What Happened to Monday?

I came across a film that premiered on Netflix in August called What Happened to Monday, which is a dystopian thriller about overpopulation in the year 2073. Whilst I think the story felt forced at times, the visual effects shown were very memorable and demonstrated many types of compositing that I happen to be interested in. These include cloning, matte paintings, and explosions. Another reason this piqued my interest was that my favourite show, Orphan Black, famous for its seamless cloning shots, ended a couple of weeks before the release of this movie, so I was excited to see if this sort of thing would be replicated well. Unfortunately, a VFX breakdown wasn’t published on the internet as it would’ve been really great to see how some of the effects were produced, especially as one of the skyline shots stuck out to me in a similar way to our Flatpack project, where 2D layers were put in a 3D space.

I have always had a particular interest in futuristic-style compositing effects, and the use of holographic screens, skylines and CG machines, and this is an idea I will be using as an inspiration to incorporate into my own short films.


Guardians of the Galaxy

I wish I hadn’t waited three years to see this. A film that unites young and older audiences with visuals which I thought were very different to other superhero-style films I have seen. Visual effects made up roughly 90% of this film, meaning more than just one VFX company had to collaborate for this project. These include MPC, Framestore, Luma Pictures, Method Studios, Lola VFX, Cantina Creative, Sony Pictures, CoSA VFX, Secret Lab, Rise VFX Studios and Technicolor VFX.

The collaboration of so many companies was evident in how strong and photoreal the shots were, even of things that obviously aren’t real like CG animals and otherworldly environments. I was also drawn to the wide colour scheme that hasn’t really had the chance to be explored in other films due to constraints like being set in mostly realistic locations on Earth.

What impressed me about the breakdown was that there were some sets/elements that I thought were actually made practically, only to find out that they were merely CG/matte paintings on a green screen.

Overall, this was a great film and I will get round to watching the second one, which I have high hopes for.


Since my 2000 word text, I have become interested in the use of matte paintings and how they aid most huge pictures, and I’m currently looking for inspiration on where to make them myself. This one stood out to me because of the transition from an unedited plate to a completely CG scene.

Mountain track

Mountain track nodetreeI followed a tutorial from Lynda on tracking and was able to use their project footage to create a scene where I inserted the Eiffel tower into a mountain range. As a personal extension, I attempted adding a coloured sky into the track, using a Roto node to give the sky a softer edge. In my free time, I used another clip of someone using a phone and tracked the screen manually using key frames due to there being too much movement to track automatically; through this method I used the Corner Pin node to replace the screen.


Intro to Tracking

We began to learn about different types of tracking within Nuke: matchmoving and Corner Pin tracking.

Nuke tracking

Again, this is the type of project that requires a lot of practice and repetition to be able to understand it without having to refer back to my node tree. As an independent task, we were sent to practice tracking with a piece of footage of our own.

tracker tree With this tree setup, I was able to create my own tracked clip, utilising both the matchmoving and the corner pin techniques.




2000 word text: revised

“A 2,000-word text on the use of a physical set extension in a pre-1989 movie or genre, outlining how it was done (or how you assume it was done) and how it might be achieved these days, with clear diagrams of how it might work in 2.5D Space”

The procedures and approaches taken within the Visual Effects industry have undergone many changes over the years since their introduction. Some of these are subtle however; some of the well-known alterations changed the direction of post-production. One of the most prominent changes to take place and expand the possibilities to turn today’s films into what they are, was the transition from using 2D physical elements to working in digital 3D, with the introduction of CGI.

Continue reading “2000 word text: revised”

Rotoscoping Practise

We had been practicing accuracy in rotoscoping in Nuke alongside our practical units, where I was able to get a rough idea of how to use splines and individual shapes. It is not perfect as I still need more practice on getting the small details, due to being used to Rotobrush in After Effects with little masking experience.