In case you hadn’t heard, the Olympics is on at the moment, and amidst the gold medals, world records, union jacks and jovial sports fans, there have been a number of VFX delights that have caught our eye here at Escape, and we thought we’d share a couple with you!
There are just 14 days before the Assimilate and Escape Studios BBQ Round Two…not that we are counting!
That gives you only 14 days to nab yourself a spot at our exclusive BBQ event and after the success of the first event, places are limited. This second round BBQ will be taking place at The Shepherd’s Bar, Shepherd’s Bush on Thursday the 23rd of August and that is a date for your diary if I ever did see one!
Enthralled about the latest instalment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy? Fancy yourself as a bit of a Bat-fan? Well prepare to eat your words, as this mega (rich) fan eclipses all others, and prepares to embark on a $2 million renovation of his basement, transforming it into a ‘Bat-cave’ themed, home theatre.
The rumours are true - Apple is launching its iPad Mini alongside the iPhone 5 in early Autumn, providing all the same fun gadgetry of a regular iPad but in a neat and compact 7.85 inch tablet. The competition is rife with Amazon and Google spewing out rival devices, including the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7, in preparation for this year's Tablet rush. Apple hopes to squash this competition with the release of the iPad Mini, lending weight to the idea of a ‘budget iPad’ in order to compete with the lower priced android slates creeping into the market.
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.
Get ready for bone crushing monsters in mind blowing HD slow motion next week, as on August 12th, the Discovery Channel (US) is set to broadcast the 25th season of ‘Shark Week’. The resounding success of this series speaking for itself as it celebrates its quarter century anniversary.
I had the opportunity to watch a VES (Visual Effects Society) preview screening of Pixar’s Brave, a few weeks back. And this screening, like many VES screenings, was a very special one. We were greeted by two guest speakers who had come all the way from the US to answer questions from the London professional visual effects community, and well as some kids along for the ride to see the amazing red locks of the heroine, Princess Merida. Director Mark Andrews and Producer Katherine Serafian provided fascinating trivia about the whole process of making this film.
There have been some exciting changes at Escape Studios recently, and with that we are very pleased to welcome our new Relationship Manager, Anita Gribble. In this role Anita will have two main responsibilities. One is to work closely with post houses up and down the country to continue building on the industry coaching scheme we currently have for our full-time students. As well as this she will be helping to maintain our relationship with recruiters at a variety of post houses to further benefit our students.
Fans of French Electro Duo ‘Justice’ will be content this week as they release the adrenalin fuelled, VFX heavy video for their latest single ‘New Lands’. A brainchild of the bands work with production company ‘CANADA’, this video depicts a violent futuristic combination of American football and baseball, (with some motorbikes thrown in for good measure) VFX company Glassworks Barcelona bring the video to life, with sequences that match, and at some points, (speaking subjectively of course) exceed the excitement of the song.
Just before the Olympics started I had heard of rumour that the BBC would be screening some of the sporting events, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies, at its Broadcasting House using some very special technology. As it's a screening you’d be right in assuming that it’s going to be some sort of screen and broadcasting technology. What's so special about this is that the BBC are showing off Super-Hi Vision TV, which is basically a branded way of saying UHDTV. UHDTV in simple terms is 8K television accompanied by 22.2 3D surround sound on a 300 inch screen. There are only 3 cameras functional in the world and are developed by NHK (the Japanese national broadcaster) and they are all in London. NHK have been developing this technology since the 1990's with the aim of creating a camera with a higher level of fidelity than the human eye and a screen that encompasses your entire field of view, and as a result create the ultimate visual experience.
The art of filmmaking has come a long way over the last 100 years. The technology we use today to create breath-taking scenes continues to push the boundaries of high-definition and realism, but we should never forget the genius of film crews who didn’t have the opportunity to ‘fix it in post’ or rely on computer graphics to set the scene. As lots of you know, some of the best moments in film history were created by filmmakers having to think on their feet, making the best of an impossible situation. And of course there are certain skills that were essential to the filmmaking process back then that will start to be forgotten due to the rise in post-production capabilities and accessibility.