Friday, 9 October 2009

VFX tests

A series of rough VFX tests for my upcoming short films. The first being for Hands for Feet and the rest for Meta.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

More Kuler swatches for art direction

Kuler swatches for Meta art direction.

These neons are taken directly from the Blade Runner screen grab;


Friday, 11 September 2009

Debut of 'Nar-ı Aşk' tonight.

It's the debut of 'Nar-ı Aşk', the short film I have been working with three masters students on for the past four months. We will be showing at the VRC, downstairs in the DCA tonight.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Shot 14 Test

Before and After

Gave myself extra troubles here by not checking the white balance but I think i've solved it pretty well.

Monday, 17 August 2009


I now have John Fairfield on board to produce Meta (graduation film) so with Ian Forbes as D.P. Tom McCarthy as writer and myself as director all I need is an art director and we'll be ready for pre-production!

Here is the trailer for John's film Camera Obscura.

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Meta; Toms blurb

It is a cyberpunk love story that looks at the nature of perception and deals with issues of dependency. In the not too distant future, IT has come to mean Immersive Technology. Cyberspace exists as a distinct and separate world that people jack into to do their jobs, play games or just socialise. Many people have become addicted to virtual reality and let their bodies waste away in the Game Slums. Among these addicts is a young couple: Mark and Grace. Grace has jacked into the net without a firewall giving herself an informational overdose. Mark searches the net for her soul, her data. All he can find is echoes. Data pertaining to other data – Metadata.

Nar-i Ask title test

Monday, 3 August 2009

Fountain water particles test.

This shot needs extra particles for the far side of the fountain and some painting out of water from the still image but other than that I'm pretty pleased with the results!

Joseph's eagle test renders

This is a pretty simple model but thanks to Joseph's excelent texturing it's looking sweet!

Sunday, 2 August 2009

After effects

O.K. this video is proof of two things;

First, anything I want to achive for my graduate film can be done in After Effects.
And second, I have a hell of a way to go to get up to standard!

Animation after effects from alex brian on Vimeo.

Friday, 31 July 2009

Shot 31 test frames FAO Manjesh and Joseph

You can use the last pic to frame up the bird. Just remember to set the aspect ratio to HD (1.33)

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Datamoshing article

View my tutorial HERE.


This technique could be employed during some of the jacked in sequences where communication is breaking down.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009


Saw Moon last week; bloody amazing. Here is another interesting article.

Wow! The possibilities for immersive motion pictures by the way

Drag your mouse around to move the camera like in google map street view.


My friend Tom McCarthy has agreed to write the screenplay for my grad film based on my outline. We will continue to collaberate throughout the process but I'm so glad to have somebody who knows what they're doing to take charge of the script.

Tom has written a couple of short films, co-written a feature with his brother (Outcast) and is just finnishing his first solo feature screenplay.

He's given me some reading to help with the process, it's all pretty much cyberpunk;

Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson
Vurt by Jeff Noon
Strange Days

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Test shots

The Last Temptation of Christ

"The dual substance of Christ - the yearning, so human, so superhuman, of man to attain God - has always been a deep inscrutable mystery to me. My principal anguish and the source of all my joys and sorrows from my youth onward has been the incessant, merciless battle between the spirit and the flesh... and my soul is the arena where these to armies have clashed and met" Nikos Kazantzakis

Characterisation in graduation film

There will only be one rounded complex character, that of the male lead. The other two speaking parts will be flat characters representing the oppositions in the leads conciousness. The main opposition is between the flesh of biological life (represented by his partner) and the weightless freedom of digital life (represented by a software daemon character). The lead has a contempt for the flesh and tends to regard it as a breathing machine for his brain.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Philip K. Dick

Maybe each human being lives in a unique world, a private world, a world different from those inhabited and experienced by all other humans. And that led me wonder, If reality differs from person to person, can we speak of reality singular, or shouldn’t we really be talking about plural realities? And if there are plural realities, are some more true (more real) than others? What about the world of a schizophrenic? Maybe, it’s as real as our world. Maybe we cannot say that we are in touch with reality and he is not, but should instead say, His reality is so different from ours that he can’t explain his to us, and we can’t explain ours to him. The problem, then, is that if subjective worlds are experienced too differently, there occurs a breakdown of communication... and there is the real illness.

from How to Build a Universe That Doesn’t Fall Apart Two Days Later. Philip K. Dick, 1978

Sci-fi Treatment

/ Post-human / The Nature of Reality / Isolation / Voyeurism / Loneliness / Paralysis / Greed / Hunger / Fractured Thoughts / Dream States / Jealousy

A derelict industrial basement ties together leaps to unreal ephemeral locations. Industrial basement will be given context of a decaying unoccupied future city through 3D matte paintings.

High contrast desaturated cold look for reality and high key look for cyber-memories and places.

Two characters. A couple who have been living in isolation for some time. The guy uses cyber memories and experiences as a drug like crutch. The girl resents his increasing use and refuses to use herself until, lashing out, she jacks in but goes in too deep, losing any sense that she is in an artificial reality. The film starts with the guy trying to pull her out of her cyber-trance by going in after her. The back story is told through him reexperiencing recorded cyber-memories. As time goes on he becomes more desperate and hateful and eventually, not seeing another way tries, to shock her out of it. The film ends with a feeling that he may have permanently damaged her or even killed her in the process. No dialogue is used in the reality portions and the cyber portions are confusing.

