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  1. Aesopian is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 7:50pm

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    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Thanks for the advice. My Illustator is older than CS, but the same technique probably applies. I'm still fighting the interface, so my clunky usage seems to be translating to a clunky picture. I have a few more years dooding with a pencil and paper than Bezier curves.

    Do you work with a Wacom? I've been thinking about getting an 9x12 Intous2. I figure the ability to draw will lend itself to digital art better than fumbling around with a mouse.

    Oh, and another doodle:



    He's got a bulbous forehead, not bug eyes, in case you were making that mistake.
    Last edited by Aesopian; 2/09/2006 7:55pm at .
  2. Jaguar Wong is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 8:15pm

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     Style: Shaolin Kung Fu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    My brother works for an Illustrator powerhouse (black belt? :glasses1: ). The guy's been using Illustrator since version 1 (when there was no number in the name obviously). All his guys are extremely capable of using techniques in older versions of Illustrator with just the mouse. They feel that 6-8 is where you really see the program develop. While I agree, I love the new features in 10 and CS.

    I do have a wacom, and I have to say it really helps with certain aspects of Illustrator (mostly in 10 and CS, though). But with the Bezier curves, I just use the mouse. I've got a 9x12 at work (I used to have a monsterous 12x12 at Westwood, but I adjusted it to where only the middle 9x9 was the active area), and honestly it's a bit too large for me. I have a 6x9 at home that's the perfect size. If you draw on regular paper (letter, sketchpads, etc), you're better off with a 6x9, or even a 4x5 if you only really doodle. If you're a painter that's used to working with broad strokes, a 12x12 or 9x12 is your best bet. 6x9 is the best middleground size and your wallet won't have to tap out.

    If you're learning Illustrator, all the power is in the pen tool, so you'll probably be doing more with the mouse. I did the Bullshido Bull with the mouse in Illustrator 6 (I don't have CS at home). If you're using Photoshop to do digital painting or stuff like that, I'd get the wacom if you're more comfortable with drawing. But for Illustrator, you only really need the tablet if you're playing with features found in newer versions (10+).

    Nice Oni/devil (didn't know which you were going for, but looks more oni than devil). You're young, man, so you've got plenty of time to improve. I'm starting BJJ sort of late in life, but drawing requires just as much practice and research (studying the masters and such), only you can't use it to physically manipulate people and make them submit to you.

    Wanted to add some more, so *edit*
    If you want to cheat, and skip the bezier work, my brother and I used Adobe Streamline on all of the designs for Superaction.com - 108 Martial arts . Those designs were done 5 or 6 years ago, but I was talking to them again and we just got through taking a bunch of reference photos for a new batch of designs. We're still going to be using the same approach, though. scan in an inked drawing and use Streamline to convert it to vector. nice and lazy, but not as clean as actually drawing it in Illustrator (it uses way too many nodes when it converts them).
    Last edited by Jaguar Wong; 2/09/2006 8:25pm at .
    Jaguar's MMA record
    pre Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0
    post Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0 (BOO YAA!!)

    We're number one! All others are number two or lower.
    - The Sphinx (Mystery Men)
  3. NSLightsOut is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 8:19pm


     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    My general advice to beginners and white belts in general usually involves trying to get them to avoid one of the biggest mistakes I made while I was at that stage: Concentrating on developing their top game at the expense of their guard.

    When I got my blue belt, my top game was definitely up there. I was passing good blues, and some of the newer purple belts, and could control and submit from there fairly well. However, my guard...sucked. In competition, if I got put on my back, I was most likely going to lose. So I've spent slightly over two years now continually working and honing my guard to get make myself as dangerous off my back as I was on top. I achieved an equilibrium early last year.

    In addition, I try to convey the following:

    - Relaxation: Not going too fast, not trying to muscle things through too much
    - Mindset: How to look for submissions, sweeps and reversals on an opportunistic basis as my instructor taught me once at a seminar a while ago and hasn't brought up in class again
    - Contribution to the general body of knowledge: If someone finds something that may be of use, be they the newest white belt or Helio Gracie himself. I'll listen. I'll pick the idea to death, and try to find every way that it could go wrong, but I will listen.


