Summary

The scarcity of resources has driven bands of humans and robots to subsist by scrounging, and making deals. The self-replicating VonNeuman machines, robots who once performed tasks for man now guide themselves, gathering information, and controlling the world’s nearly exhausted resources. John Henry, a field mechanic/engineer, working aboard the KRAWLR in the wasteland of the Uncanny Valley, discovers a singularity within a unique fembot. He believes this Gynoid with it’s evolving AI to be the key to changing the world.
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Drab Future is a sci-fi web-series. It is centered around an alternate timeline leading to dystopian society, with few alienated people left.

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If you haven’t already added Drab Future on Facebook, you should and spread the word on twitter and Facebook. Please re-tweet and share. We need to increase awareness. The more people we can tell about this the greater it will be!

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Summary

The scarcity of resources has driven bands of humans and robots to subsist by scrounging, and making deals. The self-replicating VonNeuman machines, robots who once performed tasks for man now guide themselves, gathering information, and controlling the world’s nearly exhausted resources. John Henry, a field mechanic/engineer, working aboard the KRAWLR in the wasteland of the Uncanny Valley, discovers a singularity within a unique fembot. He believes this Gynoid with it’s evolving AI to be the key to changing the world.
poster1_gynoid
Drab Future is a sci-fi web-series. It is centered around an alternate timeline leading to dystopian society, with few alienated people left. We are working on shooting a 10min pilot to begin the production and will continue to create episodes as quickly as we can. Once the world is established and the series continues I’d love to involve more artists to add to the world; to further populate it with their characters and add to the vision.

Bio

My name is Brad Isdrab, I’ve been sculpting and exhibiting my work in galleries since 2001 in various galleries from San Francisco to San Diego, New York and Pennsylvania. I create hand-cast and painted editions of my sculptures as well as produce short films and books.

I studied sculpture at the Academy of Art University and later turned my love of form into articulated puppets which could be brought to life through stop motion animation. My graduate work, Boris and Bianca, focused on interactivity and storytelling. Since 2006 he has been working full-time as a designer, producing motion graphics animation, and working in the visual effects and feature film industry for such companies as The Orphanage, Image Movers Digital, and Industrial Lights and Magic.

I’ve been creating the parts of this for years now, and only now have enough put together to be able to share it all with you.

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Why

This is going to happen. I want to make this world. This is simply what I must do. However, with your help I can create a lot more, and you’ll be enabling me to do it better. I’ve been working in a vacuum which is slow and difficult and its time to share it.

With your support I’ll be able to increase the scope.  The models and props I’ve built have been what I can manage in my studio. The studio itself I’ve built into an interior set. The purpose of this campaign is to take this out of the workshop and bring it into the world. I’d love to be able to create larger models, bigger mechs and robots, more intricate models.

For the full pilot I’m going to need access to a need real locations, the wasteland, shipping yard, places where my actors can safely run around with prop airsoft guns without being arrested, which means I’m going to need permits and potentially insurance.

I’m planning to begin principal photography this July, which gives me only three months to finish all the models, costumes and secure the locations.

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How

I’ve been calling upon favors from friends from the industry, and have put together a core team of dedicated people for this project. It is a labor of love for us all. No one is getting paid, we just love to see this kind of film and believe in old-school practical effects.

I’ve been very fortunate for the people who have volunteered their time and skills for this project. I’m keeping the crew to a bare minimum and not getting too bogged down with job titles, we each have particular tool sets but also share the willingness to do what needs to be done on set to get the shot.

We are shooting this on a Red Epic, and Canon 60D, to record all the detail texture of this world. And I’m going to use as much practical effects work as possible, including; scale models, radio controlled animatronics, compressed air cannons, stop motion and more. All these disparate parts will be combined to populate the world.

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The way I work

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The script is written and storyboarded, and planned out. A big part of this project is the spirit of experimentation and always looking for better ways to do a given challenge. I want to involve you by working transparently. I’ll be posting work in progress and tests both successful and less than. One of the robot characters, ‘the Witness‘, is currently equipped with a webcam from which I’ve been streaming live while in the workshop. so you can share in the creation process.

Incentives

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Since I’m an artist and sculptor, I have been making use of my skills to produce unique incentives. I’m putting together a book of the artwork from this world. I’m casting resin figures, hand-making dolls from the project, beginning with the basic doll of the Gynoid, which are my gift to donors, also everyone who purchases one of the dolls will have the opportunity if they choose, to customize it to be a part of a group art show.

