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Neil Scholes


(2022 Mar 22) Neil Rögnvaldr Scholes - Neil is a director and artist for commercials, promos, TV and film. He is the founder and creative director of Valkyrie Beowulf in London.  

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Webinar Transcript . . .

Hi everyone. Welcome to another GridMarkets webinar. As usual we're just going to wait a couple of minutes to make sure everyone can watch the whole thing at home. I hope you're having a great day whether it's in the morning like Mark or in the evening like Neil and I we've already had our day it's been eventful which makes a bit more exciting than not wait another minute by the way  Neil when you're not talking use your mute button because zoom has a nasty way of cutting to people who who they can hear you can hear yeah there you go thanks picking up everything indeed indeed I'll do the same I'm wearing very dangly bracelets non friendly bracelets today very zoom unfriendly yeah yeah I I take all my jewelry off my earrings off when I do this yes yes my tiara as well that thing jangles all the time all the diamonds yes regular Elizabeth no it's that big ruby it keeps falling down and hits the table it makes noise and then suddenly I'm on the you know I'm appearing it's not good all right okay so the two minutes past the hour so let's let's get started let's do this and hopefully the late comers will can catch up so hello everyone and welcome to today's webinar as always it's a very special one everyone is we're a very talented and driven person you see his love and passion for his craft has brought an amazing career for himself from directing corporate videos to supervising stunning commercials please welcome Valkyrie Beowulf I studied Beowulf by the way at universities I should be able to pronounce that amazing literary character studio's  Neil Scholes before we get stuck into  Neil's journey though I'd like to introduce you to who's going to be joining you this evening morning wherever you are in the world I'm Charlie I'm head of business development at post-production house moulin air in London where I'm currently based I'll be steering this ship today next up we have mark ross co-founder of grid market and the reason we're all here today mark will be taking us through the power of cloud rendering very shortly which brings me on to ben hill give us a wave ben um ben is a global director oracle cloud security specialists keeping the creative stuff secure so before we hear about  Neil's journey mark can you tell us a bit more about good markets and the reason we're here today can do since you asked well in a nutshell grid markets helps to accelerate animation renderings and simulations like this one you're seeing on your screen we have a workflow that allows you to run blender Houdini cinema 4d Maya 3ds max and all the major renders it's a two-step process to set up very easy to get started you can submit from the software the 3d software that you're using if you need one machine to run on or many machines to run on you can just dial that into the whatever you choose it's a pay per use model we have budgeting controls within it as well to help you control your spending the platform and the workflow was built and is supported by artists around the clock and secured by oracle cloud which you hear in a moment from ben excuse me check this out free trial go to sign up you'll get a 15 discount using that promotion code and we'd love to see him thank you mark and don't worry we won't be a test we will be showing that free trial and discount code later on at the end of the at the end of the webinar if you didn't quite manage to write it down there so next up as promised we have ben who's telling us how we take keeps the good stuff secure over to you thank you so much thank you Charlie so again my name is ben hill I'm a global director for oracle cloud infrastructure so briefly I want to talk about our approach to security from a cloud perspective so when we when oracle went about launching our generation iI cloud offering our approach to security was deliberate and direct we wanted to ensure that it was always on automated architected in and best of all free so I'll go through some of the high level points of how we go about doing this first is going to be more security by default and you're asking yourself what does that mean so what that means is we design for isolation we've taken the hypervisor and put it on the network layer this approach separates customer traffic which provides better security and performance and as an added bonus it reduces the risk of hypervisor based attacks also OCI Oracle cloud infrastructure has what's called separation of duties which means oracle admins have no access to customers memory space and as it relates to your data and associated storage services we have full encryption at rest and in motion as well as integrated backups for business continuity and disaster recovery best practices now let's talk about some of the tools that we we use so we have auto detection and remediation capabilities specifically oracle cloud guard and OCI security zones so oracle cloud guard provides a comprehensive end-to-end monitoring for your cloud environments by continuously collecting and analyzing service configurations audit logs and other information and reporting its findings as problems based on either out-of-the-box recipes or custom security recipes created by the advent and to complement oracle cloud guard oracle has OCI security zones which provide secure enclave within a customer's tendency for the most sensitive workloads where security is mandatory and always on this helps ensure compute networking storage and database resources comply with security principles such as as I mentioned earlier always on encryption and no public assets access excuse me and like I said last but certainly not least most security services are free like multi-factor authentication we have OCI vault which can be used to store passwords ssh keys and certificates and unlike our competitors OCI welcomes third-party tools you can federate identity management policies identity and access management policies with your organized centralized identity provider as well as even management systems like Splunk and logarithm so that is it for me on the security front Charlie I will send it back to you for some of the the sexy stuff oh security's always sexy ben don't do yourself thank you okay so yes we are here at to the main event filmmaker director  VFX supervisor and everything in between Mr.  