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OUR MISSION: To explore innovative ideas, to seek out creative minds and new inspirations, to boldly go where no creative has gone before!

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my articles on cg+news

Check out the motion picture and broadcast industry articles I’ve written on cg+news.

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Getting Creative Things Done

It’s hard for creatives to get things done. With constant deadlines, and being bombarded from all directions, being creative for extended periods of time is difficult. Cal Newport on the99percent.com recently wrote about this. The following are some excerpts – consider it the ‘Cliff Notes’ of the article. What Is Needed for Good Creative Work? In his oft-cited essay– Maker’s Schedule, Manager’s Schedule, Paul Graham highlights the unique demands of creative work (the type of work produced by a “maker,” in Graham’s lexicon). The maker’s schedule, he explains, is defined by long, open stretches of uninterrupted work. For a maker, “a single meeting can blow a whole afternoon.” Graham describes his own schedule, from his time working in a software start-up, as starting after dinner and lasting until 3am, explaining: “At night no one could interrupt me.” In Graham’s construction, Newport identified two justifications for the importance of long stretches of uninterrupted work: Shifting Mental Modes: When the mind knows it has no interruptions looming, it can shift into the flow state required to produce high-quality output. Providing Freedom to Explore: Real creative work is non-linear, often requiring long, unexpected detours to uncover the contours of the problem at hand. Long stretches of time provide the freedom needed to feel comfortable indulging in these detours. As Newport states, the problem faced by to-do list creatives is that we cannot afford to integrate Graham’s long stretches of uninterrupted work into our schedules. With this in mind, Newport came up with the ‘GCTD system’ which attempts to replicate the two benefits of uninterrupted work, as described above, in a more realistic, logistics-respecting...

Tackling Logwatch Results

Server stuff….otherwise knows as server admin tasks….can take a lot of time. And for those of us who wear many hats, managing our web server is just one of the many things we have to do. So let’s take a look at our logs. I was noticing strange entries in logwatch, so I decided to tackle a few. I’ve put the results below in hopes that they can save someone else a bit of time. logwatch error: ——————— Automount Begin ————————**Unmatched Entries**lookup_read_master: lookup(nisplus): couldn’t locate nis+ table auto.master: 1 Time(s) solution:– edit /etc/auto.master– comment out +auto.master  logwatch error: ——————— Named Begin ————————**Unmatched Entries**client 1.202.214.2 query (cache) ‘ns1.themotiongroup.tv/AAAA/IN’ denied: 10 Time(s)client 1.202.214.2 query (cache) ‘ns2.themotiongroup.tv/AAAA/IN’ denied: 10 Time(s)client 1.202.220.5 query (cache) ‘ns1.themotiongroup.tv/AAAA/IN’ denied: 9 Time(s)…and a ton more of these solution:– edit /etc/resolv.conf– add Google’s nameservers at the top of your file:   nameserver 8.8.8.8   nameserver 8.8.4.4 logwatch error: ——————— Named Begin ————————network unreachable resolving ‘100.53.194.220.in-addr.arpa/PTR/IN’: 2001:13c7:7002:3000::11#53: 1 Time(s)network unreachable resolving ‘100.53.194.220.in-addr.arpa/PTR/IN’: 2001:43f8:110::10#53: 1 Time(s)network unreachable resolving ‘100.53.194.220.in-addr.arpa/PTR/IN’: 2001:500:13::c7d4:35#53: 1 Time(s)… and tons more solution:– edit /etc/sysconfig/named– add the following:  OPTIONS=”-4″  This will cause the BIND server to only resolve or use IPV4 and disable IPV6 support. Save the file and restart BIND server. logwatch error: ——————— pam_unix Begin ————————sshd:Authentication Failures:   root (113.108.103.11): 440 Time(s)   …and many more  Getting lot’s of authentication errors? Most likely people who have too much time on their hands and want to hack your server. Here’s a couple of things I did:disable root user login 1. Add a new user. The following example, I added the user admin. I’d pick something more unique, as it will help prevent...

speaking at The Adobe Post Show 2012

I’ll be speaking at The Adobe Post Show, October 15-17, 2012  in ABQ. NM. The Adobe Post Show takes place immediately after motion. It’s 2.5 days of Adobe Production Premium workflow sessions designed specifically for pros in the film, broadcast and game industries. See you...

speaking at motion 2012

I’ll be speaking at motion, October 12-14, 2012 in ABQ. NM. motion is a mind-bending two day ride – what we refer to as the “TED talks” of our industry. motion speakers are the top creative thinkers and innovators in motion graphics, animation, and vfx. A concept borrowed from TED, each speaker is on stage for 20 minutes giving the talk of their life on subjects they’re passionate about. Talks that revolutionize the industry. Talks that revitalize the creative muse. Hope to see you...

Mac OS X Lion + Boot Camp + Windows 7

With our upcoming motion conference – not to mention the fact that I’m speaking at Adobe MAX right before our show – I’m not ready to risk installing Mac OSX Lion on my MacBook Pro – or our production Mac Pro machines that we use for motion graphics and post. But I have been curious about Lion and what it has to offer. So I decided to reformat one of our MacBook Unibody laptops (the cool little aluminum one that they only made one year – 2009) to play around with OS X Lion. I also wanted to install a Boot Camp Windows 7 partition on this machine as well to use as our QuickBooks machine – the only Windows software we run. While there were some roadblocks that I hit along the way, ultimately it worked like a charm. So let’s take a look at the roadblocks – in hopes it will help others prevent these setbacks. Challenge 1: Mac OS X Lion Clean Install Whenever we upgrade our machines to a major release build, we always reinstall. I find that this always provides the best results – and heck – it makes you feel like you have a brand new computer ;). Generally, I insert the Mac OS X install DVD and boot from it by holding down the ‘C’ key on startup. Then, I run Disk Utility to reformat the hard drive, and finally, install the OS. But what do we do now that Mac OS X Lion is a download from the App Store vs. being an actual DVD to install from? We create our...

