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Moving Heaven And Earth

This August, I’ve been working at Sehsucht Hamburg on a commercial for Dodge Ram. It’s online now so watch it in all its glory:

Amongst other things, I was responsible for compositing the shot of the car bursting through the dust cloud, wire removal work on the eagle shots and the night-time “pack shot” at the end.

Software used: Nuke, Mocha
Full credit list available here.

Here’s a small breakdown video:

Object Removal Video Tutorial

My next video tutorial for Fusion is online. It’s about removing objects (a shadow in this case) from a shot using a 3D matchmove, some scene geometry and automated white-balance matching. You can download the complete project and footage as well. Yeah, it’s a home video of mine but the technique has proven valuable on various shows already.

It can also be easily transferred to Nuke.

Related to this: freezing cameras for projection setups just got a whole lot easier with this script.

Also slightly related to this: on some other blog I’ve found a link to these vintage VFX educational videos. The whole thing has an 80s air to it but the names of the presenters should ring a bell 🙂 Well-known gurus like Ron Brinkmann and Stu Maschwitz are among them.



Morgen früh um halb 8 unserer Zeit landet mal wieder ein Mars-Rover auf dem roten Planeten. Die Landetechnik ist diesmal wegen des Gewichts von “Curiosity” mehrstufig und in der Tat auf den ersten Blick ganz schön waghalsig. Noch dazu geschieht alles im Blindflug, denn die Funksignale brauchen angäblich fast eine Viertelstunde zwischen Mars und Erde.

NASA – die händeringend besser finanziert werden wollen/müssen – macht einen auf extra coole Marketing-Kampagne. “Seven Minutes of Terror”:

Mal sehen ob das Ding am Ende heil ankommt oder ob es ein Milliardenschrotthaufen sein wird. Ich bin gespannt.

Movie Bob’s Reviews

If you don’t know the movie reviews by Bob “Movie Bob” Chipman you should head over to his “weekly column”. I like his approach of using super cheap videos edited from movie trailers and clipart graphics while he’s giving 5-minute rants and monologues about movies.

He’s surprisingly critical of most recent blockbuster movies but he backs up his stance with knowledge about each movie’s predecessors as well as screenplay theories. Basically, he’s giving short lectures about movies and their connections rather than just coming across as a bitter fanboy who sneers at mainstream cinema. Here’s a sample for a mediocre movie that I’ve happened to worked on 🙂 More can be found on his website.

Object Removal Teaser

This is an old post. Head over to the final version of this tutorial.

I’m in the process of recording another video tutorial about camera projections. This time, I’ll demonstrate a real-life example of how to remove objects (a shadow on the ground in this case) from a shot. Ok, it’s a home video of mine, not a real shot from one of my projects. But I have employed this technique on actual shows and this shaky video of mine is much more challenging than a perfect film scan.

Here’s a preview:

Bret Victor – Inventing on Principle

Now that’s some eye-opening ideas on how programming could be like if we broke free from the decades-old paradigm of writing code in a text editor, compiling, looking at the result, modifying code, ad infinitum.

Instead, Bret Victor proposes an IDE that not only executes your code while you type, but also clearly shows you what’s going on in your algorithm without you having to insert debugging statements everywhere.

He takes it further into designing electronic circuits, where software is replacing pen & paper while keeping the heritage of a pen & paper world of yesteryear. The circuit designer still has to simulate and anticipate the effects of his design in his head.

Invest 40 minutes of your time. It’s worth it 🙂

Say No To Vertical Videos