Design work I wish I'd done - Page 4
Really? Those are carved? Pretty cool.
The opening shot of Limitless was something I've never seen before.
Limitless opens with a continuous, seemingly endless zoom shot that starts as if the camera had been dropped off a skyscraper balcony, then weaves through the streets of New York, past pedestrians, under construction scaffoldings, though blocks and blocks of blinking lights and hubbub, through the back windows of taxicabs and out through their front windshields, through Harlem, into Times Square, and then right into a glowing Jumbotron. You are gliding at street level right through solid objects, and the shot reveals little visual evidence of computer-generated trickery.
But the shot doesn't end there. It keeps going, sharply and steadily through the inner workings of a human brain, which then morphs into a bird's-eye view of Manhattan, drops onto the roof of a high-rise, and somehow leaves you looking up at the sky. This is not the kind of sequence that someone can shoot with a regular camera. In fact, this is not the kind of sequence that even the Hubble telescope could shoot--unless it was somehow made of a subatomic particle, had flawless continuous autofocus, packed a bajillion-megapixel sensor, and also had teleportation powers.
This is the kind of sequence that makes you wonder, "How did they do that?"
After seeing the film, I was determined to find out. I spoke to Comen VFX visual effects producer Josh Comen and visual effects supervisor Tim Carras, both of whom worked on the title sequence and other effects as part of the Limitless crew. Comen and Carras led the team that stitched together, rotoscoped, and composited the sequence, and they provided some fascinating insight on how it came together, from the script to the direction to the camera setup to the extensive post-production process.
PCW: How did the idea for the sequence come about?
Tim Carras: The whole idea for the sequence came from Neil [Burger], the director of the film. His term for it was "fractal zoom." If you've ever seen those Mandelbrot fractal patterns--[they're] like blobby, amorphous shapes, but as you zoom in you see that the small details are the same shape as the objects that they came from. So you can keep continuing infinitely into the details, and they keep growing into the bigger shape that you saw before.
The concept was something he'd been thinking about for years, and with this film he finally had a chance to put it into practice. He's the one who came up with the concept and the look of the shot.
PCW: Was that something that was in the script, or was it sort of added after the fact?
Carras: It was something Neil added to the shooting script. It basically says, "Camera drops down into New York street, and through a series of fractal zooms, we see X, Y, and Z." He wanted a visual-effects overture to the film, and he knew the title sequence was the place to do it.
Seeing a descriptive line like that in a script is absolutely the fun part of our job. Starting out on the conversation of how it's going to be realized visually is a tremendous thrill, because that's the creative essence of the work we do: taking words on a page and making them into something an audience can watch. Hopefully, they've never seen something like that before.
PCW: Do you want to just dive right in and tell the story of how the sequence was created?
Josh Comen: I think if you only use one technique to accomplish a sequence like this, the audience is going to get it, because the audience is always more tuned in than one assumes they are.
Carras: Here's the big secret. Everything you see in that infinite zoom in that scene through New York was shot on completely stationary cameras.
The way it was shot is that there was a rig of three Red cameras mounted side by side on a single tripod, and each one had a different lens on it ... a wide-angle section of the street, a medium, and a close-up. All at the same time, [they're recording] the same movement from the extras walking around in the frame and the cars traveling down the street. And because it's New York, you've also got the lights and the billboards blinking on and off. Just tons and tons of motion in the frame. So it's important to capture all that video with three lenses at once so you have all that information.
They did the three-camera setup at every block and intersection in several parts of town. The title sequence opens on 8th Avenue, then it goes through Harlem, and through Times Square.
The brother duo, Hussain and Ali Almossawi, of Skyrill has released their experimental project Type Fluid, which is just typography that looks like exploding paint. Every letter of the alphabet was built in 3D, exploded under extreme pressure, and captured at the moments when the ‘liquid’ still took the letters’ forms.
“My concept was to capture the most interesting moments while this happens, while still keeping the letterform noticeable,” Hussian, who makes up half of Skyrill, says.
In a 3D software, gravity and pressure was adjusted so the shapes of the letters were ‘filled up’ with ‘paint’ completely. When each letter was filled, “liquid from the constraints of the original letter shape” was released, and let to explode and splash on the ground.
A great trailer, one of the best I've seen in a long while. We all know the stories by now (after the novels, and the original 3 movies which were damn good.) I wasn't plan on watching this movie, but the trailer changed my mind. The fast paced music with the "throb" which matches the scenes, interposed with the calmness of the long road set a great tone for the movie, long and thoughtful, yet filled with action/important scenes. It's funny, because the actual song is pretty worthless for the scene in terms of lyrics (It's a Nordic country, that's the only connection), but the tune work so effing well.
The installation, that figures in multiple tripods, cameras and umbrellas, took the studio eight months to complete: “It was a fun and painful project,” lead photographer David Dvir told Wired.co.uk. “Certainly most of the people that were heavily involved (including myself) had a love–hate relationship with it.”
I still hate comic sans. It's for people who don't understand humour, who wish to come off as being a fun person. It's the equivalent of exclamation marks denoting surprise in bad writing, an attempt to send a blatant message when you lack the skill to do it properly.
Hush is a womb-shaped pod entirely made of wool felt and recycled wool fiber; it can completely contain a person, so that one can sit in the dark and shut out the world. The pod has a slit where one can still see out, and has more than enough space. It can also be converted into a regular chair, so the claustrophobic also have a use for it. Freyja Sewell said she created the cosy space to provide an option for people who want to be left alone in a busy, crowded area.
The effort was the brainchild of viral marketing agency Thinkmodo, and had the model don a cube headset with an iPad on all sides, each of which played a video of the her head.
While most passers-by merely gawked, one man mustered the courage to actually interact with the iPads; upon touching the screen, the tablet launched the Cosmo for Guys app.
“The concept and analogy here is to show a guy ‘getting inside a girl’s head’ and sort of ‘reading her mind’ by flipping through the magazine pages on the iPad,” Thinkmodo creative director Michael Krivicka told The Next Web.
For the model to be able to see where she was going, cameras were hidden inside her purse and fed to a pair of video glasses she was wearing beneath the iPad helmet, according to The Next Web.
To create the images, a drop’s worth of each drink was squeezed onto a slide and then allowed to dry for up to four weeks in an airtight container. After the alcohol has dried out completely, the slides were placed under a microscope and a regular 35mm camera finished the shot.