While cruising through Renderosity recently I
noticed with some alarm that they were having a Summer Solstice
Sale, for one day only, on June 24th. I wasn't fooled, I knew this
was really a politically correct way to celebrate the 89th
anniversary of airmail service from Montreal to Toronto, or perhaps
the 60th birthday of Peter "Robocop" Weller. My sources
remain maddeningly unclear.
But I didn't worry too much about that once the reality of a huge
sale on Poser/DAZ Studio-compatible characters, clothes, hair and
props landed hard in my gut like the day-old Spicy Ham value meal
from the buffet cart at SuperSaver.
I had only three hours before the sale window snapped shut, but I
paused to take a cold, hard look at my current collection of
rendering products; a look which was complicated by the fact that
my computer is now powered by an exercise bicycle attached to a
generator because of some trivial mix-up with the electric company.
(Bills? Insufficient funds? When will these people cut the jargon
and speak English!)
Generally I render science fiction themed scenes -- and manly ones
at that! -- such as one where great hordes of alien ships are
blasting a planet to bits ("Excuse me, anyone home?,"
2005), or my Bryce creation with killer robots on the loose in New
Techno City ("Robots,Smobots ," 2007). Did I really need
the four year old product "Victoria 2.0's Frilly Glove
Set" or the Windows 95-only product "Cutesy Hair for
The answer of course is yes.
Well, actually the answer is no, I didn't need those particular
products, but I think you know what I mean. There were clearly
many, many items that I simply had to purchase. There was no other
option. But with time running out I would have to start slamming
items into my shopping cart with a celerity usually associated with
the Harlem Globetrotters.
So, pedaling quickly to build up a decent reserve charge I began to
make my selections.
The first item which struck a chord: "Blue: A Primary
Color." This package promised the exact, precise, integer
values for pure blue. Sure, I already knew the RGB numbers, but
CMYK? I had to think. And what about HLS, Lab, or the CIE XYZ
color space? What did I really know about this "blue"
anyway? Were my rendered images being subtly ruined by incorrect
Alizarin Crimsons or by a scandalous shift of Blanched Almond to
Burly Wood? The more I pondered, the more it became clear that this
was the reason I'd missed out on Artist of the Year.
Granted, locating information about color space values on the
Internet is as difficult as finding the publication date for the
next volume of Harry Potter, but I panicked and "Blue: A
Primary Color," at the bargain price of $23.50, was quickly
sent to my Renderosity Shopping Cart. Admittedly, I panic easily;
when given a choice between paper and plastic at the grocery store
I offer to take everything home in my pants pockets. As for my 17
Barnes & Noble Membership Cards, the less said the better.
I did, however, decide to pause once again so that I could come up
with a more coherent purchasing strategy. Unfortunately I stopped
pedaling too abruptly and the pent up angular momentum of the
flywheel propelled me headlong at speeds just shy of the sound
barrier. I am happy to report that modern manufacturing techniques
allow for a surprisingly high tensile strength in consumer quality
LCD flat-screen monitors, although not high enough to keep my
forehead from becoming slightly birefringent.
After mopping up most of the blood I considered my next project: a
series of detailed images depicting a bleak, desolate future where
an oppressive authoritarian regime of demons and aliens holds sway
over a crushed remnant of humanity in an environmentally scarred
wasteland. But with a light, whimsical touch.
With this in mind, I noticed an expansion module for the TN-9000
Scram-Projectile Planetary Defense Base which includes new textures
to add lace doilies to the ion cannon point defense system,
Grandma's plastic covers for chairs in the Quantum Assault Tank,
and a variety of pastel window treatments to brighten up the
Hyper-Kinetic Blast Chamber. I also noted that the latest version
of the Draxillian Conquest Battle-Suit has a jacket made with a
fine gabardine for DAZ's Michael 3.0. And I was quite taken with a
series of espadrilles for Victoria 4.0 which make an exquisite
match to the Thorax Armour of Nirgil, certainly appropriate for
images of that Babylonian death god's horde relaxing at the beach
But with the sale prices I just couldn't resist adding more.
Sediment!: a background construction kit which shows subtle
variations in middle-Ordovician strata that will be easily visible
once Ultra-High Definition Video monitors become popular in the
2030s, simply screamed for inclusion. How could I ignore Xenoglaux,
a new character that looks like a cross between Mariah Carey and a
Long-whiskered Owlet. Or, Autoderv , a set of 2D billboards just
perfect for renders depicting Indefinite Integrals. And there was
no question that at $34.95 they were practically giving away the
building props for the business district of West Brandywine
Township, Pennsylvania. All of these were quickly added to my
already bloated cart.
With time running out I rushed to the Cart to click Checkout and
then Submit. After waiting several attoseconds without any response
I clicked Submit again. Then again. And again. Finally after
pounding down for the seventh time, my optical mouse flipped over
and the laser slipped into a mode suitable for LASIK surgery.
Before my retina overloaded I noticed that I had neglected to
include the special code which actually applied the sales
Oh well, I was still very happy with my haul of new products, or I
should say, my new purchase of six copies of each new product, even
if it meant that I would be dining on a smattering of dry macaroni
noodles each day for the remainder of the decade. After all, hadn't
I had some laughs, a few tears, all the while learning that I
needed to "always be myself" in the face of peer
Apparently not, I was simply overhearing my neighbor's TV as they
watched the end of a very special episode of "According to
AnteriorLobe (Ron Kollgaard)
Check out the latest Non-Canonical
Non-Canonical is the world's funniest weekly,
cgi comic about
a talking dinosaur who works at a low-budget TV
The AnteriorLobe Story
by Contributing Columnist
Ron Kollgard [AnteriorLobe]
A personal commentary about the critical, the
important, and other stuff.
Ron is also a member of the Renderosity Comics Team. Be sure to
catch his weekly comic strip, "Non-Canonical" among the
other fine works of our hard-working cartoonists.