Tag Archives: 3d projection mapping

User Review – Notebook Workstation – Eurocom Sky X7e2 (clevo)

Eurocom Sky X7e . A Portable VJ/VR ready Beast !
An independent long term user review by Scott Vj Guy


For the past couple years I have wanted to move onto a new more portable high powered notebook for show control and portable workstation. I have have been running a mini tower PC for about 6 years and it is getting old and tired from travel plus I am getting more contract jobs for companies that need me to come in and work on location. It was hard to find a system that offered all the power I wanted in a notebook platform. I considered a wide spectrum of computers from gaming systems to tablet hybrids and portable workstations looking for the perfect balance of power and features. In the end I had to make some compromises but ultimately got what I need. After researching and comparing for months and looking at big name and US based custom PC builders I made a discovery right in my backyard .

Once I started leaning toward the custom notebook workstation option I found that the Origin PC EON17 and the Sager NP9876 both custom pc builds from USA I was looking at are the same base system chassis known as a Clevo and it is a system also used by Canadian based builders Eurocom and sold configurable from Eurocom or in pre configured models at Best Buy Online.
The Sky X7e2 is a hefty but really cool modular Notebook computer packing high end desktop features. Four drive bays (2 are M.2 PCIe) and four RAM slots. The X9 model can even support 2 1080 GPUs in SLI for extreme GPU power.  The motherboard inside uses a PC spec socket 1152 Sky Lake or Kabby Lake CPU that is great because the chip is more efficient than most mobile options. The size of the machine is actually perfect for me. I love the full size backlit KB and the solid feeling when resting my hands on the chassis. The monitor hinge is good and tight and display is safely encased in a fair amount of hard plastic. There is no Optical drive in mine and only one HDD so hardly any moving parts.
There is a 4k 60hz screen that does look incredible or 1440p 120hz option available. I got the 4k but I sort of wish mine had the 1440p screen because 4K is maybe a bit more pixels than needed on a 17 inch screen. I think I would maybe trade for the faster 120hz screen at 1440×2160 resolution if given the chance.
For me the video outputs are the piece de resistance on this computer. All these systems have the same 3 dedicated video outputs . HDMI + Two 2 x MiniDisplayPort 1.2 .

The Sky X7E2 is specially built for power users with a budget for computing power. Special features like high tech cooling system under a nice back lit full keyboard with number pad. Not to mention Bluetooth, Four USB3 and Two Thunderbolt ports, card reader, finger print scanner, webcam, NV G-sync support and some quality builtin speakers!
This 17.3 inch Notebook system is packed with features and options.
Feels durable, well made and assembled so I hope the build quality is good over time. Fins on cooling vents are a bit flexible but maybe meant for just keeping debris out of there.
Basically this system is a high end frame that’s as good as the components you put in it and several companies have adopted the frame.
It’s a beast book but I am looking for power not pretty.
It does what’s expected of it very well but not everything is perfect.
It’s very heavy on its own and with the power pack you have to carry around it is a real load. Some would consider it too much to carry around all the time but I am fine moving it from house to car to location as needed but I do feel it every time I pick it up. Battery unfortunately does not last any more than 2 hours and less if you are doing anything GPU intensive but that was expected as spec. I am going to see if I can find a higher capacity compatible battery.
I only have strong issues with the power supply. In addition to it being heavy with a short cord the power supply plug in back of computer is a bit shallow and can easily pull out. This is sometimes caused by the weight of the power block hanging below.
Not really a complaint but it would be nice to have  a touch display option. 

The base system is extremely expandable. I upgraded from the stock config 16gb up to 32 gb of DDR4 RAM and added a new 500gb SSD
This system I have plays the latest games at the highest settings in 1080p 60 FPS with ease , getting 30 to 40 fps at 4K . Tested Star Citizen , Assassins Creed Origins, Destiny 2, Steep, For Honor and more. I have been enjoying plugging it into my 55inch 4K display for gaming in screen mirroring mode and using a bluetooth Xbox One controller to play .
I also use multi monitors in extended display mode with creative applications like Maya Zbrush and Adobe creative suite. Once set up this is fine when spanning over to a 4K screen  but I have run into complications connecting multiple screens with various resolutions. In order to read text on the built in 4k screen you are forced to enable text scaling in the Windows display options and this can sometimes conflict with certain apps and the way things look on others screens like smaller external 1080p displays.
Now this is a Windows related issue and not anything to do with the quality of the laptop. It is something specific to running a 4k screen on a notebook.
If there is a way to set scaling for screens individually in windows this would be better.

