SANTA MONICA, CA -- Luma Pictures has brought aboard creative director/VFX supervisor Simon Mowbray, formerly of Zoic Studios. The move fortifies Luma in the ad arena in that Mowbray has to his credit spots for assorted brands such as BMW, Target, Nike, Microsoft and Volkswagen as well as music videos for Kanye West, DMX, Missy Elliot and Rihanna, among other artists. Additionally, Luma may look to leverage Mowbray's VFX and filmmaking acumen into its theatrical feature work.
Prior to Zoic, Mowbray served as creative director at Pixomondo. He has 25 years-plus experience in visual effects. Mowbray began his effects career in 1987, working at a number of top VFX shops in Sydney amid the emerging years of CG and compositing. In 1991, he moved to Montreal where he worked as a product specialist for Softimage. From there, he helped found Discreet Logic in 1992, where he served as a creative director. Two years later, he began as an effects artist at Western Images/Good Pictures, remaining there until opening Radium in 1996 with Jonathan Keeton. The duo sold the boutique design and visual effects company to Reel FX in 2007.
While at Radium, Mowbray contributed as creative director to hundreds of film, music video and commercial projects including several MTV Award-nominated music videos. He moved over to Ntropic where he worked as creative director/VFX supervisor before heading to Pixomondo in 2011.
Mowbray's notable credits include Audi's "Return to Snake River," a long-form ad produced by Bandito Brothers for Mediacom USA. The spot featured Audi revisiting Evel Knievel's failed jump of Snake River Canyon. In a tight 10-day turnaround, Mowbray's team recreated the practical stunt jump in CG to make it larger and more believable in addition to enlarging the actual base camp with CG tents and vans. A variety of shots were created featuring a completely CG Audi RS5, which traversed across virtual tarmacs and background matte-paintings.
Mowbray was also behind the VFX in Rihanna's "Only Girl in the World," one of 2011's most popular music videos. On a near impossible turnaround of under 48 hours for post, the team rotoscoped Rihanna from every shot to achieve a signature pink style. A field of CG poppies was also conjured, as well as ample design-on-the-fly matte painting work, compositing and tracking of firework elements.
Mowbray has won numerous awards, including a PromaxDBA Award in Digital Effects for his work on the spot "GMC Yukon - Dot Matrix" as well as several International Monitor Awards. Many of his music videos have also been nominated for MTV Music Awards.
Source: Luma Pictures