Monday, March 18, 2013

Motivating Monday Week 39

video

Today is a plug day for myself.

I am pasting together a brand new demo reel for 2013, and I have a rough edit for everyone to check out.

I would love to get some feedback on what I have so far. I still need to add an intro/outro and fine tune a few things.

Other than that I am nearing completion on it.

Regards,

Monday, March 11, 2013

Motivating Monday Week 38



I have been watching a lot of music videos lately and I came across a new one from rap artist Lecrae. 
Very interesting concept of filming a music video on the set of other music videos. 

Also Lecrae is family friendly so anyone and everyone should take a listen to his music.

-Travis

New Super Mario Bros 2 Review



 


New Super Mario Bros 2 
System: Nintendo 3DS
Release date in North America: 07/28/2012
Mario goes on a coin collecting frenzy, but is a large surplus of coins enough to tickle your platforming fancy?

Mario’s roots are grounded in the 2D. The original Super Mario Bros. revolutionized the way we play video games today.  Nintendo kept the Mario platforming in the second dimension  till the mid 90’s when the Nintendo 64 dropped. Super Mario 64 brought the Mario we knew and loved into 3D and changed the gaming industry once again. Mario would not return to his 2D roots till 2006 with the game New Super Mario Bros. for the Nintendo DS. NSMB  took the Mario we knew and loved and brought it to the modern day.  Now 6 years and a Wii iteration later 2D Mario is back on a portable system with New Super Mario Bros 2 for the 3DS.
The story is your typical Bowser kidnapped Princess Peach and the Mario Bros. must chase after the King of Koopas and stop him. The only twist this time is the expansion of coins. Mushroom Kingdom has been overloaded with those round gold pieces of metal. The game even has a coin counter with an ingame goal of collecting 1 million of those shinny little disc.  Jumping through gold rings causes enemies to turn gold and spill out coins. The new gold fire flower shoots gold fireballs that turns enemies and bricks into coins. Hitting a coin block multiple times causes it to get stuck to Mario’s head and shoot out coins like a water fountain. The first time you see Mario running around with a gold block on his head is a real treat.  The issue with this is that though there is an obvious increase in coin amounts, I still feel like it was not enough. If Nintendo really wanted to capture on this idea I think they should have upped it even further. I want to see coins spilling out of every nook and cranny of the Mushroom Kingdom. Also where is Wario during this coin extravagant  Nintendo has made Wario infamous for hording coins. Shouldn’t he show a slight bit of interested to what is going on? A Mario/Wario platformer? I can only dream…
The coin box now gets the last laugh

Graphically speaking  NSMB2 looks very similar to the previous games in the “New” series. Everything is colorful and all aspects of Mario’s world is easy on the eyes. The sound also does a bit of recycling. All the familiar “bup, bup” tunes are back as well as the classic jingles we are come to expect.  I was very disappointed with the 3D. Unlike Super Mario Land 3D, NSMB2 does nothing with the 3D feature of the 3DS. When you turn on the 3D all it does is blur out the background. It doesn’t make much since to me why Nintendo wouldn’t tap more into the 3D side of things, but at least it doesn’t break the game.
Mario controls like a charm. Controlling Mario is everything you would want it to be. The tanooki tail that made its return in Super Mario Land 3D is back once again. This time Mario can use it for full flight like he did in Super Mario Bros. 3. The tanooki tail joins the fire flower, mega mushroom, and mini mushroom for a very well rounded group of power up. I just have to ask…whatever happened to the frog suit? The easiness of NSMB2 may come to a turn off to veteran players. With the large increase in the amount of coins per stage, the increase of 1-Ups have gone through the roof. I never came close to seeing a gameover, and wouldn’t expect many well equated Mario players to either. Regardless of not finding NSMB2 to be very challenging, finding every secret exit and giant coin still adds a layer of depth to the series.
Stuck on a level? Just use this power up to make it through.
NSMB2 has a total of 3 modes. You get your basic single player experience that takes you through 9 worlds of platforming goodness. A coop mode is included giving a friend the chance to control Luigi during local play. This mode feels more tacked on, than fleshed out like we saw in the Wii version with its 4-player CoOp.  Lastly a new Coin Rush mode adds a competitive twist on coin collecting. Coin Rush has a player go through 3 randomly selected stages in a row without dying. If the player completes all three levels a coin total is calculated and then that total can be sent to other 3DS owners via streetpass. Sadly there is no online leaderboard which I feel is a huge missed opportunity.