Neil Schultz hello welcome hello thank you for joining us today  Neil I think we've got quite the exciting talk about your career just on your career not about all your creative works and achievements but before we do I believe you have a little something to show us if you'd like to introduce us to your reel yeah I'll I'll play a reel of recent work years as a  VFX supervisor and in some cases creative director let me just click some buttons town oh down  amazing thank you so much for sharing that with us such a diverse kind of catalogue of work there and I think I think that yeah I was just gonna say  VFX studios mainly in London and an amazing one in Norway as well working with them on commercials and tv and stuff like that right I mean it's really it's amazing to see but I think as I mentioned you've had a slightly maybe more unconventional journey than most because you've gone from one part working on something and going to another coming back to another so can you start to start us off by talking about where you began what was the beginning of your career look like well I went to university like lots of people in the north of England and studied visual effects and animation and I was lucky enough at the back of that to get a job at the BBC and I was there for about three three and a half years and I was I worked for a department which was promotional material and development of new ideas for BBC television and they sort of hired me as a visual effects designer which is not a term you hear very much anymore but that's what I was and so for that period of time I ended up working on a whole plethora of things dramas and you know games you know the usual BBC stuff comedies and all sorts of stuff and ended up supervising quite a lot but from university I've been bitten the bug for directing so while I was at BBC I tried to find all sorts of avenues and I was lucky enough I ended up doing directing some docudrama stuff and some documentaries and and they ended up there's like lots of internal courses so I did a directing course at the BBC and it was great it was fantastic and did a lot of stuff but I was always trying to get away from visual effects and focus on directing as much impossible so I ended up going back to my university town and setting up a company doing industrials and corporate films at the time there was just a lot of opportunity there was a lot of European money being invested in promoting you know the north of England and all sorts of stuff so there's a lot of promotional films we've made and although corporate films you know usually aren't the most exciting of things it was it was something I chose to do because it was making films and directing and producing and editing and you know making stuff but but visual effects was always something that's that's sort of been with me I mean ever since university I I the bunch of friends at university who are already computer geniuses and they had 3d Studio Max on their computer and they blew up planets so I from that day I was always like wow this is amazing this is something I've got to keep in with and learn and keep going you know for time on time and at that time I managed through another good friend of mine I managed to get my first commercial directing a Virgin phone commercial for Lithuania and went out to Lithuania and ended up shooting it in Portugal and it was completely bizarre I'd never done anything like that before but it was like two months gallivanting around Europe making commercials so at that point I was even more obsessed about you know making films and filmmaking so I I you know that sort of period I managed to get represented by a company called Johnsbury associates which is in London and they represent directors for literally all over the world but it's the kind of thing where you literally get signed up but you go and work with the locals so you get on a plane you go and fly with the production company in Cairo or wherever which is it's our own particular way of working it can be quite crazy but I did a lot of that and I ended up working quite a bit in eastern Europe and the middle east quite a lot in the middle east like Egypt and Lebanon making all sorts of stuff like Coca-Cola commercials and things yeah so that's that's kind of where I came from and sort of in tandem as you develop you're trying to get your own things made and if you're into science fiction and fantasy and magic like I am they're very expensive it's very hard to make those kind of films if you're if you're into films when it's two people sitting in a room they're a lot easier to make but if you want to make stuff with visual effects it's not that easy so at one point I managed to raise the money to make a little film that I'm making right now and basically long story short story short I had a I had a few visual effects companies that were able to help me but when push came to shove they couldn't because it was just too much visual affairs so at that point I mean I I went around the streets of London begging and it was just too much I mean it's like hundreds of thousands of