Reviewed system specs :
Eurocom Sky X7E2.
CPU : i7 6700k 4.0 , GPU: GTX 1080 8gb , Memory : 32gb RAM,  SSD: 1x 500gb N2m pciE, SSD: 1x 500GB Samsung Pro, HDD:  1x 1TB HDD, 

Pros:

  • GTX 1080 8gb GPU (desktop class chip)
  • 4K and 1440p 120hz display options
  • Multiple 4K Display outputs like a desktop GPU (1x HDMI, 2x MiniDisplayport)
  • Massive expandability with 4 drive bays N2m PCIE drive support
  • Dependable desktop class intel i7 Skylake quad core. Latest Kabby Lake Options available
  • 1x Thunderbolt, 1x USB 3.1C, 4x USB 3.0 (lots of connectivity)
  • BlueTooth, fingerprint scanner
  • Full size backlit keyboard
  • Excellent speaker system

Cons:

  • Heavy . 8.6 LBS heavy plus a power supply that weighs in at least 5 or 6 pounds.  13 + lbs is a lot
  • 4K display is only 60hz
  • 2 hours or less battery life
  • Power supply cord should be a bit longer and it is very heavy.
  • Power supply plug in back of computer is a bit shallow and can easily pull out. (common Pc laptop issue )
  • No Touch screen options
  • Limited camera options

Verdict:
The Sky X7E2 does everything I expected very well. For more casual lifestyle computing I would pick up a small hybrid tablet laptop but Ultimately the Eurocom Sky7 delivers High speed , High Power, High resolutions capabilities. It weighs a ton but I can deal because it gets the jobs done and I make a point of landing demanding jobs that are often spanned across multiple locations or traveling to do VJ performances and installations.

Link : http://www.eurocom.com/ec/configure(2,386,0)SkyX7E2

Live Video Art Gear Round Up

Here is some of the latest gear I am using in my kit rn and why.

Desktop Powered Notebook for show control and portable workstation.
Eurocom Sky Xe7 . A Portable VR / VJ Beast !
Excerpt from my latest user review,
” After researching and comparing for months  I discovered a system  known as a Clevo and it is also used by Canadian based builders Eurocom. These are bulky but really cool modular Notebook frames. 4 drive bays(2 are M.2 PCIe) and 4 RAM slots and a 8gb GTX 1080 GPU. Packed in with a high tech cooling system under a nice back lit full keyboard w num pad. The motherboard inside uses a PC spec CPU that is great because it costs less and runs faster than most mobile options. Also a 4k screen and the piece de resistance for a VJ all these systems have the same 3 dedicated video outputs . HDMI + Two 2 x MiniDisplayPort 1.2 . Not to mention 4 USB3 and 2 Thunderbolt!”
See the full review here: http://vjguy.ca/2018/01/20/user-review-notebook-workstation-eurocom-sky-xe7-clevo/
Product Link : http://www.eurocom.com/ec/configure(2,386,0)SkyX7E2

Micro Projectors
Recently I have used lots of these little mini LED projectors to great effect . If you can manage creative uses of content across multiple projectors at this size you can make projection effects nearly anywhere .
Wanting a set of 4 of these little beauties for my own kit to use on the go and for smaller creative or commercial installations.
Link: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1335995-REG/aaxa_technologies_mp_600_01_m6_led_pico_micro_projector.html

Ultra Short Throw Projectors
Ultra short throw units are highly purpose built for creating a surprisingly large screen when mounted from only a foot and a half away from the wall. Recently by combining up to 6  units I have used them to create wrap around image projection rooms in witch the viewers can walk and not obscure the image.
Ill be following up with another post soon covering more details on current projector tech like Laser ,LED , Ultra Short Throw and micro projectors that will cover the bennifits and best uses for each.
Link: http://www.projectorcentral.com/Casio-XJ-UT310WN.htm

Laser Phospor Color and Laser Hybrid Projectors
More on this in a later post but this new light source technology is nothing short of a revolution in the video projection installation world. This lampless technology makes current generation projectors last much longer without maintenance and they are far lighter and more durable as well.

