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Welcome to the family...Phoenix FD for Maya!

Welcome to the family...Phoenix FD for Maya!

It has been well known that The Chaos Group would be releasing Phoenix FD, their grid based fluid dynamics simulation tool for 3ds Max, for Autodesk Maya.  

0 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Wed 7 Nov 2012: 5:40pm

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The WARP Factor

The WARP Factor

With BVE only two weeks away we have spreading the word about our partners CandIT Media and their WARP platform.

0 Comments Jason  Jenner

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Jason Jenner
Wed 31 Oct 2012: 5:00pm

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Think outside the Box

Think outside the Box

Thinkbox, the makers of Deadline & Krakatoa, have developed a large number of application and plugins designed to extend existing pipelines and operate seamless with each other to create new workflows. Many of the software platforms that Thinkbox have created started in-house to refine dozens of VFX feature films over 15 years of production.

0 Comments Tim Flett

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Tim Flett
Wed 31 Oct 2012: 11:00am

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NVIDIA gets Heavy Hand-ed

NVIDIA gets Heavy Hand-ed

Our friends over at NVIDIA brought to our attention this “Making Of…” video including NVIDIA technology and Adobe CS6 Production Premium software. The video was created for Heavy Hand, a band formed of some NVIDIA employees.

0 Comments richard mcguinnesss

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richard mcguinnesss
Tue 30 Oct 2012: 4:00pm

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Wacom Bamboo—Manga-style!

Wacom Bamboo—Manga-style!

Konnichiwa manga fans!
Capitalising on our ever-growing fascintation in J-Culture, Wacom have unweiled their latest Manga edition of its Pen & Touch tablet, designed for illustrators to easily create Japanese-style comics. The tablet comes teamed with Smith Micro's acclaimed Manga Studio Debut 4 and Anime Studio Debut 8.

Konnichiwa manga fans!

Capitalising on our ever-growing fascintation in J-Culture, Wacom have unveiled a special Manga edition of its Pen & Touch tablet, designed for illustrators to whip up Japanese comicbook-style characters and scenes with ease. The tablet comes teamed with Smith Micro's acclaimed Manga Studio Debut 4 and Anime Studio Debut 8—you can import existing drawings and pictures to Anime Studio, automatically converting them into vector graphics, which you can then animate...Genius!

0 Comments Alison Cobb

Posted by
Alison Cobb
Mon 29 Oct 2012: 1:30pm

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Who Are CandIT Media?

Who Are CandIT Media?

Earlier this week we let you know that CandIT Media would be showcasing the WARP platform at BVE North on the 13th and 14th of November.

But who are CandIT Media?

0 Comments Jason  Jenner

Posted by
Jason Jenner
Wed 24 Oct 2012: 4:30pm

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The countdown to BVE is on!

The countdown to BVE is on!

In four weeks’ time, BVE North will be taking over the Manchester Central Complex for the 13th and 14th of November and CandIT Media will be there to showcase the patented WARP technology.

0 Comments Jason  Jenner

Posted by
Jason Jenner
Mon 22 Oct 2012: 9:30am

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The VFX Festival's tutor-led workshops

The VFX Festival's tutor-led workshops

Last week saw the UK’s very first VFX Festival, hosted by Escape Studios—a four-day spectacular exploring the breath-taking world of visual effects. Our industry pals and we celebrated the last decade of VFX with a jam-packed schedule of exclusive events, and it was our tutor-led workshops at Escape HQ that seemed to particularly whet the appetites of all those budding VFX artists out there.

0 Comments Alison Cobb

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Alison Cobb
Thu 18 Oct 2012: 10:00am

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RealFlow 2013 Previewed in London last week

RealFlow 2013 Previewed in London last week

Last Thursday for the first time ever, the entire RealFlow team travelled over from Spain to host an exclusive event at the MPC screening rooms to preview RealFlow 2013.

0 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Wed 17 Oct 2012: 11:30am

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CVMP 2012

CVMP 2012

Want to be a part of a European forum to discuss the latest research, advances and state-of-the-art industry practises?

0 Comments richard mcguinnesss

Posted by
richard mcguinnesss
Wed 17 Oct 2012: 9:00am

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The Future Face of Game Graphics: Janimation's VFX Tech Demo

The Future Face of Game Graphics: Janimation's VFX Tech Demo

Take a look at the future of video game graphics in this demo, in which Janimation shows off their amazing new engine for facial animations.

