? Is this something you'd want for yourself or just something you find interesting/arousing/etc?

Okay, here's a tale for you, and I'm probably going to be dating myself on this! This is going to be a little long-winded.

Rewind back to the time when I was five years old or thereabouts. Christmas. My parents (as the one and only Kris Kringle) bought me a Fisher Price Movie Viewer for Christmas. It was this little "camcorder" dealie in which you would put cartridges containing short filmstrips. You would use a hand crank to advance or reverse the filmstrip and you look at the film through a lens, using ambient light to light up the film. It was kind of like a Viewmaster, except for film. There was no sound beyond the clacking of the hand crank. One of the cartridges was Sesame Street's the Alphabet. How does this tie into the question? I'll explain:

This version of the Alphabet had the letters of the alphabet morphing from one to the next. You can watch a video of it on Youtube here:


Well, I tell ya, I advanced and reverse that sucker to the point where I had worn out the filmstrip! It snapped in two inside cartridge! I was so fascinated by the changing letters. I decided to try to draw the changing letters on paper. This gave me more control and allowed me to do more than just the alphabet in order. And more than just the alphabet, too. I graduated to geometric shapes--a triangle transforming into a circle into a hangman's noose into a human being into a cat. Wait. A human being into a cat? Now, that's interesting! I began to draw human beings turning into a great many things. I did this for many years whenever I had a chance.

One day, when I was much older, I was half asleep and boredly flipping through the channels on television and I was probably nearly fully asleep when I saw this werewolf transformation. I couldn't remember much about it but all I could remember is the jaws "snapping". No one knew what I was talking about and I thought I had imagined the whole thing. Fast forward to the Internet years. I decided to try to find about this werewolf transformation that had stuck in my mind all those years. Continued to draw a blank with web searches, but I found the TSA-Talk mailing list. There were people writing stories about humans turning into other things! Holy crap, there were people like me out there! I joined the mailing list and began reading stories. And that's when I became introduced to the concept of TG transformations.

Not only was the idea arousing for me, but it was as if something clicked in my mind. That was what I was yearning for all these years. I found the "snapping jaw" werewolf transformation after so many years as well, so I know I wasn't crazy. It was the scene from Howling III, the movie-in-a-movie "It Came From Uranus" (I'll let you look that one up). It was a terribly bad transformation, but it stuck in my mind just the same.

And then I became introduced to Mako through the piece "The Banaba Idol". I felt the same thing I felt back during the Fisher Price Movie Viewer days. I wanted to try my hand. I created this VERY horrible transformation in Poser. The basic plot is a guy is abducted by aliens and is transformed into a pregnant woman (sound familiar? ). It was very short and had a badly edited line from Star Trek 4 to change Kirk's line about using the whales to "repopulate the species" into the aliens telling the man that he's there to help repopulate the alien species. And there was no turning back for me.

Damn you, Mako!


3) Unless I missed something, there was a time when your production dropped off the map. This makes this a two-part question: what made you go quiet? what made you come back?

This is going to be a much shorter answer!

In short, money woes caused me to drop off the map (I was still around, but not as much as I used to). I decided to concentrate on being a Productive Member of Society (TM). However, I was informed by my employer that the job I had with them for about 7 years, I was suddenly no longer qualified to do and I was unceremoniously canned. I took this as a sign that I should try to get into this animation thing full time. So, I returned. I dusted off my DeviantArt page, began submitting work, and decided, finally, that I should go to school for animation. One of my dreams is to have my name appear on the end credits for a movie. Another dream is to work at Pixar.


4) Do you have any formal art training or are you self-taught? Same goes with working in 3D rendering software?

At the start, I did not have any formal training. I was entirely self-taught, both art-wise and 3D rendering software-wise. And I felt that it showed. Badly. I felt that I was hitting a wall with being self-taught and I decided I needed professional training. I applied for animation school and began to learn from the pros. And here we are.


5) What's your opinion of the current state of the transformation community?

Transformed.

