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【發車啦!畢製老司機】EP.12 獲國際電影節肯定,《NoWhereMan》動畫團隊分享製程、國外公司實習經驗(Blue Sky)。

上一集我們邀請到紐約視覺藝術學院 SVA 學生分享他們的創作經驗以及人生所見,本集【發車啦!畢製老司機】則是經由涵蓁推薦,採訪了另外兩位學生-Max、CK。三位製作動畫短片《NoWhereMan》,並入圍國際各大電影節的肯定!現在就讓我們跟著映 CG 的腳步,一起了解短片的靈感來源與製作過程,以及他們在國外公司的實習經驗!

EP.12 Introduce the animation team of "NoWhereMan", was affirmed by the International Film Festivals and competitions. We are pleased to have them here at InCG Media, sharing the artistic production process and the internship experience of the foreign company (Blue Sky Studio).

Foreword: In the last episode, we invited SVA students from School of Visual Arts in New York to share their creative experience and life experiences. Recommended by Han Chen Chang (Verena), the muti-projects manager (creative producer), the episode today interviewed two other students: Chong Liu (Max) and Kuan Ting Lu (CK). The animated short film "NoWhereMan" by the three talented students, was nominated for the various international film festivals! Now, let's join us to understand the inspiration with the production process of the film, as well as their internship experience in the US! 

05:17《NoWhereMan》創作分享

25:53 SVA課程心得

32:47實習經驗談

👉👉喜歡這集節目,想聽聽更多業界人士分享經驗,歡迎到 Spotify、Applepodcast 等網站訂閱【發車啦!畢製老司機】節目。  

05:17 "NoWhereMan" creative production

25:53 The course experience at School of Visual Arts

32:47 Internship experience talk

If you like this episode with interest in having more content from other talented people in the industry, please subscribe us on Spotify and Apple podcast program!  


《NoWhereMan》團隊 The team of “NoWhereMan”

由紐約視覺藝術學院 SVA MFA Computer Arts 三名學生共同合作。

劉翀 Max (右):《NoWhereMan》的創意導演。著迷藝術創作與故事概念,深受寺山修司 、安德烈塔可夫斯基等導演啟發。

盧冠廷 CK (左):《NoWhereMan》的技術導演。2020年,於Blue sky藍天動畫工作室擔任燈光實習生,參與《變身特務》的製作。

張涵蓁 Verena (中):《NoWhereMan》的創意製片。藉由各團隊合作的項目管理與製作,以不同的視野維度帶領你進入動畫世界,從中挖掘每個人的人生意義。

Three talented students from the MFA Computer Art Department at School of Visual Arts in New York collaborated.

 Max (right): The Creative Director of "NoWhereMan". He is fascinated by visual development and storytelling, focusing on aesthetic concept arts, inspired by the uplifting directors, such as Terayama Shuji and Andrei Tarkovsky.

CK (left): The Technical Director of "NoWhereMan". He worked as a lighting intern at Blue Sky Studio in 2019, participating in the production of the animated film "Spies in Disguise".

Verena (center): The Creative Producer of "NoWhereMan". Through project management and creative production with various team collaborations, she leads people into the animation universe with different perspective dimensions, tapping the significant meaning of everyone's life from it.


就讀紐約視覺藝術學院 SVA 的原因? 

Why do you choose to study in MFA Computer Arts Department at School of Visual Arts in New York?

盧冠廷從實踐大學畢業,在夢想動畫就職一年後,我發現自己嚮往更龐大的專案,然而台灣市場有所侷限,比較少機會能接觸到這些作品。所以才會想出國讀書,不僅增廣視野,與其他不同國家的藝術家交流,汲取不同文化的創意涵養,還能廣結人脈,進去夢想中的公司工作,並在大型專案的 Credit 上,看到自己的名字。於是我就在當兵時,開始準備相關資料以及作品集,前往紐約視覺藝術學院 SVA 就讀,去年還獲得在 Blue sky 藍天動畫工作室實習的機會。

