24 December 2014

Cheers 2014, A year as an artist in LA.

Well time snapped by super fast over the past year. LA has been a very exciting creative journey for me. Joining the We Are Royale team as an Art Director has been an amazing experience. Joining a new team can be daunting as everyone is learning each others strengths and weaknesses, but its been a super smooth transition. I've learned so much over the past year and look forward to growing more.

I wanted to do a slight recap of some of the projects I got to work on while I've been here -- mainly because I'm super proud of the work we've accomplished. It's hard to edit down to just a few select projects, but here are some that I thought worth re-sharing.

 Nike - XX9 The Art of Flight
Talk about walking into a high end project immediately on entering the door -- I got first hand experience working with the full production pipeline on this one. It was fun to jump on this project and help out where I could. Working on some design, r&d AE animation, and AE comp / animation.

Nike - Colordry
And if creating a photo realistic shoe being built by a futuristic loom wasn't enough, the royale team really stepped up to the plate and knocked this one out of the park. Developing an animation to explain the actual color dry process from the molecular level out was a fun challenge. What made this project stand out even further was the decision to do a live action shoot to help augment the beautiful CG effects. I got to help direct the practical shoot and also took on the role of lead comper. Thankfully Renzo had already taught me so much by jumping onto XX9 with him and we had an amazing team of compositors. Just an overall great team!

Nike - Flyknit
For this project I got to jump on a small team and help bring another Nike innovation, Flyknit, to life in a print and motion piece. Working with an amazing set of designers, we were able to create a large vertical image that lived on the web with various shoes rotating out. This was a super fun Art Direction job to be on and also got to comp the motion piece.

CW - The 100 main titiles
Title animations, who doesn't love working on them? It's fun to visualize a show's conceptual base and explore its theories in motion. This was another job where I got to jump around in my role as Art Director, creating an animated alphabet, exploring the edit foundation and also exploding some letters(numbers) with rayfire.  I think the team did an amazing job of making a sequence feel so effortless in its design and execution.

ok ok -- I think that's it for this recap. There are a few more projects that I'd love to call out, but at the end of the day I walk with saying this: I work with some amazing artist. Each of those job recaps could have ended with the team  as a whole did an amazing job, but I figured I'd save that for here. I was jumping into a completely new place, and everyone has really embraced me. I think it's led to some awesome collaborations and smiles. Every part of the pipeline is filled with top notch artist, and I'm proud to work amongst them. Look forward to our 2015 accomplishments!

Cheers 2014 -- you were alright ;)

15 December 2014

Anomaly Tour Visuals

My close friend Carlos wanted to collaborate on doing some intro animation for this opening set on the Lecrae Anomaly Tour. We had fun and it was super awesome to watch it live here in LA!

I've uploaded one version to my vimeo account here:

DJ Promote Tour visuals from James Ramirez on Vimeo.

But you can also see an alternate version and hear the full tour mix on Promote's youtube page:

01 December 2014

27 October 2014

Mir Experiment

Low Poly Landscape action, couple of hours experiment I did the other night.

MIR MEZ from James Ramirez on Vimeo.

16 October 2014

walk to your own beat. #gettypose

15 October 2014

Get your getty on.

Doodlin' over a photo I shot at the Getty Villa. There's a fun #gettypose going on, had to jump in with this.

14 August 2014

Scratch Break

A while back I did a time lapse doodle to one Swiftstyles tracks, He loves the artwork and wanted to do a print -- well here are the results as you can see in the latest SCRATCH BREAK #11.

Beast mode. I love seeing my artwork out and about in people's lives. makes me super happy.
Here's the original video

12 August 2014

11 August 2014

the strut.

another quick flash doodle, 9f @ 12fps
for whatever reason -- doesn't want to loop in browser. whatever.

31 July 2014

Spirit Hands

oh flash. you are so much fun.

17 July 2014

Wallpaper yourself

Happy Thursday. Just some wallpaper fun I created for our Inspiration Thursday get together here at Royale. Cheers.

25 June 2014


Great news!

Heather Brantman and I have put together a treat for you in the form of a font! Since I built the font using plexus, I thought it would be fitting to write to Satya Meka and ask if he would share the link through his site. Indeed he did, and we can't be more excited to see this font out in the wild!

Please share any creations you make, look forward to you being awesome.


22 March 2014

Empty Nest

Man oh man ---

It's been quite a hectic new life journey jumping into the dense freelance ocean of LA. I appreciate anyone who reads this website -- and is patient enough for updates.

Since i've lacked any updates, I thought I would share this random C4D experiment i did the other night. I blame watching Cosmos! :)

24 January 2014

An artist and his tools.

I always say that I'm one for constantly trying to learn, and lately I've started the path to learning a program I've literally avoided for years now. I remember while being an undergrad at KCAI, I first learned about Cinema4D. I thought cool -- but I'm already on the path to learning maya so -- I'll just stick to what seems good. The only thing that almost swayed me at the moment was "Deep Paint" or "Body paint" whatever it goes by now. The ability to apply textures onto an object directly in 3D really appealed to me, but with funky demos and no real reading material, I put it down and moved along.

Fast forward to the past few years in the industry, Cinema4D has really taken a strong hold in the motion graphics community. With the recent relationship development with Adobe CC, they have really set anchors down into a deep community.

I think Maxon has really developed a tool that speaks to the industry that they are chasing. Its a fast, stable, reliable and flexible product. The accessibility it offers to new comers and 3D enthusiasts alike is pretty astounding. Honestly, that accessibility and ease of use is one of the things that kept be at arms distance to the program. I know that sounds completely bonkers, yes, I didn't like a program for how easy and quickly you could get nice results. It wasn't really the program it was the users, it felt like a cheap slap for those of us who had been in the trenches fighting with Global Illumination, struggling with shaders, and fighting renders. More importantly I felt that it immediately created an animation style that was going from tutorial to finished spot. I guess you could say that about any program, but for some reason -- the users of C4D weren't appealing to me as much as the program.

After taking a step back and looking from a different viewpoint, I realized the community around C4D is a vast, resourceful and helpful growing population. Everyone is really trying to help out where they can, and their enthusiasm for learning has sparked fires in people scared of learning 3D. If you look beyond the surface you can really see individuals or studios who have adopted it as part of their work bench, and have created some amazing and interesting animations.

I remember when I first started working at MK12, how upsetting it was to a couple of the artist when doing a Q&A, people would often ask "What tools do you guys use?" The answer would be a quick and smirky "Computers". It took me awhile to understand that mentality, but what it truly means is that it doesn't matter how the artist makes the piece, it's how they found a way to engage you. Who cares if you use microsoft paint and bryce3D to make your next piece, as long as it helped you and made something worth showing.

All this to say -- the more tools you can add to your arsenal, the better prepared you are to be creative. I'm taking the time to add a new tool to the belt ;)

(I'll let you know what I think of it in a few months :P )

04 January 2014

Happy New Years!

Hello fellow party people!
Thanks for following along during 2013 and appreciate you checking in and seeing what I've been up to. I'm currently putting together a selection of my favorite personal photos from 2013, I'll have that up soon.

In the meantime -- enjoy yourselves and stay tuned!