    Quote Originally Posted by UpaLumpa
    JW,
    I'd argue that's going to far, though I suspect anyone instructing can kick my ass.
    One of the harder things to do is to 'see' the submissions in front of you and firing them off.
    'Seeing' submissions is something that I really began to learn after the aforementioned seminar from my instructor, Peter de Been. He told all the participants that the following (what I'll call the 'snapshot' method) has worked for him quite well in high level competition, and it's formed the basis of my mental game ever since. It changed my entire outlook on Jiu Jitsu.

    Peter de Been's 'Snapshot' method

    1. Look at where you are. Take a mental photograph.
    2. Analyze the setups available from the position your opponent is in. Feel the weight distribution and strength that your opponent is using, and find the weak points (i.e. is there a large amount of weight on an arm? is opp. base too small? based out?)
    3. Come up with a list of available techs.
    4. Pick what you believe is the best possible technique.
    5. Execute technique
    6. Go back to step 1.
  4. Aesopian is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 8:32pm

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    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Thanks, that clears up most of my questions. The insight into the ghost of Illustrator past is interesting.

    Since I mostly draw and doodle, I was thinking of getting Alias' SketchBook Pro 2 to go along with a Wacom. I would like to do digital painting at some point, but everything I read and everyone I talk to say to just work on pen and pencil drawing on paper, starting with the basics of perspective and shading and simple shapes and working up into landscapes, composition, coloring, anatomy, life drawing and so on. And I've seen too many crappy digital paintings to want to contribute to that collective crime against humanity.

    So for now I'm just drawing a bunch of still lifes in my living room. And doodling out devils and smoking monkeys.
    Last edited by Aesopian; 2/09/2006 8:35pm at .
  5. UpaLumpa is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 8:35pm

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     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Nice.
    The whole "six steps ahead" thing is really just awarness of what paths are available.
    My own unarticulated version of your snapshot method has greatly improved my game.

    If only I'd started doing it before about two months ago.
  6. Jaguar Wong is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 8:52pm

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     Style: Shaolin Kung Fu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by NSLightsOut
    Peter de Been's 'Snapshot' method

    1. Look at where you are. Take a mental photograph.
    2. Analyze the setups available from the position your opponent is in. Feel the weight distribution and strength that your opponent is using, and find the weak points (i.e. is there a large amount of weight on an arm? is opp. base too small? based out?)
    3. Come up with a list of available techs.
    4. Pick what you believe is the best possible technique.
    5. Execute technique
    6. Go back to step 1.
    I really like the sound of this. I'll have to make a note of this method and see if I can put it to use. Right now my steps look like this:

    1. *Whew* I was able to get guard
    2. Crap he's passing
    3. How do Shrimping
    4. tap

    Sometimes I'll squeeze in a "4. Spaz out to avoid submission" which will then bump tap to number 5. I really like the thinking ahead approach, and it's the one I hear the most, but this version seems much more feasible than planning not only your moves, but your opponents moves (thinking 4-5 moves ahead, like most high level guys do).

    Aeso,
    I've never really used SketchbookPro, but I've heard some good things about it (yesterday in fact). I'll probably check it out myself. The Intuos2 usually comes with a free version of Painter (a lite version) that has a nice feeling of natural media (although I still think the pencil still doesn't capture the same feel). OpenCanvas is also a popular (and free) drawing software among internet artists.

    I respect your attitude to drawing. I agree with you about all the crap that's all over the web (deviantArt is like mySpace for bad artists). I prefer real pencil and paper myself, but I work with a woman that's been animating since before I was born. She's used all kinds of tools, and was one of the first traditional animators to switch over to digital. She's a pioneer in her generation, and what she's always telling me is that the principles are more important than the tools. Painting in Painter requires the same color, light and anatomy as painting on a canvas, but there's no cleanup, and you have more freedom (mixing digital tools is much easier than mixing real media). So I figure if you're still new to the game, learning digitally is probably a good way to go (although carrying a sketchbook everywhere you go for drawing is easier than carrying a laptop with a tablet).

