Friday, December 24, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 164

No list. Nothing special to report.

No Talking Tuesday # 163

No list. Nothing special to report.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 162

No list. Nothing special to report.

No Talking Tuesday # 161

No list. Nothing special to report.

No Talking Tuesday # 160

No list. Nothing special to report.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I've made the belated resolution to take my various honed skills and instead of just internalizing them in an endless loop of refinement, attempt to direct them outward in a way that isn't purely self indulgent. I'm planning on this being the first of many steps towards making all that I've invested in my life, something to bind me to others and culture.

The first thing that came to mind was to be a conduit of art and method, and teach people looking for a human access point for that information. I put an ad on craigslist and will work to connect myself to other educators, and students, and make this first attempt to step out of my shell of self refinement and effect the lives of others.

I've woken up to the fact that I've exhausted the value of isolated artistic integrity, and will now begin working actively every day to define what's truly important to me, what of my life and thought and ability is of value to others, and what I can create with the help of others to contribute and sustain something which I'm involved in, but that is larger than myself.

I'm not drunk on altruism however, and am owning from the start that I want this new direction to be financially self sustainable for me. I don't feel this cheapens the intent, in fact I feel having this new direction in my life be able to thrive among the Darwinian pressures of capitalism will only help to prove what I create has a right to exist without pity or charity or someone to be sacrificed in its stead. Art, history, culture, materials, methods, craftsmanship, beauty, skill, intelligent design, are inherently valuable, and it's the job of any forward thinking thought-leader and artist to be able to synthesis these things in a way that makes their value obvious to people in a way that awes, inspires, teaches and binds.


Art Tutor

About me:

Hi, I'm Ali. I'm a 27 year old male, living in North Berkeley. I've extensively trained as a fine artist and have near a decade of experience in media arts.

What I can offer:

Personalized curriculum and supportive mentorship in the following areas of my expertise:

  • Drawing

  • Painting (traditional or digital)

  • Sculpture

  • Photography

  • Lighting design

  • Animation and Illustration

  • Design and 3D modeling

  • Creative writing

  • Cooking

Experience & Skills

Bachelors of Science in Game Design and Art from SFAI.
Workshop instructor for live figure drawing.
Exhibiting fine artist with group and solo shows around the Bay Area.
Seven years professional experience working in games/film/animation.
Currently employed as lead artist by an archeological nonprofit making visualizations for documentary films and research.

Highly organized, disciplined, creative, thorough and reliable. I have a great rapport with kids – my secret is that I never talk down to them. I respect their intelligence and assume they understand far more than most people give them credit for.

Why I'm doing this:

When I was ten years old and my parents were keen to recognize my creative talent and obsession with art wasn't a silly phase. They found me an art tutor who came by once every week or two. He gave me feedback on the comics I was drawing, introduced me to the works of artists, guided me to new mediums, gave me drawing exercises and was a supportive role model who stoked the flames of my passion to create. The effects this experience had are incalculable. I promised myself before I hit thirty that I would attempt to give back in the same way to any future artists.

I would prefer to tutor children who naturally love creativity, art and expression. I would also be excited to facilitate child/parent sessions, as I think it would be great for a child to learn alongside their parent(s).

How to proceed:

If you're interested send me an email. We will schedule a consultation. I can bring my portfolio of work and we can talk about what you would want your child to gain from this experience. Generally, a consistent tutoring schedule would be most effective for exploration and growth – regular sessions every week or two, for two or three hours. Lessons can be as structured or loose as you like. Philosophically, I can approach the objectives any number of ways – from a more classical rigor to a more exploratory free form teaching style. I can discussion the pros and cons of each approach during the consultation.

My fee is $50/hour, negotiable for extended hours or groups. I also ask that you be within the Bay Area. I have reliable transportation and can travel to your home or meet at a local site such as a community center or school. If interested, I'm happy to discuss possibilities that fit each individual situation such as group lessons, supplying materials, field trips to museums/gardens etc. I look forward to hearing from you.