Okay, perhaps I should explain. I got in on the ground-floor, as it were, when the TSA-Talk mailing list was just getting off the ground. I have seen the mailing list grow and flourish with hundreds of stories, but then it began to peter out as technology changed. People began to create their own works. Places like DeviantArt allow for people to submit their own works (for bad or for good). Youtube allows for people to submit their own videos. The transformation community is not as it was. But it's still kicking and I hope it stays like that for a good long time!


6) Do you find the Process to be a welcoming place for TG art? (This has been a complaint which has been registered a few times in the past, which is why I ask)

I do find the Process to be a welcoming place for it. I haven't seen any real complaints myself about it, but I do recall (back to the TSA-Talk mailing list again!) that the community goes through waves where one type of transformation is popular and then it becomes, for lack of a better word, passe. I see this phenomenon in Hollywood films as well, where a specific type of movie becomes very popular and then peters out, whether it's vampires, zombies, medieval epics, giant robots, or whatever. I think it's just the nature of the beast, as it were.



7) What about the PROCESS of TG do you find the most interesting to render? Least interesting?

Most interesting for TG process: Breasts. To me, the breasts are one of the most prominent and key parts of the body that distinguish the sexes. Now that I know more about anatomy and such, I find breasts to be fascinating and am constantly exploring new ways to show their growth
Least interesting for TG process: Legs and arms. I find them to be so boring!


8) Whose works inspire you? This can be either fellow TG artists or just artists in general!

First and foremost, the works of Mako, as I mentioned before. Beyond Process, however, the thing that got me the most interested in computer character animation was a short called "Bingo the Clown". It's a terrifying look into brainwashing and it stars a man who is browbeaten by several different clown characters into believing that he, too, is a clown named Bingo. Not only is the animation very realistic, it's also very dark and disturbing and shows that computer animation doesn't have to be all bright colors and happy pictures such as Toy Story and Shrek. It is truly a new art form


9) Do you consider your works good enough to be put out there for purchase? Do you consider ANY work by ANYbody good enough?

For the first question, I really didn't know. I created the Gynethrope for Halloween and people gushed over how much they liked it, that it was the best TG animation they've seen, so eventually I decided to see if there was any interest in commissions. I opened myself up for commissions and almost immediately got two takers. I am working on the first commission I received right now (my computer is running at nearly top speed to render the animation) and I have one more, possibly two, in the pipeline. I don't know if that's saying anything, but I'm glad people think my work is good enough to commission!

For the second question, I fully believe that there are a lot of artists out there that are "good enough" to sell work. I fully support for-pay content!


10) Have anything you'd like to add about your work that we, the viewing public, might not notice/know/understand? IE: how long it truly takes to render a single image, etc?

Here's the thing about computer animation: It's not a crutch. It's a tool. There is no "Make Animation" button (though I could make one!). The learning curve for animation is quite steep and I had no idea, myself, just how hard it is until I began to go to school for it. There's just so much to learn, so much that I still don't know, so much that I want to know! It can take upwards of a full day just to create one shot that's about 1-4 seconds long. The rendering itself takes even longer. It can take upwards of 1-2 hours to render a single frame at HD resolutions (depending on the complexity of the scene). Multiply that by 30 frames in a second and multiply that by the length of the animation and you're looking at months of possible render time. I only have a single computer in which to render so it's a very slow process. Then I have to compile all the renders into an animation and make sure that it's all edited together in something that doesn't look like a dog crapped over everything.

It's very hard, but very satisfying, work and, at the end of the day when you see something you animated come to life, it makes you feel like you accomplished something. And when I see the reactions I get for my work, it makes all worthwhile!

----
Thanks for the interview! I hope I didn't ramble on too much.

--DSG
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Unread 01-16-2014   #2
GenYun
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Re: An Interview With Mr. Daniel-san...geo

Oh god yes @ Question 10. I wish more people could be aware of the time involved in even a simple 3d animation project.

Awesome interview!
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Unread 01-16-2014   #3
Vengeance1701
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Re: An Interview With Mr. Daniel-san...geo

Glad you liked it, GenYun!

Any suggestions of who to interview next? (You can even volunteer yourself!)
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Unread 01-17-2014   #4
GenYun
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Re: An Interview With Mr. Daniel-san...geo

You should see if you could get Mako to do one.

I'll be up for it, if you think anyone would be interested in what I had to say.
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