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GUEST LECTURE FOR NUS CS4340 DIGITAL SPECIAL EFFECTS 2016
Did a guest lecture for the digital special effects module in NUS School of Computing as an alumni and as a VFX industry professional
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Apr 2016
Guest Lecture
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Guest Lecture for NUS CS4340 Digital Special Effects 2016
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I was recently invited by Dr. Terence Sim from NUS School of Computing to give a guest lecture for CS4340 Digital Special Effects in Apr 2016. I have taken the same module (previously called CS5245 Vision and Graphics for Special Effects) back in 2007 and thought it would be interesting to give a lecture in the capacity of both an alumni and also an industry professional with VFX experience.

As I was still in Vancouver, the whole lecture was done via video conferencing using Google Hangouts. Now that’s technology at its best!

Guest lecture was done via Google Hangouts
Guest lecture was done via Google Hangouts

I started off by sharing some of my VFX experience, talking about the different movies I had worked on for the past 7 to 8 years, the main challenges that I had faced and the techniques I used to resolve them. I also talked a bit about the different companies that I have worked at and interesting things about the countries I have lived in.

Sharing my VFX experience with the class
Sharing my VFX experience with the class

After that, I gave the students some tips on how to prepare for the VFX industry, things like demo reels, avenues for further learning of VFX, useful hobbies etc. I reiterated that there are actually technical roles in the VFX industry and that students from NUS School of Computing can actually be part of it.

Some of the students in the class (photo showing only part of the room)
Some of the students in the class (photo showing only part of the room)

Lastly, as an alumni, I wanted to demonstrate how the knowledge obtained from NUS School of Computing can be applied to the VFX industry. Using SideFX Houdini, I gave a demo showing some actual techniques that I have used in the VFX industry, using simple mockups as examples. These techniques required some knowledge that I had learned during my undergraduate studies in NUS. This section was particularly interesting because NUS School of Computing is the only place that I can give such a talk as I have gone through the same kind of course as the students have.

The session ended with a short Question & Answer session.

All in all, it was great sharing some experience and knowledge with the students. I hope they have learned something new and is willing to venture into VFX in the future.


 
ABOUT ME
Skeel Lee Skeel Lee
skeel@skeelogy.com
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Senior FX TD / R&D
Digital Domain 3.0 (Previously at Sony Pictures Imageworks, MPC, Industrial Light & Magic, Double Negative)
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I am a Senior Technical Director with strong interests in both tech and art. My life evolves round VFX, photography, software engineering, tools programming and generally anything that looks / sounds cool.
I have done a variety of CG programming, including fluid sims, muscles, soft/rigid bodies, raytracing etc. These knowledge complement the visual works that I do as a TD in VFX.
I was interviewed by The Straits Times in May 2014 for my VFX work in X-Men: Days of Future Past.