Monday, September 20, 2010

preparation for vfx shoot

- chrome sphere;
- lens distortion grid;
- measure everything and put them down; make CAMERA REPORT SHEET;
*shot description: a brief aide memoire;
*lens information: particularly form zoom lenses. include any serial number;
*frames per second;
*camera roll number;
*any filters placed on the camera lens;
*height and focus distance of the camera: measured from the film-back;
*tilt of the camera: measured with an inclinometer placed on the base plate of the camera.
*shoot dates and location;
- shoot a visual effects slate before shooting;
- take reference photographs: shoot everything you can. you'll need genral refernce stills showing each lighting and camera set-up, as well as the layout of the set. if there's any possibility you'll need to reconstruct elements of the set in 3D, shoot as many texture references as you can. NEVER FIRE A FLASH WHILE FILMING!
- set up digital camera on a panorama head and take a series of stills by rotating the camera around its optical centre. overlap the sets of images to create a 360-degree panorama.
- a grey ball and grey reference card, 18%;

-digital stills camera, various lenses, spare batteries, memory cards and a battery charger;
-tripod and lighting flag stands;
-tracking markers;
-light meter;
-printed templates for shoot notes;
-visual effects slates and a clipboard;
-pocket-size notebook or PDA
-sharpies, pens and pencils;
-gaffer tape and camera tape;
-lighting reference balls: grey, chrome and possibly white balls;
-a laptop with your compositing software of choice;
-lens grids;
-tape measure and a laser range finder;
-grey glass and various colored filter;
-video cameras on a miniature shoot, spare batteries and tapes;
-leatherman and scissors;
-an LED torch;
-a laser pointer;
-an inclinometer (to measure camera tilt);
-a spirit level;

the above info is from "supervising a VFX shoot".
chad recommended Onyx.
OnyxTREE Broadleaf is a modeler for creating trees. And models could be exported as obj.
talked with ken ferro.

- to produce the pan shot for pier 39 without parallels, use a longer plate to mount the camera so the lens could be mounted on tripod;
- shoot golden gate shot at the fort point, do a slow tilting down then the bart train comes, camera follows the bart train in motion so all background is going to be blurred and only the bart train is going to be in focus. and after the bart train passes the camera will be looking at the city.
to-do by sep 25:
- gondola pools
- reference pictures for street view
- reference pics for car
- cleaning-up polar bear
- talk to sf zoo
- try to find treadmill for green screen shoot; or try to find treadmill green screen stock footage

Sunday, September 19, 2010

bruce sent me an email with two videos to show what he got with a few hours of work.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

talked with Bruce and he showed me a short film "nuit blanche" and "making of nuit blanche". very inspiring!

he also showed me the way of making animated flying pigeon from a clip of flying pigeon, the same way as what jeff showed in class.

there're a few techniques in "nuit blanche" which could be used in my project.
-matte paining. 2d painted bg and 3d mid-ground and foreground;
-green screen people on treadmill to be composited into street scene;

to make the walking polar bear, i can try to find a stock footage then use the same technique of making a flying pigeon.

camera works:
pier 39 shot: tilt down the camera from a view of city in snow without polar bears and then reveal the polar bears; and not do the second shot of polar bear. when tilting down the camera, put the camera on a plate and tilt the plate. so when tilting the camera, the pivot point will be on the lens.
gondola shot: if i have the walking polar bear, then keep the camera the way it is. but if not, moving the camera from left to right.

the size of the bart train is wrong compared to the golden gate bridge

Monday, September 13, 2010

Friday, September 10, 2010

- FBX converter can do the conversion between max file and maya file without running max or maya;
- FBX could be the bridge between max and maya with mesh; texture; material; cameras; lights; markers; shape animation; constraints; skeleton/cluster/IK; bind pose/rest pose;
- FBX crosses platforms--mac, pc, linux;
- FBX could be played in quicktime;
720 by 576
1920 by 1080 /4k /IMAX

Sunday, September 5, 2010

"it took me a long time to learn that i need to make all the important decisions about the composition as early as possible. this helps to avoid crucial changes in the next steps which sometimes means getting rid of some highly detailed elements."

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

purchased polar bear model

model was built in 3ds max, rigged and has a walk cycle. but the maya file of this model is in a mess. will have to redo the export and import or do that in max.

Friday, August 13, 2010

it takes Pixar 30-55 people 3-9 months to complete one short animated film.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

rules of visual storytelling

you are always telling a story!

-always think about what your audience is thinking
- everything you shoot is a choice. do they match the feeling you're trying to get?
- are the actions, settings, props, and effects helping tell the story, in big or little ways?
- pay attention to te frame. everything should enter, exit, or stay in the frame for a reason.
- whatever you're shooting is your subject. it can be a person or a tree. the viewer should always know who or what the subject if your video is. (?)
- movies are about something happing. and something has to move.
- move the camera slooooowly when you move it. (?)

production timeline

before starting texturing and lighting, research renderer

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

to-do in Aug

by aug 14:
- research cinematography
- modeling gondola_ cart (left, right, top)
- research posing technique

by aug 21:
- research cinematography
- modeling gondola_ arm+ cart bottom
- research posing technique
- try to contact a cinematographer

by aug 28:
- research cinematography
- modeling gondola
- find a cinematographer
- research posing technique
- research polar bear poses
- research shooting locations

matte painting test

concept art