Mythbusters – A visual FX artists best friend.

Well I already missed a day of my daily visual diary, damn! Really trying to stick to a post a day and focusing on my course as top priority. Anywayz moving on.

Today’s inspiration comes from one of my favorite shows Mythbusters! For those of you that haven’t seen the show its basically 5 nerds doing crazy experiments in attempts to bust urban myths and legends. The show itself is good on its own for the comedy & geekiness it provides, but one of the other things I like about the show is its very good production and video editing, FX used.

The Inspiration

Each episode the mythbusters team attempt to bust 3 to 4 myths, which means 3 to 4 mini segments in a 45 minute episode about 10 min each. So the difficulty is setting up a production team for each mini myth. You can imagine the amount of work that the production guys have to go through for just one episode!

What inspires me is the cleverness and effectiveness of their editors to be able to string each of the segments togather and somehow manage to make it fluid and keep it interesting.
Each episode often runs scenes in parallel from the individual myths, which means editing together different sets, locations, actors and storyline.

What also inspires me are the cool 10-30 second transition scenes in between scenes. These are done so vibrantly and are most entertaining to watch and set the stage for the rest of the show.

The transition scenes utilize a lot of different techniques such as:

  • Stop motion
  • 2D Animation
  • 3D Animation
  • Green Screen Keying
  • and tonz of visual FX candy using explosions, chemical reactions and mechanical reactions.

Some of the software tools they use in the production could possibility include:

  • Adobe Aftereffects ( for the puppet FX ) and 10-30 second transition scenes
  • 3D animation and modeling package – not really sure what software they are using, but sometimes I see some pretty cool 3D modeling and animation
  • Video editing software

I am convinced that without the clever editors, animators and production staff the show would not be such as success as it is today.

Check out one of their early episodes in the video below. The myth is ‘ peeing on the 3rd rail ‘ :p

Thanks for reading and see you all tomorrow.

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