Different is good!

According to Merriam Webster, the definition of unique is “being the only one, being without like or equal, distinctively characteristic, and unusual.”

This week’s competition was really fun because we got to see a lot of different kinds of images made with Poser.

This week’s winner is Furious Flurry by Tessalynne who has been using Poser for about four years.

“Furious Flurry was actually born from my personal struggle to come up with a ‘unique’ Poser image.  We are such a varied group of users, that I was finding it very difficult to come up with an image that I hadn’t seen done by someone before.”

Tessalynne

When I asked her to pick her favorite thing about Poser, she had trouble choosing just one. She loves IDL, the material room, and the stability of Poser. “I have several applications that I use, but Poser is the only one that I can literally have open for days working on a scene without having crash issues.”

It’s definitely unique. Congratulations Tessalynne and enjoy Poser Pro 2010! Check out all of the submissions for our Most Unique Poser image. Different is good :)

We still have two weeks left in our Poser Image Contest. Next week’s theme is Best Self-Portrait Image. Zip your image, along with a picture of yourself (it doesn’t have to be an exact match), and submit it here before Sunday at midnight. Don’t forget to note in the Additional Credit, Figures or Content Shown field that it’s for the blog contest!

Thank you to everyone that has participated so far! And if you’re into writing and want to win some ridiculously cool prizes, check out our 15th Anniversary Contest.


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Week 2: Faces of Poser winner(s)

When I’m at a restaurant I have trouble choosing just one thing. But I want the shrimp cocktail and the burrito. Why do I have to decide? And sometimes the revelation comes to me: I don’t have to! I’ll get them both!

That’s what happened with this week’s image contest, Faces of Poser/Portrait Image. We had a tie between two images, and I asked Poser Product Manager Steve Cooper to break the tie.

“What a great set of images to pick from,” he said. “I love how they’re just so different. I can’t say which one is better.” He didn’t want to pick, so I suggested that both of them win.

The first is called Zona Sul by Kalypso, who’s been using Poser for more than 11 years.

The inspiration? “Lately I’ve been playing with reflections in Poser especially for windows or other surfaces and was listening to music when I heard the ‘Girl from Ipanema.’  That’s when I got the idea to show a portrait in the sunglasses.”

Kalypso

I’ll admit, I listened to the song. Kalypso also wanted to say, “I’d like to thank bagginsbill for sharing his work with us in the community. I’m aware of his contribution to the Poser library but for me it’s his work on shaders and lighting that has made all the difference in my images. In Zona Sul I’ve used his environmental sphere and skin shaders (VSS) both of which I find enhance the realism of my images.”

Nicely done Kalypso, and congrats!

The other winning image is Wacantognaca by Michael Michaelson who’s been using Poser since 1997 thanks to a former colleague who introduced him while working in graphic design.

His inspiration for Wacantognaca, which can also be spelled Wacantognaka and means generosity in the Lakota language, is “the beauty and proudness of the Native American people.”

Michael Michaelson

Michael loves the Poser community, the software engineers and Poser. “One of my favorite features of Poser is the outstanding workflow! It makes it easy to work the whole way with an idea, from start to finish. I love it!”

Our Poser image contest has really brought together some amazing images. You can check out all of the submissions here. If you’re interested in submitting for the rest of the contests, check out the themes and rules.

One thing I didn’t make clear and will apply only to the final two weeks of the contest is that only one image submission is allowed per person. I was a little lax on the rules before because that one was only listed in the blog comments.

All submissions will count for this week’s theme, Most Unique Poser Image.

Thanks for playing everyone!

Poser celebrates 15 years with a killer contest!

I remember turning 15. I was so excited because I got my learner’s permit, which meant I could terrorize other drivers on the road and give my mother gray hair all at once. It was a beautiful time, really.

Poser’s turning 15 this year, and while it’s probably given its developers a few gray hairs, it’s never going to be able to drive a car. So since we don’t have to spend all of our money on higher insurance and a beater car, we’re buying prizes for a killer anniversary contest.

poser anniversary

There are loads of prizes, including the grand prize, worth $3,000! Holy hannah, there’s a MacBook Pro Laptop & 64GB Wi-Fi Ipad! All you have to do is write us a love letter. I can’t wait to read all of these! (For complete details, read this.)

