Posted Feb. 10, 2020

Don’t miss the 2020 Australia Road Trip, making stops in Sydney on Feb 21st, Melbourne on Feb 26th and Adelaide on Feb 28th. Paul Fratesi and our very own Jeff “Old School” Wagner will be bringing you the latest features and improvements in Houdini 18 while guest speakers show you how Houdini is being used in production.

This event is a great opportunity to see what's new as well as to connect with other members of the Houdini community in your city.

Jeff Wagner | SideFX


Houdini18: Lighting the way to a more Procedural Pipeline 

PRESENTER BIO | Jeff "Old School" Wagner has been a part of the SideFX Software support team from the early days of PRISMS leading up to today's Houdini. Over the years he has accumulated a vast wealth of knowledge and insight and is regarded by many as a true Houdini Guru. If you've encountered him online or watched one of the tutorials then now is the opportunity to meet him in person.


Friday, February 21st, 2020
3:00 PM (AEDT)

University of Technology Sydney City Campus
Building 11 , Level 00, Room 401 
(Enter via doors at corner of Broadway & Wattle Street)


Matt Estela and Luke Gravett | Animal Logic

Matt Estella | Animal Logic Academy

PRESENTATION | Matt will take us on a Houdini journey that touches on hair and fur, cloth, large scale environments, procedural set dressing and real time projects. These disciplines will also highlight the way in which Solaris, with its USD backbone, takes the work to a whole new level. With 2020 now in full swing at the UTS Animal Logic Academy, Matt will also provide sneak peaks into new pipeline and project activities that will highly leveraged Houdini and Solaris.

PRESENTER BIO | Matt Estela is VFX Lead in Residence at The Animal Logic Academy, University of Technology Sydney. He teaches VFX and VR as part of a Masters of Animation and Visualization. Matt also maintains CGWiki, a popular website for Houdini training, and prior to UTS spent nearly 10 years at Animal Logic in Lighting, FX and CG supervisor roles.

Luke Gravett | Animal Logic

PRESENTATION | A retrospective look at the challenges and advantages of using the Solaris Lookdev, Layout and Lighting tools on a full-feature production at Animal Logic. After migrating to a full USD pipeline at Animal Logic, the FX department had to create a feature-rich set of tools, which allowed them to import and deliver FX and character FX through USD. To do this they developed a workflow in Houdini's Solaris. Join Luke for an in-depth look at the how's, why's, challenges and BIG advantages associated with building a new suite of tools in Solaris - and how this fitted into their production pipeline.

PRESENTER BIO | Luke Gravett has over 6 years’ experience in the VFX industry, having held a variety of roles both in Australia and overseas. He joined Animal Logic in 2015 as an FX Artist and is now Associate FX Supervisor working on Peter Rabbit 2, set for release early 2020. Luke has extensive experience creating pipeline development tools for company wide deployment. Additional credits include Captain Marvel, The LEGO Movie 2, Peter Rabbit, The LEGO Ninjago Movie and Guardians of the Galaxy. 


Wednesday, February 26th, 2020
9:30 AM (AEDT)

SAE Institute

235 Normanby Rd, South Melbourne


Adam Gailey | Luma

Adam Gailey | Luma

PRESENTATION | More information to come!

PRESENTER BIO | Adam Gailey is the global FX Supervisor at Luma, where he oversees the Effects department to ensure all effects related output is produced efficiently and to a high-quality standard. 

Adam’s visual effects career spans 10 years working for major studios on award-winning films. He earned his masters in Digital Effects at Bournemouth University where he was rigorously trained in Houdini. Prior to joining Luma, Adam was the FX Supervisor at Double Negative for big blockbusters including Deadpool 2 and Man of Steel. He was the FX Lead on Interstellar for the Tesseract sequence, which earned the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. Most recently at Luma, he helped develop a robust FX pipeline and led the FX department on Spider-Man: Far From Home, which resulted in Luma’s first AACTA win for Best Visual Effects and a VES nomination for Best FX Simulations.


Friday, February 28th, 2020
2:00 PM (AEDT)

UniSA - North Terrace 

Barbara Hanrahan Building - Level 2, Lecture theatre BH209 



Anna Hodge and Ian Cope | Rising Sun Pictures

Anna Hodge | RSP Education

PRESENTATION | Anna Hodge, Manager of Training & Education, will highlight RSP Educations growth in training opportunities in both the undergraduate and post-graduate areas in conjunction with the University of South Australia. Rising Sun Pictures is South Australia's only Side FX Houdini Certified School, where working VFX artists train the next generation of FX artists.

PRESENTER BIO | Anna Hodge has managed Rising Sun Pictures (RSP) growing education branch for close to four years now. Prior to this, she worked in vocational education for over 17 years.  Anna has experience in developing, managing and growing educational initiatives in the screen and media area to reflect the changing and diversifying industry, education and training market.With a proven record in securing both training and employment opportunities for students, Anna is focused on building strong and secure partnerships between education and industry for the purpose of developing job ready graduates.

Ian Cope | Rising Sun Pictures

PRESENTATION | RSP's VFX Bidding Producer Ian Cope will talk through the company's use of SideFX Houdini on blockbuster films, including highlights from Ford v Ferrari. Ian will talk through the challenges of creating awe-inspiring sequences and the effects team's part in the process. This presentation will highlight the work that RSP has been creating for almost 25 years in Adelaide, and the emerging trends in dynamic lighting and simulation in filmmaking.

PRESENTER BIO | Since starting at RSP in 2001, Ian has directly contributed to the design, management, execution and marketing of over forty feature films. Ian draws on this extensive experience to deliver world-class visual effects to clients around the globe. He is a member of the Visual Effects Society Board for the Australia section.

If you'd like to get in touch with Paul Fratesi, feel free to send him an email at