    You got some good advice as well from others. Perspective, shading (spheres cubes, cylinders and cones...we all did it) and anatomy are probably the best to start on. Composition is where things get tricky (everyone has their opinions on this). Best to follow the rules, but sometimes you can get away with a reverse omoplata layout and shake things up.
    Jaguar's MMA record
    pre Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0
    post Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0 (BOO YAA!!)

    We're number one! All others are number two or lower.
    - The Sphinx (Mystery Men)
  7. NSLightsOut is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 9:36pm


     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jaguar Wong
    I really like the sound of this. I'll have to make a note of this method and see if I can put it to use. Right now my steps look like this:

    1. *Whew* I was able to get guard
    2. Crap he's passing
    3. How do Shrimping
    4. tap

    Sometimes I'll squeeze in a "4. Spaz out to avoid submission" which will then bump tap to number 5. I really like the thinking ahead approach, and it's the one I hear the most, but this version seems much more feasible than planning not only your moves, but your opponents moves (thinking 4-5 moves ahead, like most high level guys do).
    Your steps are a product of inexperience. The snapshot approach is mental, not a technical approach. It helps your application, granted. But you aren't going to suddenly nail a reverse flying triangle by adopting the snapshot approach with six months of training under your belt.

    The 'thinking ahead' approach, IMO, is just a logical progression of the snapshot method, albeit with a greater knowledge and ability to apply technique.
  8. Aesopian is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 9:54pm

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    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I have Photoshop and OpenCanvas, and have played around with trials of Sketchbook and Painter, but I never painted anthing of worth since I can't do much with a mouse. I've seen a couple artists who now use Sketchbook on a tablet PC in place of pen and paper and say that it works great and feels right, to the point that they try to Ctrl-Z when they really are drawing in pulp.

    I don't know if really want to get into learning to real painting (and all the mixing, clean up, storage, buying, etc. that entails). Maybe after I've got more drawing down. I have considered taking figure drawing classes.

    For a while, I was getting really bummed out seeing a lot of the amateur digital paintings since they all start looking bland and repetitive since they don't have the same look and feel as a real painting where the arists can work textures and details more finely. And so much of it is crappy. For example:



    This makes me :(

    Luckily I found some really great groups of digital artists who restored my faith digital painting.

    Dare to compare:



    This = :)

    And many of them even recommend (to varying degrees) that you get some traditional painting training too. But as you can see in the last photo, they've got their anatomy, shading and other basics down too, and I can work on those with a pencil and paper for now.
    Last edited by Aesopian; 2/09/2006 10:02pm at .
  9. Aesopian is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 10:00pm

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    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    As for the BJJ topic at hand, I'm not sure if I buy the "thinking six steps ahead" theory that people always talk about. I remember JohnnyS making a post about how this is misconception, and that the advanced game is not needlessly running ahead a bunch of steps, or thinking about finishing from mount while you're still in guard. I think his take on it was that they are thinking of multiple path or immediate options from any one position. So rather than thinking 6 steps ahead, they have 6 (or whatever number you want to make up) immediate steps they can take at any one moment or from any position. But I'll have to leave those more experience to debate which of these is more valid. I know I personally don't think such-and-such steps ahead and just try to act in the moment and just be a step ahead without thinking about it.
    Last edited by Aesopian; 2/09/2006 10:03pm at .
  10. MONGO is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/09/2006 11:29pm

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     Style: na

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Aeso, I think that you got a good attitude with the forcing new movements onto people. It will help speed the learning process and force skill growth in a place that many noobs wouldn't get to in their natural progression.
    I think this applies to any level of skill tho. I find my problems in my takedowns because I focus on ground fighting to much. Its good advise for me.

    And I say **** you for pointing out a flaw in my training. I felt I was doing fine before.

    +++++++++rep
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