by - 2012/07/11 12 Comments Production

Very cool to see the crew doing dailies now (not every day but alas… :). Doing art crits and reviews is a great added value of being in one studio together.

timelapse: cleaning background plate (WIP)

by - 2012/07/10 18 Comments Compositing

for a wide angle shot we needed a clean plate that’s going to be mixed with holographic effects of Amsterdam. unfortunately there was no clean plate shot, that’s why we had to clean it up by hand in gimp. for the scale to look more correct, a lamp had to be removed. also the shadows had to match the footage shot on that day and people on boats and in the street had to be erased.

this is a timelapse recorded during the photo touchup process. there’re still some obvious mistakes, but since this is only the base of the background for that particular shot I hope they will not draw any attention.


The Dome!

by - 2012/07/09 24 Comments Artwork

Dome view on bridge with captured robot. Central set in our movie. Dome environment by Nicoló, Robot by Kjartan and Matte rendering by Andy.

Weekly – July 6

by - 2012/07/08 15 Comments Artwork, Weekly meeting

Here’s some picks of last friday’s weekly. Ian’s already having fun with playing with color spaces and tonemaps. “Film shit” he calls it!

(Actor credits: Jody Bhe, Derek de Lint, Vanja Rukavina, Sergio Hasselbaink, Rogier Schippers)

environment art videos : materials shaders presets

by - 2012/07/07 14 Comments Artwork

Here’s a first tutorial/log about environment modelling and texturing.

It’s about materials in cycles, shaders-preset nodegroups in particular , next videos will be more strictly about modelling and texturing, but i’m starting with this because .. it’s just such a cool topic: while setting up textures for the dome it was necessary to organize them in a way that lighting and shading artists could make sense of it, tweak it or rearrange the material for the final shot .

So i started using nodegroups for organization… But it’s more than just keeping the node-tree tidy and readable, it speeds up material creation, keeps things consistent and allows to refactor and do quick ‘global’ changes on materials.

It’s also a good starting point to just discuss best-practices for texturing and shading in Cycles, so i’m looking forward to comments, and the presets you see in this video could be expanded with more types and variants (there’s quite a few threads on BlenderArtists i need to dig through :)

More to come, I’m still tuning the audio recording quality (I removed noise and normalized in Audacity, but my new soundcard is still misbehaving. It’s also tricky to find the right balance between doing many takes and editing more, to make the speech more fluid)

“Make Stuff More Real”

by - 2012/07/06 34 Comments Artwork, Compositing

(Not a real site. But it should be.)



We’re making a movie. And it has a lot of VFX shots in it (110ish?). And they were not photo-real enough. So now we’re making everything more realistic! And keeping up with our quote of 50 seconds per week.*

You want to know what’s tricky? Staring at a picture that looks pretty good, but not entirely realistic, and trying to figure out what exactly is off about it.


Voronoi Fracturing

by - 2012/07/05 61 Comments Random

In new builds of blender you will find under User Preferences/Addons/Object/Cell Fracture the new voronoi fracturing tool from Campbell Barton! It’s still under development, but already useful.

screenshot with all the options


How to break things

by - 2012/07/03 18 Comments Animation, Rigging

Because this is a vfx film, the animation workload is a little less stressful than it would be if everything was animated. Which lets me get in with a fine tooth comb and really polish the c**p outa these shots.
Other things it lets me do it to add in little bits that’d make it look a lot more awesome (because we love that word here at Mango!)

So here’s a very brief tutorial on how to break things.


Andy shares his screen and does compositing stuff

by - 2012/07/02 10 Comments Compositing


Today I’m going to work on more shorts from the inside of the command center. Mostly set extensions and integrating the Captain, Thom and Ghengis into the CG environment. I decided to share my screen for today and let everyone look over my digital shoulder. I’ll try to keep it entertaining, but since I’ll be rendering, sometimes things can go slow :)

edit: I’m sorry, it looks like this turned out a typical monday, with lots of off-screen discussions, so I had to stop the screen sharing. I will resume this experiment at another point in time probably.

edit2: Scroll down for tuesday!