elgin park

As a model maker in the 3D realm I find this story fascinating.   ‘Elgin Park is a lot of things: a 1950’s utopia, a fantastical world, and an optical illusion. Artist Michael Paul Smith’s imaginative town – composed entirely of miniatures.’  

View Michaels work on his Flickr page: flickr.com/photos/24796741@N05/

Director: Danny Yourd (twitter.com/dannyyourd)
Cinematographer: John Pope
Production Company: Animal (animaleast.com)
Editor: Mike LaHood
Sound Design/Mix: Defacto Sound

bluemarlin 2015

2D & 3D animation, editing and sound design created under contract for the award winning international branding company bluemarlin in London. software used After Effects, Cinema 4D and Premiere. Creative director: Ian Catling. Communication Director: Aimee Rivers.

best cinematography

When you’ve been editing  footage you shot for as long as I have have it’s really  refreshing  to just sit back and enjoy something you didn’t shoot or edit.  This round up of the best cinematography of 2014 comes from Jacob T. Swinney  & the website No Film School.

I fully expect my current experimental masterpiece ‘sooner or Later I will change’ to be included in next years edit. there is a shot in there from ‘gone girl’ if you’ve read my post me & david fincher you’ll know just how close I am.

Lemon Druids

futuristic clockwork druids for lemon magazine Kubrick issue
futuristic clockwork druids for lemon magazine

I have the opportunity of a job with the legendary Disney Imagineers in Burbank CA. To say it is a dream job it is an understatement. Imagineers design Disney theme park rides, which is cool enough but when you think about the recent acquisitions of Pixar, Star Wars, Star Trek, Marvel you can only imagine what kind of crazy fun stuff they are working on.

They asked for examples of modelling work so I dug out the boards above, these were a series of models I created for an indie American Magazine called Lemon, the Stanley Kubrick issue. I also created HAL from 2001 and one for the cover.

operation pie

Animated for the branding company bluemarlin in london the holiday pie was created primarily in after effects.  The pie itself was created in photoshop from stock photography. With studios in New York, London, Bath & Signapore  holiday pie is the backbone of the  2014 Christmas mailer and website branding,

monty’s christmas

This year’s John Lewis Christmas campaign features Monty the Penguin and is a heart warming tale of the magic of Christmas seen through a child’s eyes. The advert uses Tom Odell’s cover of John Lennon’s ‘Real Love’ as a result John Lewis sales reached 100 million a week for the first time ever!  As if  further proof was needed of the power of  great storytelling.

Created  by Adam&EveDDB in London, which as picked up nearly ever award this year including Agency of the Year at Cannes.  It deserves every last one of them !


me & david fincher

It turns out that David Fincher and I are only about 2K apart, in workflow at least. This interesting video from Adobe outlines his post production workflow on gone girl which mirrors my post production workflow using Adobe Premiere & After Effects. He shoots with the 6K Dragon Sensor RED I own and shoot with the 4K MX Sensor RED, I thoroughly enjoyed Gone Girl and hope my next horror short ‘dedicated’ which I’ll be shooting on the RED with Nikkor primes will look just as good and be every bit as thrilling.

now you see it



When talent forgets to bring flesh coloured underwear and refuses to go naked (to be honest I don’t blame him it was  a very crowded and cold set) it’s up to the VFX team to  fix things.

Luckily for me the advert was shot in 4K on my RED Scarlet. More pixels means you have more information for tracking, rotoscoping or creating skin coloured patch to cover tightie whities.

Photoshop to the rescue

Taking a single frame of 4K footage into photoshop I painted out the underwear. The skin patch was then tracked using After Effects CC onto the model so it stayed in place during the dolly move. There was little hand tracking to be done to the shape of the mask to keep to compensate for the perspective shift as the camera pushed in.

Be careful with that brush
Be careful with that brush

The next shot required the artist to hold a paint brush up in front of her subject as (if measuring him for her drawing) The problem with the original shot was the white underwear created a big blurry white blob around the models crotch which ruined the ‘mike myers’  gag of teasing the audience that you are just about to see something rude until it’s hidden by a potted plant.


Using another 4K still from RED footage I rotoscoped the models hand holding a paint brush, added some animation to keep it alive and then comped the whole thing in  After Effects using a 3D camera to add realistic motion blur and depth of field.  After some tricky colouring to match the still foreground hand with the raw RED background footage the gag is complete.




animation design boards

for the last sixteen years I have worked as freelance animator in los angeles, dublin & london. I came across some design boards I used for a job pitch, Ithought they were pretty cool and worth sharing. the 3d software I pimarily use is maya for rendering and animation, Zbrush for organic modelling, but I also know, 3dsmax, Cinema 4d, Realflow and vray is my renderer of choice.

here my 3d animation reel.