Brandon Zhao | FX Artist

Brandon Zhao | FX Artist

by brandonzhaoart on 31 May 2020 for Rookie Awards 2020

Gnomon Fx student, this includes my personal and school work I made for my Fx Demo Reel 2020. Special Thanks to all my teachers, friends and family helped and guided me through this journey.

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Round of applause for our sponsors


This piece was inspired by idea of bringing organic movements to something mechanical, as these lightbulbs come to life, they breathe flicker and float up into the air. I modeled the geometry using Houdini and create constraints for the body, glass and wire using the Houdini vellum tools. I then animated each lighbulbs pressure attribute and offset them to create this animation. The shot is then rendered in Redshift and composited in Nuke.


This piece was my second attempt exploring the Houdini Vellum tools and chaining different solvers together to create a more complex effect. To create the shot above my teachers at Gnomon helped me edit the overall look and streamline my workflow. The disintegration effect was created using Houdini vellum and particles. The secondary rock fracture was created using Houdini RBD tools. I created an extra pulse and glow effect that was later thrown out. The butterfly animation is created by my talented classmate Carlene Chang. The shot is then rendered in Redshift and composited in Nuke.   


Inspired by my favorite season, "Fall" was created when I was exploring Houdini Flip. I really love the way Flip particles move and wanted to create a magical effect that reflects the emotion fall evokes in me. I instanced cards on each particle and create a rotation matrix for each leaf. I also used the points and velocity from the Flip simulation to create a dusty fog that follows the movement of the leaves. The shot is then rendered in Redshift and composited in Nuke. 

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