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Potential Shortage of Hard Disk Drives

Potential Shortage of Hard Disk Drives

Western Digital, one of the worlds largest hard drive manufacturers, has been badly affected by recent flooding in Thailand where they have two production plants. The one in Bang Pa-in Industrial Park is completely destroyed, with equipment submerged in water. The other in Navanakorn Industrial Park is struggling to keep flooding at bay.

0 Comments richard mcguinnesss

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richard mcguinnesss
Thu 27 Oct 2011: 1:07pm

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iNuked: Part 1

iNuked: Part 1

I was on the hunt for an appropriate piece of tech to occupy my mind whilst travelling to and from Escape Studios, during my epic commute into London each day and initially the novelty of an iPad seemed the best source of distraction. However after further investigation the answer came in the form of Hugo Guerra (Escape Studios compositing tutor) who, in less than ten minutes, managed to persuade me to spend an extra £600 on an alternative Apple product.

3 Comments Simon  Richardson

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Simon Richardson
Thu 27 Oct 2011: 11:07am

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Autodesk Softimage UGM This November

Autodesk Softimage UGM This November

A Softimage UGM in the UK has been a long time coming, something that Autodesk are very aware of. So, we've partnered up with Autodesk to make it happen. We are delighted to announce that Jason “Chinny” Brynford-Jones, Softimage product manager and demonstration guru, is making the trip to London to chair this meeting. It certainly wouldn’t be the same without him. A blast from the past for some of you, “Chinny” has been with the Softimage family for 15 years. He started out as a demonstrator in London and has since gained a reputation as being the cheerful face of Autodesk Softimage.  He has been working in Product Management for the last 8 years and is now a Technical Product Manager at Autodesk in Montreal.

0 Comments richard mcguinnesss

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richard mcguinnesss
Wed 26 Oct 2011: 2:55pm

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Fine Artist to VFX Artist - Could This Be You?

Fine Artist to VFX Artist - Could This Be You?

Have you ever thought about taking your artistic talent and transferring those skills to VFX? Then the webinar that we’re running on November 10th could be the start of you doing that. For the industry to remain fresh and buoyant, it’s important that there are constant waves of creative and original talent. We always say that creativity is key – if you have that, learning the technical skills is the easy bit. The current growth of the VFX industry in the UK means there is a growing demand for fresh talent. In this webinar I'll look at the potential routes a Fine Art graduate may take into the industry and the transferable, creative skills that will allow them to stand out from the crowd when making the move into this demanding and competitive industry. 

0 Comments Miles Pettit

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Miles Pettit
Wed 26 Oct 2011: 10:27am

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After Effects to NUKE Free Training Workshop

Are you an After Effects user, looking to progress over to NUKE? If so we have a free training workshop that could help you.

1 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Wed 26 Oct 2011: 9:33am

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New 3DBOXX 3970 XTREME: Pick of The Week for Desktop Engineer!

New 3DBOXX 3970 XTREME: Pick of The Week for Desktop Engineer!

BOXX Technologies are bringing a new workstation to the market that aims to boost processing speeds and accelerate workflow. This unique product is kitted out with 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor as well as Intel Smart Response Technology, a combination you can’t get elsewhere. It is currently the fastest single socket workstation on the market, with incredible speeds of up to 4.5 GHz. The latest addition to the 3DBOXX XTREME workstations line, it is designed to offer exceptional support for visualisation, modelling, 3D animation and motion media applications.

2 Comments richard mcguinnesss

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richard mcguinnesss
Tue 25 Oct 2011: 8:48am

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Alex Williams Cartoon Book Launch

Alex Williams Cartoon Book Launch

Pictured centre flanked by tutor Gideon Corby to the left and Training Manager Miles Petit to the right, Alex Williams savours the launch of his book with a glass of champagne.

0 Comments Toby Young

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Toby Young
Mon 24 Oct 2011: 6:18pm

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Escapees in far-flung places

Escapees in far-flung places

It turns out that our escapees are never prouder than when they are wearing an ‘escapee’ T-Shirt, as you can see in this photo of Mentored VFX Course student Ricardo Vianna. Whenever I’m out and about in Soho, I’m always surprised by how many escapees stop to tell me that they continue to wear their T-Shirt, even after we have placed them in jobs. Some have mentioned that they’ve even taken them on holiday. All of our Classroom and Mentored Course students get a T-Shirt and they are becoming a bit of a phenomenon – well, put it this way, it’s very easy to spot our graduates when out and about in the industry. It turns out that one of our students has a picture of herself standing outside the pyramids with it on! (Picture coming soon…).

