At the end of each spring semester, the Academy of Art has their annual spring show which showcases the best student work. We produced some really great Visual Effects and Animation work this year. If anyone lives in San Francisco, definitely check it out. It’s open house for all, but hurry since the show closes on June 11th, 2009.
Category: ‘Academy of Art’
For our second field trip, the school rented a RED One Camera and we shot a few plates in the Marina district of San Franscisco. There has been a lot of hype about the RED so it was really nice to be able to mess around with it. I have to say, it can be quite intimidating at first with all the options that are available on it. The great thing about the red is that you completely bypass any film processing as the files are stored digitally onto either a harddrive or memory card. We shot a few items at high frame rate at 160fps.
This was the first field trip in my VFX Cinematography class. The location is Treasure Island in between San Francisco and the East Bay. We used a 35mm Film Camera and we also had a Panasonic HPX 500 digital camera. This was the first time most of us ever used a 35mm camera so this was quite a treat.
My classes began today. After some last minute changes, here is my schedule for this semester:
- Particle Effects 1
This will be taught in Autodesk Maya. Hopefully we’ll get into nParticles which is a new particle system in Maya 2009. We have a new instructor for the class: Markus Burki, currently a visual effects animator. The last movie he worked on was “Monster vs. Aliens“.
- VFX Cinematography
Taught by Kenneth Ferro (who is amazing btw), this class will teach lighting and cinematography with respect to VFX. It’s great for those pursuing a track as a VFX supervisor. We’ll be using a few high-end cameras like the RED One 4K camera. We’ll be shooting some stock footage for the school as well as work on some class projects. I’m looking forward to this.
- Nuke 2: Advanced Compositing
We have a great instructor for this class – Kyle McKulloch who currently works at the Orphanage in SF. A few of the movies that he worked include Iron Man, Live Free or Die Hard, and The Last Mimzy. The class will touch on of all the advanced features in the Nuke compositing package. Ultimately, I will be working on some of my thesis shots.
It’s been another busy semester as usual. I’ve worked on a few projects this semester which I will be posting to the portfolio section soon. In my Visual Effects class, we worked on a greenscreen character replacement, matchlighting, HP commercial, and a UFO project. Here are some screenshots:
I found a potential location for the intro of my final MFA thesis project. These panorama photos were taken from the Oakland Hills (Claremont ave @ Grizzly Peak Blvd). In the distance is the city of San Francisco along with the Oakland and Golden Gate bridges. It’s quite a nice view from up here.
It’s amazing how quickly the summer went by. Classes officially begin today at the Academy of Art University. I have a full schedule with 3 classes (believe it or not). They are:
- Pre-Production for VFX
- Collaborative Texture and Lighting
- Production Lighting Principles (VFX 1)
The pre-production class here at the academy is where you develop your masters thesis ideas, along with the story, storyboards, concept art, animatics, etc.
The collaborative Texture and Lighting class is essentially a production class where we colloborate as a class to work on outside projects. We actually had to sign a non disclosure agreement on the first day. I wish I could give more details, but you’ll just have to wait until my reel gets updated after the semester.
The last class is Visual Effects 1 consisting of five projects, some group, some individual, beginning with character replacement in a film. This is probably going to be a ton of work, but I’m not too worried about that right now.
Luckily, my classes are all on either Tuesday or Thursday so technically school starts on the 9th for me. It should be another exciting semester. I’ll update the site with project work as I chug along.
My classes begin today. I’m taking the following:
- Conceptual Physics
- Advanced Texture and Lighting
I’m really looking forward to both of these. I haven’t taken physics since undergrad, but I’m not too worried. The class is going to cover the underlying physics in relation to the field of Visual Effects and Animation which will help me understand the fundamentals of science. We’ll be covering waves, particles, light, color, refraction, diffraction, motion, and much more.
The advanced texture and lighting class will no doubt help me tremendously. I’m familiar with the basics of texturing and not so much about lighting. Later this fall, I’m planning to take a lighting production class that will cover the rules for lighting during a green screen shoot, among other things. I’ll post updates on my work in the class. Stay tuned.