Interview with Main Road|Post

 Main Road|Post is Moscow based a visual effects production studio. Studio produced visual effects for Attraction, Duelist, August. Eighth, Metro, Stalingrad, Wanted, Winter Olympic Sochi 2014 Opening, Ghost. Our interlocutors are: Arman Yahin – CEO, Mikhail Lesin – CTO, Andrey Maximov – Attraction VFX supervisor, Dmitry Kuznetsov – Attraction VFX supervisor.

 

Can you tell us more about Main Road|Post? 

Arman Yahin: Main Road Post began in 2006 as a team of six. Today we have about 60 artists and plan to expand significantly by the end of the year. Our team provides VFX for movies, mostly for the biggest Russian projects. Stalingrad was our breakthrough work, which made us prominent among the global VFX community. This year we have decided to change our management style and turn to Scrum, which made us separate the whole company into small, versatile teams. Continue reading

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Interview with Andrew Lowell

Andrew Lowell is the Effects Technical Director (FX TD) and  lead instructor at school of visual effects “Lost Boy Studios”.   In his career he has worked in several countries, and major studios such as Rhythm and Hues, CIS Vancouver, Animal Logic, and Digital Domain. He is the author of book Simultaneous Music, Animation and Sound with Houdini and professor at fxphd. The reason for the interview is his upcoming visit to Belgrade in November, where he will lecture intensive course for Houdini.

Tell us about your beginnings? What did you study and how did you get your first assignment? What was instrumental in getting your current skillset and role? (education, interests, jobs…)

I’ve had a variety of roles and careers as well as multiple beginnings. If there was a defining start in my graphics career it would have been the process of, and becoming of an Autodesk Certified Trainer. The process was very rigorous and my evaluator Pia Maffei made it clear to me that I both had the talent to, as well as was expected to produce both top-notch work as well as deliver high quality instruction. From then I gained my first jobs at movie studios like Rhythm and Hues, and other factors propelled me as well such as writing a book on Houdini, and international movie studio work and seminars.

Was there something you were specifically interested to know about the the job / industry before you started working?

I was primarily interested in the possibilities of highly generative design. What this means is designing systems upfront, such as FX rigs, systems to generate natural phenomenon, or highly abstract visuals. Afterwards those systems could give possibilities through simulation that the designer never anticipated or would be too complex for a more traditional artist to accomplish. This interest and mentality naturally drew me to FX related work.

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Intensive Houdini course in Belgrade

Serbia Film Commission and Crater VFX Training Center have designed this intensive 5 day course with SideFX to empower VFX artists and their skills in creating dynamic simulations with Houdini. The total of 30 hours of effective training will answer variety of aspects, protocols, workflows and real time examples from rigid bodies to FX and fluids. Lead instructor from Lost Boys Studio, Vancouver and certified SideFX instructor Andrew Lowell is conducting the course in Belgrade.

November 13-17, 2017, Belgrade

Location: Crater VFX Training Center, Knicaninova 3, Belgrade 

 

Knowledge requirements: general 3D knowledge and FX interest/knowledge

Course organizers are providing all necessary equipment, software, course materials, refreshments and lunches throughout the week. All course participants will need to send their CV and portfolio/reel for a short review prior to the course at the email posted in the application form.

 

Number of attendees: maximum 12

Language: English

Total number of training hours 30.

Intermediate to advance level of artist experience.

 

More information about course: http://www.filminserbia.com/intensive-houdini-training-in-belgrade/

 

About the lecturer:

Andrew Lowell

Andrew’s CG experience includes Houdini film effects at studios such as Rhythm and Hues, Ring of Fire, CIS Vancouver, Animal Logic and Digital Domain. Andrew’s teaching credentials include teaching college classes in 3D graphics, teaching classes for Sidefx, FXPHD, CG Masters. He is now FX Department Head and Lead Instructor at Lost Boys School of Visual Effects in Vancouver. He is also the author of a book on music and animation with Houdini. Andrew’s personal interests deal with the interaction of visual and sonic perception. Houdini is his primary application because of it’s audio features and unique abilities with visual effects.

Procedural Rock Formations for UE4 | Saber Jlassi | Houdini Hive at SIGGRAPH 2017

Creating procedural rock formation and cliffs can be very challenging due to all the complex natural patterns (layering, cracks, sharp edges). Using Houdini VDB volumes and voronoi fracturing, Houdini instructor Saber Jlassi shows how this problem can be solved to create all kinds of complex rock formation. After creating the highres meshes we will learn how to generate the game friendly version and bake all the maps needed to make a realistic looking environment in Unreal Engine.

 

 

Houdini Hive at SIGGRAPH 2017 | Mikhail Lesin, Main Road Post

Mikhail provides in-depth details of VFX production for Attraction. We will go right from the early stage of pre-production through all fascinating effects. How we generate an authentic city and then destroy it, develop design of alien exoskeleton and spaceship, make genuine clouds and atmosphere, and why we need to make a CG fighter pilot. At the end you will hear how we adjusted our work principles to accomplish all this with a relatively small team of 50 people in just 1 year.