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Staff Profile: Josh Ellem

BY: Crystel Newman |

CATEGORIES: rising sun pictures, interview, jobs, rspvfx

M E E T   J  O S H   E L L E M  -  J U N I O R  M A T T E   P A I N T E R

RSP's Junior Matte Painter Josh Ellem developed an early passion for arts and movies, inspired by seeing behind-the-scenes footage from the Lord of the Rings trilogy. But one does not simply walk into Mordor, as they say, or into a career in visual effects.  Josh grew up in suburban Sydney, but began his career journey by enrolling in an arts course at a university in Melbourne, with the aim of developing his creative skills. 

Finding that it was not what he was looking for, he attended a workshop run by an Adelaide-based course, which had a greater focus on concept art, and within a week found himself travelling to Adelaide to begin the course proper.  Impressed by Josh's creative flair and ability, his lecturer - Nick Pill, who by day is the Art Director at RSP, offered him a job upon graduation. 

Josh started at RSP as a concept artist, working under the direction of Nick, for almost two years. To expand on his skills, Josh has changed roles and is now a Junior Matte Painter, enjoying all the new challenges and diversity of the new position.


WHAT MOVIES /SHOWS HAVE YOU WORKED ON?

Thor: Ragnarok, Tomb Raider,Logan, Animal World, X-men Dark Phoenix, Romper Stomper and Pine Gap. 

WHAT’S THE MOST CHALLENGING THING YOU’VE FACED IN YOUR ROLE?
It was a recent task, I had to create a title sequence and do a number of roles from concept to comp. The work included setting up cameras, animating, modeling, look dev and compositing. A lot of work, but the results were worth it!

WHAT CHANGES WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE IN THE INDUSTRY?
More job security. 

FAVOURITE MOVIE RSP HAS WORKED ON?
Tie between Thor:Ragnarok and Animal World.

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT WORKING IN THE VFX INDUSTRY?
Being able to do things I'd probably do in my own time and getting paid for it! Plus seeing the final product on the big screen is pretty cool too!

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT WORKING AT RSP?
The People. 

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT LIVING IN ADELAIDE?
The People.

WHAT ARE YOUR INTERESTS / HOBBIES?
Making things, whether it's with my hands or on a pc.

TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT YOURSELF THAT WE DON’T KNOW?
I'm obsessed with ancient history.

FAVOURITE MOVIE
Lord of the Rings trilogy and Seven Samurai.

FAVOURITE DRINK
Water.

CRAZIEST THING YOU HAVE DONE
Worked in the VFX industry!

SUPERPOWER OF CHOICE AND WHY
Immortality, I want to learn more and experience the future.

PHOBIA
Heights.

WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW IS….
Less bureaucratic crap.

ADVICE TO ASPIRING ARTISTS
Get sleep, don't do all nighters, it's not worth it. 

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