A Brief History
Art has played an important role throughout my life. After finishing high-school and after a brief stint with actuarial sciences, I started playing with Flash and Dreamweaver and eventually found work as a web-developer; along the way picking up PHP and MySQL. After coding a 3D engine in Flash and still finding it limiting I started looking elsewhere for a medium which would allow more creative freedom. This search brought me to 3D graphics and to Softimage|XSI.

To get some formal education related to computer graphics, I started a degree in computer science but wanting something more artist friendly, I went to RMIT University, Australia to get an Advanced Diploma of Multimedia (ADoM). There I specialized in animation and did my very first visual effects piece without any supervision. Visual effects has always fascinated me as it allows fantasy to be seamlessly melded with reality. My trip to Australia finished after I got a Masters of Arts in Animation and Interactive Media. At the culmination of this course, I wrote my first article on approaching a short animation. Whilst doing this course, I briefly taught Flash Actionscript to high school students.

My very first foray into visual effects during ADoM had a lasting impact. To further strengthen my concepts in this field I went to Vancouver Film School (VFS) to attend the 3D Animation and Visual Effects course. VFS introduced me to various techniques on approaching shots with visual effects. Amongst other subjects we also studied film, colour theory, composition and animation. At the end of this course I wrote my second article about the basic breakdown of a visual effects shot and pitfalls to avoid when combining CGI with live plates.

Since I started learning XSI, I have picked up JScript, VB Script, Python and C++ to help with custom tool development. Over the years, I have become quite proficient in using Photoshop, After Effects and Boujou with a working knowledge of many other software. My latest interest besides Lighting and Rigging is developing plug-ins.

Future Plans
I intend to work in commercials and perhaps do some work in high-end broadcast. If the chance arises I would be interested in contributing my skills to feature film production. My first love has always been problem solving. In the CG pipeline, each of lighting, rigging and simulations offer unique problems on a per shot basis. Although these tasks are quite varied in nature, I thoroughly enjoy all of them and continue to expand my knowledge in the relevant areas.


Articles
Birth of a short animation
The anatomy of a visual effects shot