Hello and Happy Thanksgiving!
It has been a while since I posted. November has been a very busy month.
It began with the launch party for Blood Drive. Our company's (and Activision's) latest game release. Interestingly though, it will not be released here in Austrailia or New Zealand.(too bloody/violent). The party was followed by AnimFX, a small industry conference held here in Wellington for 3 days. I was asked to be a guest speaker and did a 50 minute presentation on "outsourcing art". The conference was great fun and I met a lot of great people, including the director and co-writer of How to Train Your Dragon, Dean DeBlois. I also got to see a great presentation on the making of Avatar.
A few weeks later, I spent 2 days in Auckland with 2 co-workers at a workshop on LEAN processing. (work related practices) I was not sure what to expect, but it turned out to be very inspiring and educational.
This was my first Thanksgiving away from the US and family. It seems odd to be my age and say that. Anyway, it was and interesting week. We got together over the weekend before with some other ex-pat friends to celebrate in a very untraditional manner. We all brought various dishes of food (we brought a 5 layer dip and chips) to share and we watched all 3 Lord of the Rings movies back to back. It was fun. Then early in the week we heard about the snow in Seattle and all I could think about were my friends and family enjoying the snow and getting an extended holiday break (no work all week). Thanksgiving here is not a holiday, so it was business as usual, which did indeed feel odd. But alas, we did not completely let go of the tradition... As you can see we did make an effort to begin a new tradition and have a Thanksgiving meal just the two of us. We picked up a small stuffed chicken because turkey is not available here until closer to Xmas (that's the only time they import them) and I made my sweet potatoes with marshmallows, for the first time from scratch (they are called Kumaras here) and they came out great! Interesting to know...marshmallows here come in bags of white(regular) and pink(strawberry) so we had to sort out the pink ones. AND Eric made a pumpkin pie using fresh pumpkin - no cans here - that also came out delicious! It felt good to have a little Thanksgiving even though we weren't in the US.
Overall work is going well for me. I made the arrangements for talent and spent 2 days at the Weta facility helping with some motion capture for our upcoming Rugby game (www.rugbychallengegame.com). The technology is quite amazing. Eric is still working the Hobbit possibilities and the general consensus is that hiring for that will begin after the New Year.
The other photo above was taken from the gym where Eric and I workout. Quite a view huh? Wellington has just bee named the coolest "little capitol" in the world by Lonely Planet's Best in Travel. The cone shape objects are more wind art. On windy days the cones spin and shift with the wind and at night they also light up.
With the holidays around the corner we have lots to do. It is a very different feeling here with Xmas being in the summer, but we are still trying to get in the spirit.
Cheers to all and we will follow up again soon.
Stacy & Eric