Play-Informed Design

(Republished with permission from The Neighbourhood and Alex Farrell) It’s easy to underestimate the power of play and how it shapes our view of the wider world. In fact, the more you look around at the built environment, the more you might spot the echoes of childhood present in the shapes of buildings and the method of their construction.

No More Ceiga Magazine (kinda)
no more ceiga

Ceiga Magazine started off as a side project during my third year of university. I’ve had a lot of fun doing it, met a lot of cool people (over the internet) and improved my Adobe InDesign skills; but I’m sad to say that from this point onwards I will no longer continue to release new issues of it.

Zbrush – Characters & Creatures
ZBrush Characters & Creatures: Projects, Tips & Techniques from the Masters

Want to learn from the great sculpture masters but don’t have access to any? Then the next best thing is to get a book like ZBrush Characters & Creatures: Projects, Tips & Techniques from the Masters. Pre-order in the 3DTotal shop.


(Republished with kind permission from The Neighbourhood and Michelle Collier) A few years ago we made a playing card guard for our Alice in wonderland inspired project for Heston Blumenthal. It was a thrill to explore what 3D printing could bring to our work. A joy to lift characters out of narrative worlds and place them within real environments to augment our stories.

Playstation Vita Pets Game Trailer – Mi

There aren’t many in depth articles on the blog of game trailers, mainly because they’re quite hard to get – but the guys at Mi were super kind enough to share their work on Playstation Vita Pets with Ceiga.

Model of a Pfalz DIII Airplane – Tutorial

There hasn’t been a tutorial on the blog in a while, possibly because they take a long time to write and put together. But the awesome guys at Autodesk decided to collaborate content wise and get one of their artists to put this together. Hope you enjoy it.

Don’t Judge a book by it’s (online) cover

Sometimes when I see new architectural CGI’s online my thinking can veer towards: ‘seen this before’. Of course there are always fantastic, original pieces of work being created, but too often I see the same old floor plates, perfectly sunlit exteriors, and generic interiors where the same furniture design classics appear again and again. It’s hard not to become disengaged by images that are technically great, but lacking in imagination. But what if we try to pretend it’s the first time we have seen an image like that? Could we see it in a different light?

NFL Sunday Ticket – The Mill

The Mill worked with Grey and MJZ director Matthijs Van Heijningen on a series of spots for DIRECTV’s ‘Most Powerful Fan’ campaign promoting its new NFL Sunday Ticket feature. ‘Landing’ is the first spot in the campaign, featuring a Philadelphia Eagles fan whose devotion has an “earth-shattering” effect on the neighborhood. We look at the behind-the-scenes R&D that made the spot’s photo-real visual effects possible.

Shell V-Power – Taylor James

Landscapes with a twist strike a cord with drivers in this far-reaching press and poster campaign. JWT’s concept required real and imagined worlds to unite.

Taylor James worked up a 3D model to prove the concept at pre-production stage, and then Andy Glass went to shoot at Atlantic Road, Norway, and in the Docklands, London, whilst we developed the CGI. This seamless integration of disciplines, and a little retouching magic, shows how an intelligent approach from the start can bring a concept alive.

The Advent of Real-time – The-Neighbourhood

Driven by hardware advances made in the games console arms race, and a desire for property developers to stand out from the crowd, real-time technology is finding greater relevancy. It’s not a particularly new concept in architectural visualisation, but it has often been dismissed as ‘gimmicky’ and lacking the fidelity we are able to produce in our traditional, high-resolution renders. The release of Unreal Engine 4 (UE4) has reignited the real-time debate, as well as some in-house R&D. Has the technology matured, or is it still the preserve of the Playstations and Xboxes?

A New Hue – Case Study

‘A New Hue’, is the charming tale of a young girl, Lily, who lives alone in her own bland paper world, until she meets an excitable blob of ink, Blot, who literally colours in her world.

George, Steve and I came together to create a light-hearted, warm and playful piece that an audience would describe as being ‘charming’ or ‘quaint’.

Our first and perhaps largest hurdle was getting the simple story just right, often we found it was much easier to over complicate things, however we eventually found the quaint, family-friendly story we had been seeking.

The Neighbourhood – Don’t believe the CGI

This might seem an odd thing to say from someone who is in the image business.

A few years ago on a family holiday, we booked a stay in a ‘beautiful’ Lake District cottage. In a time pre-google street view, the photographs of the property on the landlord’s website were all we had to go off, showcasing the beautiful setting and the idyllic coastal views. Only when we arrived at the cottage, did we find that all these photographs had been taken looking in one direction, so as to not include the nuclear power station dominating the view in the other!