In addition to the contest, we’ve compiled a history of Poser, complete with a letter from Larry Weinberg (Poser’s Dad), anecdotes from over the years by Poser Product Manager Steve Cooper, profiles of Poser staff and artists, and some old school Poser animations.

Check it out and enter the anniversary contest. We had fun over the years and are looking forward to hearing how you’ve had fun too!


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Poser eye candy: Fairies and WINTWAS

One of the things I like about my job is that I can make executive decisions. Well OK, maybe not executive decisions (that’s what The Boss is for), but mid-level decisions to be sure.

And since we had two categories for our Poser Anniversary Image Contest this week and some really great entries, I decided we should have two winners: one winner for the Best Fairy and another winner for Best Woman in a Temple With a Sword.

The winner of the Best Woman in a Temple With a Sword is The Victress, by Jackie (or PropsChick). She was inspired by the female version of her name, Victress.

Jackie PropsChick

She’s  been using Poser since 2006 and found out about it through an online 3D world game.

Her favorite feature of Poser is “the content creation aspect. Second would be the ability to work with such a wide variety of content and mix them together as I did in the image.”

The winner of the Best Fairy is Woodland Radiance, by Candace. Her inspiration came from a fairy figurine at her friend’s house.

“Everything else just came as I worked. I find that if I have a strict idea of what I want for an image, it never turns out the way I wish,” she said. “I start with the vaguest idea and let it grow on its own.”

Candace's artHer favorite feature in Poser is Image Based Lighting, and when I asked what her preferred superpower would be she said she was wavering between flying or breathing underwater. She settled on flying, which is great, because then I could take the underwater breathing ;)

Congratulations to Candace and Jackie! If you want to see all the entries for last week, you can check them out here. Remember you have until Sunday night at midnight to enter this week’s contest: Best “Faces of Poser” Portrait/Headshot Image. Submit it here and be sure to include “Faces of Poser image contest” in the specific software field.

Check out the contest’s upcoming themes. And a clarification: The Best Self Portrait should be created in in Poser. Please zip it in a file along with a photo of the artist as a comparison. Thanks for all the images so far. This is really a lot of fun for us!


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Some refreshing Friday inspiration

When it comes to deadlines, sometimes I need a reminder, a little inspiration and a bit of incentive. (Coffee works really well.)

I’m using this blog post as your reminder for the weekend: you have until Sunday night to submit your art for our Poser image contest! This week’s theme is Best Woman in a Temple with a Sword or Fairy Image.

Here’s your inspiration: This image Fae Folk is one of my favorites in our Poser Facebook gallery right now. (It’s not been submitted to the contest; it’s just inspiration.) Send us your fairies and WINTWAS!

And here’s your incentive: The winner will receive Poser 8 or Poser Pro and get their art featured on the blog! So it’s like money in your pocket and free advertising. What’s not to like about that reward? Sorry, I couldn’t figure out a way to give out coffee via blog post ;)

Have a great weekend and don’t forget to check out the upcoming themes for the image contest!


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Show Poser 8 some love

vote for poserI’ve never been a huge reality TV fan, but I will admit (with a minimal amount of shame) that I voted for a particular American Idol. She was so awesome and entertaining that I felt she earned my vote.

Poser 8 may not sing pop songs in different outfits in front of a panel of celebrity judges, but the cool thing is that it could! So if you think Poser 8’s earned it, show us some love and vote in the MacUser Awards! (And don’t be intimidated by all the personal info the site asks for; you don’t have to fill it out to submit your ballot.)

All of us here at Smith Micro say thanks in advance! Without all of its users, Poser would have never made it on the ballot to begin with.

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Let’s play giveaway! Who wants Poser?

If there’s one thing I’ve realized in this job, it’s that I love to give things away. All of the people who have won Poser and Manga Studio and iPads have been stoked! And happiness is contagious, so I like to be around it as much as possible.