pounds of visual effects but I was naive and I you know I was just like I just hope I can get some support but at that point I bit the bullet and thought solid I'm going to go back into visual effects and relearn it but I was and I'll do it myself but I I was very much aware of what I needed to relearn so at that point I set off to learn Houdini and nuke and Linux for my sims which I don't regret at all Linux is amazing so that's yeah that's kind of like my past kind of up to present but this film that I'm making is it's been a major investment not just financially for the shoot but in terms of learning and understanding and sort of getting back up to speed with visual effects so you having to re-learn so Houdini I mean I suppose we've spoken about it on this podcast before accessibility to Houdini how how was that for you I mean I guess you'd already had even though you'd kind of pulled away from it for a few years you had that experience and you started off your career having an understanding of visual effects and how you know how it works and what it adds so would that help that was that to you knowing well when the tools who to go to and just kind of learning again but on a different platform yeah I mean I knew before that I'd used 3d studio max and lightweight and you know had done a lot of 3d but I'd never really done it at a deep level and I knew I had to take it to a much deeper level and a guy I was working with at the time I started learning Maya because I thought that was the big boy's tool where everybody needs to learn Maya but a friend of mine mentioned Houdini and I picked it up and sort of fell in love with it and it when I started playing with it I would instantly realize how vast a piece of software it was and how immensely powerful it is but for whatever reason it just gelled the whole node based workflow it's just like nuke in that sense and there's something very powerful about working with nodes and yeah it was it was a it's been a lot of learning and I'm still learning and the thing about Houdini is it is massive it's probably the most amazing cg software there is and every year side effects themselves are developing the the application at the rate of not so every year is another learning exercise so it's it's a non-stop learning process but it is absolutely huge but the the one thing that does help with Houdini is the community there's just a there's an amazing Houdini community lots of people sharing when I started learning it it was literally watching really long tutorials that are very boring and reading books but now things have changed so much that you can literally talk to people and get you know who do you need setups for stuff so yeah it's it's been pretty epic it has been pretty vast but it's an amazing tool and I've used it a lot in my career you know it's been an amazing investment so I'm interested to see your obviously someone who is enticed by the creativity of and the visual look of something if you're a director who loves visual effects and I you know the commercials that you supervise as well are incredibly beautiful when you if you went into work in corporate films and industrials and then back into that more maybe one would say creative world and visual look was that helped by this new refining visual effects going into that yeah I mean I think everything that I've done is fed into the next project I mean from my perspective there isn't really much difference between corporate videos and a pie in commercial or a film it's just questions of budget but I mean I I've always enjoyed jumping around so that the stuff that I've done shooting you know working with cameras and lighting as well as the post-production stuff visual effects it all feeds into the same thing and I I definitely I mean a lot of people are I mean I think it's kind of unusual but a lot of people I've worked with have kind of gone the visual effects route or they've gone you know the production route they've been dps or they've worked their way up through a camera department they've worked the work through a comping department and and I haven't I've kind of jumped around and I think it's just because I'm interested in filmmaking actually making films rather than specific crafts even though I love those crafts and I want to learn those things and they're all they're all tools so they definitely fit into each other and I think a lot of this stuff whether whether it's learning Houdini or nuke or editing or whatever they're just tools to make films and I think what one thing that happens when you when you learn Houdini is you quickly become focused on the fact that you're playing around with numbers to make art so in Houdini you've constantly got these attributes it's just a spreadsheet full of numbers and it sounds incredibly boring but it isn't when you get into it it's all about numbers and and and I don't know if there's a subject that's quite as good at this where you you basically have this incredible integration of math and art and when you do learn heaping you see that for what it is and it sort of it changes your mindset and the way you think and you realize that there's lots of similarities across all sorts of tools so you know in visual effects there's a kind of division between 3d and com but to my mind they're not they're they're not really it's the same thing it's it's playing around with numbers and making beautiful images and I mean like you've said you like to do everything and learn everything from being the dp and the director and the creative director on your project I'm just interested in like the on the writing side and and those sorts of areas as well do you bring in a writing partner do you have relationships on the non-visual creative side as well this is this is coming from left field because I'm just I'm just interested no no I I should