Sunday, December 27, 2009

Ending the year with style

This here is Jonah's adventuring partner, Funlola, as mentioned earlier. Again, her design is based on my brother, Shobo's concept here, and although I changed some things about her I'd say I stuck pretty close to the original design. It must seem kind of annoying posting these character images without describing their back stories, but I must as I don't want to harm any story element Shobo intends to use in the future.
Well, I'm glad I got this final post in before the end of the year. I'm thinking 2010 is going to be a pretty interesting year, lots of exciting projects in the works for me. Also who knows, maybe some Croatian scientist is getting ready to unveil the worlds first functioning matter teleporter... fingers crossed.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Jonah lives!

So over the last few months work on Jonah has admittedly been slow, as a combination of freelance illustration work and learning new techniques hampered speed, however I learned several new things in the process of creating a fully rigged character from scratch. A lot of toenail-biting frustration and ludicrously long technical problem solving hours finally added up to the fact that I can now animate Jonah with a decent animation friendly rig that is not the rubbish, buggy rig system I used for my animated short earlier this year. I've also almost finished rigging Funlola as well so stay tuned for a very short test animation in the near future. For now enjoy Jonah's first hero shot in full Technicolor glory.

N:B: Been forgotting to mention that Jonah won the Best Bust/Character award at the Queen of the Rocketmen Hardcore Modeling Challenge at CG Society earlier in the year. You can see the work in progress thread here also.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Wood Spirits

Amazing. Two posts in one week! Setting standards that I'm pretty sure I can't maintain. Anyway since I enjoyed the process and subject matter so much, I felt compelled to do more sketches for the Eredo project. These are two common wood spirits that inhabit the forest of Eredo, referred to by Yoruba people as Oro/Iwin. Also I forgot to mention in the last blog post that I attended a lecture by animation legend Bill Plympton earlier this month at MCA, and got to meet him briefly thanks to my old animation professor. He seemed like an affable person and it was just fantastic learning about his techniques and philosophy.

Friday, November 20, 2009


I've been doing a lot of illustration lately and I decided to channel some of that energy toward a personal project. These are two quick sketches of the main antagonist for a project I've been developing in my spare time. Her name is Queen Sungbo and about a thousand years ago she once ruled over a really large portion of Southern Nigeria, specifically the area North East of present day Lagos. She was a childless widow and commissioned the building of Africa's largest earthwork, a 100 mile long (circumference) system of 20 meter high ramparts and ditches surrounding present day Ijebu Ode. I'm still working out the story of Eredo so I won't even try and explain any of it now, however Eniola as seen previously on the blog is the story's heroine.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Chatterbox Audio Theater


Silent Retreat

Over the last week, I worked on these illustrations for the wonderful people at Chatterbox Audio Theater in Memphis. They air live radio performances every month on WKNO, which can also be listened to on their site. In October they had a special Halloween program that they performed on the 31st from 7pm- 9pm which can be listened to here. I created two illustrations based on two stories from the program called Hypnosis, and Silent Retreat written by Robert Arnold, who is also the co-founder and executive director of Chatterbox Audio Theatre. They were really fun to work on as I got to experiment with some techniques and don't deal with material such as this very often Let me know what all ye in blogland think.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Funlola is bald!

Another character from my brother's comic. Her name is Funlola and yes, she's bald, uber tough, and she's Jupiter Jonah's fellow intrepid adventurer on their quest to find the Eye of Oduduwa. I stuck pretty close to my brother's original concept design above because it captured her attitude perfectly. Her suit also appealed to me because of how simple and striking it is. According to Shobo, she is part human, but mostly Jovian, an alien race of his making. My interpretation of Funlola is below.

With the pictures of her and Jonah below, I was hoping to achieve the intimidating physical presence that I perceived Funlola commanding over her peers in the comic. Right now I'm at the stage where I'm rigging the duo and all the texture work is done. So when I finally get some decent rigs done, you can all finally see them in color and maybe some animation... hopefully.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Africa Benson

Fell off the blog wagon for a little bit, but only because I've been quite busy working on a couple of projects, some of which I can't post just yet. Here is one I worked on in the last month for the writer/designer, Yegwa Ukpo also known as Spaceboy Nigeria. It was a pleasure working with him, and we had a lot to talk about the current state of Nigerian comics and entertainment. He commissioned me to do a T- shirt illustration of his new character, Africa Benson, a scientist and inter-dimensional traveler. I won't say much more than that about the character as you will be able to read more about her in the upcoming months on Yegwa's site and his upcoming comics. Anyway, the moment captured in the illustration depicts Africa's leap through an inter-dimensional warp portal. I wanted an iconic pose with lots of energy and strength. There are also concepts images and iterations it took to lock down her suit and final look. I would have liked to have kept the poncho in the final illustration but the pose would have made it look like a cape, which I didn't want. Let me know what you guys think.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Edward Usher Project

Edward Usher Run cycle from Kenneth Coker on Vimeo.

