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Fuel VFX go into administration

Fuel VFX go into administration

Bad news down under this week, as the prolific Australian firm, Fuel VFX, has made a 'backs to the wall' decision to go into voluntary administration. Having worked on such films as Prometheus, The Avengers and Iron Man over the last few years, we can safely say the world of VFX will be missing this hive of talent!

2 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Fri 31 Aug 2012: 12:00pm

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Dragons are cool, right?

Dragons are cool, right?

In pursuit of some new blog material, I managed to stumble across this über cool, VFX heavy advertisement. For the most extravagant collection of watches I think I’ve ever seen. And as far as product shots go, this one is a pretty elaborate example.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Thu 30 Aug 2012: 2:30pm

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Konami announce plans for Metal Gear Solid Movie

Konami announce plans for Metal Gear Solid Movie

If you, like me, were the owner of a PS1 back in the late 90’s, (or as we called it back then, simply ‘the Playstation’) there’s quite a high chance you would have owned stealth action game ‘Metal Gear Solid’, the successor to Konami’s MSX2 tactical action espionage game, ‘Metal Gear’, which this week celebrated its 25th anniversary.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Thu 30 Aug 2012: 12:00pm

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Explosive Dates for your Diary!

Explosive Dates for your Diary!
Calling all VFX artists…….
 Is it time to take your career to the next level?
 Learn how to create earth shattering natural disasters, amazing particle flows, beautifully complex dynamic simulations and cataclysmically destructive explosions… without being prosecuted.
 Our 6 week Pro VFX courses are set to begin on the 1st October and the 12th November. If you have already completed the 12 week Visual Effects for Production course here at Escape or can demonstrate a sound knowledge of Maya this course could be open to you.
 Our expert tutors cover the following topics which will take your show reel to the next level:
 
Primary Dynamics
Renderman Fundamentals
Fur and Hair
Fluids
NCloth/N Particles
 
Currently, the industry is in hot pursuit of those who possess this high standard of skill to create such magic.
For more information, contact our wondrously polite training team here.

Calling all VFX artists! Is it time to take your career to the next level? Learn how to create earth shattering natural disasters, amazing particle flows, beautifully complex dynamic simulations and cataclysmically destructive explosions…without being prosecuted.

1 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Thu 30 Aug 2012: 9:00am

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Oggy Oggy Oggy, Ouya Ouya Ouya!

Oggy Oggy Oggy, Ouya Ouya Ouya!

Living rooms all over the planet best prepare themselves over the next few months, for the arrival of the world’s first ‘fist sized’ games console… ‘Ouya’.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Wed 29 Aug 2012: 5:30pm

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Allergy to Originality

Allergy to Originality

Seattle-based filmmaker and illustrator Drew Christie's latest animated Op-Doc, Allergy to Originality, is a feast for the eyes and quite the creative brain cell tickler too.

0 Comments Alison Cobb

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Alison Cobb
Wed 29 Aug 2012: 5:00pm

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Selby's App of the Week: Postagram - the new age of postcards!

Selby's App of the Week: Postagram - the new age of postcards!
In this modern age of gadgetry we've got tablets, suri and GPS coming out of every oraphis, but sometimes it's nice to remember the past, the things that people used to do before all the technological world took over, like writing a letter - with an actual pen and paper, using real stamps from a post office?! That's quite a retro step too far but if there was some way to combine the old and the new worlds...some sort of post card sending app maybe?? But if only you could use your own picture - not the generic touristy crap you can get every, something more personal...Everyone LOVES taking photos on their phone - it's fast and it's easy but what do you do with them after that - sure you can whack them on twitter, upload them to facebook and wait for the likes but what about posting it...as a postcard?!
BOOM! Hello Postagram! This super cool app puts a perfectly digital spin on the dying art of postcards allowing you to take any picture you've captured on the hot photo-sharing service Instagram (anyone who's anyone is using Instagram!), convert them into a postcard, add your own 140-character message and click send! Postagram allows you to look at your Instagrams while on the go and then send any picture - new or old - to anyone all from your iPhone! All you need is a recipient's name and address and a credit card - details will all be remembered after the first entry.There are a couple of photo-postcard-sending-apps on the market at the moment, including Touchnote, but Postagram is super user-friendly, quick and convenient and allows a direct connection with Instagram - which is great for editing and jazzing up pictures.
So if you too would like to send the personal touch of a postcard, without the old skool hassle of finding those fiddly stamps and a pesky old mailbox you can download the Postagram app for FREE! Each postcard costs just £1.49 to send - if you think that's pricey, have you been into a card shop recently?! You can thank me later. You're welcome.

