While this was the second short film I've ever worked on, it was the first time I dived into visual effects (VFX) and soundscaping. Both parts are incredibly important to bring any film to life and adds a profound depth to the story.
When it comes to any custom graphics, it's good to be resourceful and use what you can. The first poster went over really well, but we decided to go in an alternate route as an homage to the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 poster.
There were various challenges associated with the posters that we had to solve. One of the lead actors was unable to appear for post production shoots, so we had to improvise by finding the best still of themselves in the movie to use.
I also had to create various sizes that printed in high quality. There was the standard 11x17, 24x36, and movie poster size - 27x40.
Recording a design process was really fun and intensive. I had to make sure I had new recordings set up every 10 minutes throughout the entire time. As soon as I was done, I added all of the recordings and placed them in orde using Premiere Pro. I sped up all the clips as fast as I could, and did a normal export.
To be completely transparent, this was the very first time I did heavy visual effects, so I did a lot of prep work prior to diving in. I researched tutorials, helpful plugins, and general forums that people use to get more knowledgable.
Mocha Pro was insanely helpful with this process. After Effects has Mocha AE pre-installed, but the pro version was able to create meshes that helped the tracking process for the makeup and shield portions.
The really important thing to learn about selling the effect, is to use simple blur presets to work with camera movements. This helps trick the eyes and makes it much more convincing.
If you would like to see my favorite VFX moments, check out the video below.
I wanted to consolidate my favorite VFX moments that I created for the movie. The video showcases the different styles and variations of effects - such as tracking, masking, and saber glow. All of the renders were created in After Effects.
As you could see from the video above, I thoroughly enjoyed this process. It was a different medium for me, but it was very fun looking for the right foley to use, and manipulate a few pieces of audio with different effects. You have to think of every sound - ambience, chair creaks, footsteps - even lamp lights.
I color-coded the process to make it easier to navigate as I was placing different sounds throughout all the scenes.
We wanted to stand out from other typical short films and actually work with various vendors to create a nice dice set. Not only did it contain a set of fantasy dice, but different sweets and snacks to enjoy a movie with.
Another trend we wanted to try was called 'Soldier, Poet, King' on TikTok, where you would match yourself or others as one of the three. It gave us a chance to showcase the film as a nice teaser. For testing purposes, I think the results came out great considering the fast-paced nature of content trends.
For many festivals, short films are required to have a trailer that caps at 30 seconds. I'm personally not a fan of trailers that tell you everything, so the 30 second rule was very helpful. I wanted to use a powerful line near the end of the movie to create a structure.
If you would like to view an alternate trailer for Athena's Corruption, hit the button below. It is a separate piece that was created for the post-festival run.Alternate Trailer