2 Comments Fabrizio Arzani

Posted by
Fabrizio Arzani
Tue 9 Oct 2012: 6:00pm

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We'll have a Heineken; shaken, not stirred

We'll have a Heineken; shaken, not stirred

Riding on the excitement of the new Bond film, Skyfall, Heineken has a James Bond themed ad, featuring Daniel Craig. The VFX for the ad were done by none other than our good friends at The Mill, and the global TV and digital campaign will be activated across 32 markets and involves the participation of the film's stars, Daniel Craig and the latest Bond girl, Bérénice Marlohe.

1 Comments Brad Collier-Brown

Posted by
Brad Collier-Brown
Tue 9 Oct 2012: 9:30am

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Be one of the first to preview RealFlow 2013

Be one of the first to preview RealFlow 2013

For the first time ever the whole team from RealFlow are coming to London for an exclusive RealFlow 2013 Preview. This event will be the first time that the RealFlow team has previewed the advanced alpha version of this software in public and will be a unique opportunity for you to see first-hand what to expect from RealFlow 2013.

1 Comments Tim Flett

Posted by
Tim Flett
Thu 27 Sep 2012: 9:40am

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Happy Birthday Electric Theatre Collective!

Happy Birthday Electric Theatre Collective!

We would like wish a big happy first birthday to Electric Theatre Collective who celebrate their first year with some massive success under their belts.

0 Comments Jason  Jenner

Posted by
Jason Jenner
Wed 26 Sep 2012: 4:30pm

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Winning in Westeros

Winning in Westeros

As you can tell from the numerous blog posts, we here at Escape are pretty big fans of HBO’s Game Of Thrones and I can honestly say that if there were a parade I would be leading it.

0 Comments Olivia Grout

Posted by
Olivia Grout
Mon 24 Sep 2012: 9:00am

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Webseries spotlight: Red vs Blue - Part II

Webseries spotlight: Red vs Blue - Part II

Continuing on from Part I of this blog... then, at the start of season 8, and totally out of the blue, RvB started using action sequences, made with fully scripted fight scenes that involve stunts not possible with the previous game engine. CG had crept its way into the show, and in a big way; multiple people beating the incredible hell out of each other, huge explosions, space fights, giant weapons, and jaw dropping set pieces littered season 8, including a hilarious 8-minute sequence of Tex destroying the Reds and Blues, and flashbacks to Project Freelancer.

0 Comments Ash Miles

Posted by
Ash Miles
Mon 17 Sep 2012: 9:05am

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Webseries spotlight: Red vs Blue - Part I

