Welcome to the new Art of Robotic Special Effects course!

This site will be the primary source for course content, assignments, and student project reports. This site uses Andrew authentication, so students may log in using an Andrew ID and password.

The syllabus is still in development, but the course description appears below. We look forward to working with you and each other, we think this promises to be a fun class.

Course Description

Inspired by the early “trick” films of George Melies, this project-oriented course brings together robotics and film production technique to infuse cinema with the wonder of live magic. Students will learn the basics of film production using animatronics, camera motion control, and compositing. The projects apply these techniques to create innovative physical effects for short films, all the way from concept to post-production. The course emphasizes real-time practical effects to explore the immediacy and interactivity of improvisation and rehearsal. The robotics topics include animatronic rapid prototyping and programming human-robot collaborative performance. The course includes a brief overview of the history of special effects and robotics to set the work in context.