YTread Logo
YTread Logo

VFX Artists React to Bad & Great CGi 19

VFX Artists React to Bad & Great CGi 19
so these are all miniature environments that were shot really gollum his facial performance was entirely keyframed the water in the shot blew my mind there's a couple of big advances we made for this film thanks to squarespace for sponsoring this video stick to the end to see how you can save 10 on your first purchase hey what's up welcome back to another episode of visual effects artist

react

today we have a very special guest you may have seen him in our previous episode talking about in game we have matt akin with us today matt joins us from weta digital in today's episode i think we want to talk about some of the older movies that you have worked on and some of the advances that weta digital has made over the course of the last you know 25 years when you started working at weta there's basically just you and one other person doing the effects right yeah that's right so you're like as og as it gets i've seen where to be lots of different variations along the way going way back to the early days of the company the film project that already put us on the map was lord of the rings the work was in a lot of ways much more difficult because there was a lot more character work one of the things i found amusing from looking at the behind the scenes to lord of the rings was how much entertainment peter derived from the turnovers when he would give you guys a really hard shot to figure out oh yeah sort of present these shots and just see how many drop...
vfx artists react to bad great cgi 19
jaws you can get out of one of these turnovers i'm sure the roto

artists

must suffer psychological problems the thing i i think about peter is that he set up weather digital because he recognized very early on that it was going to be a really useful tool for him to make the kind of films that he liked to make right they always had a big visual effects component he's never really felt like an outsider to us he's always been part of the process yeah what do you think was the biggest generational leap between lord of the rings gollum and hobbit golem lord of the rings gollum his facial performance was entirely keyframed like we didn't have facial motion capture at all when it's smeagle having a conversation with gollum and he's going back and forth yeah that's all hand animated to match andy circus's performance there's no automated tasks 132 different controls that they're just keyframing you know between zero and one the facial component would take a good two weeks to do for like maybe a two second shot you know typical to two and a half seconds so there's a lot of painstaking work going on there where are you crafting it andy will have been on set with these guys clambering around he's very athletic andy we painted him out of every every shot that gollum's in which is its own painstaking yeah because andy tends to poke out around the edges of gollum you know andy to motion capture on a motion capture stage at a separate...
vfx artists react to bad great cgi 19
time that we incorporated into these plates it must have been really difficult for andy in lord of the rings to kind of do this all this work on the motion capture stage when elijah wasn't there and he was just basically working to an audio track but by the time we got to the hobbit we were able to onset motion capture simultaneous with the live action photography including the facial motion capture it was a much more actor friendly approach the world premiere for the third lord of the rings film was actually in wellington new zealand where we are based we had a

great

party afterwards then i checked my inbox and then and peter had a king kong meeting scheduled for 8 o'clock the next morning he was like yeah let's keep going let's keep this going straight up like half the party yeah you're gonna sleep in the next day we were on board with it we wanted to keep going as well nice king kong was like a really fantastic project to work on actually the cgi in this movie looks like a movie from 10 years after its time i mean there's a couple of big advances we made for this film we got fur going that was one of the big challenges we hadn't really done fur to this level before and we were doing facial motion capture for the first time so andy serkis who did the reference performance for kong unlike save for gollum here we're actually driving kong's facial performance what was one of the biggest challenges you guys face for this sequence well...
vfx artists react to bad great cgi 19
there's where do i begin looking back on this what what occurs to me you know at the time of hong kong we couldn't do the complex natural environment of a of an island-based jungle we couldn't do that on the computer so these are all miniature environments that were shot really yeah okay with motion control camera moves because these are some fast camera moves going on yeah no because we've got a motion control camera we can repeat the camera move on the miniature over and over again with multiple passes key light passes fill light passes fog passes oh interesting um so you guys can alter those after the fact um and because light is additive you know you can just take those passes and add them together in your comp it's just as simple as putting them on ad mode and calling we're getting whatever flexibility we can out of the setup so there's a lot of compositing work going into this yeah even just to get the the environment before you put the creatures in so you have to deal with casting a shadow from the cg characters onto this real environment trying to make them feel like they're really connected exactly we've laser scanned the miniature so we've got that as geometry that we are using as reference like when kong's hanging off the cliff we need to know where the miniature is we're using the same meat packing scanner yeah pretty much and then there's particle like simulations for interaction with leaves and some of...
that's element-based and some of it's simulation based i think we should talk about kong's death so another spoiler alert at the end of this movie another character dies sorry people one of the ways that we work really hard to make our characters seem alive is by the way we light their eyes we'll get make sure that we get a nice highlight in the eyes and that's often a cheated light that we have to bring in we had this moment where kong dies and one of the ways that we let the audience know subtly that he has actually died is that we turned those all those light passes off and i think i think if you know that that's that's happening you actually get to see it oh yeah there goes the cute little like highlight yeah it's like his eyes are drying out so i don't know that people are consciously aware of that but i think they emotionally will respond to what that what that means that's really fascinating i always get excited when there's like an effect that's something that anybody could do and it brings like emotional power with it and king kong themselves there's hair simulations and skin ceilings motion capture but the the reflections on the eye disappearing that's the key to the shot i think that's what really makes it yeah do you have any more like favorite characters like dying that you want us to look at back with effects from those moments we could talk about spidey bluffing out at the end of infinity war if you...
want to put ourselves through enough already you want to see more of these videos consider subscribing that's the best way to make sure you don't miss out on an episode these are fun to do and i bet they're fun to watch it's a shot that's inspired you or a shot that you oh like you're like how is this done the particular scene that sticks in my mind is the jurassic park t-rex in the rain it still holds up you know it's just it's just amazing work so they're using a really clever shader to simulate the flow of water off the back of the t-rex here a shader describes the interaction of light with the surface of an object whatever the material is so the fact that the surface of this t-rex looks like wet reptile skin that's the shade of doing that i was doing my masters in computer graphic when jurassic park came out and i went to that with my wife and i got a good buddy and and they were like oh that was that was cool that was fun i was like don't you realize what we just saw it's all changed speaking of amazing visual effects do you have one that you want us to take a look at leave a comment down below we'll read it and maybe in the very next episode we'll take a look so what about this one run don't run what run definitely run avatar was the highest grossing movie of all time until your most recent movie came out i think we did about 90 of the shots i helped in a pre-production context so so kind of building the world...
all the jungle environments in avatar were with cg yeah and there were no miniatures shot for um for avatar at all so that represents a huge change in the way that in general filmmakers approached because it wasn't just us it was everybody who was making that same transition at that time this shot right here i spoke about this another vfx artist

