Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Major Project | Idea Development

After deciding that I wanted to focus my major project on the idea of privilege, something that was sparked after viewing Dunkirk over the summer, I decided to see if there were any interesting in my family's history. Once I had spoken to a few relatives I discovered that my great grandfather was very heavily involved in the second world war, although I knew I didn't want this project to be specifically focused on conflicts or military I thought that this would be a perfect place to start looking for more in depth inspiration.

Amongst countless medals and artifacts from his time serving in Scotland and Africa, I found this valentines day letter that my great grandfather had send to my great grandmother whilst he was stationed in Africa, there was also a reply that she had written him asking him to bring a banana home from his travels as their son had never seen one.

Finding both this card and the reply really struck me as I couldn't quite get my head around the idea that I was sat talking to my granddad with an iPhone in my pocket that is capable of ordering 100 bananas in a matter of seconds and he spent a period of his childhood having never seen a banana. This hit me as a perfect vessel for the idea of privilege that I'm hoping to depict in this project, as it opens a massive fissure between our generations and highlights just how different our lives were.

A notion that I'm really keen to adapt from this artifact of their life together is this idea of effort, or more importantly difficulty, as we live in a world where its not uncommon for valentines day messages to exist on screens it seems like nothing short of a miracle that a couple went to this much effort to communicate on this day of romance whilst living in completely different countries, during a world war. I'm currently looking at ways in which I can illustrate this theme of effort or struggle through more subtle ways that suggests this topic if the audience looks deeper but can still exist as an entertaining piece of film without this extra step. 


In the above videos I feel as though the idea of what it is to struggle or suffer is beautifully depicted, illustrating the theme itself but not blatantly depicting the source material, something I'm hoping to achieve in my work for this project, in whatever form that takes.   

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Idea Proposal | Major Project

The idea for my third year major project stems from the 2017 film Dunkirk, directed by Christopher Nolan. After initially struggling to find inspiration to work with my shape animations, that I began to explore in my last project, I found a theme in Dunkirk that caught my attention, the idea of privilege or ease of life.

Fig 1: Movie Poster, Dunkirk

After seeing the events these people, some of which at a similar age to me, had to go through, I couldn't help but feel extremely privileged to have lived such an easy life in comparison. 

Fig 2: Screenshot, Dunkirk

Moving forward with this theme, I would like to adapt it to suggest motives rather than to force any kind of military or millennial aesthetic into my work. Potentially similar to the subtle way in which William Eggleston suggests areas of American culture in his photography.

Fig 3: Biloxi

In terms of aesthetics and methods that I want to use to create my work, I think that the intro animation to the Netflix series Daredevil best illustrates the ways in which I want to form my animations.

                        Fig 4:

I'm really interested in creating a film that suggests, in a not too overpowering manner, the difference in quality of life between me and someone who lived out their youth during a time of hardship.

When thinking about the physical appearance of my film, I plan on taking forward the technique used in the most successful part of my last project. The above images were seen as the moments of my film that most effectively manipulated the two mediums of photography and CG, something that I want to have as a foundation for this project, whether that be via projection mapping of deformation.

Illustration List

Fig 1: Movie Poster, Dunkirk,, Accessed on: 26.08.17

Fig 2: Screenshot, Dunkirk,, Accessed on: 26.08.17

Fig 3: Biloxi,, Accessed on: 26.06.17

Fig 4: YouTube Video, Daredevil,, Accessed on: 26.08.17

Monday, 3 July 2017

Butch Auntie | Hangwire | Jacksons Lane

After a couple of months of working on various things with Pete Wallace over at Butch Auntie, and a hectic final week of rehearsals that required numerous edits and renders, the 1st of July brought along the Hangwire performance, a showcase of incredible talent contained within the walls of Jacksons Lane theatre, Highgate.

I was lucky enough to be invited along to the performance at Jacksons Lane by Pete and snapped up the opportunity instantly. the acts, of which featured aerial acrobatics, theatrical monologues and one performance focusing on feminism, were all incredible, and it was also a fairly proud moment to see elements that I had created in a contemporary theatre in front of an audience.

Over the past few weeks I've created 3D elements that I never thought were possible and worked in areas of Maya that I didn't even know existed. From crafting stars and entire galaxies to trying to work out the engineering behind nerves, I've learnt skills in Maya that I honestly think will help me in my final year and have proved to myself, after spending a lot of times doubting my skills in Maya, that I can create anything if I work hard enough.

The first element I was tasked with creating was one that proved challenging, but incredibly educational, a galaxy to be projected over the performers whilst the act was underway. After looking into particles and other intricate areas of Maya I managed to create something that both Pete and myself were happy with.

After a number of changes to the various elements involved in the scene, this was the finalized effort that was successfully projected over the performance...


As well as another shot that wasn't in the show but highlights another angle of the galaxy...


Once the Galaxy element had been finalized and tested in rehearsals, I was asked to work on another element of the show that featured a shot of what was in essence passages of the brain, although eventually Pete found a different program that was more suited to creating this element in Maya, here are the test renders I snapped up whilst experimenting on  this element...

The past few weeks have not only been extremely enjoyable but also educational in terms of Maya practice, but also seeing how the field I want to move in within the future works in a professional manner, utilizing mediums to create an atmosphere for an audience, successfully!

As this branch of the internship was closing Pete offered the opportunity to continue and work on another project with him and another artist, which I also snapped up instantly! the next few weeks are going to be incredibly exciting!  

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Butch Auntie | Creating A Particle Galaxy

As my internship with Butch Auntie begins, I've decided that I'm going to keep my blog updated with the work I create, along with any research or references I use as I go as well as the personal work that I have planned over the summer period.

The first task I've been issued with is the creation of a particle style galaxy that will be used in a projection during a performance, here are the images that struck me instantly as well as some initial movement tests... 

In terms of transparency, I'm thinking that adjusting the attributes of the shader applied to the particles...

As simple lighting effect that I currently like the idea of relies on a spotlight rotating in the center of the galaxy, highlighting the particles individually...

So far I feel like the general feeling is being achieved and after a little feedback I will make any additions or adjustments and go from there.

Reference Illustration List

Fig 1: Star Wars, Movie Still,, Accessed on: 29.05.17

Fig 2: Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, Movie Still,, Accessed on: 29.05.17

Fig 3: Space Invaders, Game Still,, Accessed on: 29.05.17

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Maya Tutorial | Film Review | Submission



Facial Rigging



Lighting And Rendering

Film Reviews

Maya Tutorial | Creating A Turnaround |

Maya Tutorials | Texturing | Parts 4-8