caveat that I I I don't sort of I definitely don't take pride in doing everything myself it's just that when you're trying to make stuff and you've got those kind of ambitions you sort of wear a lot of hats and you know you learn how to put a budget together or you learn how to ad or shoot or you learn how to you know operate a camera or expose film or expose a camera or whatever it is so that's always been a big part of what I've done it's just learning these tricks and I think you have to be sort of like into learning to be able to do that but that doesn't mean I don't like you know collaborating and yes I've met some incredible writers and I'm hoping to collaborate with some really good writers on some future projects so my goal is not to sort of be good at everything which is impossible but it's just to embrace certainly to embrace technology and I think right now with the way things are going I think that's self-evident that things are developing at the rate of knots and as a filmmaker it just makes sense to learn and to adapt and learn things well I think that makes you a better film director or filmmaker in general doesn't it having an understanding and maybe being more empathetic to different areas of the craft I think a lot of different areas whether it's straight post-production to visual effects to actually being on set can be quite dismissive of each other because they don't truly understand what the others doing perhaps the effort that goes into one or they deem one more talented than the next and so being able to kind of understand and learn about it and also that shows the passion as well the whole process and films of the craft otherwise yeah it's just doing being siloed into one job can be yeah I I think so I think having an awareness of things definitely makes projects run smoother and and in that sense better and you know the level of communication required and stuff I think that's very true and certainly jobs that I've worked on where I work with people who are a lot cleverer than me and are amazing what they do it just transforms everything so I think yeah I mean I think the goal especially now I mean projects I worked on an augmented reality job for a while back and that was really interesting because it was visual effects for commercial but it had to work on a phone so I sort of entered that job without really knowing anything about AR kits and apple phones and making 3d work on phones and stuff so that was quite a sophisticated job from a technical and creative perspective and I just think things are becoming more and more sophisticated now and I think things are going to change so much with filmmaking and Sony advertising that that it just pays to embrace all this stuff definitely so in your real you showed some really amazing words I told you yesterday that that ford commercial I think is just beautiful with the butterflies and so what's it's you were a supervisor from that so what are you doing at the moment with working collaborating with visual effects houses and artists at the moment I'm working as a consultant and I'm doing some interesting work with coffee and tv which I've just rebranded so some funky branding and pitching on commercials possibly direct and what I'm trying to do at the moment is try and balance my time so I can get my film finished while also making a living so that's what I'm currently doing so rather than focus on visual visual effects full time I'm operating as a creative director for visual text companies which involves a lot of bidding and pitching and you know putting together projects and how it might you know unfold and how it might be managed and you know put together with teams and stuff so yeah and that's I think that's invaluable as well for a director to have that experience in doing all of that and understanding all aspects of that especially the budget quite often that's the producer's job and directors don't might not necessarily know how to keep within those confines that's that's really good but you mentioned again your film and I think that's can you tell the listeners a little bit more about that well it's basically a short film and it's very much a test commercial for Mercedes and it's you know it's a work of passion it was shot in 35 millimeter anamorphic and I'm doing all the visual effects and there's a lot of visual effects it's only 100 seconds long but in in 100 seconds is quite a compact amount of visuals and imagery so yeah that's what I'm working on and it's I'm hoping that it'll you when you're directing you you tend to get the work that you get and it can be very hit and miss and you can you can work on many many pitches and not get them and what what happens is for a lot of directors I mean you end up working a lot of stuff and you realize you've got 25 commercials of some cherry cola thing and it's not what you wanted to do in life so you think hang on a minute I need to I need to make something really cool and that's me so that's that's the genesis for making this film and I'm I'm hoping that it'll just open up markets will open up opportunities and you know yeah just expose me to different clients and different possibilities yeah that's the project so you mentioned you've had some funding but also real you know visual effects is an expensive service to to pay for so how have you how have what's your experience being like in creating I know you're doing it yourself yourself learning but the tools to use I mean that's part of the big cost as well infrastructure and you know data centers well part of the learning is not just how to use Houdini because obviously you need to know it to work in industry or compositing or nuke or whatever but part of the learning is setting up your system to get your film made so your little pipeline whatever that is your your workflow and you know one