Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Bucks Animation & VFX Reel 2017



Check out our latest animation and VFX demo reel here at Bucks. This is our latest showcase of student work, and reflects the huge leap in both the quality and quantity of animation and visual effects work that has been going on at Bucks in recent years. Congratulations to all our graduating students, and to Rob Penhaligon and Sydney Padua for their sterling efforts to keep raising the bar at Bucks.  An animator's demo reel is never done. It is a constant work-in-progress, always being refined and updated to showcase your best work. Above is a compilation of some of the best animation that has been done at Bucks over the past year.

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

About Animation at Bucks



Curious to know more about studying animation and VFX at Buckinghamshire New University? The video above gives a general introduction to the undergraduate course in animation and VFX at Bucks, including interviews with our tutors. To find out more about the experience of studying with us, search through the blog to see what we're all about. We highly recommend that prospective students come and visit us at one of our Open Days. If you can't make it in for a visit, don't forget to take a virtual tour of one of our animation studios, and you can also check out what our students think of our course, and see why we're ranked in the top 12 creative universities in the UK.

Monday, 7 August 2017

Anton Alfimenko Graduation Reel

Anton Alfy | Showreel 2016 from Anton Alfy on Vimeo.
Chekc out the excellent demo reel of Bucks Animation graduate Anton "Alfy" Alfimenko. Anton graduated from Bucks last year, and immediately found work in the industry in London, securing a work visa as well as the start of a career in animation and VFX. Congratulations to Anton on his excellent work.

Friday, 4 August 2017

Stuart Penn Reveals Alien Secrets

Last night I was privileged to attend a talk in London 
by VFX Supervisor Stuart Penn, talking about his extraordinary visual effects work for Framestore, one of London's leading visual effects houses, and now a global company with locations in Canada and elsewhere.

Stuart, whose VFX work includes Avatar, The Dark Knight, Iron Man 3 Guardians of the Galaxy, was talking about his recent work as VFX supervisor on Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant.
 
So, what were the secrets behind this most coveted of VFX roles - working for one of the greatest living film directors on this legendary film franchise?

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

How To Prepare For Our Online MA In September

The best book on animation
What kind of preparation should students do before starting with us with our Online MA in 3D Animation in September? It's always good to do a little preparation and get a bit of a head start.

Below is a brief list of stuff to get you under way. You don't have to do all of it, but tick off a few of the things on this list and you will be a making a great start on your animation career.

First, here is a short reading list to get you started. We've narrowed it down to just two key books that we recommend for all our students.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Blue GFX Expo 9th November 2017

Save the date! Blue GFX Expo is taking place in London on 9th November 2017.

Last year speakers included the folks from Blue Zoo, one of the UK's biggest TV animation company, Stuart Penn from Framestore, and experts from Autodesk showing the latest tools. Curious to know what's inside Maya 2018? Blue GFX Expo will be the place to find out.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Online MA in Animation - Our First Graduates!

Graduation Day at Bucks
Graduation Day takes place at Bucks on 6th September, and we are especially proud to welcome our new MAs in Animation.

Of course, the event is something of a formality - no-one actually has to turn up, but we hope that many of our online animation students will come and celebrate their achievement - graduating as Masters of Arts on the world's first online MA in Animation.

In a small way, everyone there will be making a little piece of animation history.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Stuart Penn Talks Alien Covenant on 3rd August

Stuart Penn
Framestore VFX Supervisor Stuart Penn will be talking about his work at a free event in London in two weeks, on Thursday 3rd August at 6.30pm.

Stuart's work includes the digital oil refinery "Hell's Gate" on James Cameron's Avatar, the Hong Kong sequence of Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight, the development of the Extremis effect for Marvel's Iron Man 3 and the "Knowhere" environment for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy.

Stuart will be talking about his recent work as VFX supervisor on Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant. We encourage all our students to attend - and ask questions. This is a chance to meet a successful industry professional and ask him - how does a student artist break into this field?

Monday, 17 July 2017

Bring Your Own Animation Tonight!

Lukin pub, Fitzrovia
One of the great advantages of studying animation and VFX at Bucks is our close proximity to London and the expanding industry in our capital city.

One event we highly recommend our students attend is - "Bring Your Own Animation". The monthly event takes place tonight, Monday July 17th.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Virtual Reality UK Today!

VR UK is at Ravensbourne today and tomorrow
The UK Virtual Reality Festival is taking place today and tomorrow, 6th and 7th July, at Ravensbourne in London. Sponsored by the Arts Council and the Lottery Fund, this event looks to be a great opportunity to break into the fastest-growing part of our industry - Virtual Reality.

Want to be an expert in a field that no-one really understands yet? Get yourself to Ravensourne. For our undergraduate students, being near London and the many opportunities to attend events like this one is one of the great advantages of studying at Bucks. For details, follow this link.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

What's Inside our Online MA in 3D Animation?


