VFX Los Angeles

Toyota VFX Breakdown

Toyota Weather Enhancement

VFX Supervisor: Izzy Traub

Heavy rain was crucial to demonstrate the new safety features that Toyota had to offer. However, it wasn’t possible to do practically on set due to having a small water tower.

VFX LA had to add not just falling rain, but rain to the windows and rafters. We also cleaned up the shot, removing logos, signs, address change, and adding another parking meter.
 

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Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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Fake Railing & Window VFX Breakdown

Girl breaks through fake railing

Aimee, Part 2

VFX Supervisor: Izzy Traub

Fake railing and fake windows bring this fight scene to life.

This was for Lee Whittaker’s short film Aimee ( https://www.aimeemovie.com/ ).

 

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Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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Floating Ghost Effect

Floating Ghost Haunts Sleeping Beauty

Aimee, Part 1

VFX Supervisor: Izzy Traub

Lee Whittaker’s short film Aimee ( https://www.aimeemovie.com/ ) required a combination of subtle and larger-scale visual effects work. We solved some interesting on-set production challenges with VFX, which would have been very expensive to tackle live.

The project was also a good example of how on-set and post teams can work together, starting from the very beginning of production, to achieve amazing results without breaking the bank.

The process began with on-set VFX supervision work. Knowing, in advance, what we were going to do, and helping the on-set production team tweak things to ensure that we had what we needed, was immeasurably helpful.

The most difficult shot in the film, by far, was this one.

The flying ghost girl, Aimee, had been shot underwater in slow motion against a green screen. The pool wasn’t entirely clean, so there were tiny pieces of debris everywhere that had to be removed. Cleaning up the green screen around the girl’s hair was also challenging (as cleaning around hair usually is). The biggest task here, though, was addressing the bubbles coming out of Aimee’s nose and mouth, especially when she screams. On set, those bubbles crossed in front of her face on numerous occasions. This meant that we weren’t just cleaning things up. Pieces of her face and even her teeth had to be repainted in every frame where a bubble was interfering.

Soon I’ll post another very cool VFX shot we did on Aimee.

I’d love your feedback! Leave me a comment here:
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Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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Weapons Room Set Extension

This gun arsenal was added to the set in post, enhancing production value.

For the low budget Film Sleepless (that I also directed), we didn’t have the budget for this weapons room and set design that I wanted. (For reference, here’s the vfx projector-phone shot from the same film).

For the above scene, the character was supposed to walk up to our elaborate gun rack and take one off the wall. The problem? We couldn’t afford to rent high-end prop guns for the day. And a friend who had ‘promised’ to bring his own guns, didn’t show up with them!

The only solution was VFX. Luckily, the type of guns we were able to drop into the scene were better than the ones we were going to borrow and amped up the production value considerably.

Our weapons room looks real, thanks to the gun wall and we would never have been able to attain this with the budget we were working with.

I estimate we saved $2700.00 by doing these CG props in post, rather than in camera.

I’d love your feedback! Leave me a comment here:
LinkedIn Discussion Group.

 

Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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Reduce Vehicle Rental Costs

See how the producer saved over $20,000.00 on this airplane shot

Certain kinds of vehicles can be very expensive to rent. Consider the cost of renting airplanes, tanks, helicopters, or exotic sports cars. A single Lamborghini can cost anywhere from $1500.00 to $2500.00 per day to rent, with a large deposit and extra insurance.

Renting specialized vehicles can be costly! But swapping those expensive vehicles out with identical VFX models can slash production costs and allow you to spend your money on other project components.

Take the above shot for example. For the film, FML, the producers and director wanted to have a custom banner being pulled through the sky by an airplane. They needed the sky to be perfectly blue and couldn’t afford to wait for the weather.

Had they decided to do this shot practically, the cost could easily have surpassed $20k.

