Welcome to my blog, hope you enjoy reading :)

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Free tool to help writers!

Have you seen this?
They say that this is a free tool to write interactive stories. Have you tried it? Do you think it is useful?
Here is a sample: and here is a tutorial!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Struggling to make 3D Character Animations

After seeing Rosa, I have been trying to make a short video using opensource/free software but I must admit that this is hard. I found Daz3d easy to use (compared to Blender etc) but then I have been unsuccessful in creating realistic motion. Even a simple walk cycle is difficult. I found a pretty neat run that was created quite a while ago using Natural Motion's software which is not available any more :(
I collected many links like (nice info on clothing using Marvelous Designer)
I thought of capturing motion using software like or or and using with Daz3d's characters but in vain :(

Can anyone suggest how I can create or learn to create a short character animation? I don't care if it is 3D or 2D for now. Please share some ideas.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Scratching your head after hitting a production issue!

This is something not related to movie making... when programming in Java have you ever wanted to capture information about memory utilization etc so you have some data to help you in debugging should you run into weird issues... I ran into one such issue and was badly needing and hoping if I could have had some sort of profiler. Anyway, I ended up using something like of Hazelcast. Have you developed any such tool yourself? Tell us...

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Angular 2 - Special Event at Google

I was there today! And it was a special event to announce the release of Angular 2!!

I met with Misko, Vivek(?), Naomi and a few others whose names I can't recall now :(
It was super cool to be there today! 
This release announcement would help me coax some of the development teams I work with to use Angular 2 - they can no longer give the excuse that it is still in beta :)
Have you tried Angular 2? I think it is cool - give it a shot and tell me what you think...

Monday, September 5, 2016

Maniratinam... a musing on his style...

I was reading about Maniratnam today (again)... he really has achieved something! I really wonder how he developed his unique style. What inspired him to settle on that dialogue style? I would really love to ask him how he developed it. I think his screen plays carry his unique style. Every one of his move is a master piece - am sure most of you will agree.

He brought together the dream team... P.C. Sriram, Sujatha (of course not introduced to movies by Mani - but his story and Maniratinam's direction is a blazing combination), A.R.Rahman and of course Aravind Swamy and Mathavan! BGM of Illayaraja was good but somehow the chemistry didn't work out and ARR really rose to the occasion. Anyway, I want to ask him how he breaks down the screenplay... does he observe certain people/elements in real life and incorporates them in his films? Or are they purely imaginary? May be he observed little kids growing up. Who? Where?

Another question: is he able to envision the end product even when he is penning the script? I have heard that the mark of a good director is to envision the final product. But I that that is truly an impossible aspect.

All these questions just let me linger in the void... I really had wanted to ask Steve Jobs how he developed his unique insights into product design, but couldn't. The closest I could learn was that he used to walk in the parking lot observing the cars he liked and stool thinking, trying to understand what aspects appealed to him. How does one develop such unique style? Do you know how anyone famous developed their style? Oh well...

After musing for quite a while, I searched for the BMW film series The Hire and found these - enjoy!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Tools for zero budget film making

This is cool! These are nice tools .
Check it out:

Looks like Daz 3D is another free software!
And there is Source Filmmaker ( too! (Here is a write up on SFM and link to some tutorials.)

You would need CrazyBump to create realistic textures (see this tutorial)...

(Not related to the ones above, but here is a bunch of tutorials:

Check them out...

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Introduction to 3D Modeling

As I started playing with the free version of Hitfilm 4 Express and after watching Simon's tutorials on Aeroplane and Atomic Particle Titles I was intrigued to try it myself. (Here are their other tutorials). But those features are not available in the free version and so I started to look for alternatives. Seems like good old Blender is the only capable tool and now I want to learn it...
Here is a wonderful tutorial by Jason Welsh that I found. Here is an article that highly appreciates this tutorial. Let me know if you know of any better tools or tutorials.

Here is another set of tutorials:

Sunday, August 7, 2016

3D Models for Compositing

Here are a few websites  from where you can get your 3D models:
You can find great stock pictures (still pictures) here:
Here is something totally different. Green screen plates:
I am not associated with any of these companies.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

From Good to Great...

