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MARI: the best thing since sliced bread for texturing

MARI: the best thing since sliced bread for texturing

The latest version of 3D digital paint tool MARI is being harnessed by LucasArts to help power the impressive visuals seen in its hotly-anticipated title Star Wars 1313.

0 Comments Simon Fenton

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Simon Fenton
Tue 21 Aug 2012: 10:15am

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Selby's App of the Week: Get 360-Degree Snap Happy with Photosynth

Selby's App of the Week: Get 360-Degree Snap Happy with Photosynth

It's a well known fact that the iPhone camera is pretty cool but there's always been a certain je ne sais quoi missing from its camera interface. Granted it does make taking a quick pic a breeze but there isn't much on offer in terms of customisation or creativity. That's where Microsoft's Photosynth app comes in. This versatile panorama app automatically stitches vistas out of your iOS device camera's images.

0 Comments Emma Lee

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Emma Lee
Tue 21 Aug 2012: 10:00am

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Our latest escapees break out!

Our latest escapees break out!

A fresh batch of escapees have broken out of the Escape studio and what a talented bunch to emerge, even if we do say so ourselves...

1 Comments Alison Cobb

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Alison Cobb
Fri 17 Aug 2012: 5:00pm

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World's Largest Digital Photo: Say Cheese!

World's Largest Digital Photo: Say Cheese!

Feast your eyes upon this image. No it's not just a random cityscape image - it is in fact the World's largest digital photo.

1 Comments Emma Lee

Posted by
Emma Lee
Fri 17 Aug 2012: 12:00pm

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Assimilate BBQ Date Change...

Assimilate BBQ Date Change...

We are sad to have to tell you that due to our demand for such a massive amount of beef for our BBQ, Argentina has told us that they don’t have enough cows.

0 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Fri 17 Aug 2012: 11:30am

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Fubar Redux - A must watch!

Fubar Redux - A must watch!

Escapee Hasraf Dulull's fifteen-minute film is a true work of art! Set in an alternate reality with cats and dogs, it mixes some intense action with some serious drama, all emphatically enhanced by a unique animation visual style.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

Posted by
Robert Broadbent
Fri 17 Aug 2012: 10:30am

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Nvizible create the outstanding CG in Grabbers

Nvizible create the outstanding CG in Grabbers

A film currently bringing an interesting element of humour to cinema screens in Ireland has been described as the heir to the “Shaun of the Dead” throne. This statement may not be far wrong. I won’t lie to you, the plot is a tad mental, but in that great tongue-in-cheek way that makes it the kind of film that will surely cheer you up at the end of a tough week. The film in question is Jon Wright’s Grabbers, and it’s one I hope you’ll all get a chance to see.

0 Comments Ellen Payne

Posted by
Ellen Payne
Fri 17 Aug 2012: 9:56am

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Reasons to be Creative, 3-5 September 2012

Reasons to be Creative, 3-5 September 2012

Roll up! Roll up! This year's Reasons to be Creative festival (formerly known as Flash on the Beach) is fast approaching, ready to serve up its esteemed melting pot of minds from the realms of digital art, coding, and design.

0 Comments Alison Cobb

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Alison Cobb
Thu 16 Aug 2012: 5:30pm

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A-level results 2012: top marks drop for first time in 20 years

A-level results 2012: top marks drop for first time in 20 years
A-level results 2012: top marks drop for first time in 20 years
The number of students awarded top marks at A-level has dropped for the first time in 20 years, suggesting the biggest decline in A grades since records began according to the Telegraph.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/9479182/A-level-results-2012-top-marks-drop-for-first-time-in-20-years.html
I’m not sure this is so sensational especially given that the overall pass rate increased for a successive 30th year but the papers have to report it all!
There are always lots of facts and figures banded about when it comes to results and I guess we can get a little lost in them all. However we do know the importance of getting good grades. There is no doubt that it is increasingly more difficult for graduates at any level to find work and the competition for jobs is at its highest level. 
It’s also true outside of the mainstream, for our industry, VFX, students want to go to the best Uni’s to learn their trade and need the results to do so. They need to put in those extra hours, take on additional learning and finally focus on their show-reels… These are the ones putting themselves in the strongest position for work in one of the coolest industries on the planet (and beyond)!
Whatever your results today, we send you our best wishes and hope that if gets you your place in University or to whatever path you have chosen. Good Luck!

The number of students awarded top marks at A-level has dropped for the first time in 20 years, suggesting the biggest decline in A grades since records began according to the Telegraph.

0 Comments Mark Cass

Posted by
Mark Cass
Thu 16 Aug 2012: 12:30pm

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Rock on...another escapee success!

