Public Lecture - Ben Morris

Ben MorrisUniversity of Bristol alumnus (BEng Mechanical Engineering 1993, Honorary DEng 2011)

The lecture took place on Tuesday 6 March 2012.

Visual Effects in Film - A Fusion of Art and Science

Visual effects have existed in the world of film making ever since the very first 'silent' moving images were captured on film over 100 years ago.

From the work of pioneers like George Melies and Willis O'Brien to the modern computer generated spectacles of Avatar and Harry Potter, the artists and scientists involved in making visual effects have been continually challenged by film makers to create ever more believable fantastic worlds and characters as part of the visual experience of telling stories on screen.

Over the last 20 years the visual effects industry in the UK has developed from a small number of traditional physical effects companies creating practical models, animatronics, pyrotechnics and optical camera effects to a world leading digital effects industry working on many of the biggest summer blockbusters seen around the world.

As with so many areas of film making, the specialists involved in making visual effects come from a wide range of backgrounds - illustrators, sculptors, painters, animators, bio-mechanicists, computer scientists, machine vision specialists, physicists, engineers, chemists, photographers and lastly, and most importantly, storytellers.

Ben presented some of the more recent visual effects work created in the UK and explained in detail the techniques and processes involved in making these images.