劉翀原先就讀北京的傳統美術學校,主修數位媒體,然而我的學習以及創作經驗偏向 2D,畢業後,為了精進自己的 3D 創作能力,決心報考國外的動畫研究所。另一點,想前往美國就學的原因跟 CK 很像,想闖盪不同環境,與來自世界各地的人交流,畢竟開拓視野對於創作有非常大的助益。

CK: After graduating from Shih Chien University, I started working in MoonShine Animation Studio in Taiwan, I found that I yearn for a larger project in my career life. However, the industry in Taiwan has limitations with fewer opportunities to get access. Therefore, I chose to study abroad, not only to broaden my visions but also to communicate with talented artists with different nationalities. Involving more creative inspirations from different cultures, connecting with various kinds of people, then getting into a great company with and working on my dream job with influential credit on the great projects. I began to prepare relevant materials and portfolios during the period when military service in Taiwan; fortunately, I entered into School of Visual Arts and obtained an internship opportunity in Blue Sky Studio in 2019.

Max: I initially studied at China Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, majoring in Digital Media Arts. However, my study direction and creative experience tend to 2D creation. As a result, to improve my 3D creative ability, I decided to apply for a foreign animation institute after graduation. The reason for choosing the school in the United States is very similar to CK. We both want to go through different environments and cultures, networking with people from all over the world. After all, broadening my vision is very helpful for inspiration and any creative production. 

分享《NoWhereMan》故事與創作理念? 

Please share the story and creative concept of "NoWhereMan" 

3劉翀:《NoWhereMan》是一部關於「時空旅行」的動畫,男主角作為第一個參與「時空旅行」的人,被大眾與媒體稱為「英雄」。然而這個彰顯國家勢力的「時空旅行」實驗發生了故障,導致男主角被困在時間空隙中,永遠巡迴在某個時間內。最後政府選擇隱瞞,沒有人知道男主角發生了甚麼事,只記得他所象徵的勝利戰果。

故事的靈感源自於一篇探討「時空旅行」理論的文章,內容大致上在探討「時空旅行」可能造成的偏差,就如同動畫中的劇情,如果你穿越到十分鐘之前,但運作時間剛好也需要十分鐘,時間旅行者可能就會被鎖在一個時間的循環裡,以旁觀的眼光來看,跟消失沒什麼區別。這個概念非常吸引我們,於是我們以此作為背景故事,去諷刺國家間的科技裝備競賽,對於真相的蒙蔽。 

Max:"NoWhereMan" is a 3D animated short film, about a hero who is sacrificed by the government and the masses. The story follows a marshal who announces their first-ever travel experiment to the public. However, the experiment goes haywire when the hero gets trapped in the repetitive timeline forever. Behind this shallow success is an ironic truth. In the end, the government chose to hide. No one knew what happened to the male protagonist, only remembering the victory he symbolized.

The inspiration for the story comes from an article that explores the theory of "time travel". The content is roughly discussing the possible deviations of time travel as if the plot in the animation. Imagine, one travel back to ten minutes ago, yet the operating time also takes ten minutes; eventually, the time traveler may be locked up in a cycle period. From the third perspective, it is no different than disappearing in the period. This concept is very appealing to us. Thus we applied this as the background story to satirize the technological competition between countries and the ironic truth in history (time).


針對時間旅行,有甚麼個人觀點嗎? 

Is there any personal thought on "time travel"?  

劉翀:我是支持永恆主義的,這個論點基本上是對應愛因斯坦的相對論,過去與未來就相當於兩個時間節點,它有點類似於宿命論,雖然可以改變當下某些事,但過去與未來是固定存在,也就是說很難因為某個過去的改變,去影響未來某個必定發生的事件。而永恆主義也是《NoWhereMan》的基礎論點。

盧冠廷:我比較膚淺一點(笑)。在「時空旅行」真的發明前,我認為這個理論僅是講故事的一種工具,如果可以說服觀眾,沒有任何劇情上的矛盾,不論是永恆主義、當下主義還是其他理論,我都可以接受。

張涵蓁:不論是時間旅行還是《NoWhereMan》的劇情 ,我們的開放性劇情接納每個人的觀點;就像我支持時間論的當下主義,而導演們 Max 與 CK 各支持永恆主義與中立看法,如此多方位觀點的劇情也能激起觀眾去討論、反思故事劇情與隱藏含意。而《NoWhereMan》也不只談論「時空旅行」,還有另一個重點是對於真相的蒙蔽與揭露,一位被大眾所推崇的英雄,自然背後有著不可告知的犧牲與奉獻。如此看似荒謬的情況,卻極有可能是真實發生的歷史秘密! 