Adam Esat explains, that like many video games industry professionals, the first seeds of inspiration were sewn as a child, playing the likes of The Legend of Zelda, Metal Gear Solid and Pokémon. 
We soon found out that like the protagonists of his childhood inspirations, Adam had embarked on a pretty exciting journey of his own.
We caught up with this escapee in the wake of a recent poll from ‘develop online’, indicating Travellers’ Tales (His employers, and main producers of games under the Lego franchise) to be the number one UK game developer.
Adam explains that although he knew he wanted to enter he world of gaming, he didn’t quite have a clear cut vision so early on, and it took him three years at university to make a decision as to what he wanted to specialise in.
‘I loved 3D modelling most of all, which I dedicated my efforts to from then on.’
From here the foundations were set, and Adam could start stacking the building the blocks of his career. (If you’ll excuse the pun) Speaking of his time with us, he acknowledges the premium level of teaching and positive learning environment that Escape Studios has to offer.
‘The quality of the tutoring is what I consider to be world class; it truly was a creatively charged, collaborative place to study, which frankly made me strive to improve myself even more’
As with all of our success stories though, our resources are matched, if not trumped by the infallible commitment of our students, and it took Adam four patient months of meticulous alterations to his show reel before he felt it ready for job applications. These were four months though, that surely pale into insignificance now… 
‘Since then I've been happily employed at TT, whilst also pursuing my personal work in my free time’
We asked Adam to dispatch some industry wisdom for our students and any potential VFX artists out there  who may be reading his success story
I would say the most important thing is decide exactly what you want to do within the games industry, and focus on it, the key is to specialise. Work as much as you can on creating an awesome showreel targeted at the area you wish to specialise, It's incredibly competitive out there and if you want to succeed, you need to work hard. Show your prospective employer that you're the right person for the job and most of all that you want it more than anyone else.
Adam knows not what the future holds, as the industry is always evolving. But with a work ethic and skillset like his, we can be sure that this escapee has a very bright future.

Adam Esat explains, that like many other video games industry professionals, his first source of inspiration came as a child, playing the likes of The Legend of Zelda, Metal Gear Solid and Pokémon.

0 Comments Simon Fenton

Posted by
Simon Fenton
Thu 16 Aug 2012: 11:00am

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Out of this World: Mars Panorama

Out of this World: Mars Panorama

Check out this awesome Mars panorama, released by NASA this summer. This full-circle scene combines 817 images taken by the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. It shows the terrain that surrounded the rover while it was stationary for four months of work during its most recent Martian winter.

0 Comments Brad Collier-Brown

Posted by
Brad Collier-Brown
Wed 15 Aug 2012: 5:00pm

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SimCity Is Back on a Global Scale!

SimCity Is Back on a Global Scale!

Some of you may remember the incredibly addictive Maxis game, SimCity. If anything, you’ll remember the awesome tunes that accompanied your construction of cityscapes, with endless building potential. And for those of you with fond memories of this game, you’ll rejoice in knowing that the creators are taking it to a whole new level of development. SimCity is now global!

0 Comments Ellen Payne

Posted by
Ellen Payne
Wed 15 Aug 2012: 4:42pm

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A walk on the-not-so-wild side...

A walk on the-not-so-wild side...

Wow. Sometimes you strike it lucky; I certainly did last week when our wonderful PR agency Inkling mentioned they could get me a family ticket to the Wilderness Festival in Oxfordshire at the weekend.

0 Comments Mark Cass

Posted by
Mark Cass
Wed 15 Aug 2012: 4:22pm

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Get your game on at Gamescom 2012

Get your game on at Gamescom 2012

Gamescom, Europe's premier gaming event, starts today in Cologne, Germany and will run through until the end of this week (15th - 19th August). With over 275,000 visitors, more than 5,000 journalists and 557 exhibitors from 39 countries, Gamescom is the World's largest games event, uniquely showcasing all interactive game segments from PC and console right through to mobile gaming. This is the place for game devs and manufacturers to make an impression on Europe's tastemakers and games journalists.

0 Comments Emma Lee

Posted by
Emma Lee
Wed 15 Aug 2012: 12:00pm

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Shapes In Motion: Acting & Movement

Shapes In Motion: Acting & Movement

Shapes in Motion are hosting some exciting new Acting & Movement for Animator’s workshops coming up in Sept, Oct and Nov 2012. 

