The Great Gatsby VFX


Chris Godfrey was the VFX supervisor on The Great Gatsby, directed by Baz Luhrmann. This video shows shots from the film, before and after VFX had been added – simply amazing. Set to Lana Del Rey’s Young and Beautiful.

Baz has graciously agreed to let us release this ‘before and afters’ reel to show our peer group the VFX work completed on his film ‘The Great Gatsby’. While this specific reel was the work of Animal Logic (as my primary vendor), in total I worked with 7 vendors including Animal Logic, Rising Sun and Iloura in Australia, ILM in San Francisco and also Prime Focus and Method Vancouver. We also ran an amazing internal SWAT team that completed over 400 shots. Congratulations to all who did such fabulous work on almost 1500 shots and especially to Andy Brown from Animal Logic who put this sequence together.

Many thanks to Baz, CM, Catherine Knapman, Chris DeFaria and Mark Brown – and of course Prue Fletcher and Joyce Cox.

Saturn’s Dark Side


Saturn NASA Cassini

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, which has been in orbit around Saturn for more than eight years, has delivered a rare backlit view of the planet and its rings.

The image was taken in October 2012 during Cassini’s 174th orbit around the gas giant when it was deliberately positioned within Saturn’s shadow.

On Oct. 17, 2012, during its 174th orbit around the gas giant, Cassini was deliberately positioned within Saturn’s shadow, a perfect location from which to look in the direction of the sun and take a backlit view of the rings and the dark side of the planet. Looking back towards the sun is a geometry referred to by planetary scientists as “high solar phase;” near the center of your target’s shadow is the highest phase possible. This is a very scientifically advantageous and coveted viewing position, as it can reveal details about both the rings and atmosphere that cannot be seen in lower solar phase.

See a larger image at NASA’s website.

The iPad Conference Table


DuPont, which is known for its designer furniture made of Corian fiber, has created a conference table with a futuristic design, integrated with technology for using iPads. With 16 docking stations which help in securing the iPad and preventing the theft of the same, this conference table comes in a variety of shapes and colors depending upon the requirement of the customer. 

Whether it is a video conference or a congregation where one may need to display a presentation to a large audience, the Multi Table is the perfect option to choose from among hi-end conference tables. With its accompanying chairs, it fits very well in office environments which have a modern décor to create a situation where the world could be bought under one roof and the flexibility to multi-task without using too many gadgets.

How Nuclear Power Plants Work


Maggie Koerth-Baker at Boing Boing wrote an excellent piece on how nuclear power plants work. With the devestation of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and the Japan nuclear power plan situation, this is a great read to get up to speed on the basics of a nuclear power plant.

For the vast majority of people, nuclear power is a black box technology. Radioactive stuff goes in. Electricity (and nuclear waste) comes out. Somewhere in there, we’re aware that explosions and meltdowns can happen. Ninety-nine percent of the time, that set of information is enough to get by on. But, then, an emergency like this happens and, suddenly, keeping up-to-date on the news feels like you’ve walked in on the middle of a movie. Nobody pauses to catch you up on all the stuff you missed.

As I write this, it’s still not clear how bad, or how big, the problems at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant will be. I don’t know enough to speculate on that. I’m not sure anyone does. But I can give you a clearer picture of what’s inside the black box. That way, whatever happens at Fukushima, you’ll understand why it’s happening, and what it means.