In this modern age of gadgetry we've got tablets, Siri and GPS coming out of every orifice, but sometimes it's nice to remember the past, the things that people used to do before the technological world took over, like writing a letter—with an actual pen and paper, using real stamps from a post office?! That's perhaps a retro step too far, but if there was some way to combine the old and the new worlds...some sort of postcard sending app, maybe? But if only you could use your own picture—not the generic touristy crap you can get everywhere, something more personal...Everyone LOVES taking photos on their phone—it's fast and it's easy. But what do you do with them after that? Sure you can whack them on twitter, upload them to facebook and wait for the likes but what about posting it...as a postcard?

0 Comments Emma Lee

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Emma Lee
Wed 29 Aug 2012: 4:00pm

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Webinar Exclusive: Snow White & The Huntsman with Amy Cuthbertson

Webinar Exclusive: Snow White & The Huntsman with Amy Cuthbertson

Our visual effects and compositing students have gone on to work on some pretty awesome projects over the years. These include the many studio blockbusters that light up cinema screens around the world. Seeing escapee names in the rolling credits at the end of such films never fails to give us that warm fuzzy feeling of pride – proud to see they have achieved the goal they had when we first met them on our courses. And this was very much the case when some of the Escape team went to an exclusive screening of Snow White and The Huntsman at Framestore a few months ago.

0 Comments Ellen Payne

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Ellen Payne
Tue 28 Aug 2012: 5:41pm

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Everything is just Vine...

Everything is just Vine...

Over the past six months we have been working with Michael Illingworth, founder of Vine Post Production to expand his studio. Michael has worked at The Mill and Cinesite and has been involved in post-production, compositing and visual effects supervision on some of the biggest film names in the industry including the Harry Potter franchise, Gladiator and Black Hawk Down.

0 Comments richard mcguinnesss

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richard mcguinnesss
Tue 28 Aug 2012: 11:30am

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Get Involved with Thinkbox

Get Involved with Thinkbox

Thinkbox Software will be in London on the 3rd, 4th and 5th of September and will be working alongside Escape Studios to organise meetings and demos of their product line up.

0 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Tue 28 Aug 2012: 10:00am

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Webinar reminder... don't miss out!

Webinar reminder... don't miss out!

For all budding Compositors out there, Alexander Swann is joining us for an exciting webinar exclusive next Wednesday. Roto Artist and escapee, Alex has spent the last couple of years mastering the art of 3D painting and rotoscoping at Framestore. Showing some examples from the very recent, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, we recommend that you check this one out.

0 Comments Ellen Payne

Posted by
Ellen Payne
Fri 24 Aug 2012: 5:44pm

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Film 4 Scene Stealers: Winner Announced!

Film 4 Scene Stealers: Winner Announced!

Just over six weeks ago, we blogged about a competition run by Film 4, called ‘Scene Stealers’.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

Posted by
Robert Broadbent
Fri 24 Aug 2012: 5:00pm

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Autodesk Scaleform

Autodesk Scaleform

Our friends Autodesk have recently released three user friendly packages for Scaleform users, Unity plug-in, Mobile Flash platform and Mobile SDK.

0 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Fri 24 Aug 2012: 3:30pm

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A one day VFX taster session!

A one day VFX taster session!