1 Comments Garreth Gaydon

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Garreth Gaydon
Mon 24 Oct 2011: 12:39pm

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Special Compositing and Animation Open Days announced for November

Special Compositing and Animation Open Days announced for November

Once again we are going to be running a couple of course specific Open Days for those would like to find out more about our courses and the sort of training we offer here at Escape.

0 Comments Paul Wilkes

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Paul Wilkes
Fri 21 Oct 2011: 5:38pm

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CG Whiz Judge Lee Danskin: Tips for the Amateur Category

CG Whiz Judge Lee Danskin: Tips for the Amateur Category

CG Whiz 2011 has been open for entries for over a week now, and we’re already seeing lots of great work coming in. We know a lot of you will be hard at work on your showreels, so to give you some insight into what the judges will be looking for in the amateur category, we caught up with Lee Danskin, our Training Director and a CG Whiz judge since the competition started two years ago.

1 Comments Isabelle Duarte

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Isabelle Duarte
Fri 21 Oct 2011: 2:23pm

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Coaching Diary – A day in the Life of a Compositor at Framestore

Coaching Diary – A day in the Life of a Compositor at Framestore

One foggy day in London town, a gaggle of our compositing students congregated for coffee at Oxford Circus.

0 Comments Miles Pettit

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Miles Pettit
Fri 21 Oct 2011: 12:36pm

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MARI vs Photoshop Webinar… Coming soon!

MARI vs Photoshop Webinar… Coming soon!

There’s a new tool on the market that is taking the industry by storm. MARI is the magnificently user friendly 3D paint package that lets an artist spend more time painting and less time battling tech issues. It offers a great many solutions that until now have been missing from comparable applications. Photoshop continues to be an invaluable tool to compositors and motion graphic artists, but MARI has the time saving functionality currently missing.

0 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Fri 21 Oct 2011: 11:20am

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Summary of 23 MARI Tips Courtesy of Henry South!

Summary of 23 MARI Tips Courtesy of Henry South!

Last month Henry South, lead texture artist at Framestore, kindly shared 23 MARI tips via twitter over 23 days. For those of you who followed these feeds over the 23 days, thank you for your positive feedback. Your encouraging messages let us know that these little projects are welcomed and necessary.

0 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Thu 20 Oct 2011: 3:07pm

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The Art of Flight

It might be sunny outside now, but we're in England, so its fair to say that winter is just around the corner. For most, this invariably leads to grumbling about dark, depressing days, weather-induced travel disruption, and just how much you can't afford Christmas this year. But for some of us its a time to get excited about the upcoming snow season, and whether you ski or snowboard, nothing gets you in the mood like a stupidly high-budget documentary showing people younger than you, performing tricks you will never be able to do, in places you will never go.
Cool skiing and snowboarding videos are a dime a dozen these days. Every grungy kid with a camera and a rough idea of which way up to hold it can shoot his mate face-planting in their back garden and stick it on you tube, but with so much stuff on the internet these days, people bore easily, so it takes something special to drop the masses' proverbial jaw. The Art of Flight is something special. Released earlier this month, it is the much anticipated sequal to BrainFarms' 2008 release, That's It, That's All, which documents pro snowboarderTravis Rice and his entourage of boarder buddies hurling themselves off some of the most incredible mountains in the world. The sequal aims to go bigger, better and harder and do it all in 3d. With more helicopters.
True to their style, Red Bull Media House spare no expense at producing a luscious looking result chok full of awesome landscape shots, arty focus pulls and lots of obligitory slow mo. Amongst others, Brainfarm used the Phantom Flex camera, capable of packing 1 second of time with a whopping 2800 frames at full 1080p which goes some way to explaining why it features so heavily. Other camera trickery includes lots of low fish-eye shots, the usual head cams, and even suspending a cameraman by his waist from a cable car wire. Huge tricks are what this film is selling and what you get defies belief and seemingly gravity some of the time. Even the helicopter pilots seem to be adrenaline junkies, often nosediving down a cliff face after unloading their troops.
So clearly we can't compare something of this scale to backyard handicam hijinks. Yes, this film does seem to sweat the supposed $2 million budget put into it and wallow smugly in its own glory a little bit, but rightly so too. Despite the fact that this is supposed to be a documentary about snowboarding, or more accurately, a documentary about making a documentary about snowboarding, it is as much about showcasing some really lovely cinematography and editing, while also paying homage to the extreme landscape and conditions that these guys choose to test. Focusing on these aspects makes it so much more accessible to people who would normally have no interest in a film like this. You could show this to your gran and she will probably overlook the fact that some silly boys have stuck two skis together, just because its so beautiful to watch.
So whether your a skier, snowboarder, tobogganer, or enjoy wildlife (in every sense of the word) documentaries, this is guaranteed to send shivers down your spine and possibly have you typing your credit card details into a travel website shortly after. Dangerous stuff.