Below is a sample of my work:

No Talking Tuesday # 159

No list. Nothing special to report.
No Talking Tuesday # 158

No list. Nothing special to report.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

First Solo Art Show!

Remedy coffee in Oakland is hosting my first solo art show. I had a piece in their self portrait themed group show the last two months, and submitted a few proposals for art and photo solo shows of my work. The curator chose the proposal I titled "Sketch Book Spreads", which features sketch book pages from my last few sketchbooks, specifically those which the drawings made use of facing pages.

The opening is this Friday at 6pm and goes until around 8pm.

Remedy Coffee

4316 Telegraph Ave
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 922-8455

The opening is during the Oakland Art Murmur, which is a extremely hipster friendly celebration of the local art, music, food scene the first Friday of every month.

If you want to see a sneak peak of the pieces in the show online:

So come on by, chub up on some roasted veggies, look at some drawings and say hi!

No Talking Tuesday # 157

The List:

whole life

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Self Portrait

The last couple months I've had a self portrait drawing/painting in an awesome coffee shop in Oakland named Remedy Coffee. The whole way I even became connected to the curator/barista was when after the first time I went there with my friend mark for coffee, proceeded to shamelessly hit on her, with the prospects to ask her out. She misinterpreted my efforts as an artistic interest in the space and asked if I wanted to be put on the mailing list of upcoming show opportunities. Rather than explain the misunderstanding I decided to take this new direction, as it was in keeping with my new years resolution to promote my art for a change. It's funny that when I finally get off my duff to do so it's only because it came as an accident to my much more exercised lecherous philandering.

Anyway flash forward a couple months and I was included in this self portraits group show, and and now currently hanging a solo show to be up for the month of November. More on that later!

For now here are some photos of my piece in the last show and the space:

Wake Up Eubert!

About five years ago in college, (back when I was young and spry and on an all super burrito diet) I painted a illustration for an online art competition. As most of my work at the time it was whimsical and and poignant, and wistful to the point of saccharine. It stared a sleepy flying snail thing named Eubert.

Flash forward now to 2010 and I get an email out of the blue from someone who came upon the image and wants to buy a print. I thought it over and decided I didn't feel comfortable making money off the naive yet earnest efforts of college era Ali, and coupled with my laziness to print/package/mail etc. I just uploaded a high rez version for the guy free of charge.

In the course of my messages to him I discovered that his name is Eubert! Which I thought didn't exist before I made it up. Explaining at least in part his interest in the piece. Anyway I thought the whole thing funny, nostalgic, and heartwarming. The experience is sure to be safely wrapped and kept in my breast pocket to be reminded of in my more cynical and jaded artistic moments.

Below is the painting I did in college:

No Talking Tuesday # 157

The List:

in S.F

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Elegantly Aggressive Checkmate!

I just played a online chess game in which I played very aggressively and elegantly!
So much so I made the effort to look for a online chess gif maker to record the game for myself.
Here it is! I played white:

[Event "Live Chess"]
[Site ""]
[Date "2010.10.20"]
[White "aliartguy"]
[Black "pinorforkit"]
[Result "1-0"]
[WhiteElo "1446"]
[BlackElo "1355"]
[TimeControl "10|0"]
[Termination "aliartguy won by checkmate"]

1.e4 e5
2.Nf3 d6
3.Nc3 Nf6
4.d4 exd4
5.Nxd4 c5
6.Bb5+ Bd7
7.Nf5 Bxb5
8.Nxb5 a6
9.Nfxd6+ Bxd6
10.Nxd6+ Ke7
11.Nf5+ Ke6
12.Nxg7+ Ke7
13.Nf5+ Ke6
14.Bg5 Qxd1+
15.Rxd1 Nxe4
16.Ng7+ Ke5
17.f4# 1-0

No Talking Tuesday # 156

The List:


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Wedding Photos... Again!