Max: I support Eternalism. This statement corresponds to Einstein's theory of General Relativity. The past and the future are equivalent to two-time nodes, and it is a bit similar to fatalism. For example, changes may happen in the present. Nonetheless, the past is a firm existence with another existed future, that it so say, it is challenging to influence the future just because of a specific change in the past. To be more precise, "Eternalism" is also the basic statement of "NoWhereMan".

CK: I'm a little bit shallower (laughs). Before "Time Travel" truly invents, I take the theories just a concept or inspiration for storytelling. If the storyline is convinced well without contradiction in the project, whether it is "Eternalism", "Here-now Presentism", or other theories, those are acceptable for great storytelling.

Verena: Whether the theory of time travel or the story of "NoWhereMan", our opening plot accepts everyone's creative point of view. As I support the "Here-now Presentism", yet Max and CK each support "Eternalism" and neutral perspective, the multi-faceted aspects of view can also arouse more discussions and reflections on the project, even hidden meaning for the audiences. "NoWhereMan" not only talks about "time travel", but another significant point: "the exposing of the ironic truth". A hero admired by the public actually has the huge hidden sacrifices and dedication behind. The seemingly absurd situation in our story is very likely to be a historical secret that may happen!


聊聊《NoWhereMan》視覺風格?

How about the Visual Development of "NoWhereMan"? 

劉翀:視覺風格我們分為角色與環境設計兩大面向,針對前者,我們想做出視覺上的突破,與主流遊戲或 3D 動畫的風格產生區別,希望更藝術性一點,所以參考一些表現主義的畫作,例如愛德華孟克、佛洛伊德等等。因此動畫中的人物造型都看起來與眾不同,但在打燈渲染上還是偏擬真,讓《NoWhereMan》介於一種在真實與想像中的邊界,呈現出獨特的視覺風貌。

提到環境設計,為了符合故事劇情,我們所設定的是一個偏向封閉的國家。在建築方面,採用許多工業化的元素,讓城市看起來是冰冷、沒有溫度;而另一方面,我們也想體現它是一個具有強大勢力的國家,因此整體環境設施需要看起來很龐大壯觀。

於是我們參考許多東歐、前蘇聯的建築設計,並加以轉化,建構出《NoWhereMan》獨特的場景風貌。另外,角色的服裝設計也是參考前蘇聯的一些軍服,以及冷戰時期軍備競賽的太空服。 

Max: We divide the visual style into two significant aspects: Character and Environment design. For the former, we tend to make a visual breakthrough, which is different from the style of mainstream games or 3D animation. We hope to be more artistic, and so we refer to some Expressionnisme Paintings such as Edward Munch, Freud, etc. As a result, the characters' modeling finally looks abstract and unique. Yet, the rendering and lighting design in a more realistic manner, so that "NoWhereMan" is well presented between reality and abstraction, showing a unique aesthetic visual style.

When it comes to environmental design, we set in a closed country to meet our storyline. In terms of architecture, we apply plenty of industrial elements to make the city look cold and lonely. On the other hand, to shows that it is also a powerful country, the overall environmental facilities are designed to be vast and spectacular.

We also referred to many architectural designs of Eastern Europe and Soviet Russia, integrating and transforming all of them to construct the unique scenes of "NoWhereMan". Besides, the character's costume is well designed based on the military uniforms of Soviet Russia, as well as the spacesuits of the Nuclear Arms Race during the Cold War period. 


為了打造獨特的視覺風格,技術上會遇到甚麼挑戰嗎?

