RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 139,601
Posts: 5,424,742
Members: 24,810
Currently online: 385
Newest member: David Ellerman

TrekToday headlines

September Loot Crate Features Trek Surprise
By: T'Bonz on Sep 16

USS Enterprise Miniature Out For Refit
By: T'Bonz on Sep 16

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes Comic Crossover
By: T'Bonz on Sep 16

Trek 3 Shooting Next Spring?
By: T'Bonz on Sep 16

Star Trek: Alien Domain Game Announced
By: T'Bonz on Sep 15

Red Shirt Diaries Episode Three
By: T'Bonz on Sep 15

Made Out Of Mudd Photonovel
By: T'Bonz on Sep 15

Takei Has Growth Removed
By: T'Bonz on Sep 15

Retro Review: Tears of the Prophets
By: Michelle on Sep 12

New Wizkids Attack Wing Ships
By: T'Bonz on Sep 12


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Welcome to the Trek BBS! > General Trek Discussion

General Trek Discussion Trek TV and cinema subjects not related to any specific series or movie.

View Poll Results: CGI or Models?
Models! 21 27.63%
CGI! 8 10.53%
both are good! 47 61.84%
Voters: 76. You may not vote on this poll

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old June 26 2014, 06:59 PM   #16
Relayer1
Commodore
 
Relayer1's Avatar
 
Location: The Black Country, England
Re: Models or CGI?

I like both.

TMP is beautiful, but a lot of recent CG is remarkable too.

Cheap modelwork looks worse than cheap CG imho...
__________________
Soon oh soon the light, Pass within and soothe this endless night, And wait here for you, Our reason to be here...
Relayer1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26 2014, 07:00 PM   #17
Bad Thoughts
Fleet Captain
 
Location: Containment Area for Relocated Yankees
Re: Models or CGI?

Being colorblind, I tend to find CGI--cheap CGI--to be very unsatisfactory. Most images lack depth and dimension.
Bad Thoughts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26 2014, 09:10 PM   #18
JesterFace
Lieutenant
 
JesterFace's Avatar
 
Location: SUOMI FINLAND
Re: Models or CGI?

Models just look better in my eyes and feel like they're really there, because they are.
JesterFace is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26 2014, 10:43 PM   #19
MacLeod
Admiral
 
Location: Great Britain
Re: Models or CGI?

One example of where I think model work is superior to CGI is ROTJ vs ROTS, for me the CGI battle at the start of ROTS just looked fake whilst the model work of the space battle at the end of ROTS seemed more real.
__________________
On the continent of wild endeavour in the mountains of solace and solitude there stood the citadel of the time lords, the oldest and most mighty race in the universe looking down on the galaxies below sworn never to interfere only to watch.
MacLeod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26 2014, 11:24 PM   #20
Lance
Commodore
 
Lance's Avatar
 
Location: The Enterprise's Restroom
Re: Models or CGI?

^ The trouble with a comparison like that though is that ROTS was made at a time when CGI was not NEARLY as sophisticated as it is today. Modern CGI is vastly better than that.

I still remember when 'The Mummy Returns' came out, and I saw those shots of the CGI Scorpion King at the end, and I remember I just laughed at them (I assume this was not the reaction the film makers intended me to have). I was just like, "They could've got Stan Winston to provide some kind of awesome physical effect for this sequence, and THIS is what they do instead?!". My general feeling was that people in Hollywood, as well as in the wider audience, had bought wholesale into the myth of CGI as being shiny and flash and necessary, and were using it simply because it was there, when there were in actual fact better options available elsewhere that were being overlooked by movie producers at the time.

Now however I think the level of CGI has finally reached what everybody said it could do back then but it hadn't. It's now really a very, very good medium for effects.