Here are the categories of estimated savings;
*Wages for camera & support crew
*Pilot
*Airplane rental
*Fuel
*Airport fees
*Craft service (food for crew)
*Insurance
*Banner production
*Camera and gear rentals
*Transportation (crew and gear)
*Payroll Admin
*1099 Reporting Admin

By choosing to do this shot in VFX, production time was saved. And the weather did not need to cooperate!  Doing it in CG gave the director 100% control over all the factors in the scene.

Adding specialty vehicles to your project is a great way to boost production value. And VFX makes it possible, even if your production budget is limited.

Inexpensive vehicle rental

I’d love your feedback! Leave me a comment here:
LinkedIn Discussion Group.

 

Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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‘Virtual Extras’ Added to Scene

Over 50 ‘virtual’ extras were added to scene with VFX (crowd simulation)

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We estimate that by adding the extras virtually, rather than hiring live actors, the producer saved over $5,000.00 on this scene. This is after taking into the cost of the VFX).

Here are our categories of estimated savings;
*Wages
*Craft service (food)
*Insurance
*Casting
*Costuming (for some)
*Payroll Admin
*1099 Reporting Admin

In addition, potential damage to this set was avoided (add 50 more people and things tend to get broken or go missing).

The source footage contained only a handful of real people, yet the script called for a large-scale pool party. Besides that, the producers of this film were looking for innovative ways to cut costs, without sacrificing production value. We used inexpensive VFX to solve the problem.

The 3D tracking, character creation, and compositing were straightforward, but placing and animating the characters was a challenge. The 3D and live characters needed to walk convincingly around each other. They had to avoid the live actors. Obviously the 3D characters couldn’t walk on top of, or through live actors, and nothing could look like it was obviously staged to avoid those issues.

Busy days and a sleepless night or two of careful planning, watchful eyes, and elbow grease got us a finished result we (and the producers) were very happy with.

vfx breakdown of a crowd simulation

[social_sharing style=”horizontal” fb_like_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” fb_color=”light” fb_lang=”en_GB” fb_text=”like” fb_button_text=”Share” tw_text=”Cool crowd-simulation effect” tw_lang=”en” tw_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” tw_name=”izzytraub” tw_button_text=”Share” g_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” g_lang=”en-GB” g_button_text=”Share” su_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” linkedin_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” linkedin_lang=”en_US” p_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/add-virtual-extras-to-scene/” p_image_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/wp-content/uploads/VFX-breakdown-crowd-simulation-1.jpg” p_description=”Cool%20crowd-simulation%20effect” alignment=”center”]

I’d love your feedback! Leave me a comment here:
LinkedIn Discussion Group.



Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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Projector-Phones: VFX Breakdown

Anyone want one of these new projector-phones?


The movie ‘Sleepless’ was chock-a-block full of visual effects like this and we had a blast creating that high-tech world.

In this shot we wrapped pieces of cardboard with green tape. After tracking and rotoscoping, we were able to replace that with 3D modeled phones. We then completed the shot by compositing in holographic screens.

We feel so grateful for being able to be part of this creative industry where we get to image a reality, then make it happen. Living the dream!

projector-phones

[social_sharing style=”style-4″ fb_like_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/projector-phones-vfx-breakdown/” fb_color=”light” fb_lang=”en_US” fb_text=”like” fb_button_text=”Share” tw_text=”VFX worth looking at…” tw_lang=”en” tw_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/projector-phones-vfx-breakdown/” tw_button_text=”Share” g_lang=”en-GB” g_button_text=”Share” alignment=”left”]

What do you think? Leave me a comment here: ‘VFX on a Budget’.



Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
VFX for low-budget feature films


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VFX Low Budget Rescue

What do you do when your movie has a limited budget but you need high production value?

The movie ‘Sleepless’ needed this shot of a high-tech plant:
slp_vfx_scene_11_breakdown-after

But the budget would only allow this:
slp_vfx_scene_11_breakdown-before

In this shot we leveraged visual effects in post to create a high-tech set, replacing empty Home Depot boxes in an empty warehouse, with industrial machinery.