of the things I learned is 3d equalizer which is camera tracking and it's incredibly sophisticated 3d equalizer and that's that's a thing in itself have to learn lots about linear light seeing preferred linear light flow and working with high dynamic range and color space which people kind of even comp is looking at you go oh don't talk to me about color space but it's a huge part of getting something correct Linux because you know I started out working on windows and it just drove me insane so I embraced Linux and and which made a huge difference because everything's caching nicely and flows and it's just something that I needed to do and also people I was working with saying ditch windows use Linux so I've just been picking things up as I go along trying to sort of embrace and one of the things about learning is like deciding what you don't need to learn so you know in Houdini one of the languages in Houdini is called vex you can use python but vex is a huge part of it you go hang on a minute I don't need to take python this far but I definitely need to know these little vect snippets because they allow you to do all this amazing stuff so it's a constant sort of arbitration of I need to do this I need to do that and calling people up and how to do this and trying to figure things out and spending a lot of money on tutorials as well but there you know there's some amazing tutorials out there now it's quite incredible so yeah and setting up your own thing and I now have a system you know a nice system where I'm using resolve for basically the editing and grade and sound mix new studio for the conform visual effects conform obviously all the comping in new and and one thing that I'm I've just started doing effects development in Houdini like literally just now started and one thing I'm slightly wary of is rotoscoping because that is a huge demanding thing and I don't want to do all that myself so I might have to get help although things are changing at the rate of knots and I've seen the new tool for newt which is we use his aI to study imagery to move roto which looks amazing however roto by definition is the silver silhouette of something so I don't know if that's going to work but I want to try I want to try it because that might make right scoping amazing so yeah I'm I'm still at the stage where I've scheduled everything out I've been very very sort of mean with myself with the cut so I don't have like 300 shots and I can do something manageable I've given myself 18 months and I hope you know in that time I'll get it done I certainly will get a lot of it done but there's there's I'm just sort of taking a step at a time because if you sort of look at it and all in one go you go oh my god and you just want to give up so yeah that's but the the thing about grid markets so I mean I I was well aware of grid markets for at least a year or two and very recently I sat down and played with it just to install it and get to know it and do it and I did a simple explosion like everybody does but it was it sounds stupid but it was just that instant thing of you get your renders back really quickly and you've got that sort of instant sort of farm on the cloud and it sounds kind of daft but when you do a test you go oh my god and suddenly at that point I realized this is what's going to make my film this this is how I can do it because a lot of the effects I'm doing are a lot of volume sims and particle sims a lot of volumes and that's hundreds and hundreds of gigabytes of data and if you can imagine like I don't want to spend a fortune on a render farm I don't want to spend a fortune on terabytes of data I don't really want that geometry data I just want to generate it and use it to create renders and actually just this weekend I did my first tests with which I can show you with axiom and grid markets and it was just a little test as part of the development in fact shall I shall I show you now let us show us yes ah please do I will this is with axiom right the axiom solver yeah let me just bring up the thing click right we love a live demo the axiom solver for everyone is a new addition to the grid markets platform as well so I think excuse me know you're one of the first to have used it so yeah it's quite exciting can you see my screen yeah okay yeah so I mean axiom is a GPU solver in Houdini and I and I ca I started using this recently and it's phenomenally fast it uses the GPU it's great for pyro solves and I actually ask grid markets if they consider supporting it and about two weeks later they did which is amazing anyway see how powerful you are  Neil you you ask and we we jump so this weekend I just started doing a quick test this is like some kind of vortex idea and I'm simulation in Axiom here on my machine low resolution and I'm caching on my machine so I'm just here I'm just playing around with volumes and I'm I'm thinking about an idea so I'm doing this all locally because it's very fast and you can start to think about here I'm you know invecting some particles through that smoke and I'm just thinking about shapes with the with the idea that I will up the res of everything and send it to grid markers and this this is the first time I've done it so here I'm just like investing particles what's amazing about grid markets is it obeys dependencies and dependencies are everything in Houdini it's very much a pipeline of a cg tool it's like do this you define the order of things in which you're working so you know here I'm working locally I've advected some particles and I'm starting to shape it slightly and think about things but pretty much soon I go okay this point is my volume this is what I'm highlighting the moment this is my volume sim and that's going to go to the cloud and then underneath that under this node graph the sort of procedural node graph this is my