Do you remember the moment when you decided that you wanted to get involved with visual effects?
I remember very well: watching the opening shot of A New Hope (1977) in our local cinema in Oxford. Totally blew my mind …
What were some of your favorite movies, books, or TV shows growing up and do any of them inspire your work today?
In terms of films related to special and visual effects, there were films like Blade Runner (1982), Dark Crystal (1982), Dune (1984), The Thing (1982), Alien (1979), all of Ray Harryhausen’s films and of course the original Star Wars trilogy.
I was also an avid reader of books and magazines related to VFX film making such “The Art of Special Effects” or “The Art of Star Wars.” My grandparents, who lived in Los Angeles, kept me posted with new editions of Cinefex, Starlog, New Voyager and the odd edition of American Cinematographer.
Many of these influences still inspire and inform my work today. One of my great passions was pouring over photos of complex motion control model shoots and detailed animatronic character builds to try and workout exactly how the magic was being created in the ‘real’ world.
What was your first job?
My first job was working as a practical model maker on The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992) during my summer holiday from University.