Tuesday, April 22, 2014

#40@40 Finished!

That's it my 40th year done and my #40@40 list filled up.

Thanks to everyone that helped and joined in. Here's the full list. Hopefully It's made me a much more interesting person to have at dinner parties  :)

1. Go power-boating down the Thames
2. Walk over the Millennium Dome
3. Set up my own company
4. Try eating insects
5. Meet the Parents
6. Try life-logging with a Fitbit
7. Have a 'Chariots of Fire' moment
8. Be a bee keeper
9. Get my DNA analysed
10. Visit Croatia and Dubrovnik
11. Take part in a triathlon
12. Get a wet shave
13. Take part in a tomato fight!
14. See the Northern lights
15. Swim in Iceland's hot pools
16. Get soaked by a geysir
17. Try circus skills
18. Spend Christmas away from home
19. Go indoor sky diving
20. Be a zoo-keeper for a day
21. Have a Michelin star meal
22. Visit Florence and see the statue of David
23. Climb the leaning tower of Pisa
24. Experience a floatation tank
25. Knit a Scarf
26. Tour the Houses of Parliament
27. Have a suit made
28. Try a Graffiti master class
29. Have a yoga lesson
30. Go rally driving at Brands Hatch
31. Attend film school
32. Go ice climbing in Covent Garden
33. Get printed in 3D (Mini Me)
34. Home Brew course (Double D ale)
35. Try miracle berries and lemons
36. Make my own Muppet
37. Have a manhattan in Manhattan
38. Go up the Empire States Building
39. Go air-boating in the Everglades
40. Go power-boating along Miami Beach like the start of Miami Vice

No plans for a #41@41


Thursday, March 20, 2014

#40@40 Mini Me

So I had this idea. Another case of trying something out which is uncommon now but in the future nobody will even think around, getting something printed on a 3D printer.

As luck would have it I happen to find out that ASDA was running a trial touring printing service at its different branches where you could go and get yourself scanned and they would print out a small model of you for 60 quid.

A trip out to ASDA in Dagenham had me standing in a large white tent by a cigarette kiosk watching a technician scanning one of the security guards. After filling out some forms it was my turn. The trick with getting a good scan was get a comfortable stance and then don't move and you don't have to fix your smile before the end as they come back and do that bit last.

So the technician was slowing walking around me with a white box which took a thousand or so digital photographs. All the while the scanner knew its position and orientation so afterwards software can compile all the pictures into one complete scan. Apparently it all gets built up on a wired frame and then they tidied up a bit before the thing is printed. The technician backed up the scans with some ordinary digital pictures of my face at the end so they could get the details right. He also took pictures of areas which had more detail such as my hands. He said it all gets sent away for alot of preprocessing and then a file is sent to the printers.

The print process is a bit of mystery but I think its to do with heating a points in a bath of ceramic powder which is then cleaned off to give the finished colour model with the colour details printed straight onto the surface.

So two weeks later I was back in the store and a had in my hands a little statue of me. The detailing is really quite good and when the thing is standing on my windowsill its really quite spooky from across the room. It's definitely me!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

#40@40: Attend film school

An odd one this. It just sort of popped up and I thought it looked interesting. A day in a lecture theatre near Somerset House learning about what its like to be in the film business.

We started with writing the screenplay and a talk from Elliot Grove, the director of Raindance. He covered the basic principles of writing screenplays, and what storytelling tools. you can use, for example, types of characters and what their journey might be in a good story. He also covered some of the copyright and legal ins and outs and how movies are bought and sold.

Next up it was a talk and the mechanics of actually making a movie. Budgets, equipment, dealing with locations and the general public. Also the importance of planning before you start both timetables and shots.

After lunch was a great talk from Director, Patrick Tucker, on how you actually direct a movie. Dealing with actor and framing and the weird things you have to do to get the action looking right on the screen. Getting the voice levels right and getting the actor to think about acting to the screen.

The last talk it was Elliot Grove again talking about how to make your big breaking into the film industry. Getting all the promo stuff sorted and what if any money you might be able to earn.

If you would like paid work in the film industry, this is the session for you. Elliot’s back and teaches how to prepare yourself for work as a writer, producer, director, technician, editor or art director.

Some interesting stuff and a few odd things to check out the next time I'm watching a block buster.