'I'm always looking for the Hows and the Whys and the Whats,' said Muskrat, 'That is why I speak as I do. You've heard of Muskrat's Much-in-Little, of course?'
'No,' said the child. 'What is it?'
- The Mouse and his Child. Russell Hoban.

Go here to find out more.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Rendering Synthetic Objects

When TV first came out my family had other plans for our money. But later on, the box came into our lives, with all its rubbish... and wonders. We quickly became blasé about 'special effects' like people appearing and disappearing (you could often see the tiny slippages of the other cast members as they tried to stay still while the camera was stopped to allow the object person to leave the scene), and a favourite was 'twins' or people talking to themselves, positioned on either side of a 'line' in the background somewhere. And we quickly grew tired of the corny 'people driving in cars but actually it's the the background moving' effect.

But occasionally there'd be something quite spectacular that would cause my Mum to say Her Line: 'So how did they do that then?' to which my Dad would respond 'fishing line' or 'model' or some such. We knew this as Trick Photography.
These days it's all so wonderful. Star Wars was clever and brought us Blue Screens and CG, but then the LOTR* brought us motion capture, realistic CG water and flames, and computer generated 'mass' behaviour for crowd scenes, and goodness knows what else.
Kevin Karsch's PhD project takes the manipulation possibilities of the likes of Adobe Photoshop for still images, and superimposes objects, plus movement, plus incredibly good colour and lighting, to the level of the astonishing.

You can't believe your eyes. Not 'you won't', but 'you can't'.

* Lord of The Rings


  1. I would leave a comment but I don't know what sort of comment you might be looking for and I wouldn't want to leave one so unrelated to the post or so artistically philistine that you might question my sanity. I also don't know what sort of comment a post of this type might elicit because, frankly, I have never seen a post of this type before.

    Therefore, I will not be leaving a comment.

  2. Robert: I think you are slightly over-thinking this Dear!

  3. This week we took your grapes and Ellie's cross-stitched basket of fruit (53 different colors, took 18 months to complete) to the framer shop. Both of them will be hanging in our breakfast room before Christmas.

    Thank you once again for your wonderful gift.

  4. All I can see is a blank screen. I've not been able to get it to load. So I can't pass a comment. Sorry.

  5. Where are you, Katherine?

    You must be very busy.

  6. I suppose it's already Christmas there, but it's still Christmas Eve here. May your days be merry and bright, and may all your Christmases be filled with memories of successful exhibits of your art.

  7. Robert...I am honoured to be included in with Ellie's cross-stitch... I have done one or two myself and I know what a time they can take. I'm glad you are still pleased with the grapes. (I MUST make that post!) Do you have a photo of it? I'd love to see how it turned out framed...

    Sorry for the long delay in replying. Yes busy. And also not. Let's say, winding down too.

    Thank you for your kind Christmas wishes. The same to you both, with bells and stars on! :-)

    Geeb... Sorry, I'll see what I can do to fix it. In the meantime: Happy Christmas! To you and all my blogger friends!

  8. I wondered if it was my T-stick internet connection which was the problem but now that I have 'proper' internet I still can't see the video. Odd. C'est la vie. I'll get over it.

  9. Ah, perhaps because it's a vimeo clip instead of the usual youtube Geeb. Perhaps that's the problem. Check to see if your Flash is up-to-date, or try using another browser.. I use Safari.

  10. Geeb, I wonder if you have been able to view this yet?

    1. Just spent time doing a comment and that disappeared. Before that spent 20 minutes trying to watch the video and managed most of it in bite-sized chunks. Vimeo obviously requires more broadband speed than my BT 0.54 at the moment allows. I shall try the satelite broadband and report back. Either way it is astonishing what can be achieved these days. However having marvelled at CGIs when they first arrived I just take them for granted now.

    2. OK. At least I can watch it properly on satelite although I lost the sound at the end when the ball was coming down the steps. It is remarkable.


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