To create a unique visual style, is there any technical challenge?

盧冠廷:在有限的設備與資源下,要開發出嶄新的視覺風格確實有點困難,所以我們用的渲染引擎是學校新引進的 Redshift,它的優點在於渲染速度非常快。但由於它還在開發中,所以有些效果無法渲染出來,像是 Maya 自帶的 2D 卡通材質等。於是在上網看了許多教學後,我們決定寫個可以製作出假卡通材質球的 Pipeline,並用 Nuke 將其合成。然而有些卡通風格貼圖,是無法用寫實貼圖製程做出來的,於是只能靠 Max 的畫功和概念設計技巧,一筆一筆繪製出理想的風貌。  

CK: With limited equipment and resources, it was challenging to develop a brand new visual style; hence the rendering engine we used was the new Redshift introduced by the school. It provided faster-rendering speed; however, because Redshift is still under development, some effects cannot be rendered well, such as the 2D cartoon material that comes with Maya. So after researching a lot of methods and tutorials, we decided to write a Pipeline coding that can make a pretended cartoon-style texture ball, which can also be composited together in Nuke. Unfortunately, another problem happened; some cartoon-style textures still cannot be created with realistic textures in the meantime. Finally, we presented a detailed stroke and stylish look with Max's reliable painting and conceptual design skills.


SVA 讓你印象深刻的課程?

The most impressive course at SVA? 

盧冠廷:其實在 SVA 有不少業界人士授課,所以可以聽到許多業界的一些內幕或是製程,像是製作 Neflix 相關影集的空拍師,就有談到「紐約市是不能用空拍機」,所以就要租直升機拍空景,於是他向我們說道,當初是怎麼用直升機做出驚險刺激的追逐鏡頭等等。雖然對 CG 創作者來說,空拍好像是另一個專業,但能在 SVA 學到各式各樣影視技術,都有助於創作。而且也很難說自己未來不會走向這條路。

CK: In fact, there are many talented professionals in the industry teaching at SVA so that you can hear some insider or various processes of many industries. For example, the professor in the course "Video Production", as an aerial photographer who created Netflix related series, sharing some real experiences that how he used helicopters to make breathtaking chasing shots in the series. Interestingly, the reason why we took the helicopters for the shootings is simply because of "The prohibit of using an aerial camera in New York City ". Thus at that time, he rent a helicopter to take pictures of the sky. Now he is kind to share the essential detailed information with us. Although, as a CG creator, aerial photography seems to be another major for me, the ability to learn a variety of film and television technologies at SVA is helpful for inspiration and vision. And it is hard to say that we won't go on this way in the future.  


聊聊去國外動畫公司實習的經驗?

Let's talk about your internship experience in a foreign animation company! 

劉翀:我在一間比較小的工作室實習,雖然是做概念設計,但基本上甚麼領域都要碰,因此我的技術與製作能力,也因為各種不同的專案而提升。再加上,小公司案子比較趕,所以在時間壓力的驅使下,我學到不少更為快速的製程。不僅可以運用在動畫創作上,甚至對銜接業界有很大的幫助。

盧冠廷:前面有提到,我在 Blue sky 藍天動畫工作室的燈光部門實習,這經驗開拓了我的視野,讓我了解大型動畫公司的製程。而團隊的藝術家也對我呵護備至,不僅指派我做一些簡單的工作,還會一步一步慢慢引導,總覺得自己好像是他們的家人(笑)。後來,由於表現良好,我參與電影《變身特務》的幾顆鏡頭,觸碰到藍天動畫過往20年一直使用的系統,用程式語言去做打燈的效果。也由於實習期間,正好是《變身特務》最後的衝刺期,所以燈光部門非常忙碌,可以學習到如何在時間壓力下,創作一個好的作品。

最後我必須說,Blue sky 的環境真的很棒,隨時都可以去拿甜甜圈可以吃(笑)。 

Max: I was working on an internship in a relatively small studio. Although I was doing conceptual design, I had to touch every field. Therefore, my technical and production capabilities were also sharply improved due to various projects. Besides, small company cases are more urgent. So, driven by time pressure, I learned a lot of more efficient production processes. Not only can it be used in animation production, it even has enormous support in connecting the industry.

