Senior Thesis Final Presentation/Journal 10

My piece is a story that documents a trip that my friends and I took to Canada. This project is one that truly helped me to grow as an artist and I think that making this piece really helped me to take my personal standard to the next level.

When making this piece I took a lot of inspiration from the show “Superjail” as well as work from Lazy Cheif. Below are links to pieces that I pulled some influence from.


I took influence from The Pride of Strathmoor for my drawn sketchy style with a emphasis on texture. This is mainly seen in the intro.

The two above pieces inspired me to do 3d in the first place. Those were some of the pieces that made me really want to get into 3d. I took influence from how bipolar they are and are constantly switching scenes and not repeating things much. This can be seen throughout my piece as I don’t use any scene twice (except one)


I took influence from “Serenity” in the way that I loved the casual narration style. I loved how naturally the artist just told the story and it came off as really genuine. I wanted to emulate a similar tone as best I could.

Originally when I was trying to decide how to represent this idea I was having serious trouble. I didn’t know how to portray all of the shots, I didn’t know what shots I wanted to include, it was just a really difficult and grueling process. After a few weeks, I created an animatic and it was really good. It had tons of really slick transitions and the entire piece was really creative throughout. I presented it to the class and received what I considered to be a somewhat negative critique which mostly scoffed at how I said the word “like” too many times in my narration and that it needed some work.  I shouldn’t have listened. I ended up completely starting from scratch and started making a completely different piece that basically told the same story but it was extremely scripted and really forced and focused on different parts of the story. It wasn’t completely bad, it focused on some new elementes that weren’t previously included and had several sections where the music cut out which provided a cool effect.  I storyboarded this and presented my audio to the class and they liked different aspects of it but said that it wasn’t as good as the original. In an effort to stop myself from making the same mistake that I had apparently just made, I decided to stay with this version of the project for a while.  Weeks later, I decided to scrap EVERYTHING. I got rid of my audio, I wasn’t going to use my 3d visuals and I wanted to tell a more elaborate version of the story but have it all be in a really rough around the edges 2d style. From this version, I completed an intro section and various parts in the middle. Upon showing my professors, they liked it but were disappointed that I had gotten rid of the slick 3d visuals that I had previously put together. From there I decided to bring the 3d back, but this time I didn’t want to focus on the man we met in Canada, but just the places he took us. I completed this version and presented it to the class and was told it was the “worst version out of all of them” and that “every time I presented to the class the project kept getting worse”. They told me they missed my really rough around the edges audio, how often I would stop, my emphasis on the man we met in Canada and all of the weird things he told us. From there, I decided I really needed to go back to the drawing board and figure out how I could piece together a compelling art piece. I decided to take inspiration from my original rough animatic for the background music. I decided to use the intro section from the 2d version as a preamble to the story because it fit and was a nice little snippet to provide some background to the story. I brought back the rough around the edges natural audio (to the best of my ability) and the best slick transitions from the original version as well as most of the narrative. I included a lot of stoppages and more details like the second version and I think at the end of the day this final version is really solid. The path that I took to make this was winding and really chaotic. It was stressful constantly starting over and throwing away my work, but sometimes it’s best to just stick with what you have before you change it too much and ruin the magic that was originally there. I think combining the 3 versions of the piece made the final stronger than the animatic, but next time I will think twice before completely scrapping my project.

Throughout my college career I have never liked 3d art. I always thought it was boring to work on. I thought it was ugly and over-processed. I wanted NOTHING to do with it. For years I actually complained to the head of the department about making 3d and pushed for a graphic design program. This semester I wanted to prove to my classmates as well as myself that I was capable of doing this style. Over my years here I’ve tried so hard to conquer whatever challenge that I came across whether it be 2d animation, programming arduino boards, making video games, lots of things that I came in knowing nothing about, and I was able to successfully do all of these things. I figured it I could learn all of those things and make compelling work, then I could do the same with 3d. This project has made me realize that if you’re an artist, the medium shouldn’t prevent you from making compelling work. If you are creative and resourceful enough you can take anything provided to you and make it into something interesting. This is something I will never forget, and I will use this lesson from now on.


This project helped me grow, and I’m glad that I stuck it out and got it done.


About JamesWrobel

I'm a junior at Alfred State College majoring in Digital Media and Animation. I specialize in digital art and photography rather than drawing and painting. It's a work in progress and I'm working hard to achieve my dreams.
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