“Outside In” – A small movie production with big promises and a lot of talent all the way from Austria
Julius Lechner is an effects artist from Austria. He has had the great opportunity to work on several feature and television films as well as commercials. In addition, he is currently doing his master's degree.
Through his more recent work in the short movie “Outside In’, he is continuing to show the world the extremely high potential he possesses. Creating top quality visual effects, Julius is just starting his career with a lot of enthusiasm, aptitude and much more to offer.
cebas: It seems that this was an important and major project for you and your firm. How did you get involved?
This short movie was our graduation project where we got the chance to invest a lot of time and realize crazy ideas. After the initial idea was born the whole team continued developing concept and story until we were all happy with it.
cebas: Which shots/images/sequences in particular were you involved in?
I was in charge of the VFX supervision for the whole project and I was also directly responsible for a good amount of the effect shots that take place in the outside world and supported the other artists with their technical issues. In the underground sequence my part were the effects as well as lighting/shading. For me the most interesting part was to work on the scene where the character adopts the wall's material. It was challenging but still a lot of fun.
cebas: What cebas software did you use and why?
We used Thinking Particles and Final Render for most of the effect shots. These two packages work very well together and especially the possibility to use fr-instances as particle geometry saved us a lot of render time. One reason why we wanted to use Thinking Particles is that first of all it is a very structured and logic system where you are able to create complex effects without losing control. Another big plus was the shape collision, which was very important for us, and the volume breaker.
cebas: What other software did you use?
Our pipeline was actually based on Maya, since most of our team came from a Maya background. To work on the effects we had to transfer the scenes to 3ds max, which worked pretty well in most cases.
cebas: How did you use cebas software to achieve your effects?
The basic setup in the stone sequence was to use one or more lines that were constrained to the character's geometry as a guide for the particles combined with a force that was always perpendicular to the character's surface, which made him kind of „magnetic“.
We rendered most of the effect shots with Final Render, which was pretty straight forward although we didn't have much experience with it. The best thing about that was that we could render full 3d motion blur without pushing the render times too much.
cebas: What features helped you do this and how?
I can't really name one particular feature that made it all possible. It was simply the way you can handle the data each particle carries and work with it that enabled us to do things that wouldn't have been possible with other packages.
cebas: What was the most difficult aspect of this project and how did you solve it?
Overall I would say the biggest challenge was the huge amount of shots we worked on, since our team was really small. For me personally the most difficult part was the stone sequence. It was tricky to keep the balance between chaos and control.
cebas: What was a step-by-step breakdown of a typical shot/image/sequence?
We simply took the match-move data and imported the animated character as point-cached mesh from Maya. Keeping the workflow as simple as possible and transferring only the most crucial things, reduced errors and mistakes to a minimum. When the effect looked pleasing we had to match the lighting to the stuff we did in Maya. To put the renderings from Maya and 3ds Max back together, we mostly used displaced holdouts but in some cases we had to switch to Z-merging in compositing
cebas: How did the cebas tools perform for you and what was the experience of working with them like?
All packages were really nice to work with. We didn't really face any stability issues and everything worked great together.
cebas: What was the most fun or rewarding part of this project for you?
I think the most rewarding part for all of us was to really finish this project, which wasn't always the case. Many student projects don't get finished because the workload is just too high. I'm really happy that the whole team worked very hard to make this film possible. And thank you cebas for supporting us with your great tools! :-)
Thank you Julius for the kind words, we are truly amazed by your work and are very proud of the results you were able to achieve using our tools. We hope for more to come in the near future...we will be looking out for your next big hit!
We highly recommend our users to check out the movie website Here!
Thank you cebas customers for following our news everywhere. Stay tuned for more to come :)