“Big things have small beginnings”, was an idea acknowledged in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, released earlier this year. And for us, this statement couldn’t be more true. Taking the art of visual effects as a prime example, the spectacular CG you see on screens today was born from the most basic of concepts, and the people who created those effects invested significant time and energy to become the talented artists they are today. Every creative talent has to start out somewhere, and with the right levels of care and determination, it can evolve into something magnificent.

4 Comments Ellen Payne

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Ellen Payne
Fri 24 Aug 2012: 12:08pm

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Total Recall, Terrific Reception?

Total Recall, Terrific Reception?
This year’s remake of cult classic ‘Total Recall’ has sparked some serious controversy in the world of film. Here at Escape Studios we are PUMPED for its release, given the fact that a number of our graduates have been hard at work over the last year, on the VFX side of things.
A total of 1600 digitally enhanced shots are used in the film, the vast majority of which were worked on by our pals over at Double Negative in Soho – pretty damn cool right? 
The hugely complex cityscape of a futuristic London was some challenge for the artists, and it required some high detail rendering, luckily these digital wizards called upon previous lessons learnt from their work on the ground breaking, Oscar winning, Inception. 
Total Recall is yet to be released in the UK, so we can’t join the squabbling masses just yet. But if you do spend your bank holiday weekend watching this high action sci-fi flick, we want to know - Does this contemporary version do the original justice?
Twitter is telling me a number of different things, from…“WARNING: Total Recall remake is unbelievably boring.” To “Total Recall - Amazing cinematography, perfect execution. More exciting than Avengers. 9/10”
I just don’t know what to think! 

This year’s remake of cult classic ‘Total Recall’ has sparked some serious controversy in the world of film. Here at Escape Studios we are PUMPED for its release, given the fact that a number of our graduates have worked on it over the last year, on the VFX side of things.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

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Robert Broadbent
Fri 24 Aug 2012: 10:00am

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Good news for desk dwellers!

Good news for desk dwellers!
Since starting an internship with Escape Studios, I’ve had to rapidly acclimatise to the nature of ‘ the desk job’, and I must say, like a nine to five Robinson Crusoe, I’ve made myself a home from home in front of my computer screen. 
There is one concern however, that I can’t seem to shake off… and that’s the impending worry of the dreaded spillage. On a daily basis, the would-be relaxing activity of consuming a delicious cup of tea is tarred, by the constant preoccupation of whether the sweet milky goodness will make its way onto my technological equipment, given my traditionally clumsy nature.
Unbelievably, I am yet to spill a drop since my desk-debut, now nearly 9 weeks ago - but I have experienced a couple of liquid disasters, and of course when a fiasco like this occurs - the keyboard is first in the line of fire.
Considering my ever present worry of this kind of incident happening to me, you can imagine my delight when I read this morning that ‘Logitech’ have released a waterproof keyboard… in fact, I nearly spat my tea out over my now seemingly primitive, run of the mill keyboard.
It’s selling itself as a ‘washable keyboard’, which is great when it comes to getting rid of those pesky crisp crumbs and sandwich morsels, without the aid of a pencil, but I’m quite sure that the magic of this spill proof equipment is its ability to not worry about a few drips of coffee disturbing our working day. Surely Since starting an internship with Escape Studios, I’ve had to rapidly acclimatise to the nature of ‘ the desk job’, and I must say, like a nine to five Robinson Crusoe, I’ve made myself a home from home in front of my computer screen. 

Since starting an internship with Escape Studios, I’ve had to rapidly acclimatise to the nature of ‘the desk job’, and I must say, like a nine to five Robinson Crusoe, I’ve made myself a home from home in front of my computer screen. 

1 Comments Robert Broadbent

Posted by
Robert Broadbent
Thu 23 Aug 2012: 3:00pm

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Iteration to a whole new level

Iteration to a whole new level

As an artist, I have a huge passion for the process of pre-production; taking an idea and iterating until you achieve the correct result.

0 Comments Simon Fenton

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Simon Fenton
Thu 23 Aug 2012: 10:00am

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Ball of Twine or Game of Thrones? I Know What I'd Choose!

