The Finale

This page is dedicated to the growth we had here during Freestyle, showcasing 2 of the best pieces made to show growth and excellence. There were a lot of projects I made, some small, some big, and choosing which 2 projects to place here was a bit tough. The second one on this page was a must, there was no way I wouldn’t choose that one, but this first one really had me scratching my head on what to choose. Luckily, the rest of the website is here to see all of the other options I had, so I settled with the project that stuck out to me the most, the one where I could distinctly remember the difficulty in making the project.

“Positive Effect”

That is the title for my animated documentary. My documentary page has all of the extra information you may need. This project was one of the biggest contender for “there’s no way I’d do that in the future,” reason being that art wasn’t a strong point for me at all. That really just came down to my poor penmanship. My handwriting was lacking, and so was my drawing skills, so doing this project really had me thinking about what to do. When it came time to begin this project, I was still working on the writing piece for the documentary, which had a lot of information that I needed to keep out of the video if I wanted to keep it under the limit, which I believe was 3 minutes, since there’s no way we could make it any longer in just a couple of months. What I decided to do was to find a way to portray this message in a light-hearted way, because this was about stress management, which isn’t the most joy-filled topic out there, but positivity is what I was banking on. I wanted to find ways to make the visuals as comedic as possible for a semi-light hearted message, while also keeping my limits of art in general and devices in mind, since there was a lot of work I had to do on a MacBook alone. One of the most important things I kept in mind during the entire animating process was “consistency.” At least for my case, I believed that it’s fine for the artwork to be mediocre, as long as it’s consistently mediocre, sine I thought that having some shots be extremely detailed and some looked much worse would have made the overall product much worse. This project really pushed the limits of my artistic ability and my ability to plan out parts of the video, since I needed to find ways to make animating as effective as possible (which I definitely didn’t accomplish, because I animated purely using Photoshop, while others combined Photoshop or Animate with After Effects to make stringing parts together easier), as well as jumping around different scenes, since animating from start to finish wouldn’t have been ideal for me. At the end of it, I had a 2 minute and 15 second that complimented my written documentary well.


Heavy Moveset Showcase

There was basically a negative percent chance that I wouldn’t have this here. I did enjoy doing many of the projects in Freestyle, but this is the one of the few projects that I had true, genuine passion for. The explorations project was basically the start for this, giving me some insight in how SFM operates and how to preform certain tasks with it. I’ve written multiple documents detailing certain things about the project, and made a bunch of art to help the project. This was a big test to see just how well I could translate my vision into video form, and how much I wish you could just copy your imagination onto an .mp4 file, because good lord this took a long time. I put so much thought into just how the character would operate, as well as anticipate the many questions people would have about this topic. Now, the video is not perfect. I had to take a lot of creative liberties when making the video, and as a result, parts of the video should be different in the eyes of some due to opinions. For example, the alternate costumes for Heavy were one of the most difficult decisions to narrow down, because there was just so much I could do with that, given the amount of customizability you have in TF2. I tried to include some of the obvious costumes, as well as some of the more obscure choices to balance between familiar and obscure. Because of this, I’ve already gotten multiple people asking me why those were the ones I settled with. People said that the Commie and Jotaro ones were a bit unrealistic, and some said that not having a default BLU costume was a mistake. While I agree with these statements, it’s my job to tell them that it was a matter of personal preference, and that we aren’t all going to agree on certain parts of the video, which is a good thing. It’s good to gauge conversations about the topic like this, I get to hear what people have to say, positive or negative, agreements or disagreements, and I enjoyed that. This project taught me just how much one person with a determined mind can do.


Animation Reel

This was a short project which served as the final assignment in Animation. Reels have the job of presenting the work a person has done to someone, primarily an employer, and showcase the growth an artist has achieved throughout a large span of time within a couple of minutes. This reel contains only animation projects, but showcases nearly everything I’ve made in animation:

NikoJ – Animation Reel



The Freestyle experience was unlike any other I’ve had. I’ve been involved in media production quite a bit prior to coming here, but Freestyle taught me a number of new things, especially animation, since I never made higher quality animations before Freestyle. What I valued about being a Freestyle student is that not everything in life is fair. There are a lot of things I have done that I did not want to do or did not like doing, and some things in Freestyle are no exception, but what it taught me is that you are just going to have to take it to the chin and just do it. The things that motivate me the most when I do anything is showing my worth, and that I have to just get it done, no matter how much I don’t enjoy it, no matter how much I have to compromise things I do enjoy, no matter how many hours of sleep I lose, I just have to do it, and there aren’t other options, but once the product is finished, I can at least feel relief over finishing, and at most extreme joy for doing something I wanted to do. Even doing some the things I didn’t want to do, I still got some insight on what it took to make such a thing. I didn’t really enjoy the music production unit, but it did show me what it took to make good music. The coding unit was just down the middle, didn’t love it and definitely didn’t dislike it, and it showed me what it took to code something good. The Zenith project was everything I wanted to do, and it showed me what it took to make a good animated video. These 2 projects I’ve shown really pushed my artistic capabilities, and these videos are evidence to me that I can talk about topics that I am knowledgeable or passionate about creatively, as long as I put my mind to it. The question at this point is what is in store for the future. In terms of a profession, that is still something I need to think about, but as of the end of my senior year, I’ll be going into economics, but will continue to create some types of media as a hobby, or even as a profession if I am willing to do so.