Swaroop C H

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Interview of Abishek Nair

02 May 2007

My friend Abishek Nair and myself were recently having a conversation over email where I kept prodding him about what he's going to do next. You see, being a Bangalorean, he's not a software engineer! He's a vfx whiz. In normal English, that means he's one of those guys who creates the visual effects in ads or movies that you might have seen. A couple of days after that email exchange, Abishek calls me and says that he's got a contract with a Singapore company (with whom he had just finished a project) and was going there to work on even more cooler stuff.

I was happy to hear that because I've seen some of his work and I think he really is talented, all he needs is a platform to showcase his skills, and this new gig should be a very good opportunity for him.

We met up a couple of days before he took off, just to catch up. He showed me some of his latest work and I was just blown away. You must have seen the latest Limca ad on TV featuring Riya Sen...

He went on to explain the software that he uses and how "node-based" software has shaked the vfx industry literally, thanks to the popularity of Apple Shake, and so on. I was surprised at how much painstaking effort is required to create these visual effects - we take movies like King Kong for granted but the amount of work behind the scenes is mind-boggling.

Coincidentally, Dad had recently bought a new Sony DCR-DVD 708E handycam and I had brought it over to show it to Abishek... I got a brainwave - why not make an interview? It need not be anything professional, just something that happened. I think Kiruba's enthusiasm, while encouraging podcasters in a session at BarCampBangalore3, had rubbed off on me.

And here I present to you - the first ever video that I've ever shot! The best parts are the demos of Abishek's works and his description of how it was created.

Note 1: You can also download the video for offline viewing.

Note 2: The audio quality is a little faint in the beginning, but much better after we switched off the fan :)


If you are interested to know more, you can write to Abishek - his email address is abisheknair (at) gmail.com.

Comments

Sriram Krishnan says:

I sense a career change coming. PodTech India next? :-)

Swaroop says:

@Allagappan : Premiere

@Sriram : Heh

Withheld on special request says:

Abishek is definitely one of the most serious (in his work) and one of the best visual effects artist in India and (I can proudly say)abroad. Thanks Swaroop for taking the effort of showcasing real talent. Way to go Abi!

Anirban says:

Well, most of this work isn't really that hard, only tedious. Maybe a bit of matchmoving in the Limca ad to put the painted buildings in place... Its primarily green screen and compositing, using a node based compositior. In programmer terms, its similar to visiting each node in a tree and applying some algorithm and then merging the results in a particular order.

The real fun will start when Indian special effects and software merge. Procedurally modelled cities, skin,fluid simulations , optical flow, and Pyton based graphics pipelines for studios... we are way behind Hollywood in this.

Thanks,
Anirban

(Interestingly, I came to your site looking for a way to embed python scripting to write shaders for a graphics rendering program )

Abishek says:

@ "Withheld on special request" whoever you are thanks.

@ Anirban - there are people in India working on toolplugin development at various studios, just a matter of time before people at the management realise how imp scripting is for CG and VFX. I dont think the day is far cos I have seen some interesting stuff at a couple of Indian studios....wait and watch :)
We are def way behind the west in so many fronts but just a matter of time....we'll get there ...eventually.

P.S - if am not mistaken I saw you at 'Paprikaas Animation studios' a long time back.

Allagappan says:

Good one.
What video editing software did you use btw?

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