The BFX Festival came to an end following five days of movie screenings, animation workshops and industry insights into some of the best movies of 2014.
The Festival, in its second year, celebrated the best in animation, computer games and visual effects from the last 12 months, with talks and workshops from industry professionals offering a ‘behind the scenes’ look at how films and games are made.
Graduates and students from Bournemouth’s universities joined industry professionals and members of the public for the Festival, designed, in part, to inspire future generations to enter the booming creative industries.
This year, industry experts took to the stage at the Bournemouth International Centre to talk about their work on movies such as The Lego Movie, Maleficent, Godzilla and Guardians of the Galaxy. Legendary computer games such as the new instalment of Elite (Elite: Dangerous) were also featured – with delegates learning about what it takes to create the visual effects for games and movies and just how much of our films are digitally created.
Framestore’s Ben Lambert, a Bournemouth University graduate, spoke about his modelling work for the Oscar-winning movie Gravity, which won the visual effects Oscar at this year’s Academy Awards. Another BU graduate, Miles Green, who works for Australia-based visual effects house Animal Logic spoke about his work on The Lego Movie and how they tried to stick to the limitations of the Lego world while creating the movie.
The Festival is the idea of the International VFX Hub; a collaboration between the award-winning National Centre for Computer Animation (NCCA) at Bournemouth University and the Faculty of Media and Performance at the Arts University Bournemouth (AUB).
Weekend activities had a more family-friendly flavour, as children and parents descended on the Festival to create their own animations, during a free workshop. Children were invited to make a model out of clay before using a stop motion camera to bring their creations to life. The talks and workshops were complimented with evening screenings of popular movies, including Maleficent and Frozen.
A special art exhibition, featuring concept artwork from 1959 animated film Sleeping Beauty and Maleficent were also on display during the Festival, loaned from Walt Disney Animation Studios in California.
Sofronis Efstathiou, Senior Lecturer at Bournemouth University and the BFX Festival Director said, “It was great to see so many people learning more about visual effects and animation and their importance in cinema, TV and game making.”
Sofronis continued, “BFX Festival 2014 was a great opportunity to review some of the best visual effects and animations from the past year – I was in astonished by the quality of speakers and their presentations this year, and delegates seemed to enjoy the range of activities on offer – from screenings and workshops to talks from industry professionals on movies such as The Lego Movie and Gravity.”
Bournemouth University has a long history with the visual effects industry, with many graduates going on to work on award-winning movies and games. Over 80 BU graduates worked on the film Avatar, while around 60 BU graduates were involved in the visual effects for Gravity.
Plans are already underway for the BFX Festival in 2015, and alumni are encouraged to join in, as Efstathiou comments, “We’ll be back again next year and would love our alumni to join us so watch out for communications about BFX in 2015.”
For more information about the BFX Festival, or to keep up-to-date with the latest information about next year’s Festival, visit www.bfxfestival.com.