Tim Burton’s newest film Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is out soon, and it made me think just how many of the director’s films are either huge VFX blockbusters or do a great job of using subtle – but a lot – of effects. So I wrote about it for Inverse.
In the design world, it’s pretty easy to look new projects up, watch the latest pieces of advertising and check out making ofs. But it’s not always as simple to hear from the people – the creatives – behind the work.
Luckily, there’s a Design Conference in New York on 7th and 8th November called STYLE FRAMES that’s going to be hosting some of the big studios and the big names in design.
Rob Legato has won two visual effects Oscars (for Titanic and Hugo). He also got nominated for Apollo 13 and he’s won a couple of Emmys for his work on two Star Trek TV series. You most recently saw his vfx supervision in The Jungle Book, an almost all-CG film.
But Legato is one of those vfx artists who doesn’t really think in terms of CG or visual effects – he just thinks in terms of how the shots he’s supervising will be part of the final sequence, the final shot, the final frame.
Animal Logic’s The Master: A LEGO Ninjago Short plays before Storks in cinemas right now, and I got a chance to talk to some of the team about how it was made. And about LEGO chickens. Here’s the story at Cartoon Brew.
At Trojan Horse, I spoke to Brave director Brenda Chapman on what she’s been up to after Pixar. Great news is she and husband Kevin Lima have a hybrid film they are pitching. The interview is at Cartoon Brew.
But as many readers would know, he worked his way up at places like Rhythm & Hues, Robert Abel and Associates and ILM, landing the role as the head of the Lucasfilm art department on the Star Wars prequels starting in 1995. Here he worked with George Lucas on designing a new angle on the Star Wars world.
‘What was it like working with George?’, Chiang says people ask him all the time. It was terrifying for two reasons, he explained in a packed out session at the recent Trojan Horse was a Unicorn event in Portugal.
The first reason was that Chiang was trying to fill the shoes of his heroes – Ralph McQuarrie and Joe Johnston. And the other thing was something Lucas told him on the first day, ‘Forget everything you know about Star Wars.’
That revelation completely blew Chiang’s mind because he had been angling almost solely towards mimicking McQuarrie and Johnston’s famous Star Wars designs. However, Chiang reflects now that it was a blessing since it allowed him to dig deep on what was the design philosophy of Star Wars – what makes it work? The end process in the prequels would be slightly different, but the process would be identical to what had come before.
These are the four principles of Star Wars design Chiang came up with.