Sean CunninghamMember Since 17 Mar 2013
Offline Last Active Jun 04 2014 10:51 AM
I grew up mostly in little towns in West and South Texas, the son of a Baptist preacher. In high school I started teaching myself CGI techniques and "turned pro" before graduating high school, thanks to the gift of an amazingly low-cost but powerful Commodore Amiga ('88-89).
After graduation I fooled around at the local community college, taking art and RTV classes ('90-91). I didn't know what I really wanted to do with the rest of my life until James Cameron's T2 hit theaters. After that first matinee showing (July 1, 1991) I had new focus and, thanks to the internet, earned myself an acceptance letter from California Institute of the Arts, a month later. The review committee really liked my recreations of effects from the film.
Oscar winning Metrolight Studios recruited me out of CalArts after a portfolio review (Nov 1991). While there I learned from Abel Image Research veterans like Con Pedersen, visual effects supervisor for 2001: A Space Odyssey, as well as other Academy Award winning and industry defining artists. I'm an original start-up artist for Digital Domain (Summer 1993) and later worked for Centropolis Effects, Sony Pictures Imageworks and Rhythm & Hues Studios, providing digital VFX for several Oscar and BAFTA nominees and winners.
Over the course of my career I've worked with many of the best and brightest in the industry. Some of my favorite projects include "Missile Team" duty on True Lies, my first feature experience, and later supervising on two other James Cameron productions (Strange Days and T23D). I had an amazing experience designing the flying traffic for Luc Besson's The Fifth Element, which took me to Pinewood Studios and later Cannes. I made the first implementation of Paul Debevec's image-based lighting techniques for a major film in X-Men and flooded a valley for the Coens in O Brother, Where Art Thou? I actually started out studying character animation but developed a knack for visual effects, many dealing with natural phenomenon which is crazy because I hated math all through school.
I moved back to Texas in Feb. 2009, back to my roots but still creating VFX independently while experimenting with digital cinematography and commercial production. I co-produced, shot, graded and VFX'd the independent, feature-length thriller Sick Boy with my writer/director brother Tim (shot June 2010). This is our second independent feature film to successfully get worldwide distribution. Our debut, Xtracurricular (shot June 2001), was one of the first feature length narrative films lensed on the CineAlta F900.
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visual effects, animation, anime, photography, filmmaking, movies, cars (Euro, sport compact, touring, classic Mopar)