I’m going to arrange a special screening for the cast crew and donors of the complete pilot in San Francisco. I’m also making a lot of other rewards available to donors; pez dispensers, magnets, pins, nerf guns,T-shirts, magnets…

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What you can do

At this stage I really need your help. I’ll be kicking this campaign off on Indiegogo soon, and in the mean time I need all of the feedback I can get. If you haven’t already added Drab Future on Facebook, you should and spread the word on twitter and facebook. Please re-tweet and share. We need to increase awareness. The more people we can tell about this the greater it will be!

Reorganizing the stage, but realizing #cambot makes it hard to sit at the computer. Tetris continues. #fengshui #stopmotion #motioncontrol #drabfuture #art via Instagram http://ift.tt/1n44zsD

Drab Future toy production

Posted: September 16, 2013 in model, prop, robot, Uncategorized

I’m proud to announce that the new Drab future toys are available through the Zerofriends web store and I can’t wait to see what everyone does with theirs.
A detailed breakdown of the process of long road, from prototypes to molds/casting/assembly and painting can be seen over on Bradisdrab.com.

UntitledLetting the second batch of resin toys cure #drabfutureUntitledCast two of each toy as well as parts for 2 gynoid dolls #drabfuture

via Drab Future toy production.

Drab Future Toys

Posted: August 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

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I’m proud to announce that the new Drab future toys are available through the Zerofriends web store!

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I’ve decided to make three of each version available. This will include the full color hand-painted versions as well as single color and unpainted raw castings for you to customize yourselves.

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Order now!

Drab Future Zerofriends

Posted: June 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

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Zerofriends in Oakland, this Saturday! I’ll be unveiling a large portion of the work from Drab Future and giving a sneak peek at the web series.

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I’ve put together an installation featuring some of the life-sized robot sculptures and animatronic characters from Drab Future such as the Witness, who has been streaming live footage of my preparation for this show over the last two months. So you can come by and meet the robots, get to know them in person and even take your picture with them.
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We’ll also have an extended look at the pilot episode of Drab Future, as well as character portrait prints, props, dolls, and hand-made resin toys. All of this work feeds into the world of Drab Future, and any profits from the sale of this work will feed back into the post production of the web series.

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I’ve created an toy for each of the seven main characters. These are single part cast resin figures from kit-bashed and sculpted prototypes, each hand-casy and gaurenteed to be unique and full of personality and imperfections. I have produced three variations of them; Full color, single color, and raw resin, for toy-customizers, all of which will be available at the show. I’ve made this an edition of five so far, but will be producing more after these sell out.




IMG_7563This is also your opportunity to see an armory’s worth of prop sci-fi guns, some screen-used in Drab Future and many more that are totally new sci-fi blasters. These heavily modded Nerf dart launchers show ages of influence from iconic futuristic weapons from all over, from the plasma rifle to the ZF-1 and M41a Pulse rifle.

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There is also a set of brand new blank Gynoid Ball-joint dolls as well as some customized ones, most recently displayed in the “Great Doll Harvest” at Dollirium in Canada. These hand-made cast resin BJD dolls are fully articulated and posable via a wire skeleton running through their body.

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Hope to see you there!

Drab Future Toys Gallery

Drab Future Armory gallery

Drab Future update

Posted: May 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

Its been nearly a year since I posted this first teaser trailer for my Drab Future series, and since then

I’m excited to say with the last pick-up shoot this weekend! I’ve been working hard to make the sets, models, costumes, props, shoot, and edit and completely put together the full pilot episode. I’m still deep in it and have been putting in 4-5 hours a night on weeknights, and 12 a night the weekends. I should have the new trailer ready for a special screening for my solo art show at Zero Friends in Oakland, the first Friday of June at Art Murmur.

For more info, check Drabfuture.com and like us on Facebook

via bradisdrab.com.

Continued from; Von Neuman Moderator Animatronic Robot (pt1)
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Progress on the Von Neuman Moderators has been progressing very well. I brought all the parts to my 2nd secret lab workshop in Oakland, where we can spread it out for the construction.

Kyle has been a great help with the build. Progress is slow but we have a constant dialog/sounding board going. I’m still planning on using the Wowee Elvis as unmodified as possible, however the neck is going to require a bit of reworking. We are currently using what we call the “konami code” whenever we start him up. Basically the Elvis brain requires us to trip the neck’s limit switches in it’s ‘boot up’ sequence, otherwise it shuts itself down.

I started adding a bit of paint and closing up the body panels, cosmetic changes but it adds to the character and helps it fit in with Drab Future. I still want to make it more autonomous and programmable, but its exciting to see it take shape and move on it’s own, and I think he will look great in the first episode…

In Drab Future, The Von Neuman Moderators are the eyes and hands of the network. These agents exist to gather information and track resources, in order to expand the network and build more of them selves. While I could see that the power armored version could be a costume, I realized this character wouldn’t be able to be a person in a suit. Once the armor has been stripped away we need to be able to see their inhumanity.