Ball of Twine or Game of Thrones? I Know What I'd Choose!

I've been watching and loving Game of Thrones since the moment it was introduced to me. Completely absorbed in the HBO action, it almost got to the point where if I needed to blaspheme, I would most likely yell out "JON SNOW" instead of the more traditional term.*

2 Comments Miriam Payne

Posted by
Miriam Payne
Thu 23 Aug 2012: 9:01am

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Get LinkedIn with The Art of VFX

Get LinkedIn with The Art of VFX

LinkedIn is a pretty awesome tool for lots of reasons, but one in particular is how it encourages some users to be quite industrious in their spare time. And a perfect example of this is how freelance digital compositor Vincent Frei has created a group called The Art of VFX. This is where Vincent shares interviews he’s had with a range of industry professionals working in VFX, offering us VFX geeks an inside scoop into what they’ve been working on.

1 Comments Ellen Payne

Posted by
Ellen Payne
Wed 22 Aug 2012: 5:44pm

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Mortal Kombat: Legacy

Mortal Kombat: Legacy
Mortal Kombat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mortal_Kombat) is a franchise everyone's familiar with. Along with Street Fighter (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_Fighter) and Tekken  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tekken), it's one of the classic beat 'em ups of early arcades and game consoles, pitching several outrageous competitors against each other in an excessively violent fight to the death for who cares what the reason was it was awesome. Spawning a huge list of games from 1992 all the way to the present day, MK has helped taint innocent childhoods for 20 years. It had two major films, one acceptable (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0113855/), one classically woeful,(http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0119707/) and last year, around the release of Mortal Kombat 9 (http://www.ign.com/games/mortal-kombat/ps3-14317281), came a pleasant surprise; Mortal Kombat: Rebirth. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x9YUeTTaVqo)
Rebirth was a 8 minute short film from director Kevin Tancharoen(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kevin_Tancharoen), who wanted to create a 'proof of concept' for a MK movie. It retold the MK story in a style that focused on realism, without the Outworld or any of the supernatural elements from the game, and was used as a way to convince Warner Brothers (http://www.warnerbros.com/) to reboot the MK film franchise. While they didn't immediately agree, they did help Tancharoen create his webseries Mortal Kombat: Legacy. (http://www.youtube.com/show/mortalkombatlegacy?s=1)
Legacy was the follow up to Rebirth, telling the stories of several different MK characters, mostly in the same gritty, real world fashion, with some others taking a less grounded approach. Although both had famous actors in them, you can see through the series that they've spent their modest budget wisely, even though there are some episodes that rely more of VFX than others. While the story of Jax, Sonya and Kano focused more of acting and gunfights, Kitana and Mileena's episodes were heavily supernatural and involved both 2D and 3D animation. My favourite of the bunch is Raiden's (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5tWh4Z42SJk&list=SL) story which is both raw and stupendous at the same time, and packs an emotional punch. 
It's another example of how webseries' are evolving to incorporate brilliant visuals with real production and producing something that is legitimately worth watching. Its worth noting that the series did so well that Warner Brothers have now agreed to let Tancharoen helm a new MK feature film! Keep your eyes peeled for my next Webseries spotlight, where I'll show my favourite web show. And if you have anything that you think should be covered, sound off in the comments below!

Mortal Kombat is a franchise everyone's familiar with. Along with Street Fighter and Tekken, it's one of the classic beat 'em ups of early arcades and game consoles, pitching several outrageous competitors against each other in an excessively violent fight to the death for...well who cares what the reason was, it was awesome! Spawning a huge list of games from 1992 all the way to the present day, MK has helped taint innocent childhoods for 20 years. It had two major films, one acceptable, one classically woeful, and last year, around the release of Mortal Kombat 9, came a pleasant surprise; Mortal Kombat: Rebirth.

0 Comments Ash Miles

Posted by
Ash Miles
Wed 22 Aug 2012: 5:00pm

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