So when we started talking about the Poser 15 year anniversary, we wanted to go big. Trust me, it’s gonna be huge. But that’s next month. I couldn’t wait that long to give something away, so we’ve decided to start a little early. For the next five weeks, we’re having a weekly image contest. Each week will have a different theme, like portraits, and the winner will receive a copy of Poser 8 or Poser Pro 2010.

Each week you can submit an image based on that particular theme for a chance to win. Our stellar web team will pick their favorite — we’re looking for the best use of Poser’s strengths. (Hint: lighting is key!) Here are the categories for each week, so you can get started.

8/23-8/29: Best Woman in a Temple with a Sword or Fairy Image
8/30-9/5:  Best “Faces of Poser” Portrait/Headshot Image
9/6-9/12:  Most Unique Poser Image
9/13-9/19:  Best Self-Portrait Image
9/20-9/26: Best representation of the 15 years of Poser

Here’s the legal mumbo jumbo: You can enter one or all of the themes.  Images should be made with Poser. Enter using the Image Submission Form, but you MUST note that you are entering the blog contest of the week in the Additional Credit, Figures or
Content Shown
field.

Images must match the theme for the week that they are entered and be received during the submission period and by the end of Sunday Pacific time.  You cannot submit images in advance for future weeks in the contest. (Sorry about the boring stuff, but it’s gotta be in here somewhere!)

The winner of the week will be featured along with their image the next week in the blog and will also receive a copy of Poser Pro 2010 or Poser 8. It’ll be really cool to get a closer look both at images made with Poser and the artists who create them. I’m really excited!

The coolest part is that the best is yet to come. Our anniversary prizes are making me super jealous of whoever wins. But that comes later ;) Let the image creation, giveaways, and happiness begin!


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Poser Pro users spoke and we listened!

The last part of July was a pretty big whirlwind for a lot of us, what with San Diego Comic-Con and Siggraph back-to-back. Steve Cooper, Poser product manager worked especially hard showing off all the things that can be done in Poser.

He must have some amazing images made with Poser on that iPad!

But we’re back to business as usual (or close to it anyway) and Cooper and the Poser engineering team had a chance to address some things in the latest Poser Pro Service Release.

“We were able to get back down to finishing up some work on Poser Pro 2010’s support for Maya 2011 via an updated PoserFusion plug-in. This is provisional (beta) support at this point, meaning that we are currently only able to handle uncompressed Poser content in Maya 2011,” he said.

“Older versions of Maya can handle both compressed and uncompressed Poser content. While we wanted to provide level support across all versions of Maya, we received lots of requests for the update and decided to release it so that our users can work with Poser Pro 2010 and the newest version of Maya.”

Way to put your nose back to the grindstone Cooper! Poser Pro users: Download the SR 1.1.

Poser knows: Don’t hassle the Hoff

When I have an idea, I’m very quick to write it down. Visual artists are more apt to sketch it. Others use props (like salt shakers or cell phones) to get their point across.

But what happens if you’re pitching an idea to a super-awesome celebrity? Say you want to sell David Hasselhoff on riding a giant bus through San Diego during Comic-Con. Drawings on the back of a coaster might not work. You probably wanna use Poser.

Comic-Con Hoff Parade

Gary Randall produced this illustration with Poser when he sold David Hasseloff on the idea of singing on top of a bus for Comic-Con. I think it’s pretty convincing. Did it work?

Gary Randall and his Poser illustration have come to life!


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Some news IS good news!

While some people may believe that no news is good news, I disagree. One of my favorite things is receiving mail. Sometimes opening it can be a bummer, but the initial letter in my mail box always makes me smile.

So I was thrilled to send letters (I can call e-mail a letter, can’t I?) to the winners of our comment contest over the past week. We selected seven winners at random, one commenter from each blog post.

As you can imagine, they were equally as excited. OK, maybe a little more excited than me: “Oh wow! How exciting! I’m bouncing in my chair now!”

Poser pro mad maxine

I won?!? I'll take...this one!

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who participated in the comment contest. It was a lot of fun. (And it really stroked my writer ego to see those 80-some comments, even if we were giving away software!)

As a thank you for those who didn’t win the software, you can take 10% off at Content Paradise. The coupon code: 3ATrebec. As in 3 Alex Trebecs. I know! I like Jeopardy too!

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