particle setup and here I'm going to send those particles those particles rely on that volume to be simulated first it's actual geometry so okay so I so before I send this off I'm happy what I'm doing I go okay I'm gonna say to grid markers I'm gonna do my cloud sim then my particle sim and then when all the geometry geometry is ready I'm going to do two renders in parallel using 30 machines in this case one Arnold render for the volumes and one mantra renders the particles and then I obviously you load up envoy which is a really nice interface and once envoy's running I can submit this and I know that the simulation of all the geometry what's fantastic for me is that that stays on the cloud so here I'm just you know the pre-flight scene check the stuff and I send it to the farm it does all the sim but then I just get my renders back and I don't have to worry about the cap and this is what I came just playing around about six hours working locally to develop the thing and then when I sent it off it took about over 30 machines I think it was something like two or three hours and I got everything back which is phenomenal so for me when I'm making my film where I've basically got a lot of stuff that I need to develop and I need to do a lot of posters so you know you need to develop some effects and then do a post fizz so that you can slip the edit and make sure it's all working and time stuff just having that quick iteration is is just absolutely needed and if I was to do that on my own that would take that would take four or five days of rendering and simulating and at that point I'd give up so for me right now that kind of quick iteration is amazing that's that for me is why it's amazing and that's what I'm going to use it for so it's very exciting I'm very excited about the possibilities that's fantastic thank you thank you for sharing that I think it's safe to say when you started or even 10 years ago the possibility of being able to do all of this yourself and not have to go to a studio probably wouldn't have existed I mean how yeah I know for you how is how has the advantages of technology affected you well it's amazing I mean everything's becoming speeding along at the rate of knots and it's incredible I mean visual effects used to be sitting in front of a beige monitor watching windows crash all the time and and now I mean visual effects artists are like wizards you know they're practically I mean it's almost they're shaking their hands and creating amazing stuff and it's just getting better and better I mean you know one thing I'd really like to get to obviously is real-time visual effects and the the stuff the tools that are being developed every day I mean it's just phenomenal and which is why I sort of decided now is the time more than ever to make your own content and make stuff and get stuff out there I mean you've got all these tools all this power start making things you know start making stuff as a director and a producer rather than rather than just focusing on the visual effects industry and it's interesting I think a lot of I mean a lot of companies that I work with are doing that and they're starting to embrace more the sort of creative production orientation because they have all that skill set and visual effects and they want to you know direct and produce their own stuff so taking on a roster of directors and stuff and you're seeing it more and more and I think that's great it's great and it's great for visual effects people as well and do you think you're you're starting out in the visual effects work world or with that influence at the BBC do you think that that's helped informed your decisions as a director or just made you a better director understanding that yeah I think everything I've done in visual effects has been a major learning curve you know working with different people and working with clients and expectations and you know learning a lot about politics which is something you don't think about as a student necessarily I think it's all it's all feeds in directly to everything that you do but there is something special about visual effects because it's it's all encompassing I mean if you think about it a lot of careers like a dp or a grid or an editor it's very specific role we're in visual effects it's the whole gamut of earning often 99 of a film everything from set building right through to animation to to visualization so you know working with visual effects artists is incredible because you get the the widest range of eclectic human beings you get some incredibly smart ex-physicists or mathematicians whilst at the same time you get people who are just amazing artists and can sculpt beautifully and draw amazingly so it's working in the visual effects arena is very special and if we take a we you I take a look back on your career and where you started and where where you are now is there anything that you would do differently no I think just I I think in life you can't really look back and make decisions you go with what you do at the time and you sort of live with it and that's life but I've been thought I mean it's it's a curse and a good thing you know you have a dream some people don't know what they want to do and there's nothing wrong with that and nothing's nothing set in stone but having wanting you know having a passion and pursuing things just throws you into things and I've thrown myself into a lot of stuff in the past and I don't regret it at all I think it's great I would recommend to anyone to do that to embrace things you'll be really scared and then you'll look back in a month and go nah it's easy yeah okay so I've asked the looking back questions what about looking forward we I mentioned at the beginning my poor pronunciation of Valkyrie bear wolf yeah well that that comes from I mean my family my second name skulls