VFX403 – Create A Crowd For an Epic Movie

VFX403 – Create A Crowd For an Epic Movie
Submissions Start: 2 September 2010
Submissions End: 30 September 2010

Film viewers will be transported to the very edge of their seats if engaged by an exciting crowd scene during a movie. A crowd can be compelling and will create the spine tingling atmosphere of epic cinematic moments.

In a ‘Mexican wave’ towards memorable scenes from the likes of blockbusters Gladiator and Invictus; VFXChallenge VFX403 will require you to test your crowd duplication skills. In the third challenge of the series VFXTalk wants you to ‘rent a crowd’ and ensure that excited people are jumping in their seats.

Your crowd can be watching a sporting contest, rock concert, alien gladiatorial battle or a historical joust if you like; but the focus of this challenge is on the crowd and not on the event within the arena. You have free reign to show us as much or as little of the stadium and performance as you wish.

You can introduce 2D or 3D elements, modify the video footage we supply and use your matte painting talent to bring this all to life. Use your crowd duplication skills to create a seamless believable audience and bring on the stadium atmosphere!


Source Material
The source footage will be available shortly, in the meantime view the clips at the links below to begin your creative process – you will be able to use one or both clips for your entry. The downloadable links will be ready v. soon!



Note this footage is copyright Ribbit Films and you only have permission to use it in the VFX 403 Challenge.

You will be judged on the integration of all elements, from appropriate shadow casting, grain, reflections, and originality. Judges will give consideration to both the technical aspects of the shot(s) you create, and the content of the shots. But since we want this to be a fun – but professional – forum, the emphasis will be on the technical aspect. A very funny but sloppy entry will not be as successful with the judges as a slightly less imaginative, but very realistic one.

The necessary skills you will need to learn to succeed the Series 4 challenges are: Matte Painting, Modelling, Lighting, Compositing, Onset Photography, Planning Ahead, Originality. Particle and volumetric FX generation, Animation, Projection and 3D Texturing and HDRI are all optional.

Everything must be created from scratch, save textures or photographs, of course. The complete shot should be 720 frames long at 24fps (minimum of 15 seconds long) at low HD, res 852×480. No prior work will be accepted. If we find that you are using existing libraries of cities or building models, you will be disqualified.

You get extra points from an active WIP! Begin your WIP thread by painting up this image to show us what you’d like to accomplish. From there, hit the visual effects supervisors mark by bringing that concept to life. It is not necessary to create other shots that lead up to this one, and you won’t get higher marks for it. Focus your time on creating this 30 second shot the best that you can! You can find the WIP forums here: http://www.vfxtalk.com/forum/vfxchal…orum-f109.html

Moderators will judge all entries and will choose a shortlist of ten, these entries will be judged from the Work In Progress threads and the final result. The final ten submissions will then be voted on by the community in order to select the top 3 winners.

We do not want to see a final shot turn up out of nowhere and have no clue as to how it was created. Since you are starting this from scratch, having a WIP thread showing your progress will be vital in swaying the judges to vote you into the top 10.


From VFX403 onwards it will not be possible for competitors to tie for prizes. Once the voting thread is closed, if there are any entries tied on the same amount of points then the judges panel will decide which entry is placed highest.

If you have any questions regarding this challenge please post them into this thread. Please start your WIP threads in the VFXChallenge WIP Forum, as always. Team entries are permitted, provided that all participants are members of VFXTalk and the team is no larger than 3 members!

As always, all the help you will ever need can be found in the relevant Software Forums for your software of choice or the WIP Forum. We are trying to encourage an environment for peer/team learning! The more we help each other, the further we can push each other, and the better our VFX skills will become!

The prize’s for this month:

1st Place: The 1st Place winner of each monthly VFX challenge will be taking home a hot Intel based Mac Mini! This fantastic prize has been sponsored by the cool people at online independent film site Sputnik7. They will also receive a Taskwise Small Business account, use this innovative software to easily create and share projects and information between a team of up to 10 people.

2nd Place: The runner up will receive a subscription to the eyeon SWAT program and a free copy of SWAT Edition of Fusion! eyeon’s new SWAT Membership program offers SWAT members the opportunity to learn Fusion in several different ways from introductory to advanced online training resources and webinars, extensive facility training, 3-day to 6-week courses, SWAT authorized curriculums, including universities and colleges and One-on-one seminars. Members also have access to great SWAT Edition pricing and upgrade models!

Third place: Third place winner is sponsored by cmiVFX, the leading provider of technological training for visual effects artists! You will take home your choice of one cmiVFX training video, take advantage of great online visual effects training to hone your skills! You can also buy training videos from their site this month at an added discount using the VFX403 promo code!

Judges Prize:
The challenges now feature a judges prize that will be awarded to the entry that has the most advanced and seamless use of visual effects. The judges prize is sponsored by Ribbit Films and receives a total of ten points which will go towards the final scores on the series leaderboard.

The Grand Prize:
Series Grand Prize: The coveted grand prize, awarded to the winner of the series, is sponsored by Sputnik7, Eyeon and The Foundry! It consists of an Apple Mac Pro workstation loaded with the latest complete versions of both Eyeon Fusion 6 plus Generation and a copy of Nuke from The Foundry!

The Sponsors
The VFXChallenges are supported by our very generous sponsors; without their help we would not be able to offer such fantastic prizes. These companies have been incredibly supportive of VFXTalk.com and we are extremely grateful to them for their continued involvement in the VFXChallenge Series.

Sputnik7 – www.sputnik7.com

eyeon – http://www.eyeonline.com

The Foundry – http://www.thefoundry.co.uk/

Ribbit Films – http://www.ribbitfilms.com

Silversoft – http://www.taskwise.com

cmiVFX – http://www.cmivfx.com


We welcome all your input for the VFXChallenges…please let us know of any cool ideas, footage, or elements that you would like to have featured in a future VFXChallenge by letting us know HERE

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