Another one of my jerk friends thought it would be fun to abandon me to bachelor purgatory and went and got hitched.

At least he chose a stunningly beautiful California mountainside.
I took photos as is to be expected.
Here is the link with the full set, and below are some sample images:

No Talking Tuesday # 155

The List:

so i was wondering

well that's what i was wondering

if the final frame is the inner rectangles

so there is no safe space on the bottom of the frame?

no really

i just want to be clear, it's the

so now that we are clear about the framing want to quickly re watch the playblast and make sure the framing is what we want?

Monday, October 11, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 154

The List:

One moderate for here please

I don't remember how square roots work
No Talking Tuesday # 153

The List:

1 super heart smart
burrito with rice
---> black beans

If you called a cab to Mark's
could you buzz him there?

How sure are you he is home?

How would we get online?

Just call someone who knows Mark
and can call him for us

But these people have websites

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Wedding Photos

My long time friend Isaiah, made a honest woman out of a rather sweety pie girl named Melissa a couple months back. It was inevitable as they are both far too awesome together to not get married. So begins the chapter of my life where my friends leave me in the soul crushing dating world and retire into boring lives of talking about picking up IKEA furniture, and how best to arrange potted plants on the deck. When will I be able to get some of that action?

I was best man and photographer. Here are the photos!

No Talking Tuesday # 152

The List:

Don't do laundry so early

not really?

there is a really nice bookstore
kind of far

nice record shops farther
down the street

just keep walking down until it
starts to suck

No Talking Tuesday # 151

Way too much communication to get a burrito. The woman mistakenly put the order in for a steak burrito, which effectively ended my non red meat eating streak by accident. She even had the audacity to shrug off responsibility by mumbling "You said something different", obviously I didn't say anything, I wrote it down very legibly, in the very pad she was holding, and which I pointed to the line of my correct order. She looked askance and muttered "Oh, yea..."
Take that burrito woman. I love your burritos but not your attitude!

The List:

1 special burrito


I ordered the special
burrito which was
supposed to be fish?

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 150

The List:

for some reason the information stamp didn't get exported with the rendered image, but in any case 1550 took 43min 20 sec and 1500 was forty something minutes. do you remember what the one you saw was? 44? 45 20

and this is essentially exactly what I've been rendering, just the osario with the ground

i put it on everything as a test, and it worked fine, but didn't save since i'm waiting on chris to final uv's on stuff. but once the file is ready it will be very easy. essentially what i'm going to do is put a grid texture on everything and scale uv's so it's all about the same texture density then apply the stucco, and that's pretty much it. whatever doesn't look good i'll make another version of the stucco with more or less displacement/reflectivity, etc. as needed.but it's not in the file as it is now, i just threw it on and didn't save.

it wasn't the alitest file? yea i directed you to a alitest file, hmm, then if that's not it i'm not sure. but i did render from the main scene. i stamped it but it didn't save with the images. but i have both the images without the stamp'd info. yea i did. no. have you done it before with a 16 bit image? hmm, then i don't know i bucketed the stamp and it was in the viewport when i saved out the image. no because i've since closed down fry the only thing i have from it is the two images. and the knowledge of how long they took.

i doubt it's displacement, i bet i could render five osarios at the same time and still not get the low performance we've been seeing on the problem frames

i would rather have two versions of the scene, one with osario, and one with ballcourt, and in the beginning of when you can see the ballcourt peeking in the background of the osario, we just composite it in after. because we don't have to worry about a loss in fidelity bringing the ballcourt into the background of the beginning of the shot, but composting the osario onto the background when we're so close to it is going to mess up the GI and look weird i think.

have we confirmed that the render is ok when the ballcourt has no displacement but is in the scene?

but how can you assume there is a problem with the ballcourt when it renders ok by itself?

and did you do a version of the render without temple of tigers as part of the ballcourt, but with the background?