Ideas stolen from Red Dwarf books and Neuromancer.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Great site for film locations

This site has a great community of people writing about and posting pics of their urban exploration experiences.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Adobe Kuler

This online app from adobe was used for finding colour complementaries for skin tones in the Blockbuster Film Look tutorial and seems to have endless palate creation possibilities.

Adobe Kuler

Colour grading tutorial

Ignoring the cheesy chat there is some really interesting stuff here about grading in favour of colour harmony's.

Blockbuster film look tutorial.

Closed Circuit

Closed Circuit a short film by Matt Cameron, Ian Forbes and Doug Slone

Friday, 3 July 2009

Random textures in Photoshop

F.A.O. Joseph
To get a bit of texture in this sky gradient I created some random noise by rendering some clouds then blurred the results for a low contrast effect. I then blended it using soft light, backing the opacity off until I got a subtle result. I then added some large grain to the clouds layer for some finer detail. Hope that helps.

Monday, 22 June 2009

Next years film; feature film influences

Taxi Driver - Isolation, paranoia, self imposed loneliness and a hostile environment lead a fascinating yet unlikable character to an inevitable conclusion. [story, character]

Death of a Salesman - Delusion of the character is carried through in the form of the text, we are taken with him in delineated time, space and reality. [form, story]

- Broken memory and post-human isolation combine with single minded revenge create a character willing to loose himself to the cycle of death rather than confront his own misdeeds. [story, form, character]

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - Dream sequences which use poetic connections to move through time, space and reality. [form]

The Matrix - Visual Effects used as an integral element of the story and its underlying concepts, computer generated realities. [form, story]

Evangelion - Investigating the nature of our human separation from each other and the fundamental loneliness that brings. Exploring the dangers and possibilities that would arise if we were able to bridge the gap between one anothers minds and be one. [story]

Friday, 19 June 2009

Next years film starts here.

After much thinking about what I want to make next year I have settled on making a short scifi set on a William Gibson influenced earth. I have been toying with writing about electronically altered states and artificial experiences and this quote from Andrei Tarkovskys book Sculpting in Time really seems to be a seed of truth that could help keep me focused;

"Let us imagine for a moment that people have attained happines - a state of complete human freedom of will in the wildest sense: at that very instant personality is distroyed. Man becomes as solitary as Beelzebub. The connection between social beings is cut like the umbilical cord of a new-born infant. And consequently, society is destroyed'

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

PFTrack Walkthrough

Manjesh & Joseph.
Hi guys. I tried rendering a version with just the tracking markers and pftrack seemed to deal with it ok. For all our shots I think we need to use free motion for the camera type. I kept the bounding box away from the edges because i didn't want it to get confused by the cutoff edges introduced when I did the stabilizing. I then tracked the shot. Then I removed any points that were tracking cut off markers (where Deniz passed them) by lasooing and deleting. I then brought down the tracking threshold in the Clean Auto-Feature Tracks dialogue box. The grid seems to stick ok although with this test it did seem a bit juddery and the point cloud looks way too dispersed. I'll supply the trackable image sequences like this from now on. Hope that helps!

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Moon, a film by Duncan Jones

When I started watching the trailer I thought it was a bit too 2001 but now I'm excited as hell and can't wait to see it. Bring me more scifi!

Easy Riders, Raging Bulls

Peter Biskind discussing film critic Pauline Kael's reaction to the beginning of the end of New Hollywood, brought on with the invention of the Blockbuster (Spielberg's Jaws) in his book Easy Riders, Raging Bulls.

Ironically, the very success of the New Hollywood, rather than rendering the studio system obsolite, as Hopper and Penn had imagined, had merely reinvigorated it. She wrote "these men were shaken for a few years; they didn't understand what made a film a counterculture hit. They're happy to be back on firm ground...." Voicing the utopianism of an earlier decade that still echoed faintly through the self-satisfaction of the mid-'70s, and no doubt thinking about Scorcese and Altman, she warned, Cassandra-like, of the death of moves.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Telegraph Picture of the Day!

Ailsa and I were featured on the Telegraph's picture of the day today! Was the first time I ever had a contact lens put in and it took quite a few attempts.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Bow Down to the King

Many characters, themes, and symbols recur in King. More significant than any geographical world King has created is the integrated view of the way in which things in life happen and why they happen. He suggests that this work repeatedly emphesizes that he is
"not merely dealing with the surreal and the fantastic but, more importantly, [is] using the surreal and the fantastic to examine the motovations of peaople and the society and institutions they create" (Magistrale, Stephen King: The Second Decade, 15)

Zombification for the Nation!

A picture I took of Duncan after Ailsa Lawson (TBAD Graduate) made us both up as Zombes to publicise her degree show. Some photographers from a couple of newspapers came and took some but of course I think mine are superior. ;)

Wednesday, 20 May 2009


Found these unbelievable images on stumble. Impossible wide angle HDR madness. Would love to have a film full of matte paintings like this, but how would you match the crazy lenses!!?

Tracking markers

We had the bright idea of using yellow post its for tracking markers when filming this footage. At the time I figured it wouldn't be too tedious to get rid of them... I WAS WRONG. This method involved tracking the markers together then adjusting them one at a time to compensate for perspective shift then keying them out. It's taken me three hours and what makes it worse is I already spent six hours solving the same shot yesterday and then accidentally deleted the after effects file.

Monday, 18 May 2009

Let the Right One In

Saw this at the DCA last night. Unbelievable! The most naturalistic supernatural film I think I've seen. Great pace, beautiful and satisfying.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009