Course Title: Create digital visual effects

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2011

Course Code: COSC5382C

Course Title: Create digital visual effects

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5198 - Diploma of Creative Industries

Course Contact : Adam Lovell

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4976

Course Contact Email:adam.lovell@rmit.edu.au


Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: Andrew Harrison
Email: andrew.harrison@rmit.edu.au

Nominal Hours: 70

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

There are no pre-requisits or co-requisits for this unit 

Course Description

Compositors or effects artists working in 3D animation and graphics studios apply the skills and knowledge described in this unit. They are responsible for creating digital visual effects to simulate physical or natural phenomenon, such as fire, crowds, flocks of birds, fluids, smoke and weather conditions. They receive material from various sources, which could include blue screen elements, particles, graphics, 2D and 3D animation, and live action footage. Their job is to creatively combine elements into the final image, ensuring that the established style of the project is respected and continuity is maintained.
Typically, their briefs are based on elements of storyboards for film, television or digital media productions, including games. A high level of creativity is required, along with proficiency in using a range of industry-current software applications to create and refine digital visual effects. A collaborative approach to work within a production team is essential, as is an ability to meet deadlines.


National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUFANM402A Create digital visual effects

Element:

1 Clarify work requirements

Performance Criteria:

1.1 With reference to production documentation, clarify requirements for digital visual effects
1.2 In consultation with relevant personnel, clarify work flow sequences to ensure that production schedule deadlines are met
1.3 Select software that best suits the type of production and delivery platform for which visual effects sequences are being created
1.4 Gather and analyse reference material to help with visualisation of final sequences

Element:

2 Prepare components.

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Gather all assets for integration and check that they are in the correct output file format
2.2 Choose digital visual effects that best represent the vision of scripts, as required
2.3 Check that components comply with storyboard requirements
2.4 Determine the appropriate methods and techniques to be used for the production of the required digital special effects

Element:

3 Assemble previsualisations

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Create previsualisation of the required visual effects sequences using the appropriate assets and compositing techniques
3.2 Experiment with previsualisation to establish the best results and solve problems that arise during the process of creating the visual effects
3.3 Submit previsualisation visual effects sequences to relevant personnel for evaluation and feedback
3.4 Match elements as required, such as colour, lighting and camera

Element:

4 Produce visual effects.

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Create final visual effects
4.2 Generate additional required effects to final stage
4.3 Render visual effects to desired format
4.4 Submit visual effects sequences to relevant personnel for evaluation and feedback by agreed deadlines

Element:

5 Finalise visual effects

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Respond to feedback by making adjustments to visual effects so that they comply with design and production specifications
5.2 Save files to specified storage system accessible to production team
5.3 Make back-up copies of visual effects in accordance with enterprise procedures
5.4 Complete workplace documentation as required
5.5 Review process of creating digital visual effects and note areas for future improvement


Learning Outcomes


On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to apply creative compositing techniques to a range of media productions.


Details of Learning Activities

Learning Activities will consist of
• demonstrations
• workshops
• practical exercises
• productions
• discussions
• screenings
• reading set texts
• research
• presentations
• planning and development of visual effects assessments
You will be responsible for your learning and will be expected to engage in independent research, reading, study, practice and screenings


Teaching Schedule

Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources.


