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CityEngine: Mapping Out The Locations on Pixar’s 'Cars 2'

CityEngine: Mapping Out The Locations on Pixar’s 'Cars 2'

Pixar, renowned for their cutting edge animation, know better than anyone the advantages of saving time where possible. The technical directors and supervisors on Cars 2 were faced with the challenge of building locations for this feature length animation. Those of you who have seen the sequel will remember that the lead character, Lightning McQueen, is being sent around the globe to race in the world Grand Prix. The challenge for the Pixar creative team was to build recognizable cities, on a very broad scale.

1 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Fri 16 Sep 2011: 3:47pm

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Who Remembers Scanimate?

Who Remembers Scanimate?

I stumbled upon a really good site the other day which sent me on a trip down memory lane. The site is called "Scanimate Central" and is basically a resource for anyone to read about how animations used to be made.

0 Comments mark spevick

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mark spevick
Thu 15 Sep 2011: 12:02pm

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Escapee Jacob Flint Sees His Name in the Credits of Pirates of The Caribbean

Escapee Jacob Flint Sees His Name in the Credits of Pirates of The Caribbean

Checking out Facebook this morning I couldn't help but notice something that one of our escapees had posted earlier. Jacob Flint who studied VFX with us has posted a picture of his name in the film credits of the latest final Pirates of the Caribbean instalment!

1 Comments Flora Ho

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Flora Ho
Tue 13 Sep 2011: 11:18am

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News Round-Up: Monday 12th Sep 2011

News Round-Up: Monday 12th Sep 2011

For some time now, I have been doing a weekly round up of news for our own internal use at Escape Studios. I never actually thought of sharing it more widely until someone pointed out to me last week, that actually, maybe it would be useful to the people who read this blog. 

0 Comments Isabelle Duarte

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Isabelle Duarte
Mon 12 Sep 2011: 8:41am

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The Ancient History of Computer Animation

The Ancient History of Computer Animation

When you ask people about Pixar's early 3D animated films they may answer you Luxo Jr from 1986, but Ed Catmull, Pixar founder, made his first animated film while still at the University of Utah, way back in 1972.

0 Comments Toby Young

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Toby Young
Wed 7 Sep 2011: 4:43pm

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3D Paintings on Panes of Glass

3D Paintings on Panes of Glass

I came across these amazing pieces of work late last night in one of my typical 'browsing fest', and just couldn't keep my eyes of them. That's what I call 3D with a difference!

1 Comments Isabelle Duarte

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Isabelle Duarte
Mon 5 Sep 2011: 10:10am

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23 MARI Tips In 23 Days on Twitter

23 MARI Tips In 23 Days on Twitter

MARI is a relatively new piece of software, and is becoming more popular with artists as its reputation for efficiency and adaptability becomes more widely known. As with any piece of new software there is a period of trial and error before you really get to know its full capability. It is in light of this that Henry South, lead texture artist at Framestore, is offering to share his top 23 tips when working with MARI.

0 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Fri 2 Sep 2011: 8:14pm

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Raytrix Lightfield Cameras: Ahead of Lytro

Raytrix Lightfield Cameras: Ahead of Lytro

A few weeks ago, Simon Fenton wrote about the new - yet to be launched - Lytro 'lightfied camera'. Being a complete photography nerd, I have to say that I got quite excited about it and went on a search fest to find out as much as I could about it.

4 Comments Isabelle Duarte

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Isabelle Duarte
Wed 31 Aug 2011: 12:15pm

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Escapee Giuseppe Candido Secures Job at FIPLAB

Escapee Giuseppe Candido Secures Job at FIPLAB

Giuseppe Candido is not only a recent character animation course escapee, but now also a very talented animator and a skilled Maya Generalist. He has put together one of the most charming demo reels we have seen here at Escape Studios. Giuseppe combined many of his student exercises into a circus project - creating a stunning short film in the process, and all completed from scratch in just six weeks.

1 Comments alex williams

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alex williams
Thu 25 Aug 2011: 12:03pm

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Pixar Announce RenderMan for Maya 5!

Pixar Announce RenderMan for Maya 5!

Our friends at Pixar have announced that the release of RenderMan for Maya 5 is being planned for this autumn.

0 Comments Mark Cass

Posted by
Mark Cass
Wed 24 Aug 2011: 9:36am

Dreamworks Inspires Our Students

Dreamworks Inspires Our Students

Just over a week ago, our students were treated to a visit by the extroadinarily talented Shelley Page, of Dreamworks. Shelley has been involved with some of the most memorable animation to come out of Dreamworks - titles like 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?', ‘The Prince Of Egypt’, ‘Antz’, and ‘Shrek’.