but i want to know if the high geometry of the temple doesn't play well with the background scene, we can't know that until we do a render of the background and ballcourt minus the temple.

but it would be worth knowing anyway before wo kick off a render for every frame

but it would allow us to finally see that all frames render at a expected time

i could simply replace the temple with a level 1 version out of mudbox, the u'vs wont match up exactly because i hand tweaked them on the high level temple, but good enough to fade to in the distance and easy

well we can bring the hero back in ass soon as we clear the osario

sure, though am i not trying to get kukukaln out by tonight?
No Talking Tuesday # 149

The List:

it was about 250

the time intensive tweak you remembered me saying but neither of us could specifically remember yesterday; i remember now that it was to split the colors

well the shader displacement is just one switch, you just unclick displacement

i think so but i should double check it first

as two or one image?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 148

No list, nothing special to report.

No Talking Tuesday # 147

The List:

food is nearly ready

so render wise

i have a finishing render of updated temple of jaguars

take a look

i'm thinking it might be worth going back into to set up the shader the way it was for reconstructed osario

currently the shader is set up differently, since it's unique uv'd and i'm doing all the color separated layers
but it occurred to me i could do that with the old shader tree as well

in any case i've taken the new shader strategy about as far as it can reasonably go, if that's good to you we can
just stop there, or i can spend this afternoon making this shader

most of last night was to introduce the weathering

it's fully done, it's just different looking,

i have a texture that has all the streaking and darkening etc. i think i pulled it back too far,
i can easily just up it and it would look pretty much just like that render but more weathered, so i'll try that first?

i can re exaggerate the reflectivity difference in the current shader very easily, so no worries there

let me update the render

i'll have to look into it, i don't know off hand

Sunday, August 08, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 146

I made a mistake today! FRIGGGG.

Having just returned home from an overwhelming awesome Joanna Newsom concert, I was collecting myself over a online chess game. The Game quickly got out of control due to a unnecessary blunder on my part. Behind in material I tried desperately to take advantage of my better development, the game took on the hyper aggressive recklessness of a nineteenth century chess game, which surprisingly I was able to steer into a mid game check mate against my opponent. I was stunned and accidentally said out loud "Haha, crazy!"

I looked at the clock and saw that it was indeed four minutes into Tuesday, and then I pouted like a little baby.

No Talking Tuesday # 145

No list, nothing special to report.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 144

The List:

Got the current day kukulkaln and the new carocal in the master scene,
and I'm doing two renders, each one being the closest we get to either structures.
it was upside down and 1/100 the scale. well the first of the two.
I can't open the master scene on this computer.
did you get the

No Talking Tuesday # 143

The List:

I think it would be cool
if we do the 1080p, approach
to purposely break the reality
of the shots by doing in
shot breakdowns showing
the color wipe on to the white
versions of architecture. This
way we could include this
question of how to reconstruct
color into the narrative
it would be like a reconstruction
breakdown reel in the same
way revealing render layers
in the shot would serve a
compositing break down reel.

I'm still for flat output, re cut
to be much more feasible (less frames,
focus on what's good looking etc.)

I can write up a texturing
to do list today broken up into
sections based on variables
like flat or dome output,
reconstruction and current
day texture work etc.

It has a tuned procedural
what you can see in renders
that looks nice

I was going to repaint color
in 3D in mudbox

I can keep it, I don't think it will
matter too much either way

Kicking off German render

Tamales plate special please

Thursday, July 08, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 142

I made a mistake today! I had a presentiment I would, and tried to be hyper diligent, then the mentally retarded neighbors cat who's obsessed with me, started meowing plaintively, from the other side of the sliding glass door, during a quite section in my piano playing. I swiveled around on the bench and blurted out loud "Meow-zer face! Meow!" I was so pissed, though my rage was somewhat soothed by her endearingly mental retardation based obsession with me.