360 Camera
I have been shooting all year with the Samsung Gear 360 camera . Collecting 360 footage and experiences and learning how to use the 360 view type creatively. I’ve been getting excellent time lapse 360 shots of my production jobs and it gives a great way to record the all surrounding immersive experiences that I create . Check out my 360 content online on Veer.tv.  

Mavic Pro Drone
As a first time drone owner and operator starting in 2017 and getting into aerial photography I have to say the DJI Mavic Pro has been amazing and I might have a lot more to say about it in a full review post coming soon. I have used it almost everywhere I’ve gone and pushed it in non ideal circumstances. It makes beautiful video and photos that are amazingly stable and it is a dream to fly with several useful autopilot modes. Its also super durable and I may know after having several “emergency Landings” In trees mostly .
After a year of flying and learning a lot of lessons the little guy is flying great and I am in progress of editing a video of our adventures. Look for that post and a full MavicPro review coming soon.

Wacom Intous Pro
The drawing tablet is my main input device on the computer when using creative software. It is critical for using Zbrush, Photoshop and Maya. I have worked with several models and owned the Intous 3 and 5 and now the 3 again. See my up coming Wacom review and why I prefer the Intous Pro v3 over the 4.
Link : http://www.wacom.com/en-us/products/pen-tablets/wacom-intuos-pro-overview

Modular LED kits,
In the last few years I have been incorporating LED light systems into my staging and artistic projection mapping installations. I’ve used several controllers for LED strips from supplier Holiday Coro including the AlphaPix 3 for addressable LED strip control via Artnet . Connected to the ENTTEC DMX to USB decoder box feeding control signal from Resolume Arena or other live visual software .
Link : http://www.holidaycoro.com/AlphaPix-16-Pixel-Controller-V3-p/721-v3.htm

ENTTEC DMX USB
These devices are a critical part of the chain when controlling any DMX fixture from your computer using software like Resolume, Light Jockey and Wings.
Link : https://www.enttec.com/us/products/controls/dmx-usb/pro-mk2/

MS Kinect
The Kinect motion sensor for Microsoft Xbox1 and PC (support since discontinued) is extreemly useful when creating interactive installations and also for 3D scanning and motion tracking applications. I have been experimenting with Kinect since its release and used it in several live projects

Midi Controller
Akai MPD 226. Professional Build quality , illuminated buttons , Great for expressing yourself during VJ performances.

Trackball

I recently moved back to using a trackball instead of mouse and I like it much better. I also heavily usa a tablet and a Midi Controller when performing but the track ball is a great replacement for the mouse.

These are all key hardware components in my regular performance and day to day process.

I look forward to adding a future post about software tools .

Hope everyone is having a Happy New Year

Vj Guy

 

Dragonfly Twins

 

Dragonfly Twins was a quick projection collaboration I cooked up using a very cool art piece by our friend @Thadea_decora . Some nice results after using Resolume to segment out the areas of the design and make them flow and pop. I wish I had time with this art piece to create more customized animations to do this enchanting design justice. Enjoy these insta posts with some details of the piece.