WeekClass ContentAssessmentElements
Week 1
09/02/11
Orientation to the course
• Introduction to resources, assessments and course expectations
• Screening – VFX film excerpts
• Introduction to compositing in FCP – overview
• Introduction to After Effects – set up, layout, media files, compositions
• Class exercise and discussion
Assignment 1:
Research project and
Assignment 4: Major Project
Handed out
1, 2, 3
Week 2
16/02/11
Introduction to principles of compositing and visual effects
• Developing ideas and clarify requirements for:
• Production documentation – production brief, schedule, software list, script
• Previsulisation and storyboards
• After Effects –
• File and project management
• Project window, timeline and compositions
• Effects, presets and colour correction
• Class exercise and discussion
Assignment 4: Major Project
Develop MP idea, prepare production documentation and draft version
1, 2, 3, 4
Week 3
23/02/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 2
• Animation – keyframes and media manipulation
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 1:
Research project - finalise film choice’s and student presentation order
1, 2, 3, 4
Week 4
02/03/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 3
• Keying – modes, track matte, masking, luma matte, alpha matte, transparencies
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 1:
Research project due next week
1, 2, 3, 4
Week 5
09/03/11
Assignment 1 – Research project presentations1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 6
16/03/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 4
• Motion Tracking – stabilise footage, viewer window, track motion, corner pin, pre-compose, null objects
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 1:
Research project - results and feedback
Assignment 4: Major Project
production documentation and draft version due week 10
1, 2, 3, 4
Week 7
23/03/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 6
• 3D Integration – XYZ space, AE camera, AE lights, shadows, depth of field
• Introduction to particle generation
Includes – class exercises and discussion
1, 2, 3, 4
Week 8
30/03/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from weeks 1 to 7
• Export – motion media and still files
• Render queue – out put codecs, bit depth
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 4: Major Project
production documentation and draft version due week 10
4, 5
Week 9
06/04/11
Assignment 2: Creative Exercise – Keying and 3D RenderingAssignment 2 due
Assignment 4: Major Project
production documentation and draft version due week 10
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 10
13/04/10
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 8
• Particle generation – particle world, fractal noise
• Titles – animation presets, text tools
• Time remapping – speed changes, frame blending, pixel motion, speed ramp
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 4: Major Project - production documentation and draft version due
Assignment 2:
Creative Exercise - results and feedback
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 11
20/04/11
• After Effects –
• Revision from week 10
• Rotoscoping
• Colour correction, blending and grading
• Sound effects and music integration
Includes – class exercises and discussion
Assignment 4: Major Project production documentation and draft version results and feedback
Assignment 4: Major Project Assemble version due week 13
1, 2, 3, 4
 MID SEMESTER BREAK – 21 to 27 APRIL  
Week 12
04/05/11
Assignment 3: Creative Exercise – Motion Tracking and RotoscopingAssignment 3 due
Assignment 4: Major Project Assemble version due week 13
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 13
11/05/11
Assignment 4: Major Project – Assemble version. Present to class for comment and feedbackAssignment 4: MP - Assemble version due
Assignment 3:
Creative Exercise - results and feedback
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 14
18/05/11
Assignment 4: Major Project – Final version: Refine the visual effectsAssignment 4: Major Project Assemble version results and feedback
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Week 15Assignment 4: Major Project – Final version: Prepare to finaliseAssignment 4: Major Project Final version due week 163, 4, 5
Week 16Assignment 4: Major Project – Final version: Output and submissionAssignment 4: Major Project – Final version due4, 5
Week 17Assessment and review  


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Christiansen, M 2010, Adobe After Effects CS5 Visual Effects and Compositing Studio Techniques, Peachpit Press, USA


References

Brinkmann, R 2008, The Art and Science of Digital Compositing, Morgan Kaufmann, USA (available in the library)
Allan, D, Connor, B 2007, Encyclopaedia of Visual Effects, Peachpit, USA (available in the library)
Wright S 2006, Digital Compositing for Film and Video, Focal Press, USA (available in the library)
You are advised to look at the course Blackboard site for ongoing updated information.


Other Resources

• Portable Hard Drive – Firewire 800
• USB Stick or passport drive
• HDV/DV Tapes
• Production documents on Creative Industries blackboard
• Creative Industries Production Guide
• Creative Industries Safety Checklist


Overview of Assessment

Assessment will involve practical exercises, knowledge assessment tasks and practical group projects


Assessment Tasks

To demonstrate competency in this course you will need to complete the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback on all assessment.

ASSESSMENT TASKS:
N Assessment Task Value Due Date
1 Research Project: Class Presentation 10% 09/03/11
2 Creative Exercise: Keying & 3D Rendering 20% 06/04/11
3 Creative Exercise: Motion Tracking and Rotoscoping 20% 04/05/11
4 Major Project: Digital VFX Sequence
Production documentation and draft version 25% 13/04/11
Assemble version 10% 11/05/11
Final version 15% 01/06/11
Total 100%


The details on these assessments and the grading criteria for this competency can be found on the course blackboard site.

Grades used in this unit are as follows:

80 – 100% HD High Distinction
70 – 79% DI Distinction
60 – 69% CR Credit
50 – 59% PA Pass
Under 50% NN Fail


Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrated alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration

Other Information

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension.
Please refer to the following URL for extensions and special consideration:
http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y;STATUS=A;PAGE_AUTHOR=Andrea%20Syers;SECTION=1;

Course Overview: Access Course Overview