Minimalism. A New Approach for Adobe.

I’m an avid fan of Adobe software applications. I love the way Adobe products easily integrate with one another and facilitate efficient workflow. I have been a long time user of After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Flash – in fact, most of the applications in the Adobe Master Collection.

speaking at motion 2011

I’ll be speaking at motion, October 9-11, 2011 in ABQ. NM. motion is a mind-bending two day ride – what we refer to as the “TED talks” of our industry. motion speakers are the top creative thinkers and innovators in motion graphics, animation, and vfx. A concept borrowed from TED, each speaker is on stage for 20 minutes giving the talk of their life on subjects they’re passionate about. Talks that revolutionize the industry. Talks that revitalize the creative muse. I’ll be presenting When Time is of the Essence – join me in ABQ next month! When Time is of The Essence We’ve all been in this situation. The client wants a compelling motion graphic or vfx piece. The initial meeting was a great success. They have the budget. All the stars are aligning…and it looks like it’s going to be an exciting project! The only problem? They need it in half the time that’s humanly possible to create it. What’s the key to ‘on-demand’ brainstorming and creative thinking? How do you generate multiple ideas without losing steam? What are some organizational techniques that will improve your workflow. How do you deal…when time is of the essence. Join motion producer Elaine Montoya, in the second of our motion 2011 interactive sessions, designed specifically for motion designers and creatives faced with short deadlines. If this isn’t you…I want your job. …the rest of the sessions check it out: Q. Why should I be at motion? // THE RIGHT BRAIN // A 3-minute Short…Everyday Elastic Spaces Exploring the Intersection of Advertainment and Storyselling Failure is Not an Option Fresh Out of the Starting Gate Change...

speaking at The Adobe Post Show

I’ll be speaking at The Adobe Post Show, October 12-14, 2011 in ABQ. NM. The Adobe Post Show takes place immediately after motion. It’s 2.5 days of Adobe Production Premium workflow sessions designed specifically for pros in the film, broadcast and game industries. I’ll be presenting Putting it all Together: My Strong Suite, and a mini-lab: You’ve Got Flash in My After Effects. Putting it all Together: My Strong Suite Throughout The Adobe Post Show you’ve had the opportunity to explore the majority of the Production Premium CS5.5 applications. Now, let’s put it all together and see how well they play with one another. In this session, using Premiere Pro as our base application, you learn how to work smarter and faster when working with After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash – and Adobe’s latest addition to the power suite: Adobe Audition. It’s a complete, roundtrip professional editing package. Make it your ‘strong suite’! You’ve Got Flash in My After Effects // MiniLAB In the broadcast and motion picture industries, Flash is known as a character animation tool that is being used more commonly for full length animated features. But there’s another side of Flash that will enhance the motion graphics designer’s toolkit as well – integrating Flash and After Effects. In this 75-minute hands-on BYOL* MiniLAB, we’ll explore how these two powerhouse tools play well with one another. After a brief exploration of the similarities and differences between After Effects and Flash, and the scripting languages provided by each application, we’ll create a couple of projects that will explore transparent video, taking advantage of Expressions, and working with 3D cameras and...

about me…

creative

I love to create. Whether it’s creating motion graphics for broadcast, sharing my thoughts on motion.tv, or curating our annual show, being a creative is what fuels me.

producer

As the producer of motion, I where many hats. Creative director, production designer, web developer, graphic designer – whatever it takes. The outcome? An amazing annual show.

geek

I’m known for being a creative technologist. A unique blend of left & right brain. When in left-brain mode, I program in PHP, Javascript, and build our servers from the ground up on AWS.

elaine montoya
  • right brain 50%
  • left brain 50%

the details…

I’ve been described as a “right-down-the-middle-left-brain/right-brain creative technologist”. But since the right-brain/left-brain myth has been debunked, I prefer to think of myself simply as a creative. Someone who needs to feed both the stereotypical left brain and the stereotypical right brain.

Have I always been this way? It would seem so. I started my college career at the University of NM with a NASA scholarship in computer science and electrical engineering – satiating my left brain with logical, precise, and structured skill sets. But after graduating, my right brain screamed ‘what about me!’ Not one to ignore the whole-brain, I earned a second degree in graphic design from The Art Institute of Colorado.

Next chapter: Art Director for ad agencies. Founder of the visual design firm zocoloco studios. Won numerous awards. Was published in HOW Magazine. Taught at The Art Center.

Now, almost 3 decades later, life is filled with a wide range of seemingly juxtaposed experiences ranging from After Effects to AWS, PHP to print design, MySQL to motion graphics and video post-production.

Up until 10 years ago, I thought I was an anomaly. But I’ve since found out I am not alone. I am a creative. It is who I am.

Thus began the voyage of the motion.tv network. Its mission: to explore innovative thoughts, to seek out creative minds and new inspirations, to boldly go where no creative has gone before. And for the past seven years, we’ve done just that – providing online content for creatives in the motion picture and broadcast industries on motion.tv, streaming live shows like the annual Made with After Effects Awards, and most importantly, giving birth to motion…a place where people – not unlike myself – can come together each October and celebrate who we are: creatives.

Teacher. Speaker. Writer. Adobe Community Professional. I am happiest when I can truly create – and equally as delighted when other creatives remember what that experience is like, and are inspired to do the same.

On – and one more thing…in my spare time, I enjoy cycling, art, reading – and day spas. And, as a breast cancer survivor, I’m committed to advancing survivorship issues.

I am elaine montoya. I am a creative.