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.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that Escape students possess a unique ability to intake an insanely-high level of caffeine. Some claim it assists their CGI wizardry in the classroom, others argue it's due in part to our breakout space housing the largest cappucino machine ever created by mortal hands.
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.
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.
Last Wednesday we sauntered down to our friends at Saddington Baynes, devoured some gourmet Pizza, washed it down with some ice cold beer and cleansed our pallets with some invigorating VFX related conversation, all in the name of our second graduate reunion…who says you can’t mix business with pleasure? And with a high calibre of industry employed attendees from the likes of Double Negative, Framestore, The Mill and MPC London, conversation was rife.
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...
It’s been a little quiet for a lot of Compositors this summer, but there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel. I’m hearing that some companies will be busy this Autumn and into next year. So while you’re waiting for that call, there are lots of things you can do to spend this down time wisely.
For the past three years, we have held a ‘CG Whiz’ competition, and one of the winners from last year just recently claimed part of his award by beginning a 12 week VFX course here at Escape Studios. We wanted to offer a little insight into what this opportunity means for Daniel, but, before we jump in, here’s a low down on the competition itself.
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.
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!
Success stories about our escapees are always a pleasure to write up. What's even better though is the opportunity to write another, on the same person, just a year later! Mark Pascoe recently answered some questions for us, explaining his journey from studying Sports Science at University to working on the VFX for an Emmy nominated TV Show for the Discovery channel.