She knows when I'm visiting my parents by the sound of my piano playing, and I'm told that for a week or so after I leave each time she meow's in front of my room for as long as it takes before one of my parents lets her in to see for herself I'm not there. She wont leave until she's done a tour of the room, and even then to come back the next day to check again. If only I could find this purity of love from a human woman... Maybe she too has to be mentally retarded?

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Still Remaking

If I ever had to go to trial to decide if I was hopelessly neurotic beyond redemption, I'm afraid the following would be the prosecutor's exhibit A.

What started simply as a page of test text, to check the thoroughness of my recently serviced type writer, (due to a series of unexpected events I now have three perfectly working gorgeous typewriters, though I only ever wanted one...) predictably turned into a stream of consciousness outpouring, which by degrees in the following twenty seven drafts came together into a few cohesive lines of verse.

The evolution of this piece was more exhausting than any I've written in recent memory, and though it changed considerably through the many drafts, and many of my favorite lines got the axe at one point or another, the final result comes very close to capturing the nebulous sentiment I wanted.

Still Remaking

Hurried into your clothes
i quietly broke
between your sharp hips and fingertips
swirling in the half light
just before the bend

and if you know
(though i doubt you do)
the hurried up past before we flew
was all i had
and all i knew

in smothered moments
too shallow to swim through
all you stole from me
when i begged you to

we were the shameful tolerance
of my sincerity
i remember only
because i have nothing better
than scraped knees and shaking
still remaking
the sense you never.

No Talking Tuesday # 141

This Tuesday found me lecturing on a host of artistic/technical articles I prepared as part of a masters class web seminar to teach data driven computer graphics as it pertains to creating full dome films and helping the archeological community. Well that is to say the preceding day I gave a few lectures, on Tuesday I simply handed over my segments to my coworkers to present on my behalf and I instead got lunch ready and stuck around in case anyone wanted to ask me a question in the post session chatrooms we had set up. Speaking of which, when my art director told me of the structure of the "web-inar" and that it included live chat etc. I made a smart ass comment that if we go that rout we will get nothing but chat's from people with screen names like "cowboy69" asking things like "It looks pretty hot in there, maybe you would be more comfortable with your shirt off?" We all had a good laugh, then wouldn't you know it the first question we got in any of our separate chatrooms was in mine, which read "It looks hot in that room?" To which I replied "It's pretty warm, but I'm Persian." And then proceeded to answer another persons legitimate question about 3D data archiving.

No list

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 140

The List:

I accidentally deleted something that's not a big deal but if i can easily recover it from the thing

four files:


It's just oolong tea

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 139

No list. Nothing special to report.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 138

The List:



Tea Crazy

Finally all the spring harvests of my favorite Mainland China and Taiwanese teas have made it state side. I had my first cup of the 2010 Lishan Spring after having been deprived for months. It felt like coming home. 300$ and a three hour tea tasting session later I have all my spring harvest teas and should be good until winter hopefully.

Here's a little ditty in honor of the occasion:

Woman impulsively leans out window.
To man below
"Hey! Want to come up for tea?"

(walks to door)

Woman scampers down, let's him in, and leads him upstairs.
Later she hands him tea.

"Thank you. This is wonderful. You're wonderful."

Woman (abashed)
"Thank you... I think I love you?"

Man: (smiling over tea)
"I know. The feeling's mutual.

"It's crazy."

"We're both nuts."

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

No Talking Tuesday # 137

The List:

Ali Jamalzadeh

No Talking Tuesday # 136

The List:

Best Bookstore in
East Bay is
"Serendipity" on
University near
San Pablo

Also on Telegraph
there are a couple
Shakespeare and co.
and a couple others

Norwegian Wood

Monday, May 24, 2010


Here are the scanned pages of the sketchbook
I was carrying around on my travels last year.
France, US road-trip, Montana, Germany, Greece etc.
and of course various places in California as usual.

Not that me saying this really matters
since I mostly draw my hands and plants wherever I go.

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