Working on an effects-driven Marvel blockbuster is any FX nerd’s dream, but for me especially, the kind of magical and alien effects involved in the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise made this job much more exciting.
Proceduralism > simulation
Over the course of nine months or so, I was tasked with creating a whole slew of tools and effects, mostly related to Ego’s planet. I tried to keep as much of it as procedural as possible, playing to Houdini’s strengths and avoiding costly simulation. The solar flare-like structures emanating from Ego’s planet in the opening shot of the sequence and the aurora-like wake following the white airship the crew travels on in particular were procedural geometry rendered as volumes, requiring little or no up-front simulation costs.