Shat Happens wrote: View Post
In ST:ID I didn't like the shaky camera. In the 1980s the SFX motion control cameras had to be in rails, having it shake on purpose was impossible, and by accident meant a ruined shot. So we got beautiful images. Now with CGI they can shake, but what did the President say? "just because we can do a thing desn't mean we should".
I agree with this as a wider and more general issue, not simply relative to effects shots. Some of the cinematography in modern cinema is appalling, and like the CGI example I cite above one gets the impression they've bought into some idea that frenetic pacing and out-of-focus shots somehow make it look more like an action movie. I watch them and I just keep thinking the cameraman has got ADHD...
Lance is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26 2014, 11:41 PM   #21
MacLeod
Admiral
 
Location: Great Britain
Re: Models or CGI?

Lance wrote: View Post
^ The trouble with a comparison like that though is that ROTS was made at a time when CGI was not NEARLY as sophisticated as it is today. Modern CGI is vastly better than that.

I still remember when 'The Mummy Returns' came out, and I saw those shots of the CGI Scorpion King at the end, and I remember I just laughed at them (I assume this was not the reaction the film makers intended me to have). I was just like, "They could've got Stan Winston to provide some kind of awesome physical effect for this sequence, and THIS is what they do instead?!". My general feeling was that people in Hollywood, as well as in the wider audience, had bought wholesale into the myth of CGI as being shiny and flash and necessary, and were using it simply because it was there, when there were in actual fact better options available elsewhere that were being overlooked by movie producers at the time.

Now however I think the level of CGI has finally reached what everybody said it could do back then but it hadn't. It's now really a very, very good medium for effects.

Shat Happens wrote: View Post
In ST:ID I didn't like the shaky camera. In the 1980s the SFX motion control cameras had to be in rails, having it shake on purpose was impossible, and by accident meant a ruined shot. So we got beautiful images. Now with CGI they can shake, but what did the President say? "just because we can do a thing desn't mean we should".
I agree with this as a wider and more general issue, not simply relative to effects shots. Some of the cinematography in modern cinema is appalling, and like the CGI example I cite above one gets the impression they've bought into some idea that frenetic pacing and out-of-focus shots somehow make it look more like an action movie. I watch them and I just keep thinking the cameraman has got ADHD...
Well yes and no, the dinosaurs in JP which came out in 1993 still hold up well today, ROTS was what 2005 over a decade later.
__________________
On the continent of wild endeavour in the mountains of solace and solitude there stood the citadel of the time lords, the oldest and most mighty race in the universe looking down on the galaxies below sworn never to interfere only to watch.
MacLeod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 27 2014, 04:12 AM   #22
JJohnson
Captain
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Re: Models or CGI?

Shat Happens wrote: View Post
Simple question, much polemic.

My vote: I prefer models, but I concede that the saucer of the Enterprise in the 2009 movie was impressive. Problem there was the LENS FLARES!!! and digital dirty lens (even worse choice than the flares IMO).

In ST:ID I didn't like the shaky camera. In the 1980s the SFX motion control cameras had to be in rails, having it shake on purpose was impossible, and by accident meant a ruined shot. So we got beautiful images. Now with CGI they can shake, but what did the President say? "just because we can do a thing desn't mean we should".
I agree with you. I'm utterly tired of shaky cam all over the place - it's a sign of bad cinematography on the part of any director or producer in my book. And I'm also sick to death of lens flares! It's overdone and overused! Move on to character depth, story, plot, pacing, instead of such action, action, explosion, action, run, run, jump, action, explosion all over the place.

I do enjoy some good CGI though. Compare the original 1960s Enterprise to what deg3D or Vektor produced in the last 8 years, or what TOS Remastered did, where you could look INSIDE THE WINDOWS to see it's a real starship. That is immersive. When we saw just white lights - that looks like a model to me and to me, takes me out of the suspension of disbelief each time now that we've got such good CGI. Models had their day, and in some instances are good to use even now, but I want some good CGI for my starships - so good that I can see inside Ten-Forward as the Enterprise scrolls past on my screen, and I can see crew quarters, lounges, labs, etc. from our vantage point, just like we could in TOS-R.
JJohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 27 2014, 05:25 AM   #23
Lance
Commodore
 
Lance's Avatar
 
Location: The Enterprise's Restroom
Re: Models or CGI?

