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Virtual Production at FMX 2012

This year at the FMX (www.fmx.de) was a focus on Virtual Production. All I can say is … what a blast! I have been several times to the FMX and I always enjoyed the presentations about previs but this year was by far the best.

I truly enjoyed the presentations by Chris Edwards. He shared his presentation with Kevin Jenkins, Art Director at Framestore and Set Designer William Cheng. This combination of Previs, art direction and set design was what made the presentations so unique for me.

An other highlight for me were the two presentations by Glenn Derry from Technoprops. He talked about the whole techniques behind Virtual Production and showed a lot of details and insights. Glenn’s presentations were about the development of the Virtual Productions systems he has worked on with his team. Just to see the behind the scenes pictures was worth it to see his presentations.

Also the presentation by Ron Frankel was really great. Just to see which challenges they had to tackle at their project was absolutely interesting.

Christopher Evans had some news about Cinema Sandbox (Cinebox) from Crytek. I am really excited about this product and I can not wait to get my hands on it. He also talked a lot about the convergence between film and games, the differences and which obstacles they had and still have to overcome to make a previs tool based on a game engine.

I had the time of my life …

The Storyboard „Battle“

I have been to a very unique event at the Museum for Film and Television in Berlin. It was the last day of the Storyboard exhibition (Storyboards von Hitchcock bis Spielberg). Three storyboard artists were talking about their career, their background and how they started out as a storyboard artist. Their history could not have been more different.

Now comes the fun part. All three artists were given a short extract from a screenplay and half an hour time to come up with a storyboard. No further instructions, no boundaries. I cannot tell how fascinating it was to watch these three guys drawing their boards. As I mentioned before, they had a completely different background and personality and so were their drawings and approaches. They chose different establisher’s, different pacing and different moods for the story to evolve. One used a Wacom tablet, while the other two artists were using paper, a couple of pencils and Copics. One of them had a more comic like look and feel, while the second artist had a more painterly style. The third artist on the other hand had a very minimalistic and clean drawing style.

Of course it was not supposed to be a battle or competition, not at all. But in a certain way it felt like one. All of them were trying to come up with the best ideas and show what they were capable of. You could see that they have a passion for what they do. They showed the same amount of enthusiasm for the work of the other artists as they have for their own work.

The whole process was absolutely fascinating.