CK: As mentioned earlier, I was an intern in the lighting department at Blue Sky Studio. This experience opened up my vision in the industry, and it made me understand the production process of a large animation company. The artists of the team have taken good care of me, not only assigning me to do some simple tasks but also guiding them step by step. We always feel like a big family (laughs). Later on, based on my performance in the company, I got the opportunity to participate in several shots of the animated film "Spies in Disguise".

Furthermore, I was able to touch the internal professional system that Blue Sky Studio has been using for more than 20 years for creating the specific lighting effects by coding programming. In the meantime, during the internship period, which happens to be the last sprint period of "Spies in Disguise". At the crucial period, the lighting department was crazy busy, and I also learned to do a good job under intense pressure and time.

Finally, I have to say that the environment and culture of Blue Sky Studio are peaceful and perfect. You can always get doughnuts to eat! (laughs)


給讀者一些出國留學的建議?

Can you give our readers some suggestions for studying abroad? 

盧冠廷:我覺得不用怕自己英文很糟而放棄出國留學的機會,因為大部分的學生都是出國後,受到當地環境影響,才能說一口流利的英文。畢竟到了一個環境,為了生存你會逼自己去學,不用太擔心語言的狀況。

劉翀:出國留學費用很高,所以在出去前,最好是確立好自己出國的目標。因為即使是美國的學校,它也不會一步步帶著你,探索所有領域的資訊,你還是必須從中尋找自己的方向,串聯你所學的知識,進一步帶到你想進入的產業,在該領域發光發熱!

張涵蓁:出國留學象徵著得以體驗更多不同的新事物,我們得以認識各個國籍的人、接觸不同的藝術風格,進而有所合作機會。除了在自己的理想精進自己的專業技能外,盡量讓自己擁有多一些團隊合作或是參與專案的經驗。舉例來說,每一次的作業都可以與不同的人嘗試交流合作,也可以在一年級時參與二年級學長姐的作品,從中實際操作學習、互相幫助。這些都是累積經驗與人脈的效率方式!而經過時間累積,每個人也在團隊中逐漸找到自己的方向,同時訓練自己合作與交流的能力,適應在各種團隊間互相合作。從中大家都能更了解彼此,學習互相支持與包容,在一個正面的良性競爭與互相扶持的狀態下,最終將迎來最振奮人心的成果,也將為自己的人生添上了一份無可取代的美好回憶。

CK: Do not think to give up the opportunity to study abroad only because of your English skills. Most of the students are fluent in English after studying abroad and being affected by the local environment indeed. After all, in a foreign environment, you will force yourself to learn in order to survive. Just keep going without the worry about the language problem.

Max: The cost of studying abroad is very high, honestly. Before studying abroad, it is better to set your goal in advance. Even an American school will not take you to step by step to explore any kind of information. It is your responsibility to seek your own direction and even career life. Integrate the knowledge you have learned in the years, and further, bring yourself into the industry you prefer. Then shine with your talented skill in your dream job!

Verena: Studying abroad symbolizes being able to experience more different new things in life. We can get to know more people of any nationalities and expose to different artistic styles, which is super beneficial to various kinds of cooperation opportunities. In addition to improving your professional skills, trying to make yourself trust-worthy with some experience in teamwork projects. For example, try to communicate and cooperate with different people in any assignment in school, or you can even volunteer to participate in the work of the senior students. Learn from the practical experience and being open to help each other always. These are efficient ways to accumulate skills and connections! After these worthy time and expertise, everyone will gradually find their own direction, and at the same time training your ability to collaborate and communicate, adapting to cooperate among various teams. From that, everyone can understand each other better, learn to support and tolerate each other. You guys will be in a state of positive and benign competition with mutual support. A positive and healthy attitude will finally lead to the most exciting results, and it will create a beautiful, irreplaceable memory on your own. 


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