Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sleddin' Trailer

"Sleddin" - the trailer from Viz Lab on Vimeo.

Created by John Pettingill

Aside from all of the work on Imprints that I completed last semester, there is also the highly technical side of my degree, which I am focusing on 3D lighting and rendering, for which I joined a team of lighters and effects artists to put the final touches on a film that has been in production in the Viz Lab for over a year now.  This is the trailer that we showed in the 2012 Fall show of the first 13 shots of the film.  Not all of them are 100% and we still have some work to do on color matching and fog, but we are excited for how it is turning out.  In case you were wondering, I was responsible for the lighting of shots 4, 6, and 8, and the compositing of shots 1, 4, 6, 8, and 9.  We plan to finish the film by the end of the spring semester, so until then, enjoy this teaser!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

MFA Show Walkthrough

2012 MFA Fall Show walkthrough from gunslingers19 on Vimeo.
Texas A&M's Master of Fine Arts in Visualization has their 2012 Fall show in Langford C's Studio A.

For those of you who like to see art in a more live setting, I did a video walkthrough of the show.  The video cam out a little fuzzy, so I apologize.

Highlights from my work in the 2012 MFA Show


My work demonstrates intimate realities that flow behind the façades I project into the world.  In conceptualizing these images I call upon the emotional undercurrents that clash with the carnal self; a self that enables one identity to conceal another.  Using a photographic emulsion and artificial light, I capture in silhouette the presence of my physical body.   The processes and surfaces resist my control; the resulting abstraction of the literal form articulate the otherwise concealed emotional and psychological structures.  The frustration of my inability to fully determine the outcome appear in the image as flaws, tears, fingerprints, and inadvertent patterns that communicate the dissonance between internal dialogue and outward appearance, revealing without my permission that which I had longed to hide
-R.J. Peña

Sunday, December 09, 2012

2012 Christmas Card!

It's that time of year again!  For my 2012 Christmas card design,  I think I've been feeling so busy and pulled in a million directions that I've begun to lose sight of the reasons why I do what I do.  So here is a little reminder :)  As usual, let me know if you would like some, the price is $25 for a pack of 10.  Also, if you'd like to receive one, send me your address!

Saturday, December 01, 2012


There were many times in my teen years that I felt trapped and overwhelmed by an intense sensation of loneliness which was often magnified by the opposing pressures of conforming to normalcy and natural desires.  For the most part I was able to keep these feelings at bay during the waking hours with my obsessive over achieving, but during the night when all of my distractions faded away and all that was left was me and my mind, I endured an overwhelming deluge of emotions from claustrophobia to depression, anxiety, and loneliness.  The periods of pain were such that all I could do was clutch my sheets and curl into a ball, riding the torrents until they inevitably subsided.

In conceptualizing this piece, I wanted to bring all of the factors leading into these events into the image and use the resulting contortion of my body to disturb the surface that my form is projected upon.  When I felt myself returning to these memories, I clutched the fabric and curled my body much like I did when I was younger and was able to capture not only a physical representation in the imagery, but a tactile distortion of the surface that mirrors the dissidence within my mind.  The folds created during the performance fracture and distort the proportions of my limbs and demonstrate my warped psychology.

When I viewed the completed piece with my professors we again experimented with rotating the composition to determine if there were any significant emotional/compositional changes and I was delighted to discover that the perceived emotion shifted based on the orientation.  The top left (also my favorite) feels as if the figure is falling and has been swept away by a torrent, the top right as if the figure is trapped within a box, the bottom right begins to introduce a sense of violence, as if the figure has been pushed or knocked over, completely losing its balance, and the final conveys the greatest sense of violence with the figure appearing to have landed roughly on its head.