0 Comments Paul Wilkes

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Paul Wilkes
Wed 15 Aug 2012: 9:00am

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The Walking Dead Season 3

The Walking Dead Season 3

Despite all its woes over the first season, AMC's The Walking Dead amassed a huge following during its second season. Even though the story has arguably dragged at times, there is no doubting the fantastic special effects work that goes into each and every episode of the zombie thriller. Based on Robert Kirkman’s popular zombie apocalypse comic book series by the same name, The Walking Dead has captivated TV audiences for two seasons and is already whetting appetites for its highly anticipated third season, scheduled to air in the UK in October. The story follows a group of survivors, lead by police officer Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), who band together in the midst of a gruesome zombie apocalypse. The creative concoction that is The Walking Dead blends real-world and CG elements, characters, and environments. Artists at Stargate Studios, an international production services and postproduction company, merge that which is real and imagined, as well as dead and undead, into a convincing, cohesive whole on a rather impressive weekly basis.

0 Comments Emma Lee

Posted by
Emma Lee
Tue 14 Aug 2012: 4:00pm

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SIGGRAPH Round Up...

SIGGRAPH Round Up...

Another year another SIGGRAPH and what a packed in week it was. This year, LA didn't just give us earthquakes, heat waves and the biggest burritos known to man but also a full week of presentations from some of the biggest and newest studios plus an exhibition hall packed with the latest technology from around the world.  

Here is a quick summary and a few favourites from last week. These are just some of the things to check out:

0 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Tue 14 Aug 2012: 11:25am

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Disney Research showcases facial-capture technology at SIGGRAPH

Disney Research showcases facial-capture technology at SIGGRAPH

So as many of you will know, SIGGRAPH was in full swing last week, where the nerdy world of CGI congregate in LA to share innovations, lectures and an incredible amount of boasting. SIGGRAPH is the Official Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques, where leading personnel and companies in the CGI world get together and share what's been going on for them in the past and will be in the future.

0 Comments Brad Collier-Brown

Posted by
Brad Collier-Brown
Tue 14 Aug 2012: 11:00am

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Online Academy - Free Trial!

Online Academy - Free Trial!
Is your mind a whirling dervish of creativity? Do your Ideas formulate out of the blue, and evolve from non-existence to an intrinsically detailed vision, in a matter of minutes? 
Maybe you need to apply the reins to such skills, and materialise your ideas in an industry where the boundaries are near limitless…
There is a universal rule for all occupations, and whether you’re a butcher, baker, or a candlestick maker, the only way to get to the top of your game, Is to learn from the best in the business. Escape studios is a testament to such a statement. Coupled with a healthy dose of hard work, our experienced professional tutors can keep you on the straight and narrow path towards VFX success.
We understand though, that in the bustling 21st century one of our classroom courses is not the most ideal option for everyone. Which is why we’ve invested a lot of time making our online VFX academy as close to our classroom course as possible.
Mentored by one of our expert tutors on a weekly basis, you’ll be guided personally through each project, all the while receiving feedback on your progress. Our virtual classroom also allows you to meet, chat and see critiques of other students work.  Isn’t technology marvellous?
We’re so pleased with our online set up in fact, that we’re inviting you to take part in a one week free trial of it! You’ll be taken on a tour of our online academy by one of our fantastically helpful training advisors, after which you’ll proceed swiftly onto your costless one week trial. 
Don’t pass up the chance to get stuck into a piping hot, plentiful serving of VFX expertise. It really is an opportunity not to be missed!

Is your mind a whirling dervish of creativity? Do your ideas formulate out of the blue, and evolve from non-existence to intrinsically detailed visions, in a matter of minutes? Channeling these skills can be an adventure, especially if you enter an industry where the boundaries are seemingly limitless…

0 Comments Bethan Lofthouse

Posted by
Bethan Lofthouse
Tue 14 Aug 2012: 10:30am

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This Too Shall Pass

Musical originality and relentless visual ingenuity are two of the many reasons that make American indie rock outfit ‘Ok Go’, one of the most forward thinking, and simultaneously underrated, bands of the 21st century.
Having dazzled us with their treadmill synchronised choreography in the video for their single ‘Here it goes again’ back in 2006, (Which is, to the infuriation of many loyal fans, their most well-known hit to date, thanks to the video) they have continued to raise the bar.
2010’s ‘This Too Shall Pass’ is a single from their most recent studio album ‘Of The Blue Colour Of The Sky’, and shows  their very own Rube Goldberg machine in action.
I was pleasantly surprised this week to discover that ‘the Mill NY’ had done some retouching on the final project. 
A video which defies belief in the first place, It is understandable that the band had to call in the help of some fellow creatives.to ensure finesse in the final cut.
Fans of originality in all forms should set aside half an hour to peruse this group’s back catalogue. I can guarantee satisfaction.

Musical originality and relentless visual ingenuity are two of the many reasons that make American indie rock outfit ‘Ok Go’, one of the most forward thinking, and simultaneously underrated, bands of the 21st century.

0 Comments Robert Broadbent

Posted by
Robert Broadbent
Tue 14 Aug 2012: 9:30am

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