Kelly Godel has Novel Ideas

Kelly Godel is extremely creative and possesses amazing tenacity. He has written two novels and created a CGI ad for each. It took him three years to achieve. The education he got along the way was worthy of a college certificate.

Kelly was eager to talk to me about his journey into CGI and I was fascinated to hear about it.

“I am aware of how long and tedious creating CGI can be. When did you first get introduced and why were you drawn to it?”

“I had a friend tell me about digital sculpting back in the early 2000’s. I live for creative challenges and after watching Jurassic Park, I was immediately inspired. Combining film with CGI had opened the doors. In the early years of CGI, you had to be an engineer, metal worker, a chemist and wood-worker to create quality CGI. Those days are long gone.”

Kelly explains that he is completely self-taught. In earlier times, he began his career like most filmmakers. 16mm, Stop Motion, puppet creation and mask making became part of his repertoire. He spent a lot of time devoted to Claymation.


“Back in those days if you wanted to work in CGI you had to move to the US. I was content to create my own opportunities.”


At one time Kelly found work as a garden art sculptor. He continued his creative conquests by making a film about a vampire hunter from outer space. He made the costumes and props himself. It took three years to make. Just another example of Kelly Godel’s tenacity.  


“I don’t believe I’ve ever seen an ad for a novel before. What was the intention of creating them?”

“My intention was to demonstrate what was possible with consumer grade programs. For the most part, using Photoshop and After Effects combined with a very fast computer opens up so many possibilities. Once I started experimenting and learning the programs, I found it hard to not get carried away with it. The temptations of going deeper into the programs capabilities can be detrimental in meeting a deadline.”


I asked Kelly about the nuts and bolts of creating the ads for his two novels. He explained the operose  process and the tools needed to accomplish the two productions.

He used modeling, texturing, rigging, dynamics(muscle systems, hair), animation and rendering. He used programs such as ZBrush, Photoshop, After Effects, Maya, 3D Max and Blender. For the audio, he used Audacity. It took him three years to complete but states that he could’ve shaved a year off the time had he had help on the background scenes and a faster computer. In one of the ads, there are beings in grass skirts.


“The grass skirts were one of the most difficult parts of the ad. The individual fibers were very time consuming to create. For the fire scenes, I actually utilized stock footage of different kinds of fire and ran it through AE and Photoshop. Investing in a five to ten thousand dollar computer is necessary if you’re going to take this seriously.”


With new programs like Motion Capture, it’s making it easier to create spectacular pieces of work in less time. One frightening fact however in getting into CGI, is it takes a year to familiarize yourself with just the menus, so I’m told.

Talking to Kelly Godel about his CGI experience and the producing of the ads has been a real education for me.

You can view his work at and His work can also be seen at and

I highly recommend it.

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