MacLeod wrote: View Post
Lance wrote: View Post
^ The trouble with a comparison like that though is that ROTS was made at a time when CGI was not NEARLY as sophisticated as it is today. Modern CGI is vastly better than that.

I still remember when 'The Mummy Returns' came out, and I saw those shots of the CGI Scorpion King at the end, and I remember I just laughed at them (I assume this was not the reaction the film makers intended me to have). I was just like, "They could've got Stan Winston to provide some kind of awesome physical effect for this sequence, and THIS is what they do instead?!". My general feeling was that people in Hollywood, as well as in the wider audience, had bought wholesale into the myth of CGI as being shiny and flash and necessary, and were using it simply because it was there, when there were in actual fact better options available elsewhere that were being overlooked by movie producers at the time.

Now however I think the level of CGI has finally reached what everybody said it could do back then but it hadn't. It's now really a very, very good medium for effects...
Well yes and no, the dinosaurs in JP which came out in 1993 still hold up well today, ROTS was what 2005 over a decade later.
IIRC, Jurassic Park used a combination of CG and physical effects. Which is really how it should be. No one set of effects is better than the other, both have things they do better than the other.

When the Dave channel revived Red Dwarf a couple years ago they found that while they wanted to do model shots, it was practically impossible to find an effects house that would quote them a reasonable price for them as they'd all switched over to CG and overheads on shooting with physical models had shot thru the roof since the old days compared to the relative cheapness of CG. So that's another factor, some studios just aren't equipped for full scale motion control photography anymore.
Lance is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 12:17 AM   #24
trevanian
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Models or CGI?

Motion control model shoots were always expensive, I just haven't ever figured out WHY ... and I've asked a lot of folks at various fx houses this exact question since the late 90s, when the wholesale rush to do everything CG really knocked visuals down a few pegs.
trevanian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 01:17 AM   #25
CorporalCaptain
Admiral
 
CorporalCaptain's Avatar
 
Location: Kentucky
Re: Models or CGI?

trevanian wrote: View Post
Motion control model shoots were always expensive, I just haven't ever figured out WHY ... and I've asked a lot of folks at various fx houses this exact question since the late 90s, when the wholesale rush to do everything CG really knocked visuals down a few pegs.
Did it have to do with the time it took? With one hero model, there's no such thing as divide-and-conquer, right? You cannot throw more computers at the problem to increase the number of frames per day that you produce. IIRC, it took weeks to do the first shot of the three Klingon ships passing underneath in the opening of TMP. That is, the one model shot under three different trajectories with multiple passes for each trajectory.
__________________
John
CorporalCaptain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 06:34 AM   #26
trevanian
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Models or CGI?

My admittedly vague understanding is that the charge for stage time is enormous ... and yet I also know that for the FROM THE EARTH TO THE MOON miniseries they shot motion control miniatures for EIGHT MONTHS, and that was on a fairly meager budget (the whole series cost 65 mil, and you're talking a lotta hours.)

The klingon shot took longer than most because it was shot frontlight/backlight, a process that Dykstra's group wasn't totally at ease with (Trumbull's group WAS), but was needed because they couldn't keep a bluescreen behind the model throughout the big move. That involves at least one whole other pass, and that is for each ship, since it was the same model being used for all three craft.

The spinner-landing-on-police-precinct-roof sequence in BLADE RUNNER took a full week of stage time, a good-sized hunk of time on a show that had something like 3 mil to spend on ALL the vfx.
trevanian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 02:53 PM   #27
Forbin
Admiral
 
Forbin's Avatar
 
Location: I said out, dammit!
Re: Models or CGI?