is a Viking name and we just took an interest in it so and I just love liking names so Valkyrie is the angel of the slain Beowulf is a hero from Anglo-Saxon times and I just love all that word so I just thought it was a cool name for my company my goal is yes to make content to make stuff and hopefully pursue directing more and more that's definitely what I want from the future but not not letting go of visual effects always having that for something because like I said it's changing so much there's always something new there's always something incredible to get your hands on and play so yeah that's that's my goal well you were saying earlier about coffee and tv a lot of these commercial  VFX houses that focus on commercials are putting directors on their books because more and more as these commercials become more  VFX heavy you know entities that they the job or the creative director is is really the director rather than just looking at the creative look of it it's everything they've got to think about yes absolutely yeah I I think that's the point it's interesting some people think it's you know they're kind of shooting themselves in the foot because you might argue that visual effects company would end up competing with their own clients which are production companies but the truth of the matter is that the visual effects companies are the only ones who know how to do the visual effects the production companies don't so there isn't actually any real competition when you're specifically making projects which have a lot of imagery and a lot of computer generated design I think it's a fairly obvious move to make as long as you know as long as the as the as the as the visual effects company or the studio that's doing this is able to sell that quality I think that salesmanship is a huge part of it I think but that's not going away I mean you know you need directors who can win jobs as well so we are nearly at the 15-minute mark which is where I invite people to ask questions we have had a few questions already been sent in so I will ask them on our audience's behalf what excites you about the latest production technology and methods just the sheer power and if you're a filmmaker or you have a vision to make your own film or your own vision to make a shot it's just the the options and the power of what's possible like you said ten years ago doing axiom for example you can do a sim a very amazing sim in left in literally two minutes ten years ago that would have been a computer the size of a steam engine in a week so it's just the the curve the exponential curve of the ability to generate imagery is just through the roof so that's what's exciting the fact that it's faster and abundant and more affordable and I suppose and I guess we touched on it before that does help people that are wanting to expand their knowledge you know they may be a compositor in a studio where they have to be because they need to make their money but if they have interests outside you've got all of this resource at the tip of their fingers being able to learn more and more and go into their own and I've been inspired by exactly people like that very talented people I know a compositor who was a com supervisor at frame store who just embraced Houdini and blender which is kind of unusual and became amazing at it and decided to set up his own company and does that and that that kind of stuff is very inspiring you know because you go wow I want to do that I want to learn that definitely just embracing new things whether it's painting or storyboarding or animation or lighting for this definitely well I think it also enables and you know it depends on cost point of course but for those younger people or not younger people people who might be bankers you know that maybe didn't see this as a viable route whether that's weren't able to university or whatever but they can now self-teach you know you don't have there's different ways of doing it if you've got the passion and love which let's be honest a lot of people that work in this industry are driven by that it's more of a vocation it's there now you don't need a million pounds and set up and some bricks and mortar in Soho to work in  VFX or start your own company yeah we have another question from jose he says to be a generalist or a specialist in your opinion considering that many of us want to be content creators opportunities seem endless yeah that's an interesting question and something that I've come across a lot in the industry and everybody has their opinion I think the truth of the matter is that if you are a generalist or a specialist you know already if you're the kind of person that's likes to do lots of things then you are a generalist and that's who you are and you should stay true to that and it's not true that in the visual effects industry that's a bad thing to be I mean I've heard that myself I personally have had issues where I've been to visual effects companies and said I'll I'll do that or I can do that and you get a funny look like what do you mean you can do that I thought you're a Houdini guy there are people who focus on very specific things and there are people are amazing doing hair and grooming and they do that all the time and that's what they love but I think if you are a generalist if you know that you're a generalist just embrace it because like I was saying you're probably a filmmaker in the wider sense and you you're just engaged with things holistically and that really comes into play once you start working in in productions and and as you start getting more and more responsibility that kind of stuff is invaluable but if you're a specialist equally just focus on that there's no there's no right or wrong I don't think thank you I hope that I hope that helped you I jose so we again we there's another question that's