Computer Graphics World

November / December 2016

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30 cgw n o v e m b e r . d e c e m b e r 2 0 1 6 W hen searching for the subject of their thesis projects, student filmmakers are encouraged to find their inspiration close to home. And, that is what Prasad Narse did. Then a student at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Narse – who served as director, writer, producer, cin- ematographer, animation and story lead, and editor – created "I M Possible," a story about an athlete who, aer spending a year in a wheelchair following an accident, is determined to play basketball again. The topic, indeed, was a personal one. Narse's father, a sportsman, never let go of his passion for all forms of sport, even aer a tragic accident le him paralyzed. "Medically, his condition was incurable, but he had the grit to withstand it and wanted to make the impossible, possible," he says. Narse began writing the script for his film in the fall of 2011, and production be- gan the following summer. He finished the first cut in September 2013, and by April 2014, had the final cut. The film was ac- cepted into the 2015 SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival and received various awards and nominations in 2014 and 2015. For Narse, finishing the script was one of the biggest challenges, as it was his first ever written project. "The topic was very tough to illustrate through writing, espe- cially for a student filmmaker with what was a debut short film," he says. Music production also proved difficult: It took four months for him, Alex Previty (mu- sic composer), and Beau Jimenez (sound designer) to come up with a solid theme for the film. Moreover, Previty worked out of state while composing the score, mak- ing things even more challenging. The film contains no dialog, and instead relies on emotions to drive the story. In this regard, Narse was inspired by black- and-white classic films of the early 20 th century, where in the absence of color, filmmakers portrayed emotions through the use of lighting and shadows. "I tried to refer to the classic lighting setup and im- plemented it for the film. Even with color, I tried to use contrast," he says. The film begins at the darkest night for the hero, challenging him to die for his passion. He is led throughout a dream without colors, while he fights back and makes it to the bright and shining beginning in the golden of day, Narse explains. "This transition was very important for the story, to show the recovery of our hero," he says. As for the colors and light/shadow, the animator also was inspired by the animated fea- ture Kung Fu Panda. TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT Narse, who was assisted in the endeavor by approximately 20 classmates, used keyframe animation for the film. "I wanted to learn the feature-standard animation during my school years," he says. Other than that, he focused on technologies that would enhance the look and reality of the project – for instance, a cloud simulation and a muscle system. "I designed a special material shader to enhance the look of the character rendering. I also used Adobe's Aer Effects and Photoshop to enhance the final look of the film. It had a simple pipeline setup," says Narse. Other tools used on the film include: Autodesk's Maya for modeling, texturing, A STUDENT FILMMAKER ILLUSTRATES THAT NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE IN THE ANIMATED SHORT "I M POSSIBLE" BY KAREN MOLTENBREY LIFE'S POSSIBILITIES

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