Its long been a dream of mine to have a real, working, robot. I know a working autonomous bVon Neuman Moderator Animatronic Robot pt1iped with an AI is far out of my depth, but I want one that can be programmed to act in movies, run my booth at conventions, talk to people and hand out flyers. Even something like the animatronic band at Chuck E Cheese.

I have begun these videos as a behind the scenes for some of the construction. As usual I’m relying on as many found and prefab parts as I can to achieve the mechanical production look and move as quickly through the construction as I can. I’ve started with the Wowee toys Elvis Alive, which I was lucky enough to find on Ebay when a warehouse was liquidating their stock. For the body I’m starting with a posable mannequin which is similar in design to the wooden artist pose figures. This was given to me by a friend who was working in an art supply store. It had some minor damage and the store was cleaning out their storage and intended to throw it away. Truly a lucky score, I’ve never seen any others before or since. I’ve often thought about making molds from it to replicate more of them.

I’ve been planning on using the Wowee toys Elvis somewhat unmodified, at least electronically, because its really a great system. It uses a cartridge that contains songs and animation files. There is even a group of very clever folks doing some very cool hacks using them. I figured if I could avoid any major changes I wouldn’t need to teach myself arduino and robotic programming (yet) and follow along with this;
http://www.robocommunity.com/article/13840/Controlling-WowWee-s-Alive-Elvis-Part-2-Custom-Cartridge/

I even attempted to recruit someone to help me etch a custom circuit board part to make my own cartridge, unfortunately it never panned out. Basically this part is a xD media adapter to custom cartridge, which allows this ‘toy’ robot to play back animation files and mp3s.

This thread has a lot of detail about it, as well as included a diagram of the board I’d need to create;
http://www.robocommunity.com/forum/thread/13761/Elvis-Cartridge-has-been-hacked-updated-Article-is-on-the-way/

Continued in part 2…
https://drabfuture.wordpress.com/2013/02/01/von-neuman-moderator-animatronic-robot-pt2/

The gynoid tries on the Witness mask #drabfuture

The Witness

All along I’ve been trying to make as much of The Witness wearable as possible. Parts such as the helmet/cowl and vest are removable from the puppet, as well as the leg pads.

More work on the Witness suit

That way for wide or long shots he could move around with a bit more agility without having to resort to stop motion or other puppetry for every shot he was in.

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Since the head of the puppet is cast aluminum and too small to be wearable I was forced to create a secondary mask for the actor to wear.

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As the character and story evolved the costume version of the character took shape and evolved. I envisioned the witness as having different ‘modes’ and modular limbs, so he would be able to change form as needed. From his wheeled interior-workshop mode, to extended legs

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and finally his fully extended exterior form integrating inspiration from sources such as the land striders from Dark Crystal and the Wheelers from Return to Oz.

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I tried on The Witness costume in full last night at my workshop in Zero Friend’s warehouse in Oakland with the help of Kyle and Leslie. I’ve been working on the elements for this form separately for a while now, but it was exciting to see them all on at once.

Witness costume #drabfuture


full Flickr Gallery

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There are things in this world that should be left unspoken of.
Hailing straight out of mossy spider-webbed choked bogs of San
Francisco, cloaked in the darkest tombs of Midian; Karyn Jeanne
Alley’s
imagination is a frightful, disturbing, lucid nightmare into
boiler rooms in which no one can wake from. She’s a “makeup artist”;
if that’s what you want to call her. Others simple know her as a
cadaver wielding, bloodletting, midnight cemetery sorceress.

Karyn first dreamed of being a makeup artist around the age of five.
She would sneak into her mother’s makeup and “play”, using makeup to
transform herself into different characters she would see on TV and in
magazines. Her curiosity really peaked when she started watching
horror and monster movies and became interested in how the
creatures were created.

She began as a self-taught makeup artist
working on independent films, then maturing into both a beauty and
special effects makeup artist after finishing a makeup school for
salon, film, and television. She has worked on a wide variety of
projects including corporate photo-shoots, a Nike commercial, blood
and gore for the History Channel, a music video for an up and coming
band Death Valley High, and even a live Google Halloween event. Karyn
aspires to one day be able to hold a candle to such influential makeup
artists as Rob Bottin, Dick Smith, and Rick Baker.

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The things this woman can create with her hands, subjects more than
“God” like qualities. Be fair-warned the awesome power of your
ultimate demise when in Karyn Jeanne’s makeup chair. Odds are, you’ll
want therapy after a mirrors gaze at your own unrecognizable
appearance.

Link