View Full Version : Challenges issues resolved here

06 June 2003, 02:57 PM
go for it

06 June 2003, 03:11 PM
where about people who don't have video camcorder??

i really want to do this... can some one help??



06 June 2003, 03:13 PM
What if something creepy will really walk out of the shadow? :eek:

06 June 2003, 03:42 PM
when the actor turns on the light, are the turned on lights supposed to be cg lights? or does he really turn on the lights? or is this not big issue just so that when he hits the switch something gets brighter?:buttrock:

06 June 2003, 04:22 PM
i assume b/c it is only 5-10 seconds the locked off shot is the only shot? So we can not have CUs of the actor's face or other moving camera shots intergrated with the effects shot?

06 June 2003, 04:24 PM
hmmm, and wht if I have no access to an underground area? Living in Florida they really don't build below the ground (water table and all).

Now if I was still in NYC.... but am not. So how else would I go about getting footage?

06 June 2003, 04:54 PM
I do wish it didnt have a rigid camera rule, the flexibility and story telling, even over 5-10 seconds of footage would be help anything that is being done. You could get facial expression, body movement, and not be stuck in one spot. Imagine, seeing a guy walk up to the edge of a dark port in a sewer, looking out, barely seeing a switch... Flipping it, and suddenly the entire sewers come to life... The expression on his face, the stance he is in, and then the pan out to what is shocking him to begin with. Much more vivid then just seeing him walk up, flip a switch and go OMG, and never seeing anything as a result... Why would you need a CG animator for that? Could be shot in a sewer with a makeshift switch.

Danilo Buendia
06 June 2003, 04:55 PM
How about basements? I'm sure everyone has a sewer close to them, but I'm not sure about getting down in there.

NEVERMIND...I read my answer. Good luck to all.

06 June 2003, 05:28 PM
I think people grossly misunderstand how this works.

victor throe
06 June 2003, 06:10 PM
10 seconds isnt really long enough to establish any tension

are you disqualified if you go over

06 June 2003, 07:52 PM
What about all CG can we use all 3d models? That would help a lot

06 June 2003, 08:14 PM
If I remember well previous challenge, this one about disintegration... there was rigid camera rule, and people used cuts and such... so why not this time?

06 June 2003, 08:17 PM
I'm also confused about the rigid camera rule. Could we have some clarification on this please ?

victor throe
06 June 2003, 09:24 PM
ive been for a bit of a reccy and found a location id like to use and think i can do something within the contraints


as a directorial decision i would like to go over 10 seconds to have a complete entity rather than a throw away fx shot

06 June 2003, 09:41 PM
What about green/blue screening the actor and CGing the whole set?

06 June 2003, 10:11 PM
rules are rules people...

but in regards to duration, I'll be more flexible on that... you can hit 15 seconds if you wish.

for those who are confused about a 'locked down' camera, that means that the camera does not move... so that you do not need to deal with camera tracking.


victor throe
06 June 2003, 09:03 AM
15 seconds is ample



im all excited

06 June 2003, 09:39 AM
can we then use multiple locked cameras and cut. or can we do whatever we like leading up to the FX shot and then only se one locked shot?

06 June 2003, 10:23 AM
This sounds really good fun. I will give it a go, but does anyone have any tutorial sites about removing the live action as I have never done that before.

THe CG stuff is ok tho, just not sure how to get rid of the stuff I dont want.

There is an old run down Psycho hospital used during the war not far from here so if I have the guts I will sneak inside to the cellar's and dungeons,,,,,,,,,,ARGHHHHH......whats that crawling on my back!!! :eek: :eek:

06 June 2003, 10:37 AM
What about the resolution? 550x?

Martin Andersen
06 June 2003, 07:41 PM


Karl : normaly u use programs like:
Furnace plugin for shake >
and there will be a program called pixeldust soon ( i think)

06 June 2003, 07:58 PM
If you read the rules... it says that you can use a 'designed set' to represent the underground location... meaning that you can take your garage and dress it to look like the location you need... etc.

Also, as far as lights go, I am assuming that people will need to bring their own lighting equipment to the location.. I was not expecting people to find a real 'light switch'.. :)

Martin Andersen
06 June 2003, 08:01 PM
A.Alvarez> thanks I thougth it was only underground places.. :bounce:

Great Challenge.. have fun

06 June 2003, 12:27 AM
Originally posted by aurora
What about green/blue screening the actor and CGing the whole set?

Or comping some footage from another film?

Still have a problem with the underground thing. Granted I can dress up my garage, but is that really going to cut it? Now you have me doing set decoration too.... a little far left of CG work.

06 June 2003, 12:34 AM
digitizing appropriate footage from a film, etc is fine... as long as you can find something underground, where a light is turned on and an actor is reacting.

Look, we have to have rules.

06 June 2003, 02:00 AM
Originally posted by A.Alvarez
digitizing appropriate footage from a film, etc is fine... as long as you can find something underground, where a light is turned on and an actor is reacting.

Look, we have to have rules.

very kool. Works for me, enough of my bitching :scream:

06 June 2003, 03:03 AM
must the actor a real person?

06 June 2003, 03:36 PM
Darn... would love to take part on this..

I am afraid that I dont have enough time...but I definitely will follow this.

06 June 2003, 09:17 AM
Question 1: could "He" be "She"? I prefer female character most in this story.

Qestion 2:I want to confirm that, could I model the location, not use a DV to shoot a real location?????? That means all will be done in CG.


06 June 2003, 10:06 PM
Hi all,

For a smoke effect...a big thick Smoke very dusty, using particles, let's say "Sprites" how can i get Maya to have this kind of Clouds rendered???

I don't know how to put images on the sprites...and how to get them to look different.