react

the water in the shot blew my mind when i saw this i've never seen water like it before it was certainly the best water we've done i think we continue to get better at this stuff it's all done in cg the simulation includes foam passes it includes a sense of aeration which is bubbles micro bubbles in the water so you get that kind of foaming and clouding of the water so you it's not just like a clear volume that really aids the sense of it looking like real water so i do have one scene in particular from avatar that kind of blew me away it's one thing to have like digital actors interacting with real actors but the na'vi are very tall they're way taller than humans so she is interacting with the real play photography of jake sully here and maintaining correct uh eye lines putting things on his face this may be one of the scenes that we shot with a system we call simulcam where we have motion control happening on a separate stage but adjacent to the live action stage at the same time as principles so jim can actually see on a monitor he can see zoe playing nateri she might have like a scaled-down...
version of jake like as a dummy that she's holding you'll have grips or stunties you know moving jake around moving sam around as jake and he can kind of frame up on them both of them because he's got he's got a monitor that combines the cg natairi that's being driven in real time by zoe's performance it means that the shots can feel very natural as if he's actually there filming and he can give notes to both of them at the same time some of this is probably digital jake as well yeah like his hand there's probably digital i think it would have to be yeah to get that level of interaction are you guys currently working on the next avatar movies can you even talk about that i think i can i think i i think i can um the first two sequels they're concentrating on those two now so avatar two and avatar three um we're also working on the films in a pre-production kind of context at weather digital developing kind of revolutionary stuff actually which i don't think i can go into i think that's probably fair people should watch out for it because there's some pretty amazing stuff a very high-end new stuff going on for these films hi i'm jake watson will you be an angel for yourself every day thousands of people go without their own beautiful award-winning website losing friends clients and opportunities but thanks to today's sponsor squarespace there's hope take my friend ren over here before squarespace he had no access...
to traffic overview website analytics or anything else of that nature his website was just sitting out there on the open internet blind but now thanks to squarespace he's looking at those analytics every day one of the most tragic stories i ever heard was about my friend dean tried to build a website of his own but didn't have 24 7 award-winning customer service and as a result kept waiting days well with squarespace and their customer service he found out the answer within minutes did i mention their beautiful award-winning templates oh you see griffin back there you probably see him back there he's always back there it's the guy with the long hair sadly one time he was out of town and he wanted to make a change to his website but he didn't have squarespace so he couldn't just call one of his co-workers and ask him to make the change through squarespace's multiple contributors tool now be an angel in your own life and let other friends clients and opportunities come to you with your own beautiful award-winning website just go to squarespace.com chord or group and remember with squarespace there's always hope for your website don't worry buddy they're coming don't worry okay matt it's been an absolute pleasure and absolute honor having you here with us thank you so much for coming on the show sharing some of your knowledge and your experiences with everyone and it's due to people like you that we have these amazing images...
that we get to look at on screen and these you know these stories that bring us to worlds that we otherwise never get to see thank you so much for taking the time to come out here to stop by our little studio and sit on our green leather couch uh yeah my pleasure man yeah yeah i feel like we gained just a tiny fraction of some legitimacy by having you here on the couch all right cool glad to contribute one of the things i love about this field and one of the reasons why i guess i'm still working in it after 25 or 30 years is that it's constantly evolving and wet is constantly evolving but also the field is constantly changing and we're developing new techniques and we kind of i like to think we're getting better at what we do and filmmakers are always sending us new challenges as well so it's constantly stimulating and interesting for me