Something I discovered while watching the extras on Man of Steel that blew my mind - they're even CGI-ing costumes on actors now! - I mean, I realized it back during Iron Man, and the IM armor was one thing, but in Man of Steel, Zod's costume was CGI! The hell!?
Forbin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 06:42 PM   #28
Nerys Myk
Fleet Admiral
 
Nerys Myk's Avatar
 
Location: House of Kang, now with ridges
Re: Models or CGI?

trevanian wrote: View Post
Look at the TMP refit and the Phoenix from FC ... miniatures, when well-shot, are the tops, man. SUNSHINE's CG spaceships are pretty damned good, though, I'll give you that. The SOLARIS remake, too.

I think if you take the jitter and lens flare and digital dirty lens away from the Abrams, that you'd see something that maybe didn't withstand scrutiny. The best stuff so far in the Abrams was the KELVIN stuff, which really did have a physical look to it as the camera closed in while it was getting the crap kicked out of it.

I'm still trying to find out what Kerner Optical did on Trek09 - they were the former ILM modelshop, and early reports had them doing pyro stuff, probably with models, and they have a vague screen credit, but nobody has ever gone on record about what they did. Kind of makes me think it is like the Sebulba crash in TPM ... a shot that looks so good it is hard to believe it is CG -- and a decade later you find out it was NOT cg.

And ILM themselves don't always do all the work. The really good earthscapes you see in a lot of late 90s early 2000s ILM shows were actually farmed out to a place that had created a high-rez digital Earth for scientific purposes... it was used for GALAXY QUEST and I think SPACE COWBOYS, probably others. I can't find the name of the company (I interviewed the owner for a space.com article that never happened, I think they couldn't get an okay to run illustrations), but I'll dig around.
I think Abrams prefers old school physical models and sets when ever possible.

We're using every trick in the book. But WHEREVER WE CAN, we are shooting on sets — either built on sound stages or expanding upon found locations. This is important. What this means is that the movie won't have that "actors performing in a blue or green void then placed in front of a spaceship set" feeling that makes me insane. One of our really talented designers recently commented online how we shot on a green screen set and what a shame that was, since we could have built something incredible. And she was right — for that one scene, which will last for maybe thirty seconds on screen, we built only pieces and were surrounded by green. But that is the exception. We can't build EVERYTHING, and need to make this film on a budget (partly because that's the $ we have, and partly because I want the studio to see Trek as viable!).

The Enterprise will be a combo of the physical and the virtual. A photo is forthcoming!
From this interview
__________________
The boring one, the one with Khan, the one where Spock returns, the one with whales, the dumb one, the last one, the one with Kirk, the one with the Borg, the stupid one, the bad one, the new one, the other one with Khan.
Nerys Myk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 06:49 PM   #29
Mr. Laser Beam
Fleet Admiral
 
Mr. Laser Beam's Avatar
 
Location: The visitor's bullpen
View Mr. Laser Beam's Twitter Profile
Re: Models or CGI?

I prefer CGI, but if models are necessary, I have no real problem with them.

What I do have a problem with is a knee-jerk reactionary hatred of either one.
__________________
It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the beans of Java that thoughts acquire speed, the hands acquire shakes, the shakes become a warning. It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion.
Mr. Laser Beam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28 2014, 06:59 PM   #30
Metryq
Captain
 
Metryq's Avatar
 
Re: Models or CGI?

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
What I do have a problem with is a knee-jerk reactionary hatred of either one.
Bingo. CGI technology is long past the glossy plastic stage. Textures, depth-of-field, motion blurs and highly realistic lighting are available in even cheap consumer software. As with miniature photography, any failings in the shot are due to the artist (including budgets, deadlines, etc.).

Don't blame the technology, old or new. Sometimes, less-than-real is a directorial choice and not a failure.
__________________
"No, I better not look. I just might be in there."
—Foghorn Leghorn, Little Boy Boo
Metryq is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 06:20 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.