Webseries spotlight: Red vs Blue - Part I
And here we arrive at the end of our spotlight on web series blogs that have cool visual effects. And fittingly, we will wrap up with one of my absolute favourite shows.
This show began with a few friends recording themselves playing Halo; Combat Evolved(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halo:_Combat_Evolved), and dubbed voices over the top to create humorous shorts. Now, ten years later, those few guys have become Rooster Teeth(http://roosterteeth.com/home.php), and are the proud owners of the internet's longest running webseries, Red vs Blue(http://roosterteeth.com/archive/?sid=rvb&v=more). RvB has won many awards, and now has a huge fanbase(http://rvb.wikia.com/wiki/Red_vs._Blue_Wiki) over the entire world. 
In the begining, RvB was a clever nod to the nuances of videogaming; two teams, of the aformentioned colours, trapped in a boxed canyon with two identical bases with no purporse or logical goal other than to kill eachother. There was a heavy emphasis on humour, specifically for gamers and Halo fans. Over the last decade, however, it has evolved. The length of the episodes has grown, the cast has greatly expanded, the plot has twisted and turned dramatically, and although they are split into seasons, the episodes actually tell one long continuous story from start to finish, which at this point clocks in at over 18 hours. It's basically one really, really long film. 
The comedy has continued - and improved - over the years. However what's more impressive is the story, and how, despite it being created on a year by year basis, it continuously managed to tie itself into past events to create on long complex yet sophisticated narrative.
Both visually and in terms of production value, you can see how the show has adapted over the years. In its beginning(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BAM9fgV-ts), RvB was filmed in an almost bootleg fashion, where large black bars covered the top and bottom of the screen to cover the Halo HUD, and the aiming reticule is always visible in the centre of the screen (They have since gone back and 'remastered' these episodes for HD quality). As the popularity of the show increased, Bungie(http://www.bungie.net), the creators of the Halo series, gave the guys at Rooster Teeth the means to record and render their exploits with their own in game cameras. Rooster Teeth have also cleverly used their stories to explain the visual differences that occur as new versions on Halo are released. For example, when they began to use Halo 2(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halo_2), the cast were blown into the future, where everything looked better and shinier. 
Then, at the start of season 8(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQ9pCqbwCFo&list=ELKa7KIIcrH8k&index=3&feature=plpp_video), and totally out of the blue, RvB started using action sequences have been made with fully scripted fight scenes that involve stunts not possible with the previous game engine. CG had crept its way into the show, and in a big way; multiple people beating the incredible hell out of each other, huge explosions, space fights, giant weapons, and jaw dropping set pieces littered season 8, including an hilarious 8 minute sequence of Tex destroying the Reds and Blues(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ke9wtbzGjCI&feature=relmfu), and her epic final battle against Washington and The Meta (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgweBtQLL5g&feature=relmfu).
Since then, the show has cleverly incorporated fully CG sequences by showing flashbacks to Project Freelancer(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xQ3OZfPsP2E&list=ELYWB-pNdHjy0&index=2&feature=plpp_video) that tie into the current story. They've also built models for their characters underneath the suits of armour they wear, allowing their helmets to come off. It's important to remember that this is still a low budget show so the graphics aren't movie quality, but it's perfectly forgiveable considering the sheer amount of action and artistic direction used. 
For those of you who're desperate to follow RvB in all its glory after this extremely  thorough and well-written blog (which, I'm sure, will be all of you) it's important to point out a few things. The first 3 season's do look a little rough by today's standards, and it takes just a little bit of time for the cast to refine their voices. While it's fine to skip ahead to see the kind of quality you'll end up with, I urge you to start at the beginning, otherwise you'll fail to grasp most of the long running jokes. Also; it's totally hilarious, heartfelt, intelligent and constantly impresses with its ability to create a complex and intriguing story using just a few multilayer maps from a video game. So you should watch it anyway. 
It terms of visual effects, RvB delivers incredibly over the top sequences that rival any film this side of The Avengers(http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0848228/). In terms of the series as a whole, there's a reason this show has been running longer that most television shows, keeps winning awards, had it's fictional game Griffball incorporated into Halo 3 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halo_3), and generally keeps getting better every year (this has even seen the inclusion of Elijah Wood to the cast). It's the best and longest running webseries out there, and well worth you're attention. Now go; you've got 18 hours of webshow to watch this weekend. Enjoy!

And here we arrive at the end of our spotlight on webseries blogs that have cool visual effects. And fittingly, we will wrap up with one of my absolute favourite shows.

0 Comments Ash Miles

Posted by
Ash Miles
Mon 17 Sep 2012: 9:00am

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Union VFX's 'River Zoom'

In a bid to cure our post-Oylmpic blues, we've been re-watching Union VFX's fantastic opening sequence, comprising a mix of real photography, animation and CG elements, which helped to kick off the celebrations at the opening ceremony for the Games. 

0 Comments Taran Spear

Posted by
Taran Spear
Thu 13 Sep 2012: 5:30pm

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September’s Free Tutorial: "Hellboy" Inspired Maya Animation

September’s Free Tutorial: "Hellboy" Inspired Maya Animation

For those of you looking to get more adventurous in Maya, September’s free tutorial is a must see. This is the perfect opportunity to spice up your showreel with something a little different, while learning a diverse range of new skills in the process.

3 Comments Ellen Payne

Posted by
Ellen Payne
Thu 13 Sep 2012: 4:50pm

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Fusion ioFX

Fusion ioFX

The Escape Studios Technology team have received some rather exciting new solutions recently, one of which being the new Fusion ioFX board.

0 Comments Brad Collier-Brown

Posted by
Brad Collier-Brown
Tue 11 Sep 2012: 2:30pm

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