WarLord's WarBlog

Archive for April, 2014

The Backyard Studio – Part 4

by on Apr.06, 2014, under Uncategorized

It seems this project has taken forever when in fact in hasn’t taken that long at all. It’s now about 99 percent completed. All that is left are:

  • Window Treatments – (Yes… I’ll miss the towels and aluminum foil)
  • Acoustical Wall Treatments – Foam – (Will be hung on walls and windows when needed)
  • Acoustical Blankets – (Will be hung on walls when needed)
  • Acrylic Enclosure – Drums/Audio Mixing Area

In the final result there are 5 main areas to this little studio:

  1. Digital Workstation/Audio Mixing Area
  2. Guitar/Camera Workbench
  3. Guitar Corner for Practice, Filming and Recording
  4. Drum Corner for Practice, Filming and Recording.
  5. Loft for storage and eventually will hold the rendering computer rack from old downtown office.

The back area of the studio (under the loft) can be quickly cleared of all objects including signs, guitars, extra desk and chairs making it available for any type of filming. In particular this will be used to film interviews for an oral history project as different props and chairs can be used to set the mood. A large green screen can also be setup quickly across the back and floor if necessary placing the filmed object or person anywhere they need to be.

Main audio/digital work area.

Main audio/digital work area.

As you can see the main work area consists of desks created from solid pine tops and 3 draw file cabinets that are just the right height. There are two reasons for this: 1).  I  couldn’t find desks I wanted that didn’t take up too much space and 2). The desks can be quickly moved out of the way for filming and other uses if the space is needed. The building being only 12 X 24 means a lot of thought had to go into making it as efficient and useful as possile.

The Drum Corner (Front)

The Drum Corner (Front)

The Drum Corner is a throwback to my youth when I spent several hours each day practicing loud rock and roll while my mom and dad patiently tolerated it. The counter height workbench on the opposite side provides much needed flat space for “stuff” when not in use restringing my bass guitars or cleaning/servicing the cameras.


My favorite space... Guitar Corner.

My favorite space… Guitar Corner.

Guitar corner is my favorite space in the studio as far as aesthetics and the only space that even took aesthetics into consideration. The guitar hangers are both practical and decorative. The plan was to peruse eBay and other places for “wall hanger” guitars to use as decoration but I quickly found out that there were some tremendous bargains out there and ended with 7 very solid bass guitars including several Ibanez (200, 300, 400 and 2 – 700’s which were top of the line in their time) for next to nothing that are very sweet guitars. My only indulgence for a new bass was the Fender Jazz that is another favorite. On a side note… the thin bass hanging in the corner is an Ibanez 400 that is absolutely awesome in sound and playability while costing next to nothing. Another side note – the two guitars hanging on the back wall are signed by Dee Snider (Twisted Sister) and Gary Busey (Buddy Holly Story).

Back corner cleared out for a quick green screen test.

Back corner cleared out for a quick green screen test.

The next picture shows the backend partially cleared for greenscreen filming. The camera was almost to the front door on this shot.  I use a tripod mounted 7 inch monitor with my Sony video camera facing the subject so the they can easily see themselves during the interview. Seems to relax most people. This sheet can be wrapped around the entire backend of the studio if necessary.

Finally... what drives me.

Finally… what drives me.


Just a little something to remind me that life is short so don’t take things too seriously. Digital work can be very pressure packed at times but it can also be some of the most fulfilling work I have ever experienced so it doesn’t take much to remain MOE-TIVATED. This studio building was kept small to keep it affordable and it is the culmination of many years of planning, working and dreaming.

As I sit in the studio writing this blog… looking around… I can’t help but realize how very fortunate I am to be able to build such a studio and do what I do on a daily basis. I also am very aware of how little of this project I could have accomplished without the support of my freelance employers, my customers that purchase my 3D animation assets and the iClone users that purchased my iClone book from PACKT Publishing along with all the users that subscribe to and watch my youtube tutorial channel.

And of course… last but not least Reallusion… In particular… Jason Lin, Bruce Wang and CEO and Founding Partner Charles Chen for his tireless support and writing the forward to my book plus the other Reallusion employees I’ve come to know. NONE of this would be possible without all of this support and I am very appreciative of it.

Time to Get Back to Work

Time to Get Back to Work

Now it’s time to roll up the digital sleeves and get back to work.

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