Turtle Boy is considered the mascot and an Icon of Worcester. The iconic Burnside fountain or bronze sculpture is located by City Hall on the corner of Worcester Common in Worcester Massachusetts. Originally designed and sculpted by Charles Y. Harvey. and finished by Sherry Fry after his unfortunate demise. The fountain was a commission from Harriet Burnside left in her will to finance a Memorial for her father. The water fountain originally supplied fresh water for horses and other animals in the area.
"Worcester 6 Memorial"
Painted by Janet Simpkins
Oil and Acrylic on canvas
2.5" x 3.5"
The Worcester 6 Memorial was sculpted by artist, Brian P. Hanlon, as a Tribute to the six Fire Fighters who lost their lives in the Worcester Cold Storage & Warehouse Co. fire on December 3rd 1999 . The damaged Warehouse property was leveled and converted into the Franklin Street Fire-station in honor of our heroes. The memorial is a beautiful reminder of those who dedicate their lives to protect and save others.
PAX EAST 2014, a weekend of learning, communicating and experimenting.
If you were lucky enough to have stumbled upon the Becker College Booth at this years PAX, you may have been able to try out the Oculus Rift and enjoy a brief tour of a Museum Simulator which has been created by a small team of talented and creative individuals.
Scott Tongue, Janet Tremblay and Professor Ulm have been working on a project that is very different from your every day average shooter or mmorpg games. The game is a museum simulation that allows individuals with mobility issues or classes of students to enjoy a museum experience. Visitors or players whom may never have the chance to visit a museum due to its location will have a chance to for the first time. Scott is a programing guru, studying for his Bachelor of Arts in Interactive Media Design with a Game Programming Concentration at Becker College. He recently took a trip to California's GDC as a speaker for the game "Beyond Two Souls". He has been programing and incorporating game asset's created by the artist, Janet Tremblay, into the Unreal 4 Engine. He recently made a very difficult transition from UDK 3 to Unreal 4 in the few weeks he had before PAX and was very successful at it.
Janet is an Artist in the Worcester, MA area. Her game assets and art are based on the Worcester Art Museum, a museum based in central Massachusetts that is recognized as an Encyclopedic Museum. She has volunteered her time and talents to this project to help Becker College and the Worcester Art Museum.
The Museum owns a large collection of art from many different cultures and time periods. The Virtual Museum Simulator is currently a work in progress. And this weekend at PAX was an experiment to see how the public would react to this kind of visual stimuli. Janet uses reference photos she has taken and interprets them into models in Autodesk Maya and creates textures using Photoshop.
No one from the Becker team dreamed that it would have gotten the attention that it did. At one point there was a line to tryout the Oculus and they had to place tape on the floor to manage visitors in the area. Many young individuals were interested in trying it out and we received valuable feedback and positive reactions.
There was even talk of a person with a visual disability who was legally blind who had a chance to use the simulator for the first time. They were excited because they were able to visit a museum and actually see it as though a person with normal vision would. Unlike using your eyes to focus into a large room, depth perception is different with the Rift. When you are visually impaired it is very difficult to make out objects, shapes and figures 3 feet or more away from your origin. The Oculus Rift is placed on your head. It encompasses 2 screens one for each eye and they are positioned about an inch away from your view. For someone who is visually impaired this experience of seeing a room an inch away does not strain the eyes to focus on the real space as you are focusing on the surface that is right in front of you, making it a unique experience. It was also amazing to see visitors reach out to touch objects that did not exist or surfaces that were not there.
All in all the weekend was a success. The team was able to see the potential in what they can do and where they can go with this project.
This is the current painting I have finished for the Arizona Verde Valley area series. I have decided to create a series of paintings for my own gallery exhibit next year. Not sure where yet. If you have any ideas on where I could have an exhibit. send me a message and let me know.
"Arizona, Montezuma Well #2" 11"x14" oil on canvas (c) Janet Tremblay 2013
Alright, I did not finish my animation clip this week. But I used the time for networking and meeting new people in the game developing industry. I have a pretty cool idea that I would love to bring to life in unity as an educational game. Meeting people who use this program in the Area has helped me understand that it is not as difficult as I thought it would be to create a game in Unity. I even found a 10 min demo that was so simple to understand. I was surprised by how easy it was. The one thing I am unsure is learning JAVA SCRIPT. JAVA is one of the languages used to add functions to your models and animation from Maya in Unity.
Alright back to what you all came to hear. I will list the different networking tools and how they are extremely helpful.
First and foremost there is Blogger. Those of you who have already made it to this blog already know how easy it is to post shareable information and updated info on your progress or new experiences. Blogger is simple to setup and use. especially with its ability to create blogs that can be scheduled to be posted in the future.
A great example of two people who have successful used blogger for networking and showcasing their work are Travis Simpkins and Andy Fish:
Facebook is great for keeping in touch with people you have met in the industry. you can send private messages instead of posting to ones page for everyone to see. Showcase your progress on your page and share new things you have seen online. It is easy to get feedback and comments from others on making your work better.
Twitter is a good program for following news on groups, company's and meetups. They post information and it is instantly sent and updated on your following page. Only one warning. When you post to Twitter it can not be edited or deleted so when posting make sure it is something you wont regret and check your spelling. :)
Meetup is an online program used to show groups getting together in your local area. it is where you can find out different events and people to talk to that have similar interests.
Eventbrite is used to register for events. Some larger company's use eventbrite to find out how many are going to their event and it gives them time to plan, create name tags and have enough supplies for everyone who shows up.
Linked in is great for networking with others in your own industry. It allows you to post your work history and skills so that you can find those with similar interests. It also has groups that you can join and learn with others the new trends, technology and tips.
Google plus has a great feature where you can create groups. you can post information to individual group that you have created. It also has a great feature called Google hangouts. Google hang outs is used to web chat using video and text with numerous people. you can post an invite to a group of people and then can join when they see it posted in their Google page.
Youtube is good for posting your animation work so that you can share it in your other networking tools. especially the ones listed above, But if you are posting your own work make sure you stamp your name in it some where so that someone else does not steal your work and show it as your own. Its a tough world out there and it does happen.
Well good luck at keep at it. its a tough world out there and you need to get out there and talk with others in the field you want to be in. The more connections you make the easier it is to mingle.