Careful VFX planning saved the film many thousands of dollars on this shot.

In this sequence, the main character walks into a factory. Unfortunately, to rent (or even find) a factory of this quality was out of the question.

The quote we got for getting machinery into the warehouse was about $9K just for the rentals, and then another $3K for delivery. So by doing this shot in VFX, we saved production about $12,000.00. And ALSO, we were able to really make use of the space by creating CGI sliding doors, separating the two rooms so the main character could have a quiet conversation with his team.

We were also using this warehouse for another scene that was supposed to be in a completely different location, so doing this shot in VFX enabled us to skip an entire location, saving the production an additional $10,000.00.

[social_sharing style=”style-4″ fb_like_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/vfx-low-budget-rescue/” fb_color=”light” fb_lang=”en_US” fb_text=”like” fb_button_text=”Share” tw_text=”Cool virtual reality music vid” tw_lang=”en” tw_url=”https://vfxlosangeles.com/vfx/vfx-low-budget-rescue/” tw_button_text=”Share” g_lang=”en-GB” g_button_text=”Share” alignment=”left”]

What do you think? Leave me a comment here: ‘VFX on a Budget’.
linkedin VFX group



Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
Low-budget VFX specialist

Get pricing on VFX or VR.

Born Again – Virtual Reality Music Vid for Atlantic Records

[images style=”0″ image=”http%3A%2F%2Fvanityfx.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2Fsaint-motel-born-again-screen.jpg” width=”100″ align=”left” top_margin=”0″ full_width=”Y”]

Just finished another VR music video for Atlantic Records and the awesome band, Saint Motel.

Click and drag your mouse on the video after it starts playing… (must watch in Chrome or Firefox)
[video_player type=”youtube” youtube_remove_logo=”Y” width=”560″ height=”315″ align=”center” margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”20″]aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20vd2F0Y2g/dj1iNElhVjRGZVJzMA==[/video_player]

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linkedin VFX group

This VR video had an incredibly tight deadline, but it was a fun project to produce.

The rendering alone took 23 hours each time we wanted to produce a new draft and this cannibalized some of our creative time, but it still turned out great. At the beginning you see the white birds flying by. If you spin the view around you’ll see bats on the opposite side.

We delivered the project on the same day the song was being launched… sweating all the way.

Advice for VR producers… Element 3D cannot leverage more than one GPU at a time. So forget about scaling the render with multiple GPU’s (we have access to multiple systems, each with 16 high-powered GPU’s, but we couldn’t use any of that power on this!)

Learned some valuable lessons we’ll take to the next VR project!

 

Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
Low-budget VFX specialist

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Virtual Reality 360 video for Atlantic Records

Just finished this VR music video for Atlantic Records and the band, Saint Motel. What an awesome group of people to work with!

To get the full 360 experience, click and drag your cursor on the video after it starts playing… (watch in Chrome or Firefox only)

[video_player type=”youtube” youtube_remove_logo=”Y” width=”853″ height=”480″ align=”center” margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”20″]aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cueW91dHViZS5jb20vd2F0Y2g/dj1zbzJkY2lleGdnOA==[/video_player]

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linkedin VFX group

The project took three weeks to complete, starting with the treatment.

That tight deadline would not have been possible without several all-nighters and a bit of hair-pulling from team members.

We delivered the project one day earlier than the deadline. Even still, it took a dozen people to complete this, but that included the artists, compositors and the admin people who kept ringing bells to keep the artists and lead compositor awake. Thank God we didn’t hit any major technical hurdles (no crashed drives or corrupt memory!) otherwise we would have blown the deadline.

Budget? Well, I can’t disclose the exact price, but it was lower than you might think. If you’d like pricing on a similar project, I’d be happy to send it to you (see link below).

This 360 VR video came off without a hitch, now itching to do another one. Preferably with a deadline that allows us to sleep!

 

Thanks for checking this out!
Izzy,
Low-budget VFX specialist

Get pricing on VFX or VR.