Valhalla SC 2017

Valhalla 2017 Recap Movie released and Tix for 2018 avail now!
Get 2018 Tickets here
http://valhallasoundcircus.electrostub.com/event.cfm?cart&id=189126

This year Valhalla Sound Circus was the best new Festi experience for sure.
It was a pleasure being asked to do visuals and staging installs with my friend Roland there this year, located just North of Ottawa in Quebec. We worked with the Valhalla team for days on those stages to try and make them perfect for an amazing crowd of base lovers.
We added video mapping with 2x 10k Laser color WUXGA Projectors, custom built sets and controllable led lighting to both the Drakar and Thunder Ground Stage. Vj performances all weekend by Myself and Roland Csach over some of the sickest DubStep and Jungle beats you can hear while in the woods on a picturesque hillside in Quebec. The Entertainment and performances at this event were second to none with amazing aerialists and fire acts major sound and lighting . I had a great time with my Dub Step VJ sets and using some custom beat reactive effects in the video Projection mapping at Thunder Ground.
We also had some major drone fun and I am stoked to finish my edit of some footage captured and share that out.
I loved the music on the Last night at Drakar stage. The base and the vibe were simply beautiful and kept going well into the next morning.

Kudos to the Valhalla video team who did an awesome job on this recap that is just making me fully amped for next year!
I am already crafting lots of new visual treats for next summer that should really twist some necks.
As it snows here in Toronto a few days before Christmas I want to send a Big Shout out to the whole Valhalla SC team who did an incredible job bringing all the elements together that make a great festival experience.

Till 2018 MY CHAMPIONS OF VALHALLA

Adidas Predator Master Control and Toronto FC masters of the MLS

Victory for Toronto FC at the MLS Cup !!!

Another successful installation of the Adidas Predator AR experience .
The Predator Experience is A modified shipping container that contains an augmented projection mapping reality show . 360 video projections surround the guests who step inside the container and experience an immersive audio visual showcase of the Adidas Predator shoe brand relaunch. On top of the projection mapping all around the space, the user holds a large interactive tablet. They can view the shoes close up as AR 3D models as well as a motion captured soccer player showing off some slick soccer moves that you can interact with and activate a cool slow motion effect. Another important element of the activation is the online upload to YouTube of a short shareable video captured live from several feeds and programatically edited into one video with branded bumpers . Users would register to start and then receive this video giving them a chance to share the social media friendly activity.

The projection mapping show within Adidas Predator AR Experience . Without the interactive app in between it is still an awesome av experience. I was pulled onto this project to design and provide the projection mapping technology. The greater Adidas activation is produced by Jam3 @wearejam3 and an impressively diverse collection of contributers from around the world. Notably Patrick Weekes owner of Zemind the interactive app developer did some fine work under pressure , delivering a fully interactive and sharable AR experience in the tightest of deadlines. The container concept design was led by Creative director at Jam3 Dirk Van Ginkle managing the visual design while I worked closely with Technical Director Peter Altamirano and Producer Johanna Stewart over the last 2 months . It took a number of other partners to test and build this high-tech modified shipping container installation. It was a pleasure working with the staff at two other custom creation shops as they built up the standard container into our exact specifications for a self contained public projection AR experience @juiceworks_exhibits And @wondermakr . The project was first launched to great response in L.A at a special event by Adidas for the Tango soccer league finals . Now we just finished the second activation at the big show the MLS Cup finals in Toronto . The install was great and even better Toronto FC won the cup 2 nill. #livevideoart #sgp360 #adidas #heretocreate

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Production Design for Adidas Predator AR Experience

Projection Mapping and AR combined for incredible digital marketing possibilities. 

LIVEVIDEOART in L.A
Last weekend I was in L.A  providing projection technology and general production design consultations for the Adidas Predator shoe line launch. Working with Toronto/L.A based digital media firm Jam3, We created an amazing enclosed augmented reality that is fully surrounded by video projection mapping . Its all inside this converted shipping container and it is getting shipped all around the Continent sharing a cool futuristic experience and hyping up these sweet kicks.
This weekend it is being activated at BMO field Toronto for the MLS Cup FInal game with Toronto FC. Come say hi and see the cutting edge of interactive digital experiential marketing.

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcLy4GUjtC_/…

 

 

#sgp360 @juiceworks_exhibits @wearejam3 #experientialmarketing

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More 360 content to come from this event and inside the container.

Still Processing

See you at the game !! Go Toronto FC !!

