making an Arsenic Lullaby NFT...the hard way

in OnChainArt9 months ago (edited)

find finished gif on SuperRare

When we last left our hero...I was in the middle of making an Arsenic Lullaby gif as an NFT. least what I THOUGHT was the middle. I'll remind us all now that I have story boarded several cartoons, including one that was thirty minutes long which I also directed, created the cells, and did a solid share of the animation for, so a simple few second gif should have been a minimal challenge at best.

(first blog here, though it's not necessary to read to understand this one)

I joke about about how behind the times I am in using an actual brush to ink things...and that's true to some extent true, but I do actually know how to use modern things. I do it when called on.

See...Dwight Eisenhower and Douglas MacAthur were two of the greatest Generals in WW2, they were very different. Dwight was uninspired, basic but very meticulous and MacArthur was inventive, and very creative in problem solving but balked at standard procedural stuff. They loathed each other.

"I thought this blog was going to be about making cryptoart"

I'm getting to that...the example of these two guys is an analogy for this whole mess...just...f*cking, go with it.

They worked side be side for a little while, here's what they had to say about each other...

MacArthur once said “he [Eisenhower] was the best clerk I ever had.”

Eisenhower’s summation of his time serving with MacArthur: “I studied dramatics under him [MacArthur] for seven years.”

The point is they were two different personalities, approaching things from different sides of the brain.

If you're working on a large creative project with a lot of ingredients, you want to be BOTH of these men. If you are dull and uninspired it's not going to turn out, and if you are all inspiration and energy with no pragmatism it's also not going to turn out.

I went into this full on MacArther and zero Eisenhower.

Which is how you end up doing way more work than you needed to.

These (below) are just the cells for the smoke. Drawing them by hand, while an outdated way of doing things, isn't the problem and serves a purpose visually. The PROBLEM is this is about HALF of the smoke cells I drew and I didn't even end up using all of these.

AC smoke.jpg

This is the way to do sht 50 years ago when you couldn't just adjust the speed off animation with one click or shift and tweek little parts of an image with one click. This is how you do sht when you don't stop...and figure out the foundation of the thing first.

The simple foundation, as in - How many frames per second to I want? That will determine the amount of movement there needs to be between frames for the cells. Instead of drawing all the sh*t on a light table, plugging it in and realizing most of it is superfluous or just flat out wrong.

At about the actual mid way through this I did lay out a plan...


Madness, but it's a step above how I was going about this, which was trial and error, rinse repeat.

You want a good laugh? This is my traditional art based mind's idea of using the benefits of technology.

AC saucers.jpg

Instead of redrawing all of the saucers by hand several times slightly differently to give the illusion of movement, I just drew out the lines that hand.

shrug's progress. It got me to this point anyways...


The larger problem, the actual dilemma beyond even not having a plan. The smoke- which brings the composition together nicely, can look like this...

AC smoke 0.jpg

It's a captured moment in time. But you can't animate it like that because that's not how smoke works. It goes straight up unless some air current moves it around...but it's not going to have part of the flow go sideways and the other go straight up.


If this was a split second static image, that lower part of the smoke could being hit by some airflow as the rest is already on it's way up...but...this isn't a split second shot anymore. So THAT was a whole vexing problem. I could have done it abstractly and just had the smoke defy the laws of physics...use "artistic license" as they say. But that just ended up seeming very weird in a image that was more or less behaving in a non abstract world. So I just kept jacking around with it until I found a happy medium.

Which brings us to the next bout of madness...


This had like 30 different layers all for some smoke, flying saucers and three aliens...that I would tweek one element of, play, tweek, play, tweek....realize that I now had to tweek something else because of that last tweek...realize that those tweeks ruined something I tweeked earlier. Eisenhower would have figured all that out before he drew on single refined cell...of course Eisenhower would never have come up with the idea. Different talents, different brains, all come with different blind spots, and mine, among others, comes with overthinking minor details to the point of insanity...

Here's just a few different tries on how fast the eyes should move and in what kind of order...




"I don't really see much of a difference, they all look fine"

...I know. I KNOW..ha..hahaha...hahaahahahahahaaaaa ( cries).

Now, here's the really nice thing about putting work up on a blockchain. Once it is up, IT IS UP. As in DONE and can not be changed. That project is finished and you now MUST let it go and move onto the next thing.

Anyways...all in all...that was pretty fun! and it turned out decent, I'd say.

You can find in on SuperRare!

Give it a look, and feel free to come back here and tell me it was worth the effort.

Now then, I have some commissions to finish, a comic book to finish up, and next gif.



And as always, my home base is here-

and you can find me here-



If you want to try the easy way that's a little bit closer to home and won't cost you a small fortune in transaction fees, we'd love to see you @nftshowroom!

I appreciate the invite, though I fail to see how being on another platform would make the process of making the gif any easier

I misunderstood from the title, but yea making gifs in general is a pain... I actually made my first one a couple days ago and I don't know if it'll help you or not, but using helped with the transitions and kept me from having to duplicate as many of the images. I actually did mine by hand ironically, as I'm very far from what I'd consider a visual artist.

The main reason we started the site on HIVE though was to avoid the headache of dealing with ethereum and to make things cheaper for the artists, but I definitely shouldn't have assumed that's what you meant (especially after the headache of making a gif myself the other day lol). Anyways, best of luck on selling your first NFT, it gets quite addictive!

 9 months ago 

that was soooo good!!

Thanks! Glad you liked it

The trials of being a perfectionist.

I assume I would need some Ethereum to bid on the GIF, but I don't have any right now. Hope you get a good price.

ah...if only there was some way to get Ethereum. oh well ;)

I need to watch the finances right now. Not been to work on a while.

I really enjoy your style, looks great ;)

No matter branching paths, along with the trials and tribulations that happened along the way, the end result is astonishing! I have to admit though, as someone who doesn't know anything about creation artwork, reading your due process brought up one GIF to mind... 😆

That sums up the whole ordeal perfectly

Lol, having used AutoCAD and SketchUp quite a fair bit in the past, I can definitely feel your pain. It's a hard life 🙃