I just joined up with my brother on a video game called the Edward Usher Project. Its a 2d adventure platformer that looks wonderful, plays great, and is loosely based on Edgar Allen Poe's short story, The Fall of the House of Usher. I'm working on all the animations and character designs for the project and I have to say its quite fun working on 2d animation for a change. Here is a basic run and jump cycle I recently completed. Some of the frames seem kind of choppy because the game engine can only use 2 frames for the jump and 3 frames for the fall, but I think it looks pretty lively and stylized because of that. There's also a video of the game running with a stand in character here.
Anyway, I am however still working on an animatable 3d Jonah so have no fear, he'll show up before the end of the month... I hope.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Space Faring African

As promised, the sculpt of Jonah. Still to come... the fully pose able, animated leading man.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Jupiter Jonah

So I have put creating a color image of Eniola on hold for a while, but I have not been resting on my laurels for the past few weeks. Eniola is a Zbrush sculpt only at the moment and not really animation friendly and for some time I've really wanted to practice a range of animation principles with a humanoid character. I will also be attending Siggraph from August 4th to the 6th, and I wanted another character to add to my portfolio for the job fair there.

Anyway Jupiter Jonah is a great character that my brother, Shobo Coker created a while ago for a comic of the same name. He is currently working on it and has some fantastic images of the characters on his blog here and here. I decided to put my spin on Jonah. Here are my concept sketches with some actual 3d models and sculpts, and animation tests soon to come. So here he is folks, my version of the intrepid Jupiter Jonah: Space Faring African!

Monday, July 6, 2009

I Got Interviewed!

... Interviewed by the good folks at the African Digital Network. You can read the interview here.
Exciting stuff. hehe

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Shot Breakdown

Please click to read.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Demoreel '09

Kenneth S. Coker Demo Reel 09 from Kenneth Coker on Vimeo.

I finished my demoreel just in time for the end of the month. It spans the best of the cg work I've done over the last three years. Hopefully, this will be the key to getting a decent job in the animation/ videogame industry. The Shot Breakdown is here. Critiques would be much appreciated.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Some may have noticed that the last few updates on my blog have been Zbrush models. Well, over the last few weeks I decided to move past my usual tinkering with the program and really try and create presentable models with it. I was really unprepared for how lovely Zbrush is to model with. Simply put it is the best 3d modeling software I have ever used. I mean you see zbrush models on CG sites and think it must take forever, or deadly amounts of skill and time to achieve sculpts like that. While knowing other 3d software helped a lot in learning Zbrush, the program really does make you feel like you are actually physically sculpting clay. So anyone with real world scuplting experience will find it pretty wonderful. If only you could animate in Zbrush, then I would dump 3ds max in a proverbial heart beat.

Anyway, I finally realized this character design I've been trying to develop for ages. As stated above her name is Eniola, and she is a somewhat mischevious girl, who is in love with everything Bruce Lee. She has hand tailored a customized "Game of Death" banana yellow jumpsuit and a pair of lady Bruce Lee tiger shoes. Her physical attruibutes are modelled loosely on my sister who has a mole on her nose as well, and mother (both have scars on their chins). Like her idol she considers herself a citizen of the world and has great philosophical aspirations. Stay tuned for a high resolution, color post of Eniola.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Egungun Concept

This is a small project I'm working on at the moment. This is an Egungun, a messenger of the Yoruba god of death, Iku. I will be using Zbrush to make a digital sculpt of the character over the next couple of weeks. He's supposed to be a character in the upcoming animation I'm slowly working on with my brother. I posted a concept image for the project a while ago here. If you know my brother, Shobo, please poke and prod him about completing the script. Oh and here is the original sketch of the character I did last year.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Iwa from Kenneth Coker on Vimeo.

It is finally finished. It took roughly four months to create using 3ds Max, Adobe After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Logic Pro. It was written, directed, and animated by myself, original score and sound design by Michael Peery and Brian Truesby. Click here or on the image to watch in higher res. Enjoy.

Monday, April 13, 2009

A 1 minute trailer for Iwa

Its without sound at the moment as I'm still working on that, but next week the whole 9 minute short will be completed. Comments are very welcome.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Test Renders for the Orisha

Here's a couple of test renders of an Orisha who features as a sort of creator figure in my story.