It is hard not to have a soft spot for NSMB2. With great level design, spot on controls, and colorful worlds, a lot of fun can be had with this platformer. At the same time though you get this feeling the glass only being half full. Without bringing much new to the table and a lack of features that seem like a no brainier NSMB2 doesn’t feel like a complete experience. I recommend this to anyone looking for a good platforming experience on their 3DS, but don’t expect too much out of it.

7.5/10

-Travis

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Motivating Monday Week 37



So I am a day late for my weekly feel of motivation.  That is because today I had the chance to film/take photos for a Google Engage Connect event hosted by OneIMS.

It was a great time and by being there I got to check out new footage of the Google Glass being used.

Because of this I decided a good topic of motivation for this is the Glass.

Google is trying to do something crazy with Glass and could change our everyday life forever...but how do you think it will work?

-Travis

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Self-Employed Saturday #1 (Finding Work Part 1)

Finding Work Part 1

Hello everyone, and welcome to my new monthly blog post titled Self Employed Saturday. Once a month I plan to post some insight from the inside of being your own business  You can expect to find topics related to branding, finding work, inspiration, and much more. I plan to also reach out to other independent workers and get some of their insight on here as well.
If everything goes smoothly I plan to have these post up on the 1st Saturday of each month. Please bare with me if I do get a week behind...life happens. =)

So lets get this thing rolling with our topic for the month of March

Finding Work Part 1: Online

One of most common questions that pop up while in conversation with others is "How do I manage to find enough work to be a full time freelancer?"
Truth be told if you just look out across the horizon many potential clients are all around you. You just have to put a bit of work into getting them.
The most obvious avenue to plug into is the world wide web. Their is an endless supply of people looking for a video, poster, album cover, voice over, etc.....but where do you start looking? The internet is full of so many job boards, freelance blogs, and help wanted pages...how do you know which service is correct for you?
To make your job easier I have compiled a list of sites that I generally use. Some of these I have been successful in getting jobs out of...others I haven't.  Just because I did not get any jobs out of certain sites, it doesn't mean that you can't.
Lets get started...

JOB BOARDS
It is insane just how many job boards are out there! These boards can range from full time to seasonal, from design work to pluming. With this wide range of variety...how do you know which job boards deserve your valuable time?
I narrowed down a few boards I have poked around with in the past and I found them great for freelancers.


Simply Hired
Simply Hired reminds me of Craigslist without all the spam. You simply type in a keyword at the top of the page i.e. video production, writing, SEO, etc.. followed by a location, and then hit the search button. Simply Hired then gives you a list of anything similar to what you are looking for. Did you find there to be too many job postings? Simply do an advanced search to find that dream job you are looking for.


Linkedin Jobs
Linkedin Jobs works very similar to Simply Hired. The nice thing about finding jobs on Linkedin is typically if you are already out in the freelance world then you have a Linkedin profile. If you don't have a Linkedin profile yet, then you should stop reading this blog right now and go sign up! Linkedin is very important when it comes to finding jobs. The job search doesn't stop after searching through the list in the jobs tab...deep inside Linkedin exist forums for just about any career choice. Inside these boards can be potential clients as well. Just being engaged with other freelancers can point your towards more work.


Job Bidding Sites
Would you rather compete to get a job? A lot of the time customers want to have a wide selection of freelancers to chose from, and they want to see just how much you want the job. 


thecreato.rs
If you take a look at thecreato.rs website you may only see artist and not actual jobs. This is because thecreato.rs only give out job leads to their fellow employees. Don't worry though...signing up to become a creator is simple and free. Once you are signed up with a set skill set the team over at thecreato.rs will email you any jobs you may be interested in. If it is something you like you just submit a proposal and then hope that you get the gig. The team will communicate with you throughout the whole project, so if any issues with the client arises they will have your back.

Elance
Take everything you would expect out of a job bidding website and put it in one place...and you get Elance. From a huge variety of job listings, a timer tracker, customizable profiles, and much more Elance offers a lot. Bidding is very simple, first begin looking for a job that fits your skill set. Once you find some that interest you, post a quick blip about why you our qualified for the gig, add a proposal if you feel comfortable, and then submit away. Elance also requires you to add a token for each job you bid on. Free customers our limited to a select amount of these tokens. I really like this, because then you don't have people spamming every single job unless they can put their money where their mouth is.

I only scratched the surface of what is out there for anyone looking for freelance work.  Next month I will touch on using social media to find potential clients...including the behemoth known as Facebook.


Till next time....

-Travis