It would be Great if you had links or if you had a technique that could help me sort this out please, thank you very much in advance.


06 June 2003, 07:51 AM
You ought to buy yourself the Sprite Rendering DVD from Gnomon. I just recieved my dynamics DVDs from Gnomon and so far they're cool, though I have only had a chance to go through the first one and a bit of the 2nd and 12th ones.

And to whomever asked if the actor must be real, I would guess yes. This *IS* a visual effect shot... not a full CG shot. The point is to integrate CG with live action.

06 June 2003, 03:52 AM
Originally posted by Blackhorse
Qestion 2:I want to confirm that, could I model the location, not use a DV to shoot a real location?????? That means all will be done in CG.

Not to sound like a pain in the arse here, but the idea of a VFX challenge as I understood it was to use computers and artistry to add effects to live footage or live backplates. If the whole thing is done CG it'd probably be in the "Classic Challenges" category.

Just my 2p.

Also, looking for some guidance on the format for the video. Sorenson I can do, but 550x? I'm assuming this is an aspect ratio or size standard, but all I can find are references to 550 x 400... Is this correct?

06 June 2003, 04:09 PM
lol I was thinking the same thing... what's 550x? I think it's 550 x 400.

A.Alvarez, or Lildragon, you guys definitely have to fix that.

06 June 2003, 03:36 PM
I might have missed something here, but the camera has to be still? or CAN i have a camera that moves? An other thing: Can i use the free software ICARUS to track my DV-Shot, then export that to max as a max-script? That's what i'm learning right now and then i saw this challenge, which would be great for me to join...

So...Can i use: (1) moving camera (2) Icarus (almost like boujou but this one's free for non-commercial use)

06 June 2003, 04:12 PM
Originally posted by torbjorn

So...Can i use: (1) moving camera (2) Icarus (almost like boujou but this one's free for non-commercial use)

Your job:

Shoot live-action video, with a locked down camera, of an actor...
and the software is ok any software to do the job.

Good luck


06 June 2003, 05:10 PM
i guess ill try this one out, just 2 questions:

im ok with the locked camera, but can i zoom out ? i belive that zooming out can yeld some motion, but it wouldnt be so hard to track the zoom in the 3d app; thats why im asking.

im thinking about starting with a high close up in the character then zooming out into the hole enviroment

and im also confused with the final resolution. 550x ???


06 June 2003, 08:46 AM
hey there, about the resolution! what i think they mean by 550x is that when you render your movie in either max for example or premiere for example, they want the width to be 550 pixels. though the height might differ depending if you shot the movie in 4:3 or 16:9.

so the resolution could be: 550x440 if it's a 4:3 movie (this is based on the original video resolution 720x576 PAL, the numbers will change when using NTSC, but will still be proportional)

and shot in 16:9 this would be: 550x309 to be exact...

correct me if i'm wrong / T

06 June 2003, 12:06 PM
ahn ok, then

thanks for the tip !

07 July 2003, 03:06 PM
Watch it with 550x309 when doing DivX...width and height apparantly have to be divisable by 16. ...have no idea about QuickTime....544x304 is the closest, methinks.

07 July 2003, 04:34 AM

Okay, nearly done here... except that I still don't know what resolution to export this movie as.

550x means what?

I'll be trying 550 x 400, hope that's right...

07 July 2003, 04:53 PM

I didn't do a very good job of watching to see what everyone else was doing... probably a bad move in general... but now that I've got a finished submission I'm wondering who's left!

I've really enjoyed working on this one, and once again learned a lot about what I can do (and what I don't have a clue about yet... :shrug: ) plus even worked with the coders of my chosen software package (Blender ( to get the program to do some things I was looking for.

So... is this still a viable "challenge?"

What made most folks drop out? Was the subject considered too difficult? Or was raw footage too hard to come by? Just curious, as it was (no pun intended) quite a challenge for me and I would like to learn more about what more professional folks found most difficult.

Good luck to all those still in the running!

07 July 2003, 05:20 PM
We (Selim and me) are in, just putting finishing touches to our entry :)

victor throe
07 July 2003, 05:28 PM
it was my first crack at a challenge

i would hazard that getting the footage was the biggest put off for people

but tuff shit

i loved the fact that this challenge required the use of a huge range of skills


07 July 2003, 03:27 PM
As far as I can tell, there are only four entries this time around that made it to completion:

Selim & Azazel
Victor Throe

Did I miss anyone? I gotta agree with Victor: this did require a broad range of skills & equipment, and only Victor & SdFX followed the script & requirements exactly (I forgot to be lit from the waist up only in the beginning and S&A used a CG actor). Is this still a viable challenge?

Regardless, I enjoyed it immensely and welcome more VFX challenges. Congrats to those who stuck it out!


07 July 2003, 09:30 AM
Hear hear, Bischofftep! :)

I certainly hope this is still a viable challenge...and I don't think the skill requirements is what put people's the use of live action footage. There's a difference between sitting in front of your pc and actively taking it out in the field.

With all the VFX companies hiring at the moment, I don't have a clue why people are unwilling to go that extra mile...maybe they are all on vacation? I'm rambling, sorry. I think this was a super cool challenge and we've both learned a lot.

For the moderators/challengers: What's your thoughts on the lacking number of entries?

07 July 2003, 07:02 PM
Hey L'il D,

I hope its not my browser, but each link I click on in the challenge thread to 'view' the vfx challenge entries it just comes up taking me back to the vfx challenge mainpage. (But I guess this is just to view the challenge I think....doh)

Searching through peoples threads is still a pain when they don't edit thier first post or something similar to make thier entry easily accesible. (except Bischofftep & Sdfx, thanks guys :) )

Fedawy98: link to his thread isn't working either
M-H: can't even find his entry in the thread


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