Hi! It’s me! The creator!

Today is my birthday!  I’m forty-mumble-mumble years old.  And for my birthday I got myself a kinect.  And I got it to working with my windows pc!

I actually managed to successfully animate Lily through full body tracking!

It’s hard, though.  I have a few things I need to do.  First thing I need to do is pretty much dedicate a room to computer stuff, because I need a lot of space to move around in.  It seems that you can’t be too close to a kinect.  Also, some form of hand and face tracking is also necessary.  I think I can figure out the face tracking.  The hand tracking is a different story, and might require a glove or different piece of hardware.

Still, even if it comes to nothing, it’s really interesting technology.

There are other challenges as well.  The voice is very difficult to get right, even using a voice changer.  I can make it almost-but-not-quite convincing, there’s still a bit of a tell that I can’t seem to get rid of.  It’s not clear.  The technology just doesn’t seem to be quite there.  What I really need is technology that can separate my voice into its phonemes and reconstruct it as an entirely different voice.  But that technology does not seem to be available yet.  The other challenge is that this is a significant acting experience, and I have no experience at all acting, especially as someone the opposite gender.  It strikes me as incredibly ironic that technology that would be designed to aid male-to-female trans people would also very much assist me here as well – and I’m as straight and “cis” as they come.  Also, the kinect does not let me turn to the right or the left – that really confuses it for some reason.

On the one hand, I feel a little weird for even pursuing this.  I mean, a forty-mumble-mumble years old guy trying to animate a sixteen (oh wait, seventeen now) year old girl?  But on the other hand, I know my intentions – it’s really just because I don’t trust anyone else with my vision and I don’t have the money to hire an actress.  I wouldn’t mind doing that, tbh – a real life live action lily would be really cool – but that is such a pain that I’d just rather do it myself if I can.  This is an art project and nothing more, just a really involved one that requires yanking me quite far out of my comfort zone to be anywhere near successful.

But whatever.  I guess I’m learning useful stuff, such as it is.


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