New Demo Reel and 360 VR videos uploaded

VJ REEL 2017
This is my latest showreel for Vj performances and Projection Mapping . It was a tough editing process having to dig through footage from over the last 2 years or so . I am pretty happy but there are a few parts I see now I want to fix up so I’ll likely do a final cut before posting up anywhere else. Thanks to all my supporters and clients . The Casa Loma work was done on behalf of EMD Show systems and Liberty Entertainment. Stage design work at 2 stages at Valhalla SC in collaboration with my friend and production tech stage designer partner Roland Cash . There is more detailed info on some of the projects in my past posts and some new ones to come will showcase more closely Valhalla and some more Casa 360 projection room stuff.
New 360 videos up on Veer.tv from my recent travels around festivals and shows . At Ever After I was there to shoot some footage of the Heavy Meta Dragon . I shot handheld and with my drone as well as mounting the Gear 360 camera onto and around the Dragon art car.

Live Visuals Showreel from Vj Guy on Vimeo.

Heart of Gold 5 was the finale of a great party series I was happy to be part of since HOG #2 in 2012 Thanks to George and Lo Lita for bring me on to do stage visuals and some really cool custom 3d mapping effects. This year I made some flaming heart animations to go along with my steampunk heart locket screen. I think I will compile a few more in this as a set and release these clips for other people to use in projection mapping. This 360 video shows the bitter sweet final track of the night. The party title track from headliner and HHC mega star Darren Styles Heart Of Gold.

 

DJI finally got my Mavic Pro ! High Flying Fun

Christmas finally came for me when the Machine Gods bestowed upon me the great DJI Mavic Pro (AMAZING)

Now want New Goggs

More soon. This post to be updated

The legend Continues Happy 2017

Happy New Year Visualites
The Legends of Horror Halloween experience last year was the largest single project I have worked on and it took the better part of 5 months of prep work and production installation to transform Casa Loma into the Horror scenes of pop culture Legend. I was excited to be a part of it along with a passionate team and I learned a lot while on the job from mentors and colleagues not to mention lessons gained through the marathon show experience.
Toronto Canada’s historic venue Casa Loma hosted Legends of Horror every night this past October to celebrate Halloween and scare tens of thousands of guests from all over. See photos and media from the event on the official facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/CL.Legends.of.Horror/
The hugely successful event was produced by Liberty Entertainment under the Creative Direction of Nadia Di Donato and Clark Graff Production Designer for EMD show systems. I work freelance for EMD at Casa Loma as the Projection Mapping Designer and Video technician.
This video shows the large scale projection mapping I worked on installing and operating every night of the show. Thanks to Andrija for coming down and filming this piece for the archives. Shout out to Big Digital Studio for putting together the animations.

Animations and sound design by Big Digital Studio Toronto – http://www.bigdigital.ca/
Projection Mapping Technician and Operations Scott Guy
Videography by Andrija Dimitrijevic – http://adphotografe.com/blog/

The South walls of Casa Loma were almost completely covered by four massive 20,000 lumen bright Barco full HD Projectors. The Casa had custom steel towers built on the lower garden to hold them as well as a small camouflaged control booth that has one of the best views in the city. I mapped/warped and blended the 4 projectors and animated content onto the Castle using AVStumpfl Vioso and Wings for the nightly show control that main wall plus 2 other smaller single beam illusions plus 8 sterio Audio Channels spreading through the various haunted zones of the show. This projection mapping was just a part of a huge walk through entertainment experience featuring amazing sets populated by great costumed actors being enhanced with our sound, lighting and FX designs. Many of the areas and sets included video projection effect elements , There were projections on trees and into Mesh in the forest to create ghost effects. In the tunnel we had dozens mini pico projectors animating elements like crawling bugs or flames on the wall. Everywhere you looked there were convincing sets freaky characters and our terrifying av and lighting effects. I was happy to also work on the prep and maintaining of most of the animatronics and automated effects like smoke and air blasters. It was Freaking Excellent I gotta admit I love Halloween and Haunted houses and the practical effects part.
Thanks to Clark our Production Designer for steering this crazy ship through its first year. Also big thanks to Dasha our production manager for connecting all the dots and getting us set for launch time. The direction and attention to detail of our Producers Nick and Nadia was excellent so thanks to them who made it all happen. Lots of respect to all my friends on the crew, specially Reid Henry the Lighting Designer and another EMD Tech Devon Nutty for making most of the additional sound FX. Also shout out to Joe and his Liberty crew for the great work on sets and construction. Hello to my Sr production tech buddy Randy Boyd, lets go sailing soon. Huge team efforts came together to make this project come to life. Great to be part of and I am already looking forward to the screams of 2017.

