I worked at a reputable camera shop and learned about cameras, lenses and especially how to speak respectfully with customers - even those who thought that Canons were better than Nikons.

Sheesh...

ABOUT

In grade school I built models and took a lot of pictures. I remember watching the British TV show, Space 1999 when it hit me hard: " Hey, those aren't spaceships on my TV, those are models!  "

I build models, 
I take pictures, 

I want to do this !

What I do

Shooting plates on AMC's Hell on Wheels.

I actively work with production, our vendors and in-house artists to avoid the problems we all see coming and deal with the ones we didn't. While something may not have started as my problem I make it my responsibility. 

I am technically very competent, but I prefer the artistic side.  The best thing about VFX is it's both  -  my shots don't just look real, they look photographically real.  We add the same camera artifacts as the main unit's photography, with the same framing you’d expect from the operator and the same timing we’d see in each director.   I try to figure out the production designer to match their style.

 

This informs everything I do.

 

Tell me the story

The earliest conversations are my favorite, when we discuss the story, so I know what sort of project we are doing, what is inside and what is outside the box., and what the inside of the box is going to look like, and just as important;lyu what it is not going to look like.

The ideas for a project can come very quickly, and you spend the rest of the project living up to what you promised in the first days.

And don't get technical.  No matter how much we want to.

Education & History

York University                                Film Production  -  4 years

University of Ottawa                       Business Law and Marketing

University of British Columbia      Database Design

First VFX

Grade 8

 

I doubled exposed this model into a planet and starfield by taking the film out of the camera, cocking the shutter and re-loading the film. 

I had a little more

to learn about focus.

Photography

My early work was as a DP on small productions, but I got into the habit of carrying a camera long before, when I was in high school .

 

I have a personal goal of shooting at least one good image a week :

Miniatures

I started in VFX by building and shooting miniatures - the 3D software of the time was not able to deliver fully photoreal images my high-end TV and feature clients required.

These images are a mix of models I used in VFX work and those I have personally built, usually spending about a year per project. I enjoy the painting, I'm making something look real, without an undo button.

© 2020 John Gajdecki