Now that you have written your screen play or story how would you make it great? Read though Donald Maass's Writing the Breakout Novel. It gave me a few ideas to improve my script.
Here is a short summary from Amanda:

Sunday, July 10, 2016

From Web Developer's Bookmarks

A lot of innovative tools have been cropping around. I know you all would have used some of these at some point.The following are a few interesting tools:
  • Use if you want to write a small snippet and ask a question based on it - say for example you need to show others the JavaScipt that is misbehaving you can use this.
  • browser-sync is a tool that aids rapid development. Open sublimetext and type away your HTML, CSS and JavaScript and then view the output on the browser window of BrowserSync. Of course you need to have node.js and npm to install browser sync.
browser-sync start --server . --directory -files "*"
  • is similar to JSFiddle but have a few more features. 
  • Of course here are some cool stuff...
  • If at somepoint you are wondering which feature is supported by which browser, then go to to findout.
  • Here is a validatior to verify if your HTML is ... well... valid.
Not so useful as the above but is a site that shows which browser is popular.
Let me know if you have used any useful tools.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Movies... movies...

The other day I was searching for something and stumble don these. These are ways to view movies online.
I want to see if these can be viewed through a Roku box...

Thursday, March 31, 2016

How to harness your creativity?

We artsy people are creative - have to be more creative - and keep innovating. In fact in this day and age people in every walk of life are compelled to innovate. We all do not have enough time and hence we do not have the luxury to wait longer to see the final product, completed movie, completed script, clearly through through idea etc. Every one has to - wants to - achieve more in whatever time that is available. So how do one do accomplish? The catch phrase in tech industry is to "fail sooner and often"! What this really means is that we should be willing to do whatever we want to do with say 80% of information or details available. 80% of the information could possibly be obtained in 20% of the time (Total time here is the time taken to obtain 100% of information). Waiting for the remaining 20% will take 80% of the time. So once we are comfortable with the details we go we need to set out to implement it. Since we started with 80% of data/information we are bound to fail - be prepared to accept this; in fact anticipate failure and if you don't fail review all your assumptions and collected data again... something does not seem right! So when te rubber hits the road you will see the disconnect and fix it and test it again. If you are going to write a screenplay, don't wait till you chalk out every single detail - once you are comfortable just write it. You will find disconnects and that is expected - go fix it then. Then continue until you complete the screenplay. Then read it and fix issues. Then reread it and rewrite it. After all writing is rewriting. What you will end up getting is a better screenplay because you have iterated through so many times.
Well is there any way to get all the required information fairly comprehensively? The answer is yes! You need to be innovative and harness your creativity. Creativity has been elusive and folks have tired to define it and put a structure - some are ok, others are complex and some are so so. Here is something simple that I came across which could help you in putting a structure and help you in harnessing your creativity.
This framework goes hand in hand with what is touted as "design thinking". Give it a go and let me know if it really helps you.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Character Development

I had not really paid close attention to this in a long time now.  One thing that used to stand out in south Indian movies as compared to American blockbusters are what folks refer to as the "punch" dialogue or "punch" moment. I struggled to explain it better than to say that those were moments similar to the ones in Few Dollars More when Clint Eastwood picks the fight with Lee Van Cleef and they both show off their skills in front of the motel. South Indian movies have lots of such moments to introduce the hero - however crazy/senseless they may be but they will stir up the audience. Now I know what those are better!
Read this and you will know what those are because these are oft used:

Comments any one? Have you seen latest Vijay/Suriya/Ajith/Maheshbabu/Prabas or even yesteryear's Rajnikanth or Chiranjevi movies? Would you agree?

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Motion Graphics...

Seems like Processing and Blender from Open Source bandwagon offer interesting capabilities. A few of the heavyweight champions offering industrial grade features are:
Also here are a few more interesting tools:
  • Quartz Composer
  • Nodebox
See here for a few others:

Have you used any of these? Share your comments/tips...

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Magic of VFX

Hello there - I know I had taken a long a break! Well I was on to the usual stuff - writing stories, helping my friends on their startup endeavors, trying to get a team of interested folks to make a movie blah blah...

Anyways, I signed up for this VFX course; I had long wanted to do a low budget sci-fi movie (I have been sitting on a short story for ages)... hoping that this course will give me some insights. Yup! am liking the course (lots of info, good interviews with movie-makers, tips etc) and also linking HitFilm3.

Here is the course details: Visual Effects for Guerrilla Filmmakers from Norwich University of the Arts - a MOOC offered by

Here is my first attempt at VFX :)

Here are my green screen attempts. 
I shot my own background footage for the day and night exercise: 
1) (original footage for day scene) 2) (my background for day scene) 3) (original footage for night scene) 4) (my background for night scene)

What do you think? Good? Bad? So so?

Also do you know of any free software which no-budget movie makers like myself could use for VFX?