I want to add more to this post , I have pics and video from other areas and from during the set up. This was seriously such a huge project and I wish I could have better documented some of the behind the scenes work.
Here is a Instagram post from last year . You can see some regular insider pics and interesting art if you follow me there too. INSTAGRAM/VJGUY

Leveled up this ghost on the weekend with new sfx.

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This year I have my drone and time lapse cameras and I hope to better capture some of my processes and results on some future projects. Having the drone and shooting with it regularly is forcing me to be better at content management and getting my own video projects completed . Check out the next posts for my first aerial videos, more project updates and Live Video Art.

‘ScottVJGuy

Wild and Spooky Summer

More from Summer 2016
In august I was invited to Wild Summer Festival to work with my friends the Organic Family Deco Crew to do the visuals installation for the Techno stage at the small gathering in Ontario’s Ottawa valley. I was happy to take part in this new festival and we brought out the VJ Mandala for its second performance .
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The location and stage installations were fantastic as well as sound and music performances all weekend. I was very pleased to meet a fellow stage decorator Olga of Wizart Visions , her beautiful paintings and canopy designs were inspiring and masterful complimenting the beauty and wisdom of the wonderful woman herself. I hope to reconnect with this kindred artist spirit again some day.
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p1240419Psykovsky is quite a unique act and he had me dancing hard for about 6 hours with only a few breaks. His music is truly psychedelic and the tempo shifts and layers of melody were hypnotic and engaging. Daring me to try dancing to his twisted beats as he wrapped the event . I really needed that shakeup.Respect to the friends and my fave dance floor fairy for stomping all day with me.   https://psykovsky.bandcamp.com/releases
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James Monroe @ Wild Summer , Ontario , Canada . Performing in front of my VJ Mandalap1240372See the wild summer website and facebook pages here :
https://www.facebook.com/wildsummerfestival/
http://wildsummerfestival.ca/index.html

Meanwhile throughout the summer I was haunting the house on the hill above Toronto.
This shot taken while we were doing a fog test using Liquid Nitrogen in the water. We ended up using water based heavy fog emitters and dry ice for the water . 6 large units sat along the top of the hill in the gardens and channeled smoke through long inflated tubes everywhere. The fire department was called on us several times. 
FOG TEST Liquid Nitro

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Cemetery Zone
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“Steam” Fog effects pumped through prop furnace.

Liberty Entertainment’s Legends of Horror at Casa Loma was a huge project for me and the team at EMD show systems.  Under the guidance of Creative Director Nadia Didonado and Production Designer Clark Graff we transformed the entire Castle gardens and 800m Tunnels and stables into a hunted horror theatrical walk through experience.  We provided high end lighting and audio solutions for all the areas of the event as well as installed designed and maintained all the digital and practical effects . So I worked on all the video projection effects and the practical effects systems install and operations, mainly focusing on the elements in the gardens and the large format projection mapping on the south wall of the Castle.
I also assisted Randy Boyd with the Fog systems employed all around the show and we had some pretty elaborate setups that got the fog in all the right places.
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Me and The Count
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Casa Loma Projection Mapping

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Grid warping the image template over the Casa architecture with Vioso
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Legends of Horror projection mapping tests
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Legends of Horror projection mapping tests (Vioso Autoblend test)

 From the Projectors setups to running cable placing lighting and producing content this was a huge job and there is so much to cover. I’m going to follow up with a final post about Legends of Horror and some of the production and projection work I did there. I have a full video of the projection show to share and will talk about the mapping and show control system Vioso as well as some of our production and show effects secrets.

vjguyEx1