0 Comments Miles Pettit

Posted by
Miles Pettit
Tue 23 Aug 2011: 8:17am

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Coca-Cola's Siege

Coca-Cola's Siege

Here is a bit of Friday eye candy for you... 

0 Comments Simon Fenton

Posted by
Simon Fenton
Fri 19 Aug 2011: 12:51pm

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Online Texture Library

Online Texture Library

All 3D artists should take as many photos as possible which they can later use as textures, but for those of you who haven't done so, here is a link to a new and very useful online texture library.

1 Comments Simon Fenton

Posted by
Simon Fenton
Tue 16 Aug 2011: 2:54pm

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Autodesk 3D Subscription Advantage Packs, Coming Soon…

Autodesk 3D Subscription Advantage Packs, Coming Soon…

Our friends at Autodesk have just announced that from 27 September 2011, selected 2012 versions of Autodesk software will be available for download for subscription customers. Autodesk Subscription Advantage Packs offer early access to new product enhancements, giving you the very latest in Autodesk software. Subscriptions are available to contract managers, software coordinators or anyone who has been granted access to Autodesk product extensions.

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Mon 15 Aug 2011: 9:27am

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The Barbican's Brilliant Animation Show: Watch Me Move

The Barbican's Brilliant Animation Show: Watch Me Move

Both animation enthusiasts and novices alike, will be delighted by The Barbican Centre's brilliant animation show Watch Me Move. From Winsor McCay's 1914 classic Gertie the Dinosaur, to Steven Spielberg's T Rex in the 1993 blockbuster Jurassic Park, the exhibition educates and entertains in equal measure. 

0 Comments Toby Young

Posted by
Toby Young
Thu 11 Aug 2011: 1:52pm

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BlueBolt in the Running to Strike Television Gold

BlueBolt in the Running to Strike Television Gold

There is one television series that got us all excited here at Escape Studios this year. I am sure you can already guess which one it is... Yes, you got it, it was The Game of Thrones. There have been many discussions and debates about it over coffee in our office. So much so, that I decided it was time we featured BlueBolt on our blog.

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Thu 11 Aug 2011: 10:59am

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Free Webinar: Learn More About Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suites 2012

Free Webinar: Learn More About Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suites 2012

In honour of the recently released Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suite, Escape Studios are hosting a webinar to highlight some of the nifty tools in this 2012 version. Maya guru Lee Danskin will be walking through how these artist driven tools can assist with multiple pipelines without compromising on creativity. With one click solutions that give faster results, this new edition promises to increase creativity, flexibility and productivity, and won’t burn a hole in your wallet.

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Thu 11 Aug 2011: 10:34am

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Motionographer: Inspiration for Your VFX Work

Motionographer: Inspiration for Your VFX Work

Some of you may already know this, but here is an incredibly useful website called Motionographer which I actually check daily.

0 Comments Miles Pettit

Posted by
Miles Pettit
Tue 9 Aug 2011: 10:45am

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Free Tutorial: Paint Effects in Maya

If you want to create a seamless finish for your CG scenes, this is the video tutorial for you. This month, I've created a tutorial that explores how paint effects can be used to embed models into backplate environments simply and easily.

What's in this Tutorial?
First off, we'll take a look at paint effects and will explain how you can paint onto geometry. In order to do this, you’ll need to understand the importance of an object's UV which we will discuss as well. You'll then learn how to access a host of preset paint effect brushes that you can find in Maya.

0 Comments Daniel Shutt

Posted by
Daniel Shutt
Wed 3 Aug 2011: 10:20am

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A Lost Art?

A Lost Art?

My walk down memory lane continues... 

I went on a simulator ride called 'Slot Car Boogie' at the weekend. it was actually made by some old friends at Rocket Films in Bournemouth quite some years ago. 1996 I believe! Rocket Films are sadly no longer trading but it lead me to wonder who makes these kind of films today? It's hard to find any reference of it in the UK, which is a shame as we were obviously quite good at it.

This work would have been done on a Silicon Graphics machine running PowerAnimator. To put this into perspective, this would have cost around £60-80K for the SGI hardware and the software for just one artist... Oh, how lucky we all are now! 

If you know of any companies that do this type of work in the UK, do let me know.

As with most of my memory lane trips, the memories were normally pre Internet revolution. I have however found this on YouTube, Slot Car Boogie by the originator Ian Williams.

1 Comments Mark Cass

Posted by
Mark Cass
Tue 2 Aug 2011: 8:34am

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