August’s free tutorial goes out to all the Compositors. Take this opportunity to breathe a little life into your projects, using some NUKE trickery. Based on a technique applied while working on Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Compositing tutor and Head of 2D at Escape, Davi Stein looks at how to enhance basic elements within your scene for a more filmic look.
I wanted to share this fantastic image, which shows the men’s 100m Olympic Final in stunning detail.
To mark Escape's 10 year anniversary we decided to give the office a new look. Some of you who have been to our office may remember the funky brown and orange colour scheme gracing our office walls and the old layout of the desks next to our Reception area. Over the past few weeks the Escape office has dramatically changed and now we have a fresh, chic and very cool colour scheme of metallics and white. We've opened up a new area for our main office space and moved the Tech team into their very own area. There are more changes to come - we've got big ideas for the uninhabited space next to the Reception area plus some trendy furniture is arriving from our LA office.
A short time ago, our current students were treated to a presentation from some chaps from Lexhag Visual Effects. Lexhag are a small post production house with in house grading capabilities and benefit from years of on-set experience to create stunning effects for mid-level tv shows, such as Whitechapel and The Fades. We were visted by Effects Supervisor Alexis Haggar, founder of Lexhag and fellow escapee (from way back when), and Senior Producer Dan Marbrook. They took the time to come exhibit some shows they'd worked on, so the Escape Students could see the quality of work a small studio can produce.
Or wanted to be able to say, ‘I did that’, when watching a film and seeing a huge, breath taking explosion? Then maybe you should start to think about pursuing a career in Visual Effects. At Escape Studios, we want to make those first steps into the industry as easy as possible whilst providing you with the tools to succeed. Our Visual Effects Production course will not only give you the skills to progress in the exciting world of Film Visual Effects, but will also show you how to make an impressive show reel (which results in many of our students securing jobs once they have finished.)
Last week I accompanied the current Compositing class on a trip to the MPC studio in London. It's all part of the industry mentoring scheme we're encouraging at Escape, as we work to prepare our students for the working world. With aspirations for one day working in the industry, we feel it's really important for all our students to get a taste for what is expected from them as early as possible in their training. Irene Bonilla was one student who joined us that day, and here's what she had to say about it...
At the beginning of the month we gave a little insight into the world of Escape and how our graduation ceremonies work. As mentioned, we assemble all the different graduating classes into our breakout space, where students and tutors watch what each student has worked on during the first, or last, six weeks of their course.
Don’t you all just love it when our resident VFX tutor Mark Spevick shares his knowledge with us? And don’t you just love watching, with bated breath, Indiana Jones conquering new feats as he crosses a rope bridge that appears to be on it’s last tethers above a dangerous gorge? And of course we know you'll just love to know that we've put the two together.
Working in the CG industry, I have always been fascinated with stop motion animation. Growing up watching films like Tim Burton's 'Nightmare Before Christmas', I have always wondered what goes on behind the scenes and how it all works. And, funnily enough, a couple of months ago, the flat where I live actually turned into an animation studio overnight.
There is a lot of nonsense out there on the internet, and often the line between fact and fiction is a blurred one. For the VFX industry however, the net provides a sturdy back catalogue of fact based webinars, tutorials and breakdowns, with many of the key players in the business regularly exhibiting online what they do. The internet is truly a tool that when utilised, can inspire and educate.
It’s always interesting to see how different studios rank, whether it’s in regards to gaming, films or television. On Wednesday, Develop Online released its top 100 best studios, which, let’s be honest is always good to have a nose at. This time, however, what made it more interesting for us is the fact that two escapees have gone on to work for the number one voted UK game’s developer, Traveller’s Tales!
Over the weekend we attended the London VES Career Fair & Tech Expo, and let’s just say it put Love Box to shame with the numbers who turned out for the event itself! Queues of aspiring VFX artists patiently lining up to speak to representatives from some of the world’s greatest post houses, including ILM, Framestore, Pixomondo, Method Studios, Cinesite, Prime Focus and Disney, really highlighted just how much competition there is to get your foot on the first rung of the ladder in the world of Visual Effects.
We are really pleased to have been invited to partner with The Foundry at the VES Career Fair and Technology Expo this weekend.
Doing a VFX course can lead your career in many directions. For many of our students it has been the launching pad for a career in post-production, for film, TV and commercials. Many students have also gone on to work in other areas such as games and architectural visualisation. We teach the fundamentals and practicalities of working in CG, paving the way for what you will eventually specialise in.