It might be sunny outside now, but we're in England, so it's fair to say that winter is just around the corner. For most, this invariably leads to grumbling about dark depressing days, weather-induced travel disruption, and just how much you can't afford Christmas this year. But for some of us it's a time to get excited about the upcoming snow season, and whether you ski or snowboard, nothing gets you in the mood like a stupidly high-budget documentary showing people younger than you, performing tricks you will never be able to do, in places you will never go.

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Thu 20 Oct 2011: 2:24pm

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Escapee Richard Jeffery Wows with his Animation

Here at Escape Studios we are constantly fine-tuning our courses to give our students the best possible balance of skills.

3 Comments alex williams

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alex williams
Wed 19 Oct 2011: 3:47pm

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New February VFX Course Dates & Exciting News About Houdini

New February VFX Course Dates & Exciting News About Houdini

Due to unprecedented demand for our 12-week Visual Effects Production and 18-week Visual Effects Professional courses, we've just announced a new course date for February 2012. Our two January courses our now full, so if you're interested in joining the February course please contact us as soon as possible as we expect it to fill quickly too.

1 Comments Paul Wilkes

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Paul Wilkes
Tue 18 Oct 2011: 1:35pm

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Free Tutorial: Generating Faster Renders Using Command Shells

Free Tutorial: Generating Faster Renders Using Command Shells

In this month's free tutorial, I have a real treat for you - something which I know many VFX artist wish they could do. It all stems from my experience working in the industry where I have so often witnessed artists resorting automatically to using Maya's Render Tool when they could actually be so much more efficient if they knew some of the alternatives available to them.

7 Comments Lee Danskin

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Lee Danskin
Tue 18 Oct 2011: 11:54am

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News Round-Up: Monday 17th Oct 2011

News Round-Up: Monday 17th Oct 2011

Here is my usual Weekly Round-Up of News, with stories that I have picked up over the past week. If you have suggestions for stories I missed, just drop me a line or post a comment.

0 Comments Isabelle Duarte

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Isabelle Duarte
Mon 17 Oct 2011: 10:55am

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MAG Sneakers: To Buy or Not to Buy?

MAG Sneakers: To Buy or Not to Buy?

September saw Nike unveil the long awaited "MAG" sneakers - a near perfect replica of the futuristic foot ware featured in the classic "Back to Future" trilogy.

0 Comments David Conisbee

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David Conisbee
Mon 17 Oct 2011: 10:30am

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The Foundry and Escape Studios UK Tour

The Foundry and Escape Studios UK Tour

The UK has a flourishing VFX industry that is attracting business from all over the world. In terms of film production in this country, we’re securing huge business. The standard of work being produced here is world class, and it’s impressive to see how this industry is flourishing right across the United Kingdom. For those of us who work in London, sometimes we risk embracing the city as being the centre of the universe, paying far too much attention to what’s going on locally, rather than what’s happening countrywide. Granted Soho is a hub for post-production, but if we were to look beyond the M25 and further North, East or West, we would find an amazing number of talented companies working on some fantastic projects.

1 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Fri 14 Oct 2011: 5:17pm

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