MFA Indie VFX Crash Course

Saturday, April 6, 2019, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
USM Communication & Media Studies Production Center
21 Durham Street, Portland, ME

This workshop is limited to 16 participantsREGISTER TODAY!

Visual effects (VFX) provide an amazing way to expand your story and make moments in your film more compelling and emotional. VFX is a discipline that spans all aspects of production, not just postproduction. A VFX shot or sequence requires us to think creatively and tactfully.

In this daylong VFX Crash Course, we will discuss the general philosophies behind visual effects and ways to achieve them, then plan out strategy during a preproduction session.

To start, we will ask questions about the why of the effect, and what it lends to the essence of the story and the aesthetic of the movie. We will talk about common misconceptions, ways to avoid pitfalls, and best practices for planning and executing common–but potentially problematic–shots. We will discuss managing expectations as well as budgets associated with achieving certain visual effects.

Students will gain experience using USM's green screen to demonstrate best practices, followed by hands-on postproduction experience in the USM media lab.

After discussing general principles, we will dive into a “set extension” visual effects shot. During this hands-on exercise, we will cover keying, rotoscoping, camera tracking, and general compositing tricks. We will  look into third-party tools that can help us be efficient.

We will discuss the Adobe After Effects set-up processes and go over ways to lay a foundation that will make the revision process easier. We'll cover “soft keying,” ways to get the most out of your green screen footage, matting techniques, and project organization. Finally, we will investigate online resources and good places to look for help and tutorials when you find yourself in a bind.

Students will leave this workshop with an understanding of the general philosophies behind achieving certain effects, and having gained technical skills that will enable them to be better prepared to tackle VFX shots in their future film projects.

In preparation for this workshop, students should have a basic understanding of Adobe After Effects. Please  explore and review this software prior to the workshop.

Instructor: Cory Anderson, Cory Anderson Productions
Cory is a VFX and motion graphics artist who has worked professionally in the advertising and film industry for over 10 years. He graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) with a focus in 3D animation and Video Production, then jumped right into the workforce. Cory has worked on commercial projects for major brands like Mattel, on corporate communications for organizations like the National Science Foundation, and on music videos with bands like White Snake.

Cost: $50 MFA Members; $100 non-members
Register today though EVENTBRITE.
This workshop is limited to 16 participants.

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