come in and I think one that we've probably spoken about but where do you see the industry going in the future how will things adapt and change I think we've spoken a lot about technology but I suppose the industry has been changed somewhat forever maybe we'll see by next year in how and being able to work remotely technology has afforded that so I guess on the talent level as well how do you see the the industry in the next five years yeah I mean I live in the west coast of England which I love and so working remotely has been amazing for me because I don't have to commute to Mordor every day no but seriously I think it's amazing and I worked with a company recently called row tower which is a commercials production company in London and they're entirely cloud-based and that was pretty amazing and working with artists all over the world in different time zones so I think that side of things is incredible it has been said and it's true that if you're younger and you want to be in a studio you know you're out of university or you're quite young and you want to interact with people that's not so good you want to be with people but if you're sort of a senior level and you've got that experience that kind of stuff's amazing because it opens up to jobs all over the world and it doesn't necessarily matter where you are so I think that side of things for me is great yes well that that's the thing isn't it you know I think for lots of young people whether around the world you go to London you go to Vancouver maybe l or from where you know even like you say you are speaking to us from Cornwall and have ever had making films which is great but traditionally you'd have to be I mean I'm currently sat in Soho in Carnaby Street so I'm still I'm not really one to talk but those opportunities just wouldn't be there you know people would have to move down from the north of England or or move countries a lot lots of you know used to have lots of European artists when I worked at jellyfish you know I think they had more than 50 of artists were over from Europe which which is great for diversity and melting pots and cultures but they've also had to move somewhere because this was seen as a mecca but now they have that ability to stay at home be with their families it's incredible and like and like we said before be able to work on their own projects as well and have that accessibility to an industry that maybe didn't seem accessible before yeah yeah quite yeah and and so yeah it's exciting and there's people you know I'm aware of people doing things similar to me and making their own films and you can interact with them and discuss things I do do that every day and it's weird I mean some people find it odd but I think it works great that that that side of things and you know zoom calling and sharing things it's amazing and it's interesting you know about the cloud computing I mean I'm Cornwall but I don't have the best internet in the world but again the thing about grid markets is it is cloud computing but I I'm not relying on it as a workstation I'm just relying on it for data to process data and store that data for a little bit and get my images back so I'm getting the best of cloud computing without needing the most amazing internet which is for for me just it's amazing it's really amazing and you mentioned a bit earlier you wanted to dabble with real time eventually where do you see that going for yourself and for the other writings on the wall that the actors will be out of a job soon I I think that it's just going to get better and better but I mean it's all going to happen I'll be amazed in 30 years if we don't have holographic displays like star wars I mean it's just going through the roof the advance of science and engineering isn't going to stop and so there's always something new there's always something incredible and so I just think it's gonna get better and better either that or it's gonna lead to judgment day and I've terminated two we'll all get noobs but apart from that I think it's amazing my money's on that to be quite honest with you I watched far too much terminated as a child to think that that's not inevitable thank you very much.  Neil do you have anything else to add no I don't think so thank you very much though I've really enjoyed it oh no thank you it's been great talking to you we'll probably talk for hours about the state of film and  VFX and and what's going on especially the future because it's so exciting but thank you very much and thank you to everyone for joining us today as promised here's that all-important promo code for well free trial and some discounted credits I believe so promo code 2022 March 22 webinar and that can be found on the good markets website as well next week we not next week sorry I I would just like to say I have been ill these last few days so if I've sounded a bit bonkers or not with it that is why so we do not have a determined date for this but we are very excited to welcome George and Ruth Halsey he is a Los Angeles-based video artist with a deep interest in technology from simulation patterns and image Jordan has designed and created works for Madonna so Michael Jackson Walt Disney just some small you know probably people you don't know and many others we're excited to meet Jordan next month but we will keep you updated when that exact date will be so just keep an eye out on forward slash webinars or across all the social media channels that will be on there as well so thank you everyone everyone on the panel everyone for joining and watching and for all of those of you who will watch this and pre-recorded I hope you have a wonderful day and evening for those of us here in the UK and Europe brilliant thank you thank you  Neil well done awesome all right thanks Charlie

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