Thursday, June 15, 2006

It lives!

As some of you may know my day-job is a visual effects artist for der movies. You want an armada of ships for your ancient Greek epic and you only built 2? I'm your man. And so on. The current project I'm on, which will quite possibly be the biggest film of next summer, involves the creation of a digital giant. Whilst I've done creatures I've never worked on a character - i.e. one that has to act, and has to properly interact with real actors.

We've been working on our guy for about 6 months now and in the last two weeks something quite magical has started to happen. Until recently you could break down what we needed to accomplish into a series of technical problems like, "How do you make skin look like skin?" being my current bĂȘte noir or how do the muscles on an eighteen foot tall person work etc etc. All of these questions, whilst they have a creative and artistic element to them are very much technical challenges that if you sit down and bang your head against your keyboard for enough hours you will figure out how to solve, and slowly but surely he's been looking better and better. The strange part is that in the last two weeks or so he's stopped being a series of technical problems and has started to become a character, almost as real as any of the other human actors with whom we have no direct dealings. I begin to get a feeling of what Dr Frankenstein must have felt as the electricity flowed through his assemblage of body parts and jerked spasmodically into life.


And whilst he still needs much work to get him ready for his big screen debut, so does our boy. Awww bless 'im.


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