What's inside our Online MA in 3D Animation? It's a question we get asked a lot; after all, anyone signing up for 18 months of study wants to know what they're actually committing themselves to.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Marcio Leiria Animator at Ampetronic

Marcio Leiria
Many congratulations to Bucks MA student Marcio Leiria who has just got a 3D animation job with Ampetronic, an engineering company who are "world leaders in the design and manufacture of audio induction loop systems". 

Mario's new job is a reminder that the animation industry is much more broad and diverse that it used to be, and that there are new opportunities in surprising places. 

We asked him a few questions about how he got the job.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Animation Taster Day Monday 24th July.

Learn to animate a bird in flight
Want to try computer animation, but not sure if it's right for you? Come along to an Animation Taster Day in London on Monday 24th July.

Animation Taster Days are a chance to learn about character and creature animation, and find out what an animator's job is all about.

The classes take place at Escape Studios in Shepherd's Bush, West London. You will work with Autodesk Maya and the Adobe Creative Suite, and you’ll get a hands-on introduction to 3D Animation techniques, all for just £25!  By the end of the day you'll have your own piece of animation uploaded to your YouTube channel.  So, how do you sign up?

Friday, 23 June 2017

Festivus is Back!

Festivus is back!  – with special guests! The Festivus animation event is an opportunity to get to know people in the London animation industry, find out who is hiring, and where the jobs are.

The event takes place on Thursday 13th July at The Comedy Pub in London.

There is a guest speaker from Animation UK, and Blue Zoo will also be there.

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Endless Reference for Animators - at YouTube

Using live action reference to inform your animation can be one of the best ways to get started as an animator.

I have used live action reference many times on many films, especially movies with human characters, such as The Road to El Dorado and Spirit - Stallion of the Cimarron, and especially on action shots where the motion was complex and hard to get right.

Monday, 19 June 2017

BYOA Tonight!

Lukin pub, Fitzrovia
One of the great advantages of studying animation and VFX at Bucks is our close proximity to London and the expanding industry in our capital city.

One event we highly recommend our students attend is - "Bring Your Own Animation". The monthly event takes place tonight, Monday June 19th.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Mental Ray Is Back - And It's Free!

Mental Ray is back! 3D Render by Amaru Zeas
Mental Ray is Back! NVIDIA, makers of the classic ray tracer - it used to come bundled free with Autodesk Maya - have now released a version of their software which is free for student use.  This is great news for animation students, because Mental Ray has a number of advtantages over its successor Arnold.  In particular, you can achieve some very quick and attractive lighting setups in Mental ray using Physical Sun & Sky, the closest thing Maya has to a "Make It Look Cool" button.  So, how can our students get a free copy of Mental Ray?

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Government Loans for Post-Grad Study

Government help is available
The UK Government's student loan system for postgraduate master's degrees is now up and running.

These low interest loans now provide students in the UK with access to postgraduate university courses - including our Online MA in 3D Animation.

This is very good news indeed for prospective students who would like to go on to do post-graduate study with us.

So, how does the system actually work?

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Animal Logic - What's in a Demo Reel?

The folks who brought you Lego Movie
At a recent talk in London Patricia Kung, head of Recruitment at Animal Logic, explained what Animal Logic look for in an animation demo reel. 

Animal Logic is one of Australia's leading animation and VFX companies, responsible for global box office hits like the Oscar-nominated The Lego Movie. Other movie credits include Babe, Mouse Hunt, Face Off, The Matrix, Moulin Rouge, House of Flying Daggers, 300, The Great Gatsby, Happy Feet, Legend of the Guardians, and Walking with Dinosaurs 3D.

So, what is life like down under for animation and VFX graduates, and (most importantly) how can our animation graduates start their careers at Animal Logic?

Friday, 26 May 2017

Animation Taster Days 30th May & 14th June

Learn to animate a bird in flight
Want to try computer animation, but not sure if it's right for you? I'm running two Animation Taster Days in London on Tuesday 30th May and Tuesday 14th June, so that animation students can learn about character and creature animation, and find out what an animator's job is all about.

The classes take place at Escape Studios in Shepherd's Bush, West London. You will work with Autodesk Maya and the Adobe Creative Suite, and you’ll get a hands-on introduction to 3D Animation techniques, all for just £25!  By the end of the day you'll have your own piece of animation uploaded to your YouTube channel.  So, how do you sign up?

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Great Free Animation Rigs at Mothman TD

Here at Bucks we're pleased to recommend the superb Mothman TD website, packed with excellent free rigs for use by Maya animators.

Probably the single most useful rig for our students at Animation Apprentice is the horse, excellent for studying quadruped locomotion, but there are many other free rigs which are very useful for learning different aspects of character and creature animation.